Posted by Jay Bertolet on June 21, 1999 at 09:21:08:
In Reply to: What if .... posted by Ike H. on June 20, 1999 at 23:41:57:
I thought about your question and I have some ideas:
It seems to me that the same rules apply here as with any antique or collectible. That is, you're looking for desirability and rarity. Lines like York and Marzan and Alexander and Holton and even some of the models of the more common manufacturers which are pretty rare, as well as being fairly consistently excellent tubas, are probably sure bets. One thing I realized in thinking about which models to look at was that these tubas are also generally fairly old and seem to be, on average, made more sturdily. As such, they might remain in pretty good shape longer and withstand damage easier. Obviously, damage would decrease the resale value so durability has to be a consideration.
Another route you could take would be to buy tubas that you know are going to be popular functional tubas in the future. I would think that this kind of speculation would be harder though as new technologies are discovered. I imagine it could be done but I'm guessing that this type of investment would be better in the short term rather than the long term. I hesitate to recommend this approach as you would be taking good playing tubas, a rare enough commodity, out of the market! :)
One person who you might talk to about this is Randy Harrison. He is a brass instrument collector who resides in Georgia (I believe, I've never met him) and he has ads in the union paper all the time listing instruments he is selling and/or buying. One of the local tubists here sold him an Alexander tuba a few years back and got the story from him that he was collecting all brass instruments. He might have some insights on how to go about investing in any brass instruments.
This is one type of investing that I'll never get into because I would have a hard time looking at tubas past their functionality and practical application. Interesting question!