Clarinet in C by Martin Lehner (1875-1884)
Though not directly connected to the Ottensteiner Workshop, Martin Lehner's instruments (like many other Munich builders) exhibit similar characteristics of design, key mechanism, bore dimensions, and tuning tendencies as the fabled Ottensteiner instruments. Born in Ansbach in 1815, Lehner settled in Munich in 1875, setting up a workshop and building instruments under his own name. The instruments made during this time such as this C clarinet featured a stamp similar in design to the Ottensteiner stamps "M. LEHNER/eagle/MUNCHEN" providing another point of comparison between the two makers. The 1884 marriage of Lehner to the daughter of instrument maker W. Keller began a partnership between the two artisans and resulted in the creation of a new "KELLER-LEHNER/MUNCHEN" stamp, placing the date of this instrument squarely between 1875 and 1884 before the formation of the combined firm.
Key: C (Pitch A437-440)
Material: Grenadilla, Nickel-Silver
Key Mechanism: Baermann-System, missing LH F cross, Alt LH Eb and F, RH Thumb
Aside from a crack in the bell that was filled and glued, this instrument has been well-preserved and required minimal work to restore to playable condition. The keywork and springs are all original and the bore has no deviation from other instruments in terms of dimensions. The body is made of grenadilla, which adds stability for the amount of posts drilled and fitted to the wood and resists warping and shrinking. The grenadilla body adds projection and a darker and "heavier" sound than the boxwood instruments, though it should be noted that such a quality is one of the valued characteristics of the C clarinet.