Reply To: Faux Yamaha?

AvatarAlan Brinton

Preliminary Report:

I have now received my baby blue Faux Yamaha (“Song Lin”), and have taken it apart, made side-by-side comparisons with the Yamaha P-37D, and taken photos. It will take some time to get photos up, but here are some initial observations. Most importantly, it does not sound at all like the P-37D and does not have the same reeds — in fact, whereas the P-37D has three reed plates, the Song Lin has only two. It has a more muffled sound; it’s okay and a bargain at $19.99, but there’s no comparison with the clear, crisp sound of the Yamaha. I thought possibly these were factory seconds or something like that, in which case their reed plates could be harvested, but no such luck.

In many other respects the Song Lin is a replica of the P-37D. Many of the parts are interchangeable. It either is produced by the same manufacturer or is by design a fairly close copy. The tube and mouthpiece fittings look the same, but they do not fit. They’re a loose fit for a Suzuki. The white keys of the Song Lin are a paler white than the cream color of those of the P-37D, and key action is lighter and looser, though the mechanisms and springs look about the same. The reed chamber cover is almost identical, but the gasket is inferior and is not removable. If your P-37D falls off your bicycle and the main plastic body or end pieces got broken, you could replace them with those of the Song Lin. The spit button mechanisms look the same. So for me the Song Lin is worth what it cost as a curiosity piece and potential source of replacement parts (but unfortunately not including reed plates). And it raises questions I guess we already have about where these things are being manufactured, by whom, and as part of what kind of international conspiracy.

I’ll post photos when I get them organized and set up.

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