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  1. #1

    Default Parisian Ambassador F.E. Olds and Son Saxophone

    Anyone heard of it? Is it considered a Intermediate or a Professional Lv Saxophone? I'd like to know as much about this sax as I can, so anyone with info, please post

    Cheers!

    Dr. Lime

  2. #2
    Distinguished SOTW Member Saxland's Avatar
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    I sold these new in the late 60s. I always thought it was the best Mark VI copy (at the time) but we sold more King and Vito horns due to the name. They were $235 new then and were imported by OLDS (brass maker) and all we had were gold Lacquer with Nickel plated keys.

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    Default Olds stencil saxes

    I have done a lot of reading here at SOTW, and around the internet at various places, including the marvelous Saxpics site, but many others as well.

    Olds saxophones seemed to be the typical stencil, i.e., the seller purchased them from a variety of sources. Most commonly they seem to be French made saxophones, but perhaps not always. All of the altos and tenors that I have played were strong players, especially with a better mpc/lig/reed setup than they normally have. I particularly liked the Olds Parisian Ambassador (which seems not to be the Olds Parisian, but yet another horn.)

    Here's what I have pieced together, and I would welcome confirmation or varying opinion. I know of the Olds Parisian Ambassador, the Olds Parisian, the Olds Opera, the Olds Super, and the Olds LA. I haven't played all of these, or even seen all of them in person, however, so I cannot attest to their differences.

    The Parisian Ambassadors were made by a little French company
    called Beaugnier. Olds was a brass (trumpet, horn, trombone, baritone, tuba)
    maker, and they "farmed out" their saxes. The Ambassador was a good student model, as best I can determine (not sure who made these yet), the Parisian was made by Perriet (another French maker), and the Parisian Ambassador was the top of the Olds line (Beaugnier). Then there's the Olds LA sax...?

    Read all 20 threads in the OLDS forum for information about Olds saxes made by Martin and Buescher.

    Talk about confusing nomenclature!

    After Beaugnier and Pierret went out of business in the early 1970's (about the same time that Olds did!), most of their builders went to work for the Selmer factory. Selmer didn't have to take on those builders, so they must have been good ones.

    As I stated earlier, I have pieced this together from many sources, and I welcome discussion as to my possible inaccuracies. Also, I would love to hear from people who have played any or all of these Olds saxophones.

    Sax Magic
    Last edited by Sax Magic; 07-05-2006 at 03:23 PM.

  5. #5
    Distinguished SOTW Member Saxland's Avatar
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    Default Olds

    Just to add to the list.....Olds sold Buffet Dynactions that were engraved Olds with the Buffet serial #. No markings saying Buffet.

    These are Buffet pro horns that can compete with any Mark VI and Selmer SBA.
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    I have seen Ambassadors from the late 40s to early 50s that were Martin and Buescher. They look almost the same but some appear to be similar to a Com.I and others are a 140/141 Buescher. I had one of the latter and it really played well. The REAL one to have is the Super which looks like a Martin with flute cups. I am always looking for one!

  7. #7

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    Sax Magic, I have an Olds tenor (ser. no. 874128) that only has a sticker on it that says "Olds". I'm inclined to believe that they did this to avoid some kind of duties or to avoid putting the dreaded (at that time) "Made in Japan" stamp on it. The number dates it from the early 70's and it has that "look" of a Japanese made horn. Is this the one that you are calling the LA Olds? Not a big deal, but I would be interested in knowing who made it.

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    Whaler,

    I have never seen one that recent. However, Olds went out of business around 1976 (although the name has been revived by others) if memory serves me correctly. Perhaps these were Leblanc Vitos/Yamaha/Yanagasawa?

    Anybody else know about '70's Olds?

    Sax Magic

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    That was when I sold them and all I remember is the Parisian(?) that was gold with nickel keys. IT came in a plastic case with an aluminum band around it. CMI (Chicago Musical Inst.) was the distributor and later became Norlin. They also had Reynolds so some horns may be labeled thus. Don't forget that there were a bunch of Reynolds saxes made by Martin and the Music Man models were similar.

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    Don’t know if this helps, but…

    I’ve been told by an old clarinet guy that Reynolds Emperor clarinets were made in the USA by the Leblanc Corporation of America.

    He said that Reynolds were makers of brass instruments, who were taken over by F E Olds & Son.

    The clarinets made by Reynolds seem to have been Leblanc stencils, so it seems likely that Reynolds, and F E Olds & Son, were indeed stencils of various main brands.



    Anyone know when Reynolds were taken over by F E Olds & Son?

  11. #11
    Distinguished SOTW Member Saxland's Avatar
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    Default Olds and Reynolds

    According to the Sax and Brass Book, published 1998, . p.108, Olds merged with Reynolds in 1964. They were then both purchased by Norlin in 1970. The current owners of the Olds name bought the business in 1980, and F.E. Olds and Son are today based in New Jersey, but their manufacturing operation is in Elkhart Indiana.
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    Thanks!

  13. #13
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    I know that the Olds flute is a Gemeinhardt since the 1990s. It is quite common for a brass company to stencil their woodwinds. Actually almost anything Olds had sax-wise was decent. I don't know about the stuff they have now but I assume it is Asian.

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