Jump to content


Photo

Now here's a funny thing...


  • Please log in to reply
12 replies to this topic

#1 david robertson

david robertson

    Chatty concertinist

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 301 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Norwich, England

Posted 08 May 2012 - 02:05 PM

I've got an early-ish Aeola on the bench at the moment, which shows a quirk of construction whose sole purpose appears to be to make life as tricky as possible for the poor sods in the Wheatstone workshop (not to mention the humble restorer). The side-rails of the end covers are made in two layers, as if it was decided that they needed to be deeper than originally planned. The outermost sections are of a dark and distressingly open-grained wood, while the inner pieces are more conventional, being in a veneered sycamore (?) The dark wood sections are wider than the others, and do not appear to be veneered at all.

So, two questions. First, why two layers of different timber? And second, having used those two layers, why on earth would you not cover them both with a single piece of veneer?

I've only been restoring for 7 years or so, but I've never seen anything like it. Anyone else?

[attachment=7587:P5081631.JPG]
[attachment=7588:P5081632.JPG]

#2 JimLucas

JimLucas

    Ineluctable Opinionmaker

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 8831 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Denmark

Posted 08 May 2012 - 03:12 PM

I've got an early-ish Aeola on the bench at the moment, which shows a quirk of construction whose sole purpose appears to be to make life as tricky as possible for the poor sods in the Wheatstone workshop (not to mention the humble restorer).

From your description, I would guess that this quirk wasn't original from the Wheatstone workshop, but a later modification. Possibly by an amateur craftsperson?

As to why... None of the "reasons" I've thought of so far survives careful consideration, except the possibility that whatever the reason, the "solution" wasn't considered as carefully as it might have been.

How high do the buttons stand above the end now, both fully up and fully depressed? Is this about the same as on other Aeolas, or significantly different?

#3 SteveS

SteveS

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 907 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:North Yorkshire

Posted 08 May 2012 - 05:27 PM

I've got an early-ish Aeola on the bench at the moment, which shows a quirk of construction whose sole purpose appears to be to make life as tricky as possible for the poor sods in the Wheatstone workshop (not to mention the humble restorer).

From your description, I would guess that this quirk wasn't original from the Wheatstone workshop, but a later modification. Possibly by an amateur craftsperson?

As to why... None of the "reasons" I've thought of so far survives careful consideration, except the possibility that whatever the reason, the "solution" wasn't considered as carefully as it might have been.

How high do the buttons stand above the end now, both fully up and fully depressed? Is this about the same as on other Aeolas, or significantly different?

I'd agree with Jim - this looks like a repair - can't imagine though what they were repairing, and not to finish it with veneer - they obviously thought some stain on the whole end would cover it (never does).

No matter how many 'tinas I repair, I'm amazed by how every concertina throws up a different set of new problems.

#4 david robertson

david robertson

    Chatty concertinist

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 301 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Norwich, England

Posted 09 May 2012 - 04:05 AM

From your description, I would guess that this quirk wasn't original from the Wheatstone workshop, but a later modification. Possibly by an amateur craftsperson?

As to why... None of the "reasons" I've thought of so far survives careful consideration, except the possibility that whatever the reason, the "solution" wasn't considered as carefully as it might have been.

How high do the buttons stand above the end now, both fully up and fully depressed? Is this about the same as on other Aeolas, or significantly different?


A repair was also my first thought, but the original factory serial number stamp is on the inner, veneered sections, so it looks like the whole shebang was assembled like this in the factory. The overall height of the rails, by the way, is identical to a conventionally made Aeola, as is the button height. I guess it's just what we in Norfolk call a rum ol' do!

#5 Konzertina-123

Konzertina-123

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 46 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Paris, France

Posted 09 May 2012 - 07:47 AM

an early-ish Aeola



Would it be this one ? :
http://www.concertin...=1

#6 david robertson

david robertson

    Chatty concertinist

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 301 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Norwich, England

Posted 09 May 2012 - 11:49 AM


an early-ish Aeola



Would it be this one ? :
http://www.concertin...=1


The very same. Unfortunately, I didn't buy it!

#7 d.elliott

d.elliott

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1003 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Sheffield, South Yorkshire, England

Posted 09 May 2012 - 02:24 PM

I suspect that this rim of solid ebony was fitted to stabilise the edge grain of the finger plate, and to give enough depth of wood to cut the edge moulding into, saving depth of wood on the raised end and overall weight of wood; or to make a thin board work as if it was thicker. A bit like a machinist's run-out strip combined with a make up shim. The final end cover depth being set by the veneered sycamore casing sides.

only conjecture, but I think it works, and it is the sort of compromise I might have made especially if there was a shortage of board of the right thickness, or I had planed too much off the finger plate stock, and I thought that I might not have the thickness for a clean edge moulding

Dave

#8 david robertson

david robertson

    Chatty concertinist

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 301 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Norwich, England

Posted 10 May 2012 - 01:03 PM

I suspect that this rim of solid ebony was fitted to stabilise the edge grain of the finger plate, and to give enough depth of wood to cut the edge moulding into, saving depth of wood on the raised end and overall weight of wood; or to make a thin board work as if it was thicker. A bit like a machinist's run-out strip combined with a make up shim. The final end cover depth being set by the veneered sycamore casing sides.

only conjecture, but I think it works, and it is the sort of compromise I might have made especially if there was a shortage of board of the right thickness, or I had planed too much off the finger plate stock, and I thought that I might not have the thickness for a clean edge moulding

Dave


You've obviously given the matter some serious thought, Dave! I love the theory, but it is slightly undermined by the fact that nowhere does the moulding actually exceed the depth of the finger plate. Still, as you say, maybe it would be sufficient for the machinist to think it might...

#9 Geoffrey Crabb

Geoffrey Crabb

    Chatty concertinist

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 437 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Bishop's Stortford, England

Posted 10 May 2012 - 03:25 PM

Might as well suggest something.

As it is difficult to date this instrument and the general concensus is that it is an early example of an octagonal Aeola, what if it was actually a prototype?
In their bid to make a cleaner, leaner machine perhaps they under estimated the depth of the end box. Maybe the depth with the tops in place prevented sufficient lift of the pads for acceptable reed performance. Due to the method and sequence of construction this would only have be evident when the instrument was fully assembled.
However it appears that whatever the problem was, the solution was to slice the tops off, stick on the spacers and reattach the tops. In hindsight it seems more sensible to have inserted spacers in the joint beween the two halves to establish a minimum endbox depth.
As a prototype there may have been no intention or expectation of the instrument being sold but to recoup the expense in making, maybe it was offered at a reduced price or even given away for promotional purposes.
One way or another it escaped or was liberated from the factory.

Just a suggestion

Geoffrey

#10 David Barnert

David Barnert

    Ineluctable Opinionmaker

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2581 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Albany, NY, USA

Posted 12 May 2012 - 08:32 AM

The side-rails of the end covers are made in two layers, as if it was decided that they needed to be deeper than originally planned. The outermost sections are of a dark and distressingly open-grained wood, while the inner pieces are more conventional, being in a veneered sycamore (?) The dark wood sections are wider than the others, and do not appear to be veneered at all.

Your use of the plural in the above suggests (but doesn't state clearly) that you found the same construction anomaly on both ends. Is this in fact the case? If so, then I think we can rule out the suggestions of aftermarket repair or trial-and-error prototype work.

#11 david robertson

david robertson

    Chatty concertinist

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 301 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Norwich, England

Posted 19 May 2012 - 05:05 AM

The side-rails of the end covers are made in two layers, as if it was decided that they needed to be deeper than originally planned. The outermost sections are of a dark and distressingly open-grained wood, while the inner pieces are more conventional, being in a veneered sycamore (?) The dark wood sections are wider than the others, and do not appear to be veneered at all.

Your use of the plural in the above suggests (but doesn't state clearly) that you found the same construction anomaly on both ends. Is this in fact the case? If so, then I think we can rule out the suggestions of aftermarket repair or trial-and-error prototype work.

Good thinking, David! Yes, both ends are constructed the same way, which does tend to rule out repair, but doesn't necessarily exclude Geoff's prototype theory.

#12 Geoffrey Crabb

Geoffrey Crabb

    Chatty concertinist

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 437 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Bishop's Stortford, England

Posted 19 May 2012 - 11:06 AM


The side-rails of the end covers are made in two layers, as if it was decided that they needed to be deeper than originally planned. The outermost sections are of a dark and distressingly open-grained wood, while the inner pieces are more conventional, being in a veneered sycamore (?) The dark wood sections are wider than the others, and do not appear to be veneered at all.

Your use of the plural in the above suggests (but doesn't state clearly) that you found the same construction anomaly on both ends. Is this in fact the case? If so, then I think we can rule out the suggestions of aftermarket repair or trial-and-error prototype work.

Good thinking, David! Yes, both ends are constructed the same way, which does tend to rule out repair, but doesn't necessarily exclude Geoff's prototype theory.


Due to the distribution of notes between the left and right ends and the common construction of both ends of an English, what is done to one end is also done the other.

Geoffrey

#13 d.elliott

d.elliott

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1003 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Sheffield, South Yorkshire, England

Posted 20 May 2012 - 05:14 PM


I suspect that this rim of solid ebony was fitted to stabilise the edge grain of the finger plate, and to give enough depth of wood to cut the edge moulding into, saving depth of wood on the raised end and overall weight of wood; or to make a thin board work as if it was thicker. A bit like a machinist's run-out strip combined with a make up shim. The final end cover depth being set by the veneered sycamore casing sides.

only conjecture, but I think it works, and it is the sort of compromise I might have made especially if there was a shortage of board of the right thickness, or I had planed too much off the finger plate stock, and I thought that I might not have the thickness for a clean edge moulding

Dave


You've obviously given the matter some serious thought, Dave! I love the theory, but it is slightly undermined by the fact that nowhere does the moulding actually exceed the depth of the finger plate. Still, as you say, maybe it would be sufficient for the machinist to think it might...


Ah well, worth a try, looking again at the pictures I can see that now.

Dave




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users