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  1. #1

    Default The Elkhart Martin or Buescher

    Hi everyone, I am new to the forum but have been a frequent guest lately. I enjoy the information on this forum, and there seems to be quite a few experts here so I am wondering if someone can help out identifying this alto.

    It is an Elhkart alto, engraving says "The Elkhart Band Instrument Co". Nickel finish, a bit pitted in some places but not bad for an 80+ yr. old instrument. Soldered, BTH. Key work on stack (Elkhart 2 pic.) looks like a Buescher True Tone. G# looks like Martin Handcraft. 5 digit serial on body (55k), and 4 digit serial (5k) on neck and hidden under right hand E key have same numbers. I've posted pictures below.

    I think this is one of the following:

    1. Martin Handcraft stencil circa 1926-27
    2. Buescher True Tone model with BTH
    3. Indiana Band Instrument Co. horn before Martin acquired them

    Out of these possibilities, I think it is a Martin Handcraft stencil but wanted to see what others think. I'm in the process of having it fixed up and looking forward to hearing it.

    Thanks again!
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2

    Default Re: The Elkhart Martin or Buescher

    btw - here are a few more pics., one of the other side and one of the detailed engraving of the Elk.

    Thanks!
    Attached Images Attached Images

  3. #3
    Forum Contributor 2011 SuperMadHatter's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Elkhart Martin or Buescher

    Buescher bought out the Elkhart Band Instrument Co. to make it's student instrument line. Later Elkhart with the Elk logo would read "The Elkhart Built by Buescher" using practicaly the same logo. Due to yours being engraved "Elkhart Band Instrument Company", it was made before Buescher bought them out. Martin bought out the Indiana Band Company-thus their Indiana student line. My guess much more Buescher influenced as I think they made stencils and student saxes for Buescher before they were bought outright by Buescher.
    You say "Bish-er", I say "Boosh-er", let's call the whole thing off.........

  4. #4

    Default Re: The Elkhart Martin or Buescher

    That is good information. I was thinking it may be a Buescher as well but noticed the soldered and beveled tone holes which are typical Martin features. However, I know Buescher also did BTH for a short period of time. I have also heard that there could be shared features among a horn but not sure. Some of the keys on this horn look Buescher and some Martin to me.

    Thanks,

  5. #5

    Default Re: The Elkhart Martin or Buescher

    Does anyone else have or played a horn like this, and how are they? I know the key work can take some time getting used to, but I bet it has a great sound.

    Any other thoughts on if this is a Elkhart BIC or a Martin based stencil?

  6. #6
    Forum Contributor 2011 SuperMadHatter's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Elkhart Martin or Buescher

    You're right, some aspects are Buescher and some are Martin. Could be a sort of hybrid. I am not sure of this, but I think the EBIC might have done horns for both Martin and Buescher before Buescher bought them outright, thus causing Martin to buy the IBIC for their horns. Type Elkhart Band Instrument Company under Advanced Search. Maybe someone in the past has more information. I know in the beginning there was a lot of stencil makers who did work for many different companies when the companies needed extra horns.
    You say "Bish-er", I say "Boosh-er", let's call the whole thing off.........

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