Jump to content


Photo

Morse To Edgley - A Move Up?

instrument choice speed responsiveness

  • Please log in to reply
22 replies to this topic

#1 CZ in AZ

CZ in AZ

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 33 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Tucson Arizona

Posted 11 September 2014 - 11:12 AM

Hi folks,  

I have my name down for a Caroll but it will be two years more til I get it.  Currently, I am playing a Morse, but find several limitations even though I dearly love the instrument.  I am seriously thinking of buying an Edgley professional model in the interim.  Wondering if anyone has thoughts on that and would care to share their perspectives. 

 

Claire 


Edited by CZ in AZ, 11 September 2014 - 11:20 AM.


#2 Bill N

Bill N

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 509 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Hamilton, Canada

Posted 11 September 2014 - 04:46 PM

I owned and played one of each at the same time.  My wooden ended Morse is in G/D (used mostly for English sessions and playing for Morris) and I had a metal ended Edgley in C/G which I was using to learn ITM (I have since traded it to make room for a Kensington)  There were certainly differences between the two, but as far as playability or sound, pretty subtle differences, and really a matter of preference rather than one being "better". The Morse is lighter, but the Edgley had a nice solid feel, and is beautifully constructed. (The Morse is well-made too, but a little more perfunctory in its design.) 

 

What sort of limitations is the Morse presenting? 


Edited by Bill N, 11 September 2014 - 04:48 PM.


#3 CZ in AZ

CZ in AZ

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 33 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Tucson Arizona

Posted 11 September 2014 - 04:52 PM

I am not clear on whether they are my limitations or the particular instrument or the make in general, but I find that there is not very much stretch in the bellows, and that the instrument does not respond as quickly (ie not as fast) as I would like.  I feel that I have to vigorously move the bellows on a fast tune to get all the notes.  I would order a wooden ended Edgley with the slanted reed bed. 



#4 Bill N

Bill N

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 509 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Hamilton, Canada

Posted 11 September 2014 - 05:24 PM

When you say "stretch" do you mean you are pulling the bellows out to their full extent when playing? I would have to say in my experience there isn't a huge difference in bellows or response.  If anything, I preferred the Morse bellows (very slightly) and would give a very narrow edge to the feel of the button action on the Edgley. But there wasn't anything I could do on the one that I couldn't do on the other.

 

I'm by no means knocking the Edgley- I loved mine and think it's one of the top hybrids- but I wouldn't order one without trying one first.  I would be very surprised if the problems you are having would be fixed just by making the switch.

 

Just out of curiosity, have you tried a Caroll?  In my experience, putting aside the question of accordion reeds vs. traditional reeds, there isn't a huge difference in playability between the top level hybrids and the traditionally built and vintage boxes.



#5 CZ in AZ

CZ in AZ

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 33 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Tucson Arizona

Posted 12 September 2014 - 11:53 AM

Yes, that is what I mean by stretch.  I wish I had the opportunity to try instruments, but don't live anywhere near other players.  

Thanks for your thoughts.  I am still confused, but am reading the lists to get a bit more clarity. I am sure both are excellent instruments. 

 

Claire 



#6 Bill N

Bill N

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 509 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Hamilton, Canada

Posted 12 September 2014 - 12:11 PM

Maybe some of the more experienced players will jump in, but to me, unless there is a defect with your Morse, it sounds more like a technique issue than an instrument issue.  A Morse in good condition should have no problem with bellows, reed response or action that would cause the problems you are describing.

 

I'm usually able to avoid extending my bellows much past the halfway mark by dumping or taking on little "sips" of air with the air button, or using some of the duplicate notes on the keyboard to even out the push and pull when playing certain passages.  I often also use the duplicates to find easier ways to play a difficult fast run of notes e.g. playing a run of notes all on the pull instead of using push-pull.

 

Just some thoughts.

 

Edited to add:

 

Have you checked to make sure you don't have a major air leak?  That could cause the issues you are experiencing.  If you close up the bellows, then let the concertina hang from one end, the bellows should open very slowly.  Apologies if I'm telling you something you already know.


Edited by Bill N, 12 September 2014 - 12:16 PM.


#7 CZ in AZ

CZ in AZ

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 33 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Tucson Arizona

Posted 12 September 2014 - 12:43 PM

Hi Bill, 

Thanks for your thoughtful reply.  I have no doubt that technique plays a role, but I also think that my particular Morse instrument is lacking in some regards. It is an early model and it does leak,and even though I have had it repaired locally, the problem persists.   I also avoid full extension of the bellows by using the air hole, but I don't like the fact that there is little extra room when I need it. When my concertina was tried out by a visitor recently, he ran up against the same "short" problem that I have. I also re-finger and find alternates to avoid in and out, but when going for tricky notes, like a quick g# in the higher octave or some of the low C# or A in the top row left hand, the note is just glancing and is often nearly inaudible unless I pounce on it - again this is probably technique problem to some degree.   In short,  I think I am just ready for a try at a new instrument and I tend to think that a new Edgley - rarin to go, may give me a boost compared to my Morse.  That said, I was reluctant to take the plunge without a bit of feedback and research on whether I was going the wrong direction as far as quality. Sounds like a top line Morse and a top line Edgley are comparable, but that is perhaps not the case with my Morse. 

 

This is so tricky when you can't try the instrument out... , but your comments really helped me think about it more. 

 

Thanks, Claire 



#8 Bill N

Bill N

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 509 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Hamilton, Canada

Posted 12 September 2014 - 01:18 PM

Sorry Claire, I should have checked your profile before I responded-  it sounds like you know your way around the keyboard, so maybe it is time to replace a worn-out instrument.  I had sort of discounted that in my thinking, because from my experience with my Morse (played hard for 5 years now) and from others' reports I consider them pretty bomb-proof.  Certainly you would have nothing to complain about with a new Edgley.  Frank's instruments are  beautifully made, a joy to play, and hold their value well if you are planning on owning one as an interim instrument.



#9 sqzbxr

sqzbxr

    Chatty concertinist

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 223 posts
  • Gender:Not Telling

Posted 12 September 2014 - 01:20 PM

So why not at least contact the maker of your Morse and discuss the issues you are having with it?

 

http://www.buttonbox.com/



#10 Rod

Rod

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1047 posts

Posted 12 September 2014 - 01:31 PM

As all these instruments are hand made I would expect them all to exhibit individual quirks of character with which it takes a while to become acquainted. It certainly took me quite some time to learn to compensate for some of my instruments inevitable idiosyncrasies. All part of the challenge ! ( Reminiscent of that corny old saying suggesting that it is only only poor craftsmen who blame their tools ! )

#11 Azalin

Azalin

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 970 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Montreal, Canada

Posted 12 September 2014 - 01:43 PM

I would like to add that if it's for Irish Music, you should rarely have to stretch the bellows by much. Just check videos of Noel Hill, Edel Fox, Tim Collins and others play. I don't know how they do it, but they seem to always be able to keep their bellows at mid stretched level or less. 

 

I had an Edgley for 4-5 years when I started and loved it, but as others have said I really doubt a normally functioning Edgley would make much of a difference over a normally functioning Morse. Also, a good hybrid will play as well as a good Suttner, Dipper, Jeffries and other high end instruments but that's the sound that will be very different, in my opinion.

 

EDIT: I once had a concertina with which I was always stretching the bellows a lot, but I found out later that was because the bellows were heavily leaking and had many small punctures. With airtight bellows, even with only six folds, I rarely have to stretch by much...


Edited by Azalin, 12 September 2014 - 01:46 PM.


#12 ceemonster

ceemonster

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1320 posts

Posted 13 September 2014 - 01:28 AM

an edgeley will generally be louder, particularly if you go metal-ended.  additionally, edgeley uses hand or "TAM" reeds, morses feature factory reeds.  morses feature extremely fast riveted action, edgeleys feature pretty quick post action.  i did a couple years of anglo learning on a morse ceili prior to acquiring a concertina-reeded instrument.  the ceili was not the loudest kid on the block, and the reeds do not respond as fast as hand reeds do, but they have a very nice sound, and the button action is wonderful.  while i would have rated the bellows "okay," rather than excellent, i did not find the bellows problematic in any way.  actually...... i did find the reeds in my morse ceili annoying, come to recall, and i did blab about that here.  again, i liked the sound of them, and they are by no means poor quality reeds. they're actually best-quality factory reeds (the factory-reed grade sometimes labeled "super durall").  but yes, the instrument required more pushing than some i've played with hand reeds.  i'd kinda forgotten about this because i am currently studying EC with a Morse Geordie Tenor that has a TAM reed upgrade recently made available for the Geordie and Beaumont Morses, and they respond nice and fast....


Edited by ceemonster, 13 September 2014 - 01:30 AM.


#13 wayman

wayman

    Chatty concertinist

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 232 posts
  • Gender:Not Telling
  • Location:Sheffield, UK

Posted 13 September 2014 - 09:23 AM

Claire, yes, as someone has suggested, please give the Button Box a call and describe your observations. It may be that there are some simple tune-ups that will help you out, especially if it's an older Morse as you describe it. (What is the serial number, may I ask?)



#14 Steve_freereeder

Steve_freereeder

    Chatty concertinist

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 265 posts
  • Gender:Not Telling
  • Location:South Yorkshire, England

Posted 13 September 2014 - 11:24 AM

Claire, yes, as someone has suggested, please give the Button Box a call and describe your observations. It may be that there are some simple tune-ups that will help you out, especially if it's an older Morse as you describe it. (What is the serial number, may I ask?)

Yes - I would definitely agree with that. The Morse has accordion type reeds in it and if it is getting a bit old, it would be quite prudent to get it checked over. The reeds can drift out of tune and the set (gap) of the reed tongues can gradually change too, away from their optimum setting.

 

It's the latter factor particularly which has a profound impact on how well the reeds respond. If the gap is too wide, the reed can be slow to start and 'breathy'. If the gap is too narrow, the reed may start OK but can 'choke' when driven harder. In extreme cases, too narrow a gap can cause the reed to fail to start at all. Get someone who knows about reeds to check and re-set the gaps and the tuning; you may well be amazed at the difference it can make in playability and response.  



#15 ceemonster

ceemonster

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1320 posts

Posted 14 September 2014 - 11:59 PM

my morse ceili developed leaks, and  developed a big need for a tuning.  I strongly suspect the leaks involve valves and/or pads, as they seem associated with certain notes.  when I hit those notes they do not sound strongly and air seems to be escaping.  certain notes sound "wet" when you play their octave.  it really is ready for a fine-tuning and overhaul....i'm not playing it, and I can't decide whether to send it for the work and then sell it, or hope that something comes into bb's inventory that we could work a credit-trade for....the instrument is still in quite nice condition, it's just due for a work-up....



#16 Jim Besser

Jim Besser

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 2363 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Washington DC metro area

Posted 15 September 2014 - 04:17 PM

Hi folks,  

I have my name down for a Caroll but it will be two years more til I get it.  Currently, I am playing a Morse, but find several limitations even though I dearly love the instrument.  I am seriously thinking of buying an Edgley professional model in the interim.  Wondering if anyone has thoughts on that and would care to share their perspectives. 

 

Claire 

 

I have owned both, but sold the Edgley.

 

The Morse and Edgley are both fine instruments.  The Edgley, in my very subjective opinion, looks nicer.

 

But I preferred the tone and the action of the Morse, and I really appreciated its light weight.  I had minor adjustment issues with the Edgley when it was new, but my Morse G/D is now ten years old, has been subjected to the rigors of Morris dance playing and has never required repair.  The Morse seemed slightly more nimble, at least for my playing style, and was definitely louder, despite the wooden ends.  I've never experienced a bellows problem with my 2 Morse instruments, and I play really loudly and aggressively, with lots of chords.

 

In the end, it's a question of which of two outstanding hybrid instruments suit your playing the best.  I certainly wouldn't consider an Edgley a step up - more like a lateral move.  You may well find the Edgley suits you better, but I don't believe there's any way of knowing that without trying both.



#17 JimLucas

JimLucas

    Ineluctable Opinionmaker

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 10128 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Denmark

Posted 15 September 2014 - 04:30 PM

I In the end, it's a question of which of two outstanding hybrid instruments suit your playing the best.

 

From the differing experiences of various individuals reporting here, it seems to me that it can even come down to specific examples of each instrument,  not just the make and model.

 

But I believe that if you have any issues whatsoever with an instrument of either maker (and many other makers, as well), they will be most helpful in getting them sorted out if you'll only take the trouble to contact them directly.



#18 Jim Besser

Jim Besser

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 2363 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Washington DC metro area

Posted 15 September 2014 - 04:36 PM

 

I In the end, it's a question of which of two outstanding hybrid instruments suit your playing the best.

 

From the differing experiences of various individuals reporting here, it seems to me that it can even come down to specific examples of each instrument,  not just the make and model.

 

But I believe that if you have any issues whatsoever with an instrument of either maker (and many other makers, as well), they will be most helpful in getting them sorted out if you'll only take the trouble to contact them directly.

 

 

Agreed, although I believe there is probably less variation among the Morse instruments than the others (that also may be a downside to some  - they all look exactly the same. Well, not exactly: brown or black.) 

 

And I agree that the makers are all extremely eager to make their customers happy. I had that experience with Frank and with the Button Box.






0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users