Saxophone/Selmer Super Action 80

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Question
I have a tenor Selmer Super Action 80 series that begins with the letter N3525?? On the bell, It's wasn't made in Elkhart,Indiana but was made in Paris.  There are a few scratches on the horn. Unfortunately, due to a medical condition, I will have to sell it. Which year did the "N" series come out and what is the selling price for this horn. All information about this horn is well appreciated.

Thanks!

Ron Simmons

Answer
Ronald,

The saxophone you have is a Selmer Paris, Super Action 80. These are commonly known as the Series 1 to differentiate between the Series 2 and Series 3. However because they were the first series, they don't have anything on the bell other than Super Action 80.

Based on the way you worded your question, I think I may need to clarify a few misconceptions about Selmer. You are correct that your saxophone was manufactured in Paris France instead of Elkhart Indiana. Selmer Paris has never manufactured saxophones anywhere other than Paris, however Selmer U.S.A. which is now Conn-Selmer has. They are 2 completely different and unrelated companies. The only thing they have in common is the name and an exclusive import / export agreement. This has confused many who think their Selmer USA instrument is as valuable as a Pairs, and vice versa.

The Selmer Paris saxophones are pro-level saxophones and many saxophonist still consider them to be some of the best in the world. The Mark VI which was manufactured between 1954 and 1972 is highly coveted by professionals. I've seen some of them sell for over $10,000.

The Super Action 80 was introduced in 1980 and according to your serial number was manufactured approximately 1983-84. I'm not exactly sure what the "N" before the serial number means. My Mark VI has an "M" at the beginning of the number. I've had many people ask this question regarding the letters and no-one really seems to know what they mean. Selmer Paris hasn't really been forthcoming on the issue either.  

As far as value that's going to depend on several things, but the most import is the condition of the saxophone. As you are in New York, you should be able to find someone who can appraise it more accurately as all I can give is a very rough and broad estimate. The range for a SA80 would be around $1500 for one that needs a complete repad to around $3500 in pristine condition. Unfortunately they don't have the resale value of the older models like the Balanced Action, Super Balanced Action or the Mark VI. This is because the Super Action 80 is still being produced. The Series 2 and the Series 3 are both still in production. Also the "Series 1" was only in production for 6 years so they are not very common and don't have a huge following. Like I said find someone close to you who can take a look at it and give you a better assessment. Go to www.napbirt.org (The National Association of Professional Band Instrument Repair Technicians) and do a tech search for someone in your area. Call them and ask if they have any experience with Selmer Paris saxophones and tell them what you have.

I hope this helps....  

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Charles Harris

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questions regarding equipment, performance, repairs, lessons, etc. Almost all saxophone related questions.

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I am a professional member of N.A.P.B.I.R.T (National Association of Professional Band Instruments Repair Technicians). I have been repairing saxophones, flutes, clarinets, and brass instruments since 1993. I perform in several professional groups covering genres form classical, jazz, and rock.

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N.A.P.B.I.R.T (National Association of Professional Band Instrument Repair Technicians

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St. Petersburg Junior College (AA) University of South Florida.

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