From the archive: Conn 18M Stretched Soprano
General description : American instrument makers sold very few soprano saxophones after the depression of 1929, when the instrument virtually disappeared from popular music. Most of those sold in the previous decade had been straight sopranos, which were a common double for dance band saxophonists in the mid-1920s. The straight horn could rest on a peg-type stand like a clarinet, much more convenient than the curved, which required its own stand and a separate neck strap. Sidney Bechet and Don Redman, the two most important sopranoists of early jazz, both played straight sopranos. Any soprano sax is a challenge to play in tune. In 1928, Conn had introduced the "stretch" model 18M straight soprano - a total redesign, with greater projection and improved intonation. But it required a special mouthpiece design to play in tune at all, and it arrived too late for the professional market. And the easy-fingering-and-intonating Boehm clarinet (which became standard in America in the mid-'20s) supplanted first the Albert clarinet, and then the soprano saxophone.The Conn stretched soprano starts around serial M220xxx, until M236xxx. Conn came out with this longer soprano model in 1929 and because of the depression there are not a lot of these curved sopranos out there. The bore is smaller so the length of the horn had to be extended. They changed the mouthpiece as well. It was a well-made and redesigned horn. Face it, in 1929 Conn's research and design team was excellent. They had just come out with the new F Mezzo soprano in 1928. Shortly after the introduction of this new B flat soprano came the redesigned 12M bari and 14M bass in later 1929. The new 6M alto design was first seen in 1931 and then the 10M tenor was out in 1935. All these horns are of the best quality.Condition : The sax was completely overhauled by its previous owner in 2022. It was not polished so it has a very nice and unique vintage look. The horn is in almost mint condition, without damage, dents or repairs. Body is straight, tone holes are original and theres no wear.Warranty : 1 year full warranty.Level : Professional.Body : Matt silver plated.Condition : almost mint. No damage, dents or repairs.Visual : The silver finish is intact but not polished.Repairs : none.Engraving : nice engraving on bell. Shield engraving around serial number.Keywork : Silver plated.Condition : Almost mint.Pads : New: the sax was overhauled in 2022.Features : Rolled tone holes.Case : original case, in fair condition and fully functional. The interior has some normal wear.Extra : This 18M soprano has 2 mouthpieces: a standard Conn Eagle Trade Mark and a shorter Buescher mouthpiece as alternative to the original S2 mouthpiece. It is narrower overall (narrower, shorter, squeeze throat as well, smallish chamber). The S2 is 2.41 inches. The regular Conn is 2.64 inches. About a 1/4 " difference in length.Remarks : The 18M is a bit longer as the standard ChuBerry saxophone. It requires a short mouthpiece with round chamber to play in tune.