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Everything posted by SteveS

  1. It can take a few days for the shellac to dissolve completely - I keep mine in a sealed jar. Baby food jars are ideal for keeping small quantities of shellac. To make a 1/2 cut divide in 2 and add the same quantity of alcohol (meths) again to one of the halves - then repeat for 1/4, 1/8 and 1/16 cut. Ed. once mixed, the shellac/alcohol has a finite shelf-life, so it's best to make as much as you think you'll need for the job at hand.
  2. My starting concentration is 200 ml of meths and 50 grams of shellac flakes. The final shellac cut is 1/16 from the starting concentration. My final polish step is with a rubber charged with meths only - but only after the 1/16 stage has cured for a month or so, and after I've removed residual oil. When charging the rubber I use maybe 3 drops or so of meths and keep the rubber moving otherwise it'll stick to the shellac requiring then to go back a few steps, including a possible sanding stage. I tend to use blond shellac and colour it with whatever dye I require, e.g., ebony. In some cases, e.g with rosewood, I don't colour the shellac if I want the natural hues of the wood to show through. I've never noticed the purple dye in meths being an issue, and I've not yet had occasion to FP pale woods. ------- Ed. drops of meths when polishing are dispensed from an eye dropper. What I found surprising at first is just how little is needed. This is the step no one explains in YouTube videos or anywhere else, but was clearly explained in the 1905 pamphlet I have (and I wish I could find it to share).
  3. I struggled initially with FP - everything I did, following guidance on YouTube and other sources didn't work - I concluded that although the various videos were helpful, they were missing a vital aspect to FP, maybe not revealed deliberately. I was convinced that FP might remain a black art. Later I found a pamphlet in a junk shop (I'm unable to find it amongst my things) published around 1905 that explained exactly how to do FP, and especially to load the rubber with a small amount of 1/16 cut shellac when polishing. Given the small surface area of the concertina, this is particularly important so as to prevent the rubber from sticking - and I tend to use a tiny drop of refined olive oil (the variety from a pharmacy) as the lubricant for my FP. Also what I found using olive oil is that the oil comes to the surface as the shellac hardens. After maybe a month or so, the FP finish is sufficiently hard to be cleaned using a little white sprit to remove the oil, and then lightly wax polished. Here is an example of finished ends with a high gloss finish.
  4. My ratio of gum sandarac to shellac is around 5% by weight.
  5. I add gum sandarac to my shellac to improve the hardness - it was recommended to me by a luthier acquaintance.
  6. What a super find. Can you maybe scan the document and make it available to the International Concertina Association library? I'd also appreciate a copy for my own records and research. Thanks
  7. Whatever course of action you take in converting a DA to SA bass, make sure your changes are reversible, so that it can be reinstated to DA if required sometime in the future. And reeds you take out store them in a safe place.
  8. Indeed bellows pressure does affect the pitch - and this is a problem when tuning reeds. Yes as repairers we might strive for as close a tolerance as possible, as d.elliott mentioned, but its hard to tune an instrument for an individual playing style. The pressure applied on tuning a reed will probably be very different when played by the owner. And even getting a consistent pressure on tuning is difficult - although personally I use gravity activated bellows which does offer a degree of consistency. After tuning an instrument I will play it for a while, making a note of any deviations from nominal, and then tune those reeds in the instrument to get as close to nominal within tolerance. (I'm soon going to be checking the tuning on my band instruments for consistency across them ahead of recording my quartet arrangements.)
  9. I have Shure SM57 and RĂ˜DE NT1 mics. (I've been collecting studio gear for the last few years acquiring kit in sales, when reduced in price, or at auction.)
  10. I think the click track is useful for underpinning the timing of the track - especially if say laying down the bass track first. Another alternative might be to program the DAW with the tracks taken from the score and then play along to those. I need to discover the techniques that work for me myself - but this thread is highlighting some very interesting ideas to take into account.
  11. I downloaded the soundfont some time ago, so I'm not sure which soundfont it is. I plan to create a soundfont based on my own instruments - the full range - bass, baritone, treble - so as to minimise sound extrapolation. I'll make this soundfont available in due course.
  12. I wouldn't chance sending any vintage instrument to UK from Italy.
  13. Thanks seanc for your suggestions. My tango arrangement does have quite a few repeats in the bass line so record/copy/edit might work. More things to experiment with.
  14. Thanks for these - very inspiring. My DAW is Samplitude Pro X. I had planned to position mics either side of the tina and recording 2 tracks per instrument/part - your suggestion about mic placement looks like I need to experiment with mic positioning and then not change it between instruments. 2 mics might however introduce an additional level of complexity - so maybe 1 mic/track per instrument will be best. Will do. There are a lot of factors to consider and lot of research and experimentation to get best results - plus I need to learn my DAW too. This could be a fascinating journey - something I've been wanting to do for years. I'm still working on my arrangements - I use MuseScore 4 which has the ability to playback concertina samples - so this is a good way for getting an idea about how the final product might sound. My audio interface is a Focusrite Scarlett 18i20.
  15. Thanks Steve Yes using the DAW's click track is a good idea to help synchronise. One of my arrangements is a tango so the bass part should establish the rhythm first I feel. I'll have to experiment, and I was soliciting tips to carry into my planning and execution of my arrangements using the DAW.
  16. I'm working on a number of arrangements for concertina quartet - 2 trebles, baritone and bass. I'm thinking to record these arrangements into my DAW playing all of the parts myself. Does anyone have any tips on how best to work at this - my initial thoughts: record the bass part first, using a metronome for timing accuracy then record the treble 1 part to establish the melody (well mostly melody) then record treble 2 and baritone parts to create the harmony My DAW allows me to play back recorded parts for multi-tracking, as well as parts created in the DAW using a keyboard - so I could potentially playback some or all of my score at the same time as recording a part - something I've not yet tried. Any other thoughts on approach? How have others here approached the subject of recording parts using a DAW?
  17. I know it's not strictly concertina related, but we're all squeezers here, and some frequently squeeze other bellows-driven boxes. Does anyone in EU have a Hohner A114 melodeon for sale, in the key of A (or Bb)? If so, please PM me.
  18. Try Wim Wakker of Concertina Connection - he may be able to help
  19. I've seen this many times - and it's not an easy thing to repair. Bolts are overtightened in the mistaken belief that doing so will fix leaks - the leaks are often caused by the chamois being over compressed - I've seen chamois so compressed that it looks like wood and missing entirely. The remedial action should have been in this case to replace the chamois.
  20. Here is a Lachenal EC with a date written inside. Serial number 5876, February 1869. May prove useful in placing a data point on the Lachenal manufacturing continuum - if indeed it is a manufacturing or original acquisition date.
  21. VAT will be levied on the invoiced price and shipping costs. However, if it can be proved that the instrument is more than 100 years old it may be exempt from VAT as an antique. Check what is needed on the paperwork to prove the instrument is an antique.
  22. That's what I plan to use in a bass design I have.
  23. The reeds in my Wheatstone bass are placed onto individual resonance chambers.
  24. I think the combination of cello and concertina work well. Here is a recording of Gill Redmond (cello) and me (EC, shrutibox) playing for dancing.
  25. I have a concertina in my resto pile with glued-in reed pans. The fact I haven't repaired it yet is because I don't relish the task of working out which glue has been used (not any natural reversible glue as I recall), and unsticking them without damaging the reed pans.
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