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Thread: Clarinet playing band director needs help......

  1. #1

    Clarinet playing band director needs help......

    Hello All,



    I just took over the band program at a very rural school and in the storage closet I found a Besson Euph that is not listed on any inventory sheet and has been hidden in the corner for many years as the school has not had a band in many years! It is a Besson mad in England and the serial number is 578728. It appears to be a 4 valve compensating horn with a satin finish with shiny slides and valve caps shaped like old coke bottle caps. I have searched this forum and been directed to Lee's sax worx several times, but that doesn't give me a model or anything. I am a clarinet player and guess I am spolied by the Selmer site that has a link to type in a serial number and get all the info one would need. The horn has a few small dents, but all of the slides move and valves work. I was able to play 3 two octave scales so the horn is in playing condition, but we did not cover this is Brass Methods! I need a model and age and value for the schools records! Any help would be very, very welcomed!



    Jonathan K




  2. Clarinet playing band director needs help......

    The serial number indicates that the horn is a 1975. The description you provided indicate that this is likely a Besson New Standard/Imperial. I assume the 4th valve is on the side of the horn and there are extra slides and tubing on the back of the valves. This being the case, my diagnosis would be confirmed. This would be a very nice 4 valve professional compensating euphonium circa 1975. If in top condition, these sell for over $2,000 these days and are considered highly desireable by some. The only quirk is that they require a medium shank mouthpiece instead of the more available tenor or bass trombone shank.

    Doug Ruby
    Sterling Virtuoso 1052HS & Adams E3 Prototype 0.70 Top Sprung valves
    Sterling Virtuoso 1050HS baritone
    New England Brass Band
    Winchendon Winds/Townsend Military Band

  3. #3

    Clarinet playing band director needs help......

    I think it was made between 1975 and 1976. The model would be either the Imperial (not used for Besson in the USA) or the New Standard or just a number I can't remember. But if it IS compensating (i.e. has 3 "extra" valve loops on the back of the 3 main valves) it is their professional model. This was a pretty good era for Besson, although quality still varied from horn to horn.

    I would guess the value to be $1200 - $2800 or so, depending on the condition of the body, valves, finish, etc.

    Maybe some other folks will chime in who have more recent experience shopping used horns.

    (I got sidetracked while writing this, so I hadn't seen Doug's post yet)

    Dave Werden (ASCAP)
    Euphonium Soloist, U.S. Coast Guard Band, retired
    Adams Artist (Adams E3)
    YouTube: dwerden
    Facebook: davewerden
    Twitter: davewerden
    Instagram: davewerdeneuphonium

  4. #4

    Clarinet playing band director needs help......

    Thank you so much for you help! I was not expecting such a good response so quickly, I will have to thank my friends over on the clarinet bboard for directing me here! That is a lot more money than I thought it would be worth, I assumed it was a student model. The 4th valve is on the side, and it has no leaks, or none that i could find with my leak light and it only has a few small dings near the bell, so it is in great shape to be 34 years old! I think I wil try and sell it to buy some band needs as we just got 3 new 4 valve yamaha compensating horns! Ill talk with my principal! Thanks again!

    Jonathan K


  5. #5

    Clarinet playing band director needs help......

    Doug is correct: the horn is a Besson 767, aka "New Standard," however, Besson switched to large shank in April 1974, so it is probably a large shank rather than a medium shank.

    [Edit to add: You can confirm the shank size by inserting a bass trombone mouthpiece into the receiver: on a large shank horn, the mouthpiece will go in approx. 1"; if it goes in 1/4" or so, it's medium shank.]For insurance purposes, $2000-2500 is in the right ballpark, although I've occasionally seen satin silver 767sin pristine condition listed in the $2800-3000. FWIW, I sold a 1975 lacquer New Standard, s/n 754,xxx at the Army Band Tuba-Euph Conference earlier this year for $2000, and a slightly older, lacquer medium shank 767 sold for $2500 at the same conference.


  6. Clarinet playing band director needs help......

    If you are going to sell, post some pictures here and let us know before you post on ebay!
    Sterling Virtuoso 1052HS & Adams E3 Prototype 0.70 Top Sprung valves
    Sterling Virtuoso 1050HS baritone
    New England Brass Band
    Winchendon Winds/Townsend Military Band

  7. #7

    Clarinet playing band director needs help......

    I will do! And I have a few quarks with selling instruments on ebay, so it probably wouldnt end up there either way.


  8. Clarinet playing band director needs help......

    I'd sell the yamaha

  9. Clarinet playing band director needs help......

    I got so excited by this I though a new Imperial was about to be sold! I have been looking for this horn for a while but have not managed to get my hands on one...


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