Holton Alto Saxophone Model 232
This Holton was repadded by me. New MusicMedic Precision pads with oversized seamless domed resonators. New corks and felts. Tone holes leveled, as were the keypans. Pop. Snap. Crackle. Excellent projection. Snappy key action. Dextrose Dave told me that this is one of the few Holton made models with the bellkeys on the right hand side of the bell, and I believe him.
The bell keys mounted and pivot on the back of the bell. A feature more typically found on French made saxes. Likewise the right hand side Bb and C keys are both two-piece mechanisms, which is a more reliable set up with less flex and slop. G# fingertouch lever set up like that of a Conn 6M.
Overall a very solidly made horn. Virtually no dents in body or neck. There was dent under the palm D key foot which I removed. The original lacquer has good coverage, but with a lot of scratches and speckling. Best to refer to the many photos below. A very sharp and unique bell engraving.
This model 232 may have more in common with the Stratodyne, than with some of the other models. Hard to find much info on the Model 232. Here’s a little snippet on SOTW. And here’s another longer string on SOTW forum. But for some reason I can’t get to the list of Holton models. This model 232 alto might be the little brother to this Tenor Model 243, but the serial numbers are way off.
These horns which are in the minority seeing as how they were made outside of Elkhart, Indiana.
A good example is the neck octave key set up which I believe to be unique. The spring in the key, instead of pushing against the neck body, pushes down from the ‘guidepost’ which is straddled by the octave key. This photo is unfortunately out of focus. But you can sort of see it here .
Perhaps more notably is the unique clothing guard.
More information about the Model 232:
“Holton 232s are comparatively rare beasts – particularly IN Europe. Whereas Conn mass-produced Conn 6Ms for 30+ years, comparatively few Holton 232s were manufactured before Holton shifted their focus onto student/intermediate instruments like the Holton Collegiate.”
Another reference to the Holton Model 232 HERE, which describes it in glowing terms.
The Holton 232 was designed right from the start as a top-quality, professional-grade horn. It also has soldered-on toneholes (e.g. like a King or Martin) as opposed to drawn tone-holes like a Conn, Buescher or Selmer etc.