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New, Lower Priced Mid-Range Anglo From Concetina Connection?


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#1 Don Taylor

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Posted 30 September 2017 - 09:31 AM

I think that the Minstrel is new?
 
Seems like it is at a price point between the Rochelle and other hybrids like the Clover.

Has anybody tried one?

Added: Looks like the same casework design as the Clover. Maybe with cheaper bellows and reeds?
 


Edited by Don Taylor, 30 September 2017 - 10:13 AM.


#2 Takayuki YAGI

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Posted 30 September 2017 - 10:00 AM

I think the Minstrel is new. And same price range as APJ and McNeela's Phoenix. Reasonably priced and looks promising.



#3 mwatersworld

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Posted 05 October 2017 - 03:52 PM

Since I'm in the market for an Anglo a step up from the Rochelle I inquired and received the following reply from Concertina Connection:

 

"The Minstrel is the economy version of the Clover, it has standard bellows, instead of the Wakker bellows, delrin buttons (vs. metal capped traditional), it has the same reeds and action. The performance values (airflow, dynamics, harmonic spectrum, etc.) is comparable to all the hybrids out there, but at a much lower price.”

 

Promising indeed.



#4 Reed Bellows

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Posted 05 October 2017 - 04:32 PM

Perhaps this will bode well for a hybrid English between the Jack/Jackie and the Rose?



#5 Don Taylor

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Posted 06 October 2017 - 05:53 PM

I wrote to Concertina Connection and they told me that they do plan to introduce cost-reduced versions of the Rose (EC) and Peacock (Hayden duet).  These will, however, have fewer buttons than their older brethren. 

 

No timeline given as they are constrained by production capacity.  Actually they did say 'later this year' so not that long to wait.

 

Don.


Edited by Don Taylor, 06 October 2017 - 05:59 PM.


#6 gcoover

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Posted 06 October 2017 - 10:19 PM

Love the top hat in the fretwork - nice touch!

 

Gary



#7 Reed Bellows

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Posted 09 October 2017 - 02:33 PM

Great to hear Don. I look forward to this, as it'll be the next in line for me after my Jackie, most likely.
 



#8 JimR

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Posted 04 January 2018 - 12:16 PM

Perhaps this will bode well for a hybrid English between the Jack/Jackie and the Rose?

It has. It's called the Busker.  http://www.concertin....com/busker.htm



#9 Don Taylor

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Posted 04 January 2018 - 02:12 PM

The Busker has 36 buttons from G3 to C6 with no missing accidentals - by my count anyway.  A good price for a useful box, especially if you have a Jackie to trade in.

 

No plans for a baritone or tenor version which removes a temptation for me.

 

I would have thought a value priced baritone would be very appealing to someone who already owns a vintage treble.


Edited by Don Taylor, 04 January 2018 - 04:23 PM.


#10 JimLucas

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Posted 04 January 2018 - 05:31 PM

No plans for a baritone or tenor version which removes a temptation for me.

 

I would have thought a value priced baritone would be very appealing to someone who already owns a vintage treble.

 

While you're waiting for one from Concertina Connection, you could consider the Morse concertinas from the Button Box.  Their 37-button Albion is available in both treble and baritone versions, and the 45-button Geordie in treble, tenor, and baritone versions.


Edited by JimLucas, 04 January 2018 - 06:52 PM.


#11 Don Taylor

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Posted 04 January 2018 - 06:37 PM

Jim

 

(You mean the Geordie not the Beaumont which is a Hayden).  

 

The Morse Albion is 2x the price of the new Concertina Connection Busker.  I am sure it is a better box, but not quite the value pricing of the Busker.

 

Don.



#12 JimLucas

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Posted 04 January 2018 - 07:05 PM

(You mean the Geordie not the Beaumont which is a Hayden). 


You're right.  I've now fixed my post.
 

The Morse Albion is 2x the price of the new Concertina Connection Busker.


Right again.  I had looked at several instruments on both web sites, and I obviously remembered the wrong price when I thought of the Busker.

 

Thanks for the corrections.



#13 wayman

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Posted 05 January 2018 - 06:51 AM

Speaking as a former maker of R.Morse & Co concertinas at the Button Box (and as someone who has had a good crack at playing the Clover and Rose models sold in the BBox shop, as well as having a good look at their construction inside and out), I've been eyeing the latest releases from Concertina Connection - the Minstrel and now the Busker - with great curiosity as to how their prices are so much lower. Please note that 1) I haven't had a chance to handle, play, or examine a Minstrel or Busker, so all I can do is speculate; and 2) I'm a former (not current) Button Box employee, not speaking for the Button Box or R.Morse & Co in any official capacity.

 

The website spells out a few things, most notably that the Minstrel and Busker bellows are of a different construction. I'm not entirely sure what that means as far as how the instrument plays and feels, or how it breaks in and holds up over time, but it does clearly account for a chunk of the price difference. And the Busker is obviously cheaper than the Rose partly because it has fewer buttons, but the Busker and the Albion are about the same in button-count (while the Rose and the Geordie are about the same in button-count).

 

While differences in components other than the bellows may also play a part in price difference, my speculation is that the bulk of the cost savings is labour: Morse concertinas are made - stem to stern, assembly and almost all components - in Massachusetts, with very few exceptions (Italian reeds being the main one). Most of what enters the Button Box is raw material sourced (entire animal hides, sheets of brass, etc) from within America; most components are fabricated in house; and the ones that are outsourced are outsourced to local master craftsman like Al Ladd who work closely with the Button Box.

 

My understanding is that the Clover and Rose are assembled in America but some of the components are made elsewhere and shipped to America; and my speculation is that Minstrel and Busker are entirely or almost entirely made outside America. (Anybody who has information about this to the contrary, please inform us and I will stand corrected!) This would substantially reduce the cost of the Minstrel and Busker and likely account for a majority of the savings. On top of getting a great instrument when you buy a Morse, you are supporting a small local business (~10 employees), local craftsmen, and local and regional materials suppliers, and that costs a good bit more than Chinese labour; there's just no way around that.

 

I'm not trying to make a political statement or attach an inherent value to this; I'm just pointing out the economic reality that's probably partly responsible for the large price differentials here.



#14 JimLucas

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 09:45 AM

My understanding is that the Clover and Rose are assembled in America but some of the components are made elsewhere and shipped to America; and my speculation is that Minstrel and Busker are entirely or almost entirely made outside America. (Anybody who has information about this to the contrary, please inform us and I will stand corrected!)


I recommend that you contact Wiim Wakker directly and ask him, then report back to us.






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