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Thread: Elkhart tenor 30A vs 31A tenor

  1. #1
    Forum Contributor 2014 Stuckond's Avatar
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    Default Elkhart tenor 30A vs 31A tenor

    I've seen a couple of old threads talking about the Elkhart (With the pic of the Elk on the bell) tenors, and [I]'m interested what kind of knowledge fellow SOTW members have gathered in the last several years. Anyone actually get a chance to ever play BOTH of them? Any actual known difference between the 2? Thank you for all of your information and knowledge!

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    2011 SOTW Contributor fusion1's Avatar
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    Default Re: Elkhart tenor 30A vs 31A tenor

    My Bundy has the same model # and it was made in Elkhart IN so I am guessing these were made in the same factory? Mine is a player for sure and one of my favorite tenors and I have a few Zephyrs and 10Ms.

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    Forum Contributor 2014 Stuckond's Avatar
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    Default Re: Elkhart tenor 30A vs 31A tenor

    I already KNOW I want one, but I'm interested in the difference between the 2. Is there a difference? Worst case, I'll grab myself the next great condition 30A that comes up for sale. I'm beginning to wonder how many are even out there. The prices are right, so it'll just be a timing issue. Thanks for the help!

  4. #4

    Default Re: Elkhart tenor 30A vs 31A tenor

    Quote Originally Posted by Stuckond View Post
    I already KNOW I want one, but I'm interested in the difference between the 2. Is there a difference? Worst case, I'll grab myself the next great condition 30A that comes up for sale. I'm beginning to wonder how many are even out there. The prices are right, so it'll just be a timing issue. Thanks for the help!
    If its a choice go with the 30A. The metal seems to be a bit thinner on the 31A model and I have heard of intonation issues as well.
    The 30A has served as the base model for many stencils and house brands for decades through the 50s and 60s as well as the actually being the Selmer Bundy workhorse. I have one as a backup to my Mark VI and it holds its own.

    sax736

  5. #5

    Default Re: Elkhart tenor 30A vs 31A tenor

    I have a 30A that has really been around the block. In its day it would have been a gorgeous horn, it is silver plated with a true gold washed bell. Despite its appearance, it plays marvelously and has that rich vintage tone. They can be found for little money but play great. I've not seen a 31A so I can't shed any light on it, but can refer to my 30A and answer any questions you might have.

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    Distinguished SOTW Member. eugeneherman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Elkhart tenor 30A vs 31A tenor

    'It's ain't about the notes on the page, it's about the notes on the stage!'

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    Forum Contributor 2014 Stuckond's Avatar
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    Default Re: Elkhart tenor 30A vs 31A tenor

    Thank you all for the feedback. This solidifies my thoughts. If anyone sees or hears of more of these attractive options in the "Great Condition" category, any help is greatly appreciated. I'm looking for my 11 year old nephew's first tenor, and I'm staying in my sister's limit of $750 USD (ALL set up and ready to go). He's already being swooned by pretty pictures of colorful saxes that are in my "Not what I want to see him start on" category. So the tenor needs to be a looker. He saw an old article a friend showed me and conversation quickly revolved around a sales manual with the 30A attached. I've only known 1 person who played one and she used it all the way through college. Looks like a 30A Elkhart (With a family history in and around Elkhart) could be the tank-like very good player starter horn that will keep him happy for YEARS. Plus, I'd love a chance to play one, too!

  8. #8

    Default Re: Elkhart tenor 30A vs 31A tenor

    The 30A model is not always stencilled 'Elkhart' eg. ebay # 330776722259 is 'Harry Pedler & Sons', and of course the early 'Bundy' ones eg. http://saxophonewoodwind.net/vintage...lmer-elkhardt; my theory is that they carried on the serial number range from the earlier (commercially unsuccessful) Selmer-US Padless model that came out out of the same workshop. The earliest 30A I have seen is s/n 31k, whereas the latest Padless s/n seem to be ~30k. There seems to be slight cosmetic changes (key guards, LH pinky cluster etc) throughout the range. I do not recall seeing a 30A later than s/n 80k. [The same should apply to ALTOs, but of course they are model 20A]...
    Last edited by Brenton; 08-17-2012 at 02:15 PM. Reason: added/amended info

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