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Mike Pierceall

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Everything posted by Mike Pierceall

  1. A nice hymn arrangement of a piece by A.L. Butler, played on my 1909 Aeola here:
  2. I recall an interview of Sir James Galway, who still practices scales, saying, and I paraphrase, that it's all about finding the right note at the right time.
  3. This started out as an arrangement I put together for a friend with a soprano Ukulele, but I decided to record it on my Aeola English. Here:
  4. Some Jazz on the Lachenal New Model TT I restored recently. It's here: The larger volume of the TT produces a warmer tone than that of a standard treble. In fact, most of this piece was played in the treble range.
  5. Not of their own accord, more than likely knocked off an edge, or set into motion.
  6. Replacement bellows that you can install yourself are readily available and not terribly expensive. It sounds like you have the skill to do the installation even if you choose not to build a set from scratch. Of course, I'm all for experimentation, and sometimes innovation comes from the need to improvise.
  7. I was wondering, did Boris Matusewitch service the instruments used by his students? I restored one of these instruments and was delighted at the quality of the reeds which had previously been re-tuned to modern pitch.
  8. Antique, entry-level Lachenals and the like can sometimes be found at reasonable prices, though I haven't seen any lately. It can be a gamble. If the reeds are badly corroded or were improperly tuned in the past, the instrument can only be salvaged for parts. I suggest you post a wanted ad in the Buy and Sell Forum and deal with someone in the know. Best of luck.
  9. Looks good to me although I prefer a traditional box shape with a top lid so that I can remove the concertina using both hands.
  10. This is a 32' reed from one of my harmonium restorations. It speaks as quickly as the smallest reed in the organ. Large reeds need to be sturdy due to the force required to lift them. I once restored an organ where 7 of the sub-bass reeds were broken off at the heel and the tongues had been sucked into the air reservoir.
  11. Individual cards, gussets, hinges, and papers; jigs and assembly procedures. It's here:
  12. Unless the private party is a known member of the concertina community, or can be vouched for by someone in the community, I won't do it as a rule, though I made an exception once. That's when the buyer had a friend in my area, who acted as the buyer's agent. Everything was pre-arranged and the concertina was sold "as-is."
  13. Right. I've used chip board before and it is very stiff stuff, more so than cotton rag board. I'm really trying to make the bellows as trim and proper as possible as were the originals. My Aeola has the original 5-fold set from 1909, and they are the exemplar. Using reed organ reeds is problematic for several reasons, but they are often parted out from un-restorable instruments so finding a few sets wouldn't be difficult, though getting them to work in a concertina may be impossible though that's never stopped me from trying before.
  14. Full disclosure here, Geoff. I'm experimenting with jigs and other building schemes and materials so this set of bellows is not specifically intended for any instrument. For the cards here I am using architectural chip board, which is thinner than the rag board I've used before. It is a recycled pulp product. The inner hinges are gummed linen, available here from a photo supply house. The idea is to construct a set of bellows with extra folds, yet one that compresses down to a final dimension comparable to a standard set. I'm considering the idea of building a concertina, using reed organ reeds, so I may utilize this set of bellows for that.
  15. A video of a sample set of bellows cards and the method utilized. It's here:
  16. I'd suggest you purchase a copy of David Elliott's Concertina Maintenance Manual and perhaps pass the Rochelle on to someone who can benefit from it as you did.
  17. I wish more people felt the way you do about the English, my choice, as it would lessen the competition to acquire another. Alas, my experience is just the opposite, both for the former and the latter.
  18. My previous video is of a set I made using Robert Tedrow's method. I decided to cut the cards individually on this set; however. There are advantages to each method, but the results are the same. With a properly made bellows form, keeping the corners aligned wasn't difficult. The difference between the two methods is largely a matter of time as each card has to be individually cut and hinged to it's mate with the standard method. On the other hand, with the Tedrow method, hinging the long strips of card causes the strips to bow, and that has to be controlled with lots of clamps. Cutting the long, gathered blank of cards requires great care, especially since I don't own a band saw and used a table saw - a risky procedure I do not recommend.
  19. Construction video on the making of an 8-sided bellows for a treble Aeola. It's here:
  20. I say that if what you are using is working, then stick with it One of the reasons that builders and restorers use hide glues is they can be reactivated with heat and/or moisture, which makes repair or replacement far easier.
  21. Hi, David. Fish glue has a shear strength of 3200 psi. I only use it for glue-on applications like gluing leather or fabric to card stock or wood, but never for wood-on-wood applications. It is used in the pipe organ trade for building pneumatic components. I've tried removing it by wetting the materials, but it would need to be soaking wet for a period of time. I tend to think that if someone's concertina is soaking wet, there is a bigger problem than the glue Mike
  22. One of my own compositions for the English Concertina here:
  23. I've used both methods, but the way I did it in the video is similar to builders like A.P. James. After the glue has dried, I use scissors to clip the "ears" from the corners and then feather, or skive, the leather with a razor blade to produce a smooth corner. I do not skive the edges of the gussets. I use thin, soft leather; fish glue, which remains pliable for a time; and I use a nipping press to compress the bellows to "iron out" the transitions. I use a textured bellows paper, which also helps to produce a pretty-looking set of bellows.
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