Couesnon et Cie Albert system Bb-flat clarinet
Couesnon et Cie was established in 1888 by Amedee August Couesnon. Actually it was founded already in 1827 by A. G. Guichard. By 1911 they employed 1.000 workers in 8 factories, the largest musical instrument industry in the world.
Couesnon Albert system clarinets are considered to be among the best. Of course, Selmer and Buffet Crampon have a far better reputation, but Couesnon´s Albert clarinets are really great.
This one has been refurbished and is ready to play.
This clarinet is made of grenadil wood. The bell is ebonite, or hard rubber though!
I think it originally is made like this, but I´m not 100% sure. The logo on the bell matches the age of the clarinet which is just before 1930. There is no serial # to determine the year of manufactory, but the separation of the G# and A-key was not common after 1930. Couesnon is also known to use different materials for the clarinet and the bell. I know of two other clarinets: One is like this, wood with ebonite bell. The other is an ebonite clarinet with a wooden bell.
It´s a low pitch Bb-flat clarinet which is stamped on the lower part.
It comes with a Remington mouthpiece, probably not the best in the world…
Just found a case for it – not original!
This instrument is 59 cm long from top of barrel to bottom of bell. The bore is 14,90 mm and the total weight is 603 grams. All new leather pads and new corks throughout the clarinet, including tenons.
The barrel has a hairline crack. It was not leaking, but has been glued carefully just in case. The clarinet pitches perfectly at A=440 with a modern mouthpiece. I play one fom Vytas Krass.
Some shots during the renovation process…
The tenon on the lower part had a crack. It has been glued with a very strong grenadil glue. The same has been done to the barrel.
All the keys have been cleaned and bent back in positions. Springs, rods and screws cleaned from rust and subsequently lubricated and adjusted.
I suspect this Couesnon Albert Clarinet hasn´t been played for many years. This photo is taken just after I disassembled it. Of course, it has been cleaned up and the spider kicked out!
I will ask You to “warm it up” gently. Play it for about half an hour every day for at least a month. Not more. The wood needs to be reminded it´s actually a clarinet, getting used to changes in humidity again.
This has become a very fine clarinet with a wonderful and big wooden Albert sound. It plays beautifully without any trouble.
Sarah Spencer´s COVID Global Ramblers.
Watch out for the Couesnon in the top right corner…
The price is DKK 3.600,- (EUR 490,-) plus shipping.
Don’t hesitate to contact me if You are interested or have any questions.
– And please remember I´m not a professional repairman. If there are issues I can´t handle, I take it to a professional.
The Couesnon is sold as it is, very old, no guarantee or money back.