Ravoy Tenor 77XX Source: Kjell Lundman
For a few years now I have been researching and writing about the horns built by the German, saxophone-only manufacturer, Dörfler & Jörka. D&J horns are very good copies of Julius Keilwerth horns, and thus share many of JK’s best features, especially the tone.
Yesterday I happened to come across a 2003 post on SOTW, by the late, great Steve Stransky, AKA Sarge, who founded and owned World Wide Sax. This is what he wrote about these vintage German saxophones:
Yep, I agree, the Dörfler and Jörka’s are great playing horns… I just did a custom repad on a Voss tenor (also a Dörfler and Jörka) for a very good customer and it smoked… I think 1200.00 is a great bargain for it. [The price of the D&J tenor being discussed in the thread.]…
$1,200 for a D&J tenor? (Mind you, the seller was adamant that the horn was a JK, which it apparently wasn’t, hence the price.)
The closest that I’ve seen to this price was $799 for this Voss tenor, and that was a rarity. More often than not, here in North America these tenors go for around or under $600—if they go at all.
There’s no law against owning more than one!
True, these horns are somewhat of an unknown in the vintage saxophone world. That said, more information is known about them now, than was when Sarge wrote this SOTW reply in 2003. If anything, you would think that the desirability, and/or value of D&J horns would have increased over the past decade.
Vintage sax players/owners are a fickle bunch. Also, the world’s economy has gone to hell in a hand basket, and the need for the necessities and essentials of life, has replaced the pursuit of luxury and non-essential items.
Let’s face it, how many saxophones does the average player need? Realistically, 1, or at most 2 of each voice that they play. (And 2 only if they need a back-up because of constant gigging or touring.)
As much as I love—and live by—Sarge’s motto: “There’s no law against owning more than one!”, for most players having a lot of horns makes no sense, and actually becomes somewhat of a liability. There is the original financial outlay; the upkeep if they are to be kept playable at all times; and the ongoing purchase of gear for the various horns: mouthpieces, reeds, stands, neck pouches, etc. etc. All these accessories start to add up over time.
Let’s face it, if baby needs new shoes, or the Roxy needs a new mouthpiece, which is going to win out? Even a non-parent like me will buy the baby new shoes.