I saw this one on eBay and the serial number does not fit anywhere with the rest.
Here are some excerpts from what the seller said:
...vintage 1950's (possibly before) Vito baritone saxophone in very good condition. This horn sounds beautiful in the low register and all of the pads work like new! (I just had it re padded about 4 years ago and have played it very little since then). No low A or high F# on this one - sorry!
All of the lacquer on this horn appears to be original. As you can see in the photos, some of it is flaking off a bit around the bow of the horn. There are also minor dings all over the lower part of the body of the horn, but no major damage has ever been found anywhere!
The serial number of this horn is 214C4. My instrument tech told me that this horn dates from around the mid 1950's although when I re-lined the case, I found a payment receipt to a Kansas City music store for $30 that dated 1938.
I asked the seller if it said were it was made and he replied:
Hi Doc - I'm not totally sure of its origin. I believe it was made when Vito was still Vito and not bought out by Conn. My instrument tech said it dated from the early 1950's, but I can't find any info on the serial number which is:214C4. There is no stamp on it that says Elkhart, Ind. or the like. It has been my horn since 1991 and has been used strictly by me and a select few of my students. Sorry I can't give you any more info.
Here's some input received Nov. 3rd, 2006:
"I was taking a look at the vito bari that you are having trouble Identifying. First thing I saw was that it is not a
50ís vintage Vito. All of the vito saxes made in the 50ís were built by Beaugnier. They had some very specific distinctions. I will list the differences in two colums below.
50ís Beaugnier built:
- G# key cluster pivots outside of the hand
- G# key has a locking lever underneath
- Bell brace is straight
- Serial numbers had no letters in them
- All were stamped Made in France above Serial Number
Listed/ pictured Vito Bari:
- G# cluster is modern articulated like selmer style
- No mechanism here
- Bell brace is curved
- Serial number contains a C
- No distinction of manufacture
I hope this helped. I think it is a 1970ís built possibly by Yamaha or Yanagisawa.
- Thanks to the correspondent for his cogent and methodical reply.
I'll throw out a couple of things here...None of the Yamaha or Yanagisawa horns have a "C" in the serial number. And...
a lot of the Kenosha built/assembled horns have "no distinction of manufacture"...which I take to mean they are not imprinted with country of origin/manufacture.
It almost sounds like I am arguing that it was made in Kenosha, but I am not really. As far as I know, no bari saxes were made or assembled in Wisconsin.
That includes Holton...I've never seen Holton bari sax. I have seen a bari sax "distributed by Getzen" (which is in Wisconsin).
But that horn was made in Italy.
Picture one...can't see much detail at this resolution.
Picture two - the bell brace seems distinctive.
Picture 4 - Kinda hard to see the engraving.
Picture 5 - I haven't seen a bow key mounted like this before.