Zephyr Fan Club!!! - Page 7

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  1. #121
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    saxphil's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zephyr Fan Club!!!

    Here is a clip of Perth saxman Carl Mackey sounding fabulous on a late '40s-'50s, I would guess, King Zephyr tenor.
    Etta James cover I'd Rather Go Blind.
    Solo starts at approx 2:32

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?featur...&v=PDwO1zh9p4I

    Screamin' bad @ss tenor tone
    My wife, whose ears I trust, said that my sound is much fuller, richer, more powerful and resonant on this set up.
    ... but really folks... my wife said, " It sounds like a saxophone ".

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  3. #122
    John Kotches's Avatar
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    I'm part of the club. Just got the new to me Zephyr tenor back from adjustments. Mine is 1945ish Vintage, serial 2692xx. Double socket neck, triple ring strap hook... And my oh my the tone.Big, rich but not overly bright and the low register booms like nobody's business.

    I'm using a modern Link STM NY, 7* tip and Java Red 3 reeds.

    I still don't have my technique as fluid as I would like. Adjusting to Vintage keywork is a process after all.

    I was telling my wife the only reason I'd change is to play something different.

    Speaking of which, time to head home and practice while I have the house to myself!

    Sent from my Nexus 6 using Forum Runner

  4. #123
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    Default Re: Zephyr Fan Club!!!

    What he said .... with bells on ... also try a tenor reed on your alto mth pce .... a blue vandoren ,,, usually a classical reed ... man then your Zeph will scream..
    Danodownunder

  5. #124
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    So I've had about 4 weeks and most of the physical clumsiness is gone. I'm still not used to the g# not being automatic with c#/b/Bb.

    Tone (and intonation) is getting better. I am trying different reeds, D'Addario Jazz Select filed 3M. I am finding there's less "Reed buzz" and more tone. I'm not sure that I am using the best terminology, but there you have it.

    I am stripping the bad lacquer job and turning it into a brushed finish. A "Zatin Zephyr" if you will.

    Sent from my Nexus 6 using Forum Runner

  6. #125

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    Default Re: Zephyr Fan Club!!!

    Count me in! Ser# 265xxx so that puts it around 1942, it's an alto. Has probably 85% - 90% original lacquer that is that deep honey color. 3-ring strap hook, double socket neck etc. I love how it sounds. Dark but not "muddy", just kind of right. You can get loud with it. Like others have mentioned here, it kind of "vibrates" in your hand which I hadn't even noticed till I read it here. I just bought a Selmer SA80 "Series I" and I love that too (still on my "honeymoon" with that one) but they are 2 completely different horns, which is nice. I got turned on to King when I got switched to tenor way back in high school and the school had a King that I used. I'm sure it was probably an East Lake student model but it rocked. Some people seem to knock the "old-fashioned" ergos but my hands seem fine with the straight up-and-down keywork, it almost seems faster to me (not that I play "fast"!) than the more modern offset hand position, although that set-up "feels" better when I first hold the horn. Weird. I'd love an S20 but I don't know if I'll ever be able to part with this horn.

    Anyway I play either a Meyer 6 or a Greg Weir 5 with Vandoren ZZ 2 1/2s but I'd like to step it up a little without over-stressing my chops. Any suggestions?

  7. #126
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    Default Re: Zephyr Fan Club!!!

    My '45 silver Zephyr alto has a dark and powerful sound. Almost sounds like a baby tenor sometimes with a default spread vs. piercing upper register.


    Quote Originally Posted by danodownunder View Post
    also try a tenor reed on your alto mth pce ... man then your Zeph will scream..
    Haha. I tried this accidentally.

  8. #127
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    Bluto:

    I'd love to see some pics of your alto. I have a 45 tenor that I'm thinking of silver plating.

    Sent from my Moto X 2015 Pure Edition using Forum Runner

  9. #128
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    Default Re: Zephyr Fan Club!!!

    Sure thing. Bell and neck are shiny. The body is matte. Intonation is very good, unlike my '46 Zephyr tenor which is fine, but has "special needs" on a few notes. =)

    Zephyr G.jpgZephyr 3.jpgZephyr 2.jpgZephyr 4.jpgZephyr 1.jpg

  10. #129
    John Kotches's Avatar
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    Bluto:

    Thanks for sharing... that's a really nice finish!

    Time to start putting all my spare quarters in the overhaul jar ;-)

    Sent from my Moto X 2015 Pure Edition using Forum Runner

  11. #130
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    Default Re: Zephyr Fan Club!!!

    I’ve had my new 307XXX, double-socket Zephyr alto for a couple of weeks now, courtesy of Jaye, who gave her a thorough overhaul and setup. I wanted a horn diametrically opposed to my ’46 The Martin alto, and believe I’ve found her.

    So far, everything I’ve read about these Zephyrs is true, right down to the the LH pinky table, which is considerably worse than even The Martin’s: it's hard to mentally map the layout for some reason, and low B requires concentrated effort. But the keywork is sleek and fast, and it really does vibrate in your hands: this Zephyr’s tone is undeniably royal, and its sheer power intimidating. I put an Art Pepper model red Runyon Custom on her, and nearly blew the doors down.

    It’s an early birthday gift*to myself, and while my eye was admittedly drawn by a more done-up and pricey Zephyr Special, I think this rather special Z. will fit the bill--at least until my next milestone comes along.

    The search for the perfect mouthpiece continues. . . .
    A little bit louder and a little bit worse.

  12. #131
    Distinguished SOTW Member/Logician Grumps's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zephyr Fan Club!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by ZootTheSim View Post
    The search for the perfect mouthpiece continues. . . .
    An old (unaltered) Woodwind Co. alto mouthpiece was a nice match for my son's early Zephyr, and the best fit for intonation out of many we tried.

  13. #132
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    Default Re: Zephyr Fan Club!!!

    Hmm, Woodwind Co., eh? Never played one of those, Grumps. Can you characterize the sound--did they have lots of different models?

    Jaye kindly threw in an old Babbit, which has great intonation, is easy blowing, and a bit spread.
    A little bit louder and a little bit worse.

  14. #133

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    Default Re: Zephyr Fan Club!!!

    I'm in this club! My Zeph tenor is 287XXX. I don't think I will ever part with this sax. Unless I find a Silver Sonic I can afford. (Ha, ha, ha, ha!)
    I now have three King tenors. The King model, from the mid 20s is pre voll-tru and has more character than the rest and turned me on to the "King" sound. People complain about King ergo's. I think King ergos are fine. It's all the other makers with ergo problems. Old Conns are OK too.
    The Cleveland has had a rough time, marching all over Texas I would guess but it still has a great sound and the tone of the Zephyr without adjustable keywork. It has the same bell/body brace as Zephyr/ S20s of the day and the same bow guard as the Zephyr, (the reason I bought it), as well as having a tenor I can take out without worrying about damage, or theft. The nickle keywork is strong and fast. I'm not sure it the Cleveland has the same body as a S20 but the bell keys are on the opposite side simplifying the keywork. Bow is different too.
    My Zephyr is a three hole, double socket variety. Totally same body and bell as Super 20s without extra pearls and a silver underslung neck.
    I am looking into learning how to build a silver underslung neck.

  15. #134
    Distinguished SOTW Member/Logician Grumps's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zephyr Fan Club!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by ZootTheSim View Post
    Hmm, Woodwind Co., eh? Never played one of those, Grumps. Can you characterize the sound--did they have lots of different models?
    They had a lot of lettered codes... A, B, G, K, for example for their facings/baffle/chambers. B's are probably more common as a basic vintage styled piece with some added punch. K had even more punch and sometimes squarish chambers (though I have seen them with and without such flat sidewalls). Tip openings range from small (around 5), to more open (rare 7's). You can google for one of their old ad copies, which describe the differences in their models. But to generalize, they have that vintage vibe with a sort of edge you'd find that other makers gravitated to (like Link). The one my son played on his Zephyr alto was like a B6... but I'd have to double check when I'm at home.

  16. #135
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    Default Re: Zephyr Fan Club!!!

    Thanks for the info, Grumps. I tried my Z today with the old rubber Martin piece that came with my Comm III, and y'know, it wasn't half-bad. Not a huge opening and not much punch, but good intonation, a bit spread and fuzzy, kinda nice for a vintage ballad sound.
    A little bit louder and a little bit worse.

  17. #136
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    Default Re: Zephyr Fan Club!!!

    Zephyr tenor owner here. Mine is serial 247k from 1940. 90% of the lacquer is gone. Restored by Paul Maslin. Well broken-in, like its owner. Blows freely. The whole horn vibrates and resonates more than any tenor I've played. The tone is warm, broad, and full but it can still play with focus. Maybe not as full or loud down low as a Super 20 as the bell's smaller, but it just has a gorgeous tone. A few notes need adjusting to play in tune. Double socket neck. Triple ring strap loops. Bought it as my dive bar horn, but it gets the most compliments from others in terms of the tone. Maybe that's because I play it in a lot of dive bars? Other tenor players always want to buy it from me - that's a good sign - may we all get lucky from time to time. I play HR Bergs with it - 100/2 and 110/2.
    Selmer Series III (matte), King Zephyr, and Buescher True Tone tenors
    Berg Larsen grained ebonite 100/3 mpc (open chamber)

  18. #137
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    Default Re: Zephyr Fan Club!!!

    Curious, do Zephyrs typically have domed resonators on the bell keys even when the others are flat? I remember seeing a mention on SOTW of just such a setup.
    A little bit louder and a little bit worse.

  19. #138
    John Kotches's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zephyr Fan Club!!!

    I can't speak to factory. Mine are all flat metal but also aren't factory.

    Thanks,

  20. #139
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    Default Re: Zephyr Fan Club!!!

    Mine aren't factory either, though it's the only domed reso; the rest are all flat. Just trying to nail down an issue I'm having with a slight airy fluttering sound whenever I play F1 or E1, and which becomes much louder when the Eb key opens. It sounds almost like a snare drum or a pinwheel spinning really fast, and is audible regardless of which mouthpiece I use. My bassist even heard it, so it's in front of the horn too. Nothing seems loose, and it's been regulated recently, so I thought it might be the reso or maybe nearby rollers.

    Either that, or this Zephyr's just so freakin' loud it makes the floorboards vibrate sympathetically, which is quite possible.
    A little bit louder and a little bit worse.

  21. #140

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    Default Re: Zephyr Fan Club!!!

    My Zephyr tenor has a couple side key pads that are clearly of great antiquity. Black with age. The resonators on those pads are domed - with a sort of nail head in the center of the dull, vaguely silvery metal dome. Can't recall ever seeing anything like it. The other newer pads are also domed, but more ordinary looking. It's a mid-'30s Zephyr if I remember right, an early one.

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