Posted 11/20/2012 01:15 (#2707048 - in reply to #2706992) Subject: RE: Saxaphone for our daughter
Crawford County, Robinson, Illinois
My wife is a retired music teacher. Her main love was beginning band. She encouraged people to bring in used instruments for her evaluation. It was amazing the amount of junk she saw, and also tried to teach children to play with that junk.
Saxaphones are the hardest to find used with high quality, other woodwinds are also difficult to find without damage. Loose pads and bent linkage are the main things to look for. It is horrible to ask a child to learn to play with a compromised instruments. I recall her telling of one beginner that was very frustrated and ready to quit. She examined her instrument, (was not asked to do so originally) and found with a few small adjustments with a needle nose pliers she was able to change the students whole attitude as air had been leaking from places making it impossible to create the desired notes.
She even found some rental instruments that were of poor quality, so that is not the answer either, unless the horn has not been used previously. She urged parents to participate in rent to own programs, as often students would want to change to another musical instrument before getting out of school. Rent to own is more expensive, but also allows more flexibility and more chances of a better horn. If she had music stores pushing poor quality or badly damaged used units, she did not allow demonstrations in her school.
If you haven't already done so, consult with the band teacher and ask for advice. All the beginning band teachers we knew realized a little effort in choosing the correct horn made for better success with a beginning band and the children that played in that band.
My wife lost count of the junk a family member found in their attic or storage shed that would do more harm for a beginner than help them.