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Saxophone/Keilwerth Tone King Tenor Saxophone


QUESTION: I went and purchased a Keilwerth Tone King tenor sax, but it was after the purchase that I noticed a rather substantial dent in the bow, as if the sax had been dropped. It measures about 1 and 1/4 inches wide and about 3 inches long, and it's covered with dried glue. I paid $1250 for this sax and I don't know if I made a big mistake here. Also the horn doesn't play well below low C and the low B and Bb keys stick together (ie: I would press the low B and the Bb key would activate at the same time, so the Bb would sound, but not the B). Could that have something to do with the damage, or the fact that the horn hasn't been played for a while? Have I been ripped off? What can you tell me about all this?


I assume you mean there was a "substantial dent in the" bell?  The fact that "it's covered in dried glue" is a HUGE red flag and pretty much eliminates the possibility that it may have happened during shipping.  Yes, a dent like that certainly could hinder the low notes since the rods for those keys (and possibly more) may well have been bent.

Whether you purchased online or in person I would seek a refund. Or at very least, get in touch with the seller and let them know that you expect them to cover any repairs.  I would get the horn to a shop immediately and get an estimate as to what it will take to bring it up to good working condition.  You may need other repairs, but the dried glue area seems maybe to have been a cover-up!

Do keep me posted; sorry about that news and good luck.


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------


I just got back from the shop, and my tech told me that the whole stack leaks, and that there is a missing screw. He mentioned that it's a $200 job to get it in playing condition, and that the large dent in the bow lowers the value. He says that these horns sell for $1200 in excellent condition, and I paid $1250 for a horn that is definitely not in excellent condition. I asked him what the value of my sax would be once I get it into playing condition, and he told me $1200-$1500.

This was a person to person transaction (Craigslist), so how would I go about getting my money back? The seller is also selling this horn in this listing:

Now I was intent on upgrading to a professional horn, and if this alto is a good pro model, what can you tell me about it? What I was thinking was returning the Toneking and instead of asking for my money back, because it is Craigslist, I could have him give me this alto instead, or one of the other instruments that he told me that he was selling. My tech encouraged me to demand a refund, and that he would back me up. The problem is I told him that I bought the horn off ebay because I was too embarrassed to say that it was a face to face deal with me not noticing the dent. What would you advise?

Thanks for your time.

ANSWER: No - that soprano sax is not a pro model and should be avoided.

I have no idea how to get your $ from the seller - I am not very familiar with Craigslist protocol but I would hope there was a 30 or 60 day period of grace on some purchases?  I would definitely contact Craigslist and the seller immediately to let them both know how unhappy you are with what as transpired.

I'm sorry you had a bad experience with horns so far - I hate seeing anyone get ripped off- especially brother sax fans!  hang in there and good luck.


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: It was a person-to-person transaction on Craigslist, where the seller came to my home. The ad said that the horn was in excellent condition, the seller agreed via email to sell it for $1500, and after I inspected and played it we then agreed to the $1250 because it was definitely not in the condition as advertised. Although stupid me, I failed to notice the large dent in the bow and not perfectly rounded neck. Now I'm wondering, because this was a face to face transaction, is there any recourse here? The terms of use for Craigslist are as follows:

To the extent permitted by law, (1) we make no promise as to CL, its completeness, accuracy, availability, timeliness, propriety, security or reliability; (2) your access and use are at your own risk, and CL is provided "AS IS" and "AS AVAILABLE"; (3) we are not liable for any harm resulting from (a) user content; (b) user conduct, e.g. illegal conduct; (c) your CL use; or (d) our representations; (4) WE AND OUR OFFICERS, DIRECTORS, EMPLOYEES ("CL ENTITIES"), DISCLAIM ALL WARRANTIES & CONDITIONS, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR PARTICULAR PURPOSE, OR NON-INFRINGEMENT; (5) CL ENTITIES ARE NOT LIABLE FOR ANY INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL, CONSEQUENTIAL OR PUNITIVE DAMAGES, OR ANY LOSS (E.G. OF PROFIT, REVENUE, DATA, OR GOODWILL); (6) IN NO EVENT SHALL OUR TOTAL LIABILITY EXCEED $100 OR WHAT YOU PAID US IN THE PAST YEAR.

With the above stated, could I still demand a refund? I'm guessing that there is no point now, is there?

I wish I could answer the Craigslist question - but I have no idea of you are deserving of a refund.  I do know however, that you won't know for sure until you ask.... and I would ask VERY soon.

By the way - there are some terrific facebook groups for saxophone - they often post horns for sale by reputable folks and retailers. I also recommend e-bay for this very reason - I believe their sale/return policy is a bit more robust in covering each party.

Good luck Mike.


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Eugene Cantera


I have been a music educator for over 25 years and have taught on many levels from young children and school agers on through to college level, professional players and senior citizens. My main areas of expertise are saxophone(s) though I have taught many instruments including, guitar, bass, piano, oboe and drums to name a few. I have also done research on horns both vintage and new.


I have been in music education for 25 years and I have written and published in the subject of professional music education.

The Dallas Morning News, Dallas Business Journal, Marketing and Higher Education Newsletter.

Bachelor of Music Education, Hartt School of Music - The University of Hartford.

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