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Thread: Advice on a Besson

  1. #1

    Advice on a Besson

    Hello forum users, I once again return asking for help with buying a euphonium. I have been considering buying a Besson 765 4-valve non-compensating euphonium. I remembered recently reading a past thread here that details the "roulette years" of Besson where their instruments had varying quality because of overproduction and inferior materials. I read that this was around the years between 1990 and the early 2000s, which just so happens to be exactly the date for the serial number on this instrument (822803). My question is, would it be worth it to take a risk on an instrument from this time? Are the bad aspects of these instruments so bad that I should not even bother? I'm thinking I'll make a low offer to the seller for about $1,100 or so because it also does not include a case or mouthpiece.

  2. #2
    I think you're referring to the "loterry years" of English Besson brass instruments production where funds made available through the UK national lottery resulted in overproduction and poor quality control indeed. Though this is generally referred to as the era of the poorest output from the London Besson factory there were also plenty of decent and even good instruments made. Try out the horn in question to see if it is a good example if you're able to. If you're not able try out and see the instrument in person before sale you'll be taking a risk. Even if the condition looks good, loterry era instruments suffer from poor consistency due to the rushed assembly by inexperienced labourers. That's something that you won't be able to catch on sight.
    As for price: try to determine what that horn would be worth to you, including the risk you would be taking if that is the case. Propose said price, motivate why that is your price and as with every transaction, be polite.
    Music educator - Brass Instruments Enthusiast - Euphonium Player
    2019 Besson Sovereign 967T-2 - Alliance DC3

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Farmington Hills, MI
    Not answering your question directly but there are much better compensating horns that come with mouthpieces for not a lot more these days. A used Wessex Dolce might be in the $1100.00 range.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2020
    Yorktown, Virginia
    For your consideration, a Bessoon New Standard 3-valve compensating euphonium produces a warm and wonderful tone while being very responsive…may want to wait for one of those as they are well within your price point and typically include a case and mouthpiece…
    David Shinn
    Peninsula Concert Band
    Yorktown, Virginia

    1971 Besson 181 ‘New Standard’ Euphonium (3+1 compensating) ~ Alliance DC3M
    1971 Besson 176 ‘New Standard’ Euphonium (3 compensating) ~ Alliance DC3M
    1979 Besson 755 'New Standard' Baritone (3 compensating) ~ Alliance DC5S

    Peninsula Concert Band:

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