You are here:

Saxophone/King 613 alto saxophone -price and age?


Hello -I'm a private saxophone teacher near Toronto, Ontario, Canada.  A potential student wants to purchase a King Alto Saxophone Model 613; Serial # 717301  The seller is asking $500 for this instrument -they say it has no scratches or rust, hasn't been played much.  They claim the pads are clean and tight.  I haven't looked at it yet -I saw the ad on Kijiji. I don't know if it would need a new neck cork, or if it needs new pads or an overhaul. It sounds like the saxophone has just been sitting around  in someone's house. Do you think $500 is a fair price?  I'm not sure if it would be from the 1970s or 1980s -it would be great to know how old it is.  My potential student is an adult who has never played saxophone, but is wanting to find a reliable beginner instrument. Thanks for your help!

Hello Tim, For that sax, $500 is fair..But I would try to get it for $425.It is a wonderful USA made King 613, One of  the greatest student line sax every made. You could play this sax as a pro... I played my students the other day and it had a great Charlie Parker vibe to it..I think that sax is more from the mid 1960's .It's a student horn,  The value is about $499, You have a second line sax. What's a "Second-Line" Instrument?

The best way of thinking of a second-line instrument is that they are student/intermediate horns sold by a major saxophone manufacturer. It is too complex to get into the subject of European and Asian second-line horns, so let's deal with the most common American second-line:

* The Conn Pan-American
* The Martin Indiana
* The King Cleveland
* The Buescher Elkhart

In all the above cases EXCEPT for Conn, the name of the second-line instrument comes from the name of a company that was bought out (for example, the Indiana Band Instrument company was purchased by Martin). In all cases, these horns generally follow the rules for stencils, except that they were actually sold by the companies that produced them -- they just had different names on the bell.  The Conn Pan-Americans did not always use the same tone-hole layout of the Conn New Wonder. The keywork also gradually got more and more dissimilar than that found on the Conn pro line and was then used on the Conn Director instruments of the late 1950's and 1960's.
* The King Cleveland was actually produced by the Cleveland Band Instruments company, as a kind of "wholly owned subsidiary" of the HN White Company after HN White purchased them in 1925. Also, the Cleveland has its own serial number chart and, while they have the distinctive keywork of other King saxophones, the body is rather dissimilar.
* The Buescher Elkhart is sort-of a stencil: an Elkhart-labeled horn is an older True Tone model, made with the same old tooling, but made in the 1930's (or so). The Elkhart, however, is engraved as such and was available in lacquer.
* The quality of second-line horns was generally higher than their stencil brethren.
These are durable saxophones, built like a tank. Perfect for the marching field. You could play this in a big band with the right mouthpiece. I use a Meyer 7MM, hard rubber.
Please get this horn checked out by a saxophone repair technician. They can replace any bad pads, felts or corks. A new neck cork is to be expected. These saxophones last forever...
Good luck!
Grant Koeller  


All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Grant R. Koeller


I'm a Professional Jazz Saxophone soloist recently retired from 23 years with the USAF Band Of Flight, WPAFB, OHIO, experienced in performance, technique and equipment. I'm not a buyer/seller or dealer. I have 40 years Alto, Tenor, Soprano and Bari Saxophone performance experience with additional years on the Flute, Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Bass Guitar, Piano, Drum-set, Guitar and Voice. I'm a third generation professional military musician, my father, Bill Koeller(1939-1997) was in the USAF 1958-1962, and played Jazz Hammond B-3 organ from 1957-1997, and my fathers Uncle, Alfred Koeller (1912-1993), was a professional Acoustic Bassist in the Army Air Corps in WWII, and also performed on Jazz Guitar, Hammond organ, Piano and tenor saxophone.


Professional Saxophone Soloist, 23 total years with the USAF Bands, 6 years with the USAF Band of Flight, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio, performing on Tenor, Alto, Soprano, Clarinet, and Flute. 4 years in Japan, at Yokota AFB with the USAF Band of the Pacific. An Avid Composer and Arranger for the Night Hawk Protocol Combo. Former Lead Alto Saxophonist with the USAF Night Flight Big Band performing the music of Glenn Miller as well as other hits of the Big Band Era. I collect LP records of Jazz, blue's, classical and rock, and have over 12,000 records.

USAF,Phi MU Alpha Sinfonia, Men's National Music Fraternity, Johnny Mack Super Big Band, Tom Daugherty Orchestra, Kim Kelly Orchestra, Dayton Jazz Orchestra, Eddie Love Big Band, Gem City Big Band, Jazz Central Big Band, Shin Sings Orchestra, Kim Kelly Orchestra,USAF Night Flight Jazz Ensemble, Different Hats Big Band, Jimmy Baker Blues Band, This Side Up, Freelance, KING KOELLER Quartet, Jazz Central Big Band, GB Work, Sax On The Web,

Saxophone On the Web; Anchorage Daily News; All Experts; Augustana College Public Radio, WVIK;

North Texas State University School of Music, Jazz Studies 1982-1986 Lead Alto, Lab bands 1982-83 and small group leader 1983-1984, Jazz Radio Host WVIK 90.1 FM NPR affiliate Rock Island, IL United States Collegiate Wind Band European tour 1980 Augustana College, Rock Island IL, Liberal Arts Music Mentors/Teachers:My father Bill Koeller, a Jazz Hammond B-3 Organist (1939-1997) Great Uncle Alfred Koeller, Acoustic Bass 1912-1993

Awards and Honors
Paul Shartle Musician of the Quarter Spring 2008; Glenn Miller Festival, Clarinda, Iowa featured soloist; McDonald's All-American Band and Jazz Ensemble 1979; US Collegiate Wind Bands,Paul Lavalle Conductor, tour of Europe,1980; John Phillip Sousa Award, 1980 Dimond HS Anchorage, Alaska; USAF National Defense Service Medal with Bronze Star; USAF Achievement Medal with 5 Oak Leaf Clusters; USAF Good Conduct Medal with 6 Oak Leaf Clusters

Past/Present Clients
Performed with, Bob Hope, The Platters, Four Tops, Jimmy Dorsey, Crystal Gail, Helen Ready, James Williams, Dallas Jazz Orchestra, Jack Jones, The Mills Brothers, the G-Clef's, Lionel Hampton at Carnegie Hall, Performed for the King Of Thailand 2005, Tom "Bone's" Malone, Roy Hargrove, Tommy Turrentine, Performed for President Gerald Ford, President George W. Bush, The Maguire Sisters, The USO Girls-Andrew Sisters Tribute, The Four Lads, Lincoln Berry, The Dayton Jazz Orchestra, Louis Bellson, Buddy DeFranco, Walter Bishop Jr, Sadao Watanabe, Bobby Shew, Pete Jolly, Quad City Jazz Ensemble, Augustana College Symphonic Band, Jack Scott, Catfish Jazz Society, Intrigue-Boston Wedding Band, The Mark Herbert Little Big Band, The Pacesetters Big Band, The Ambassadors Jazz Ensemble, Pacific Showcase Big Band, Jimmy Dorsey Big Band under the direction of Lee Castle, Ronny Scott Orchestra, Big Al's Hot Dance Orchestra, The Dayton Sidewinders, Tom Daugherty Orchestra, Johnny Mack Super Big Band, Ken Peplowski, Eddie Daniels, Buddy Guy, Roy Hargrove, Warren Parrish, John OMeara Jr., Dave Holcomb, Albia Silva,Vinnie Demartino, Clon VonFitz, The G Clef's

©2016 All rights reserved.