I've just started chatting with Barleycorn concertinas as well as furiously googling around to try and figure out how best to trade up. I need to; I'm playing a scarlatti and experiencing the problems that come with it not to mention the feeling that I'm not really experiencing a genuine concertina sound; though nit has been good to get me started with the fingering. In an ideal world i think i'd go for a Morse or a Kensington, but both are presently out of my price range (or rather will be vetoed by my better, more financially sensible over half!) So..... I'm thinking about a trade off by going for a more budget but more authentic model- Barleycorn have a 20 key Lachenal in the 500-£1000 range, as well as a Wheatstone MayFair for about £800. Can anyone give any advice re these instruments. How will they compare to the Scarlatti (a stupid question)- BUT being vintage instruments will they have leaky bellows/poor responsiveness? However, if they give a sweeter more authentic tone than the Scarlatti that might be worth it (which has a nasal tone and breathy bellows anyway!). It'd also be nice not to be playing on plastic keys. The MayFair looks like it is metal ended, will this give it a more raspy note? Unfortunately Barleycorn in Shropshire so I can't go there andplay these instruments though they sounds very accommodating in letting you purchase on spce and return wtihin 7 days if not hitting the right note!
ps. i know that on the spectrum of cost for a musical instrument we aren't really talking big money and , in time, I hope to take the next step up!