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Oboe/Age of oboe...worth repair?


Hello Geoffrey,

I have a Linton USA-Paris oboe, wood, with a serial number of ZS19968.  I am unsure of how old it is and I'm even having some real difficulty figuring out where it was made.  As I understand it, earlier Linton oboes were made by Cabart, but some time in the 50's (?), they started to be made in the USA in Indiana.  

My main question is can you tell the age and where it was made by the serial number?  It does not seem to conform to the serial numbering convention that other Linton oboes have.  

The oboe seems to be in fairly good condition, considering that I don't think that it's been played for at least 5 - 6 years, but I am sure that it will need at least cleaning and adjustment and at least one new cork...if not the other cork and some pads as well.  My secondary question is would this be worth reclaiming to get it into playing condition?  

Thank you, in advance, for any information you can give.


 Dear Bill
Happy New Year to you from the UK!
My apologies for not replying sooner to you. unfortunately I didn't announce my holiday dates to AllExperts so my fault entirely.

The Linton information you have given me from your own knowledge is spot on. There were instruments made by Cabart in France with the Linton name on them. Unfortunately the serial numbers are not much use nowadays as the lists have long since gone. Only the specialist makers such as Loree and Howarth keep meaningful serial numbers that can accurately date an instrument. The best guess for your oboe is around the 1950s when certainly wooden oboes were made for the Linton company. They began manufacturing a plastic oboe and ran their better quality oboes with "Paris" stamed on the name cartouche - made from Blackwood by Cabart. Cabart themselves were huge makers for other labels until their demise in the early 1970s.

From a value point of view of your oboe it is so hard to tell from distance without trying it. If you can find a repairer who will put some pads on it for you without worrying too much about a complete overhaul which could be costly, then it will be better to judge its worth of course. It will then play!! Some repairers will not be happy to tackle old oboes as they can present loads of problems unknown until taken apart but a few pads might be feasible for them.

Values are only a few hundred dollars at best so don't be too disappointed by that. Old oboes are like vintage cars in that if you want to commute every day in it you might think twice.
If I can help more fire me another question.

Best wishes and sorry to be late.



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Geoffrey Bridge


Professional oboist with many years experience. Former pupil of Leon Goossens. Solo artist for Arts Council of Great Britain. Freelance recitalist/broadcasting/orchestras. Former Head of woodwind teaching in Hampshire, England. Questions on repertoire, playing styles, reeds, cane selection and processing.


St Andrews University Royal College of Music, Aberdeen College of Education Licenciate of the Royal Academy of Music General Teaching Council certificate Broadcast solo recitals/performed with major symphony orchestras/Music Club recitals/writings on double reed matters

Chairman and Trustee of the British Double Reed Society International Double Reed Society Association Hautbois Francais Orchestral Manager of Southern Pro Musica Orchestra/Aberdeen Sinfonietta

Double Reed News/Australasian Double Reed Society magazine/International Double Reed Society

LRAM, Cert Ed

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