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Serial Numbers

pete

Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
Administrator
#1
The 3 Series horns have a seven- or eight-digit serial number. Probably the first number is the month the horn was made in. This would therefore mean that a seven-digit serial number would mean the horn was made in October through December. The second and third numbers are probably the year. The last two or three digits of the serial number may also be stamped on the neck and other parts. Examples:

2364313 = February (2) 3rd (3) 1964 (64)
12364313 = December (12) 3rd (3) 1964 (64)

===================

Horns produced until about 1980 have a six-, seven-, or eight-digit serial number. Probably the first one or two numbers are the month the horn was made in. This would therefore mean that a seven-digit serial number would mean the horn was made in October through December. The second and third numbers are probably the year. The last two or three digits of the serial number may also be stamped on the neck and other parts. Examples:

372278 = March (3) 1972 (72)
1272278 = December (12) 1972 (72)
10701101 = October (10) 1970 (70)

I had someone ask, so I wanted to expand on this:

Those last three or four numbers possibly mean something, but what, exactly, is a good question. The only definite is that Yani used those numbers to match up parts, in other words, "Oh. Serial number 372278 needs a altissimo E key? Stamp the key with '278' to make sure it stays with the horn."

Sticking with the example horn of 372278 (and I'll call it a series 4 alto),

* It's definitely not the 278th Yanagisawa ever made
* It's probably not the 278th series 4 horn made
* It's probably not the 278th series 4 alto made
* It's probably not the 278th Yanagisawa made in 1972
* I think it's most likely that it's the 278th Yanagisawa made in March 1972, but I could be wrong
* It's possible that "278" means something completely different. 278th order that month/year?

I probably could confirm my "most likely" scenario if I had a series 4 and series 5 (they were produced at the same time) where one had the serial number 372278 and the other had the serial number 472278. However, I'm not currently that interested in wading through all the pictures I have :).

===================

Horns produced after 1980 seem to follow the original chart, which I'll include below. However, I've just gotten through to the 500 Series and 6 Series, as of June 8, 2014, so I haven't gotten beyond 1980 in my research.

EDIT on 07-18-2014: Chris J's A-600 was confirmed by Yanagisawa to have been made in April of 1980. His horn's serial number is
03803xxx, so that means there were some 1980 horns that followed the old serial number format. Why doesn't Yanagisawa say the horn was from March (i.e. the "03" that starts the serial number)? It could be that "April 1980" is when the horn was sold. Or when it was completed. Or something like that.

1980 - 00102143
1981 - 00106981
1982 - 00111892
1983 - 00117142
1984 - 00122663
1985 - 00128485
1986 - 00134903
1987 - 00141658
1988 - 00148774
1989 - 00156006
1990 - 00162968
1991 - 00170073
1992 - 00177116
1993 - 00184318
1994 - 00189050
1995 - 00197400
1996 - 00205400
1997 - 00213000
1998 - 00219500
1999 - 00228250
2000 - 00235000

---------------

EDIT Jan. 8, 2017: added info about last 3/4 numbers of pre-1980ish serials.
 
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pete

Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
Administrator
#2
I need to think a bit more about serial numbers, to extend them until 2014. I've got some contradictory data points, so it might be a bit to sort through them. It does appear that s/n 0031xxxx is for 2013 or 2014, but that may change a bit.

Looking at the above serial number chart, growth is almost flat (yes, I used math). You get an average of about 6643 horns a year (max 8750 in '99 and min 4838 in '81). So, if you extend the chart to 2014 using that average ....

2017-01-04_1850.png


So, 0031xxxx just about lines up. That means that this jury-rigged chart is off by a year or two, at most.

If you bought a NEW 901-II or a WO-Series horn this year -- or if you just happen to know exactly when your post-1980 Yani was manufactured (it's on your warranty card) -- please share a serial to make this chart better. If Dave Kessler and/or Jim (via Quinn) can provide some data, please do!

------------

EDIT: I noticed all the formatting got killed in the above chart after the move to Xenforo. I've made a screenshot to replace the table. (PJH 2017/01/04)
 
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pete

Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
Administrator
#3
I just found a S-901 that was purchased new in 2010 or early 2011 with a s/n of 00308501, so I think my little chart is holding together fairly well, but could use a little tweaking.
 

pete

Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
Administrator
#4
... And this is why we have problems with Yani serial numbers.


Capture.PNG


Yes, it's an A-800. The serial number is 87902482 (here's the ad; I got the picture from one of the links). You could look at it two different ways: it's just completely misstamped. I've seen a couple that actually were. Not this bad, though. Could it be from 1979? Possibly, as the 800 was first shown in 1977.
 

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pete

Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
Administrator
#5
$_12.JPG

Serial number is 79010089, which means it dates from July of 1990.
This is from a current eBay ad. This serial number is just all kinds of screwed up.

The reason why it matters a bit is because if the date is "1979," which is a possibility, if you assume someone just transposed numbers on the serial number stamp machine, the horn would be an SN-800. July, 1990? That'd probably be an SN-900 ... although this would be the first SN-900 I've seen. It'd also be, by far, the latest date I've seen Yani use the old-style serial numbers.

Props to Wichita Band, the seller, for not putting a model number in their ad. I've arguably seen more Yani horns than anyone else and I can't tell you definitely if it's a 800 or 900. It's even possible this is a limited batch horn, like the A-600.

'Course, it's possible that Yanagisawa has a record. Maybe I'll e-mail ....
 
#6
I have spent the last 5 hours trying to find out the model and year of the sax we just bought our son. He is only 14 and is thrilled with it. His private lesson teacher said it is an excellent purchase. However, I want to make sure I cover it correctly with insurance so I sort of need more information. The serial number is 00278187 so with your math and growth this sax would be from 2006. However, this is definitely a much older sax. Most posts and sites I've read would indicate that this is a 500 series. I haven't taken pictures yet but the pictures from this sax http://www.flickr.com/photos/37507076@N06/sets/72157633541273847/ match the one we bought pretty much exactly. There are so many similarities from the case with the white ribbon and the orange color to the neck with the red emblem. However the one slight difference is the pinky table. The pinky table on my son's is straight across not at an angle. I could not see any other differences. I am not totally convinced that it is a 500 series but maybe it is. One of the posts I read stated, "Both the 800 and 880 have double arms on the low C and low B keys. The 500 doesn’t." However, this sight (http://en.audiofanzine.com/saxophone/yanagisawa/t800/medias/pictures/a.play,m.342784.html) has a similar sax to what we have with a single arm on the low C but they state it is a T-800 (I am soooo confused). I did find another sax that looks like ours and has the same pinky table - http://forum.saxontheweb.net/showthread.php?225465-Just-picked-up-a-Yanagisawa-T5-from-1976 But we don't have the #5 stamped to the left of the insignia. Anyways, any information you can give would be great.
 

pete

Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
Administrator
#7
The horn on AudioFanzine is a T-6 or T-500, not a T-800, as is the one on Flickr. The one on SOTW is a T-5 -- and you really don't have to work for info on that one, as "5" is stamped by the serial number. Note that the horn on SOTW only has a partial s/n pictured. I'd like to see all of it. If it's actually "0576xxx," then it's definitely mis-stamped: there's no "helper" arm on the low B, so it's not a 6 or a 500.

Anyhow, as mentioned, the easiest difference to spot between the 800/880 and the 6 is that double-arm on the low C. That's also a difference between the 800/880 and 500. However, you've also got the the "helper" arm on the low B on the 500. It's not there on the 800/880. (Of course, the easiest way to eliminate the 880 is if it doesn't have an underslung octave key, unless you have a replacement neck -- and because I've never seen an 880 not stamped "880" by the serial number.)

So, the end-all, be-all, is that I obviously can't tell you anything about your horn -- even what pitch it is -- without pics. It does make me wonder if your serial number's really "0278187." That's Feb. 1978. That could make it an 880, 800, 6, or 500: 1978 is the disputed start date or end date for those models.

=========

As far as playing goes, you've got the only opinions that count: the teacher and student like the horn. I can understand about insurance and you can go two different ways: the current replacement rate for that model or the replacement rate for a modern horn of the same quality. The 500 was an intermediate/student model. All the others are pro models and the difference in price between the WO1 and WO10 is about $1200 (alto or tenor; doesn't matter).
 
#8
The horn on AudioFanzine is a T-6 or T-500, not a T-800, as is the one on Flickr. The one on SOTW is a T-5 -- and you really don't have to work for info on that one, as "5" is stamped by the serial number. Note that the horn on SOTW only has a partial s/n pictured. I'd like to see all of it. If it's actually "0576xxx," then it's definitely mis-stamped: there's no "helper" arm on the low B, so it's not a 6 or a 500).
The one on SOTW is mine. It is actually 0576xxx, and if you wanted to know full serial, all you had to do was ask.....happy to oblige. At the moment I am away from home, but on my return I will get the info.
 

pete

Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
Administrator
#10
First, I want to mention that you're the second person in the past two weeks that talked about the Yani 5 Series. I put the discontinued date as "1970" instead of "1976" (arguably could be 1978-80) on my website. It was a typo: even on that page I mention a horn from 1973 and I have pics of several horns newer than 1970 in my gallery. Sorry about that.

Second, you asked in a different post regarding newbies and posting: this forum has a plugin that pops your post into the moderator queue if you have under 20 posts and put a link in your post. If you think about it, it's not a bad idea: if you're a spammer, chances are that you're going to put a link to a website in your first posts. Anyhow, posts in the moderator queue are approved approximately whenever Jim, Helen, or I remember to check it -- and I tend to be online only a few times during the day on weekdays, unless I have the day off. In any case, things will hopefully be a bit smoother on the new forum, when we go to it.
 
#11
First, I want to mention that you're the second person in the past two weeks that talked about the Yani 5 Series. I put the discontinued date as "1970" instead of "1976" (arguably could be 1978-80) on my website. It was a typo: even on that page I mention a horn from 1973 and I have pics of several horns newer than 1970 in my gallery. Sorry about that.
First, no apologies needed. Second, true enough I'm sure about the two recent T5 related posts (although I simply was responding to an old query in the post rather than starting up a new matter, but in any case, no big dif or deal). Re the end date, I think I had seen somewhere else someone having said (on the internet, so of course must be perfectly true) that the T5 ran until 1975. I make no assertion, beyond the fact that I have a T5 with that 576xxx serial. Whether it is mis-stamped or not, is not a big deal for me, as it plays the same either way. However, I have heard that serial numbers can have an effect on tone . . . about as much as a big heavy neck screw maybe? ;-)

Second, you asked in a different post regarding newbies and posting: this forum has a plugin that pops your post into the moderator queue if you have under 20 posts and put a link in your post. If you think about it, it's not a bad idea: if you're a spammer, chances are that you're going to put a link to a website in your first posts. Anyhow, posts in the moderator queue are approved approximately whenever Jim, Helen, or I remember to check it -- and I tend to be online only a few times during the day on weekdays, unless I have the day off. In any case, things will hopefully be a bit smoother on the new forum, when we go to it.
Ah, it was the link(s) that was/were in the bit I had quoted. That makes sense, since none of my posts since went to moderation. Got it. Thanks.
 

pete

Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
Administrator
#12
No, a serial number of "576xxx" works just fine, provided we're talking Yani 5 or 6 Series. I think the concern, at the time, was that the serial number had a zero in front of it. That would have been odd, although I've cataloged some worse Yani serial number screw ups.

While I think it's probable your horn is from May 1976, it is possible that the horn is plus or minus a couple in the months department, if you consider what Yani and I have to say about the A-600 way back in the first post of this thread. However, you have the trump card: the model number stamped on the horn. That's the best way of telling which model you have.

==========

I did some really in-depth looking at the 500 intermediate horns, a couple weeks back, because someone asked. It's extremely hard to tell an A/T-6 (or 600, for that matter) from a A/T-500, because you have a little pileup of introduction/discontinued dates between 1978 to 1981. With that said, I'm starting to think that a 500 is a bit cheaper version of a 6. I'd love to have someone play both and tell me what differences s/he notices.
 
#13
@pete


Recently i'm willing to buy a Yanagisawa, i found an used one through web, but i couldn't match its serial code and fonts with any model of Yanagisawa. Is there anyone who can help me to figure out that it's a fake one or not?

thank you very much in advance!

IMG_0782.JPG

IMG_0781.JPG
 

pete

Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
Administrator
#14
Hmmm. Well, first, I'm probably the "anyone." :) Second, while I do request a bunch more pics, I also think those engravings look a bit suspicious. I don't think the keywork quite matches a new WO, either. And there definitely are fake Yanis out there.
 
#15
Hi Pete
Could you maybe help me with this Yanagisawa tenor sax? I've no clue what model it could be and when it was manufactured. Pls tell me if you need more pictures.

Thx in advance, Chris
 

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pete

Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
Administrator
#16
Hi, Chris.

That serial number puts the horn at about 1981, so there are whole bunch of things it could be, depending on how accurate the serial number charts are.

Here's the thread where I list the kinds of pics that are helpful. In this case, nice portrait pics of the left side, right side, bell+keyguards, and low C would be good. If you can get some non-blurry pics of a couple springs, that'll also help.
 
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