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alex_holden

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Everything posted by alex_holden

  1. Impressive work, it's like a 3D jigsaw puzzle!
  2. I understand 40 button C/G Anglos are relatively common in South Africa, and there are at least a couple of modern makers who specialise in them. You might be able to find somebody there who is willing to sell you a 1950s-1960s Wheatstone for a reasonable price. They aren't best instruments Wheatstone ever made, but they are significantly higher quality than a Stagi.
  3. Presumably the instrument would need to be over 100 years old to qualify for 13.5% reduced rate VAT rather than the standard 23% rate?
  4. There is an oddity in the harmonized tariff schedule where piano accordions (9205.90.15) are duty free, but harmonicas and other accordion-type instruments (9205.90.18) are subject to 2.6% duty. Also, antiques over 100 years old are duty free.
  5. Thanks Robert. I just noticed the Barleycorn advert it says it is 5 1/2" wide. The treble version must be very tightly packed indeed. I'm always interested in seeing what tricks other makers have used to squeeze as much capability as possible into a limited space. I'm not taking new commissions right now but wouldn't rule out attempting it at some point in the future.
  6. Hi Robert, how big (width of the end plate) is "piccolo sized"? Any chance we could see photos of the actions and reed pans?
  7. Yes. You might already be using Electron applications and not know it. It's popular precisely because it makes it easy for web developers to make cross platform desktop applications that ordinary users can install and use as if they were native. The desktop versions of Slack, Dropbox, WhatsApp, Microsoft Teams, VS Code, Skype, Discord, Twitch, 1Password, and many others use it. BTW it is written in Javascript not Java (the two languages are about as similar as concertinas and accordions - I'll let you decide which is which). If you simply want to run a web app on your offline computer and don't care about it looking like a native application, the easier way is probably to download the code (if the developer has made it available), save it to a local folder, then point your web browser at that folder. You might run into issues if it tries to load some resources (e.g. images or fonts) from a web server somewhere, but it should be possible to download and save those files once, then modify the code to read the local files. [I should clarify - this is only possible with very simple apps that don't interact with a server at all, which is probably true of Anglo Piano.]
  8. You can convert them using https://heictojpg.com/
  9. P.B. has always been fine for me - they work well and I haven't had one break in service yet. The only time I've broken one while forming it is when I accidentally bent the hook in the wrong direction, then tried to correct it by bending it back 180º. I looked into ordering a large coil direct from the manufacturer thinking they would give me a bulk discount, but they actually quoted me a surprisingly high price - the tiny packs from A J Reeves work out slightly cheaper per metre.
  10. You might find this article interesting: https://www.concertinajournal.org/articles/no-thumb-straps-no-finger-rests-but-it-is-an-english-a-personal-journey/
  11. No, the problem has to do with the little leather flap valves inside falling open under their own weight and over time developing a permanent curl. I suspect that would be a lot less likely to happen on an instrument with accordion-style reed blocks and plastic valves.
  12. I also tend to prefer cuboid cases, but another option is a hexagonal case that splits along the longitudinal plane.
  13. I would start by studying your two Wheatstones very closely. Personally I would prefer to make a fully new instrument based on non-destructive measurements rather than modifying or cannibalising reeds from vintage instruments. Perhaps consider building something a bit less ambitious first, e.g. a 36 button baritone to complement your existing 48b treble rather than replace it. Don't expect your first instrument to be great - it's a complicated instrument and there is a lot that you can only really learn by doing it and making mistakes. I still learn new things with every one I make.
  14. Thanks for the internal pictures Peter. The mixture of brass and thick aluminium levers is a bit unusual.
  15. It's a fine looking instrument. I think this is the page you meant to link to: http://www.concertina.com/chidley-duet/index.htm At first glance, it seems more logical than the standard Maccann layout.
  16. Try asking your neighbours if they had anything for you delivered to them by mistake. It happens all the time here.
  17. Barleycorn have listed it on their Facebook page for £5750.
  18. Bravo, that's very impressive, David! I'd love to see internal pictures. How big are the sound files? If you drop me an email I can probably host them on my web server. Alternatively you can sign up for a free account on Soundcloud.com. (I think they let you upload three hours before you have to upgrade to a paid subscription.) Or there are a few ways to create a video slideshow that you can then upload to YouTube.
  19. The handrests on that one are bloodwood too. Still sort of on topic, I received some blocks of Thuya burr this week, a piece of which will be used for the trim and handrails of my next instrument:
  20. I've seen some originals where the brass frames had oxidised to a dark brown/black, but the reed tongues were still a fairly bright yellow, which made me suspect they were different alloys. I don't know how long phosphor bronze has been available as a spring material.
  21. This week I'm putting the finishing touches on a 32 button C/G Anglo, 6" wide black ends with bloodwood trim and brass capped buttons.
  22. As a maker of custom instruments, I would have to charge considerably more for a 48 button English than a 30 button Anglo, which is probably why nobody has asked me to make one yet. The market for duets is a bit different again.
  23. I wouldn't attempt to glue that core back together. When you make a new one, you can measure all the dimensions you need from one of the not-broken buttons. I turn my button cores from acetal because it's fairly cheap, easy to machine, and will probably last forever. If you would prefer to use wood for originality, the ideal is something very dense and fine grained like boxwood, but I suspect the originals were just beech. I've used both beech and box for buttons, and box is much nicer. A dense fruitwood like apple or plum would probably work fine too. If you want I can post you a bit of acetal or box.
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