Untitled Document
Advertisement Click to advertise with us!

never give up

I have a Selmer Super Action 80 tenor saxophone meade in 1986. I was a freshman in high school, played a beginner Bundy for years. I made All State in 8th grade, 2nd chair(they only took 2). My competition was from a school not more than 10 miles from my school, and this is a statewide thing. I am super competitive, so the next year, moving up to the next age group, I bet my Dad. If I made first chair, he would by me this horn. I won! Well, he did not have the money, but a bet is a bet, so he borrowed it, it had to be ordered from Paris, because at the time, there were none available, and it showed up just in time for me to take to State. Well, I am now 45 years old, this has always been my prized possession. Not only because I love the sax, but that my Dad went to such great lengths to secure one for me. I am just really curious what one is worth now? My grand niece is entering 5th grade and is wanting to explore being in band. I have bought a few beginner instruments for her to try, a Bundy clarinet, a geimenhardt flute, a yamaha trumpet, all used but
playable. I can also play all of these instruments, but i am not willing to let just anyone touch my sax. I do not
play anymore, work, life and what not, but letting someone else in is super hard. If she shows real interest, I will gladly pass it down. Unfortunately, I have paid for her to be in other ventures and she did not follow through, like ballet and such. we have a lot of instruments at my home, guitars, drum sets, and wind instruments. Just wondering what the concensus on the value of the horn is. Simply because I do not feel I can let an 11 year old have it before she developes a commitment. Band seems fun and great, but how many kids honestly make it through the first year?


Distinguished Member
Distinguished Member
Ebay sales which are a pretty good indicator of what people are willing to pay show that a Super 80 tenor sells for between $2,200 and $3,200 depending upon the condition. The average over 6 months is roughly $2,700. How many kids make it through the first year of band depends upon the parent's support and commitment and the quality of the teaching.


Content Expert Saxophones
Staff member
For what it's worth, although you did not ask for this type of input, I'll give it to you anyway... Since you say this Selmer Paris horn is your prized possession, my thoughts are I would not send your niece (grand niece?) to school with it at this time. Why? For a number of reasons actually...

When kids first start out, they are naturally not as careful with instruments as when they've played for a while and are more comfortable with them. As they've play them for a while, they are less likely to bang them into stuff, bend the neck down, etc, etc. The risk for damage goes up the bigger the horn is. Since this is a tenor sax, it's risk for damage is higher than if it were an alto.

Instruments left or kept at schools are more likely to be stolen or damaged. This is especially true if the instrument in question is a pro level instrument. My students who have had pro horns gifted to them left their pro horns at home, and only used them for performances. For school the used student model instruments where if they were damaged or stolen, the impact would not be as great either financially, or emotionally--true if the horn belonged to a grandparent for example.

I would highly recommend that you either rent, or buy a decent student model tenor--something like a Yamaha for example--for your niece. If she sticks with it, then you can always gift her your horn at a later date. If you truly love your horn, gifting it to her now, might be a decision you will live to regret.


Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
I +1 Helen's comment. I'll also mention that some schools require players to have a specific make/model (generally Yamaha), so even though we can all objectively say an S80's a better horn, it's sometimes difficult to convince a school to make an exception ... unless you're an exceptional player :).

Additionally, tenors are generally not what beginners start on. It's alto. That's for an awful lot of reasons including the expense and the fact that little fingers can have trouble with bigger horns. Adults even have problems with the extra weight, too.
Top Bottom