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Everything posted by RogerT

  1. I have a lovely Crabbe duet (with Crane button layout), largish, metal ends, octagonal, serial number 9538. Can anyone either suggest a date or point me to where I can establish this? Thanks PS…I quite like the Crane layout.
  2. Hi, I have a Lachenal EC 48, student, brass reeds, serial #44249. Any idea of the age would be much appreciated. Thanks
  3. I mostly position the pads by lifting the end on and off, but in desperation one time I used a variation on Franks method and made an end hole jig from a thick bit of card and using a hole punch.
  4. Getting the pads to stay put and centred on the holes can be a pain. I put a tiny mark on centre of the pad so I can check the alignment from the other side.
  5. Hi, I've been restoring a Lachenal 20k Anglo, steel reeds (although it’s been retuned to GD..not by me). The serial number is 87898. Any idea of the approx date of manufacture would be helpful. Thanks.
  6. “the plate is inserted from the outside”. oh, that’s a nuisance. If the bolt won’t come out I’d probably still dig it out as described. If I was going to rebind the bellows I'd just work a channel on the outside and repair. But you could still get it out from the inside of the frame as well. I had a Lachenal where the bolts wouldn’t come out…and I had to cut them to get the end off anyway. This was how I tackled the issue. The main thing is to avoid damaging the flat edge of the frame, because obvs this has to be perfectly flat to seal with the action casing, and if you start drilling or cutting with a hacksaw blade or grabbing with pincers, you may easily wreck the edge/top of the frame. Anyway, that’s how I would tackle it. If it won’t come out your choices are limited. And the amount of wood I removed was tiny. I should also add …these screws shear off really easily…so even if you do get to turn it,,it may shear off lower down (been there…done that..).
  7. Quite right. My solution is for when it absolutely won’t come out.
  8. Assuming (in your case) the plate is inserted through a slot on the inside of the frame…which is how it works on a Lachenal….I peeled back the chamois on the inside and cut a channel down to the plate and beyond, to where the bolt ends, just wide enough to extract the bolt, with the plate attached, but leaving the rest of the frame in place. I then reinserted the plate and screwed in a new bolt and patched the slot with epoxy putty, making sure to turn the bolt to stop it adhering to the putty. A Dremel was the key tool…I used an engraving bit to machine the slot (the same diameter as the bolt). I smoothed the putty (Miliput) after it had set with some other Dremel bit. My aim was to remove the minimum amount of frame, so that the slot for the screw plate still functioned. Once the chamois is replaced the repair is invisible.
  9. Best guess is the pad has twisted on the end of the lever. I would not bend anything in there. It’s v easy to reposition it. Try a little strip of tape to hold it in place to test this theory, before you use some glue on it. Obvs leave the little leather washers etc where they are to keep the button at its current height. As Graham points out, wobbly pads aren’t good. I often use (liquid) hide glue on the pads as this sets hard and holds the pad where it should be…though you might not want to use this…use white glue as others advise.
  10. I’d not seen this thread before. Excellent description etc. So the little screws on the end of the frame actually undo? I’ve tried a couple of times but always found them too tight, and assumed they're somehow fixed in for good. And then sourced reeds from elsewhere.
  11. I was going to ask about the threads on 19C made concertinas. In fact thread standardisation came in earlier than when many concertinas were made. So…did makers just have their own thread taps and dies …which didn’t conform to any standard (like, say, BA)? Other than buying old bolts, which may or may not have a viable thread, has anyone ever tried making bolts, with a small lathe and suitable die?
  12. I have a screwdriver with the end filed, both with a pointing slot, as in the photo above, and a crochet hook slot in the side. I then push the spring into its hole, and use the same tool to hook the spring to the lever. For me though the game changer was a set of tiny drills incrementing in small steps, plus a miniature spiral drill. I then measure the spring diameter with a digital vernier gauge and pick a drill of a suitable diameter, and quite often make a new hole if the spring doesn’t want to stay put in the old hole. The spring should push fit nicely and not want to come out. I tried various other solutions but this is the one that seems to work. I nicked the idea from this video. You see him using one of these drills at 3:35. It took me a while to find the right tools…but good ole eBay came to the rescue….
  13. Here's my 32 key, actually quite a nice player now after a *lot* of work.
  14. This video shows how dies are made from the steel rule stuff...in this case for shoe parts.
  15. Reviving this old thread... I’m still trying to find the leather used for making concertina valves...the white stippled stuff. It’s lighter, thicker but springier than accordion valve leather. I might be able to get some samples from Russells, but on page 4 of their catalogue they have various leathers. ‘Sueded Persian Pallets' sounds promising....but then so do a few of the other descriptions. I was put onto Russells by an organ builder. Didn’t think at the time to inspect his collection of leather... https://www.russels.com/files/resources/specialist-leathers.pdf
  16. Hi Theo, ah yes, I have some of their sheep leather. What card do you use when making the pads?
  17. Has anyone (in the U.K.) tried the leather from Russells? The question is..which leather is suitable for valves? https://www.russels.com/products/category/product/?ID=494 https://www.russels.com/files/resources/specialist-leathers.pdf
  18. I believe you pay VAT on used/second hand goods, but not sure if an item is being *returned*. I bought an old instrument from NZ once and regretted it...even though it was from a private individual and wasn't working, I still paid duty and VAT when it arrived in the UK.
  19. Judging by the photo showing the reeds, and extrapolating that to all the reeds, it needs at the least, new valves and the reeds cleaned, and then probably some tuning. Bandoneon are relatively tricky to tune, because of the reed arrangement and also because it is tuned to octaves - so it can take time/costs money. If any reeds are broken they will need replacing. Also, you don’t say anything about how much compression it has on the bellows. It might need the leather pads replacing if they are of the same vintage as the valves. So if someone wants it as a working instrument they may wish to factor in the cost of some work. If you are in the UK and want to discuss further, please contact me through jollyrogeraccordions.co.uk.
  20. Back on topic... I’ve had C# on the LH G row G/A button for a while now, substituting the A with C#. It actually feels like it’s in the right place. I never needed the a anyway (I use the pull a on the C row) and you can get a nice b/c#/e triplet on the pull. Obviously a GD instrument would be nice, because my muscle memory is geared towards that, but on the other hand, my Jones is really beautiful to play, is light, more mellow than a Lachenal, and the mod is v quick and easily reversible.
  21. Mikefule... "I personally found it uninspiring and mechanical, whereas I find the Anglo — which is superficially similar — a fantastic instrument capable of producing interesting and complex music." Don't tell anyone, but I’m inclined to agree.
  22. I kind of rest my case re concertinas and orchestras. Maybe they got the balance wrong. Astor Piazzolla did ok.
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