Jump to content


  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Posts posted by rcr27

  1. That’s the only bit of information that I found about him, I thought he was a maker or restorer. I’ve had a Lachenals in the past labelled Wheatstone and Crabb, who obviously were makers, so I thought Higham could have been a maker. I find it interesting that Lachenal concertinas had different labels; wouldn’t that be sort of “ilegal” nowadays? 

  2. Hi all

    Does anyone know anything about Joseph Higham and his relation with concertinas? Not long ago I acquired this beautiful Lachenal English concertina from Barleycorn Concertinas. What draws my attention is the fact that it has a “Joseph Higham” label on. I’ve been trying find some information about Joseph Higham manufacturers and I can’t really find much that relates him with concertinas, other than he had a music shop/factory in Manchester? Is not uncommon to see Lachenal concertinas badged under a different name or manufacturer. Nevertheless this concertina plays beautifully and even looks like the inimitable, just with brass reeds. The serial number is 19082.






  3. 40 minutes ago, Sprunghub said:

    RCR27 - I have put a clip on of what mine sounds like - would be better in the hands of someone more competent !  It's in the playing section.  A poor attempt to emulate Little John's work, but getting better with time.  

    I’ll have a look now, by the way is yours a 35 key?

  4. 2 hours ago, Sprunghub said:

    ....the seller having paid end of listing fee's on a £99 "sale" rather than the % of £325 he owed to Ebay.  If rcr needs a bit of leverage it might be useful.  The chap has an into the 1,000's history of all sorts and looks to me to be someone who buys locally from Sales/Auctions then re-sells to a WW market via Ebay.  An honourable enough past-time but generally without much knowledge of some of the items at hand.  He has an EC listed currently at a sensible enough price.


    Sadly, it does look a big job to take on.  Major metal issues and extensive 'bellows' work would probably put me off.  ...although bellows making is on my radar should I need to learn for that decrepit 55k one which may, one day, turn up!  The rest of it should be pretty much do-able.  In case it helps, I have leather ( for straps ), almost a full set of springs - brand new from Mark L-A, and the 3mm ply ( to be reduced to 1.5mm ) to strengthen the ends.  If you do decide to have a go, you are welcome to any of the above for a very negligible / discounted cost ( if not free ! ) You can borrow my tuning table too, if practical although I think you are a fair way off.  

    Hopefully the seller wasn’t a diehard person and we sorted out the return already. He clearly doesn’t know anything about concertinas and yet he said the description was correct when there wasn’t any description at all! Thanks very much for your offers, although I returned the concertina already, I might buy another concertina from an auction in the next couple of weeks/months, and if I need new spares I will let you know as I want to get some experience repairing. 

  5. 44 minutes ago, Sprunghub said:

    I paid more than I wanted at around £275 in a Uk Auction.  It was chased up by A.N.Other interested bidder, which was a shame at the time!  The only compensation being that no matter how stupid I was to spend that much someone else was nearly as stupid as me !!  I would not have gone much higher, although I am very happy now that I didn't bale earlier.

    I did have the advantage of having a chance, due to a South Coast Festival to Festival run of seeing it and assessing what needed doing to it before purchase.  I knew it was a bit of a 'crock', but I also thought I could cope with most of the issues - silent reeds, x2 sounding, sticky buttons, small leaks, woodwork, lost parts, philharmonic'ish tuning etc.  I used a phone bid to keep costs down, then had a detour to collect from Salisbury, to Bridport, then to Verwood on a late summer Friday which was probably the worst bit ! 


    But I enjoy the fettling and 'learning' as much as anything so it didn't bother me too much.  The Forum aided and educated me in getting it tuned etc. and Alex is a wealth of practical help.  I see these instruments - outside of the metal work, which is beyond me - as fairly artisanal, so not much that can't be fixed if you have the kit and nouse. 

    If I did another I would invest in the 'punches' and make my own valves and pads, which I suspect could be sourced/bought for not much more than the cost of parts to do 'one'.  The materials to make them are not hard or expensive to source.  

    I think that the original listing for yours  hinted at most of the issues/disappointments, to be honest.  It was 'vague' and limited with fairly poor photos.  As with the Crabb E/C you posted about, which looked as if it may may have been a Lachenal re-marked by Crabb after resto. work, the Net is a risky place to buy, especially for those of us who are 'inexpert' and wing it a bit!


    There are bargains about, I paid itro £380 for my wife's virtually unused CC Clover - mainly due, I think to an Ebay listing 'glitch' by the seller.


    I now live in hope of a 48 / 55 button quality Crane "damaged/repair, in bit's, but all there" !! for sensible money, or one listed in one of those "Old squeezebox" / "Trumph Concretiner" listings that evades the usual suspects regular searches!  Hopefully the seller will be honourable if you do decide to return it as contrary to the original description. 



    The good thing is that you could check the condition prior to buying it. If only I had the opportunity to know what the condition of the condition of the concertina was I wouldn’t have bought it at all. Mine is even worse, almost unplayable and too much air leaks. It pretty much needs a full tlc with new everything (new fretwork, buttons, valves, pads, springs, bellows, straps... etc). As much I want to get some experience with restoring concertinas the best thing to do is just return it as I wouldn’t be able to restore it myself and it would cost me more than concertina itself. Yes the EC Crabb that I posted was a Lachenal labeled Crabb. I part-exchanged it with Chris Algar for another concertina, but at least that one was playable and worth the price. 

  6. 13 minutes ago, Wolf Molkentin said:


    ...but the winning bit is indicated as having been £99 (the starting price obviously) - do I miss something?

    No I made an offer of £325 for it and the seller accepted it (he wanted £400!) I didn’t “bid” on it but it ebay marks it as if I bidded, and £99 is due to the starting price of the auction. A bit confusing I know

    • Like 1
  7. 3 minutes ago, Sprunghub said:

    Mine was, in some ways, probably worse.  A bit of time and effort and I love it now.  The woodwork is all fairly straight forwards with basic tools.  It plays really nicely. 


    Yours will almost certainly be Mahogany under the 'crud' and if re-finished unstained comes up well.




    How much did you buy yours for?

  8. 40 minutes ago, Wolf Molkentin said:

    are you sure it's rosewood after all? however, it could make a restauration project for you, gathering some experience asf.

    Seems to be rosewood I doubt it’s mahogany. I paid £325 for it and restoring it would cost me a lot of money and time because there is a lot to do. But even if I restore it and then want to sell it, I could only sell it for around £500, so I’d be loosing money. I’ll just return it hopefully eBay protects the buyer.

  9. What a joke... what seemed to be an ebony ended duet with metal buttons ended up being a dark rosewood with dirty bone buttons and in poor condition ? Deteriorated straps, cracks in the fretwork, keys producing 2 sounds, air leaks, very out of tune... and so on. Incredible how the light in the picture made this concertina look so different. Anyways I’m not even going to bother opening it, I’ll just return it as Im sure nobody in here would want this thing. See the pictures:




  10. 14 minutes ago, Theo said:


    The photos you posted show bone buttons, and dark, almost black wood which I suspect might be black painted.   Sometimes Salvation Army concertinas (many of which were Crane system) were painted black to tone down their appearance.  I have one like this myself.

    Could be a possibility, I had an english concertina with what seemed to be painted wood, but it ended up being actual ebony. I will take and post more pictures when it arrives.

  11. 43 minutes ago, Sprunghub said:

    Value is sometimes dependent on the 'who by and where' it is being offered.  A few weeks before Xmas a Wheatstone 48 Button Crane - probably not from the 'best' period, it wasn't on on the early records.....1950's I would think, but very tidy;  brown finished wooden ends, metal buttons I think, with distinctive 'chocolate brown' bellows, in it's case and apparently little used was on offer at "about" £850 on the F/book Concertina's for sale page.  Being only days into fumbling with the 35 button I 'wondered' for a day or two and then decided that without the benefit of a lot more ability/experience, it wasn't sensible to pursue a 2nd instrument before working out how to handle the first.  

    The Uk seller - via a long F/book presence clearly had an impeccable reputation in the Art's, albeit no real experience or knowledge of concertinas.  It wasn't on sale long and I would think it was a very good buy for someone.

    As I progress, I probably wish I had been a bit more 'rash' ?  I doubt my wife agree's. 

    Typically a similar instrument from a 'Dealer' would be nearly double and 'private sales' often seem to be based on seeking as close to Dealer values as possible.  Not that, that is a bad thing, just seems to be the case that many private sale valuations are based on what is available in Trade adverts, rather than a 30% discount as would be the case in many other fields.


    Thanks for the information. I also doubted whether to buy that concertina or not, but since duets are rare I decided to have a go. Recently a Lachenal Maccann got sold on ebay for less than £200! but it was just like a tutor model. This one that I bought seems to have ebony ends and metal buttons, which made me think that the value would be higher. I guess the best thing to do is part-exchange it with Chris Algar for another concertina. 

  12. 5 hours ago, Алексей said:

    Все привет, здоровья и благополучия. У концертины Нетемперированный звукоряд, нет энгармонических равных звуков. Я не тороплюсь, но торг уместен. Завтра выставлю на eBay

    Take no offence, but it’d be better if you translate your posts before posting them so we can understand what you’re saying. Even if your concertina was fully restored it still wouldn’t cost that much, I’m just being realistic, but good luck anyway.

  13. £647 for what seems to be a tutor model Lachenal brass reeded in old pitch which requires revalving and retuning... a bit too much I think, don’t know...They cost around £500 fully restored. It’s better if you put it on eBay, although you probably won’t sell a tutor model for more than £350. 

  14. Yes the seller was selling it on behalf of someone else. Indeed there aren’t many Cranes about so I might just keep it or part exchange it with Chris Algar if he is interested. I guess I can just re-leather the bellows or at least use some corners patches. It’s likely to be out of tune so probably some revalving will be needed. Doesn’t seem to be that bad anyway, but yes there is certainly some work to do. 

  15. Hi all

    I just recently acquired this duet concertina which I’ll be receiving very soon. It’s my first duet and I really don’t know much about this concertina system. This one in particular is a 35 key Crane duet concertina - likely to be a Lachenal - with ebony ends and metal buttons (and I’m guessing it has steel reeds). I just want to know what is the value of Crane duets on the market? I know for fact that duet concertinas are the rarest compared to the English and Anglo, so I just had this curiosity. I don’t pretend to sell it straight away as I want to learn to play it, (and I’ll have to repair it first) but I might want to part-exchange it in a near future for a bigger duet, so if you have any idea of the price of this particular duet I’d appreciate it.  

    These are the most similar ones that I found. Lachenal:  http://www.craneconcertina.com/details.php?indexnum=42 Wheatstone: http://www.craneconcertina.com/details.php?indexnum=53










  16. Really good price for that type of concertina in my opinion. Considering that the it has aluminium ends, metal buttons, steel reeds and 6 fold bellows, £1220 is an excellent price, plus Crabb english concertinas are not very common. If you were to buy that concertina from a dealer it should cost £1500 minimum.

  17. That is not profiteering; that is smart dealing. When you buy a concertina from an auction house, you will never pay the price for what it’s actually worth, why? because it’s an auction! This is a big aspect of being a dealer: you buy something for a relatively cheap price, you restore the item (if you have to), and you sell it for a higher price. Nothing wrong with that, sometimes luck knocks on your door and you get a superb item for less than £500, like this rare duet. If I had that concertina, I would sell it for a higher price (or I’d just keep it because it’s a rare one). 

  • Create New...