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Alex West

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Everything posted by Alex West

  1. Whilst it's possible to find vintage Crabb and Jeffries 20key (and 26 key) instruments which are extremely good, these are not common and would be well outside a $500 budget. The "best" 20 key instruments would be the highly decorative rosewood ended Lachenal steel reeded instruments and you can find these as fixer-uppers for less than $500 and even potentially fully restored. If that's what you really want, then have a look out for one as they'll play better than your Scholer. But the Rochelle may well give you the extra challenge of a 30 key chromatic instrument as your next step up the concertina ladder Alex West
  2. So what sort of vintage are we talking about Stephen - 1870s? Alex West
  3. The George Jones 32 button is now taken. The rest are all available Alex West
  4. Rod, Theo My usage of aliphatic resins is based on advice given by others and practical experience rather than theoretical knowledge of glues. I started using Chair Doctor as I found it gave the strongest result when I was attaching ebony veneer to the end frames of concertinas. However... I could be wrong, but relying on memory and based on a quick search, I'm not sure that Titebond III is an aliphatic resin. Titebond II is a PVA (according to Titebond's website). The main benefits of Titebond II and III over Titebond I is that they are waterproof so is OK for exterior applications. I've never had a problem with the open time of either Titebond 1 or Chair Doctor. I would use Chair Doctor in this application since Titebond is more viscous and harder to get into all the tiny cracks. I've never used it but the blurb says that the Titebond Cold Press is a PVA. None of this means that you should throw your Titebond III away - the ultimate strength may be pefectly acceptable For making laminated new ends, I use Cascamite and I believe Alex Holden uses a Wessex resin system. Horses for courses, your mileage may differ etc. Alex West
  5. Rod Rather than a PVA wood glue, I'd consider using an aliphatic resin based glue such as Titebond or Chair Doctor. Chair Doctor is very watery so will creep into all the cracks which may be useful if you dont want to peel all the laminate plies apart. The advantage of both is that they swell the wood and get into all the tiny crevices so you get a very solid set. The big advantage of hide glue is that it's reversible - but why would you want this to come apart again? Alex West
  6. Louis My apologies for not replying earlier - I haven't checked the site for a while. There have been a number of threads about which instrument is the best for a beginner. If your son is already interested in the concertina and has played a few concertinas, he may have his own opinions. If he's completely new to the instrument, then you may not want to spend a lot on something which may not survive the passage of time and the need to practice to become extremely proficient. All of the instruments I have are vintage and have survived for a good number of years so with reasonable care and occasional maintenance, they will last for a few decades yet and hopefully hold their value. And of course it does slightly depend on what sort of music your son wants to play. Some of the instruments are all you would ever need without ever needing to upgrade - for example the 39 key Jeffries or even the 32 key Jones if that was tuned to CG. But these are both towards the top rend of teh price bracket. The 27 key Crabb CG and the 30 key Jeffries are both fine for a beginner but you might want to upgrade after a while if you're playing an "English" style and really miss the lowest notes for full chords The Lachenal CGs are both beginner friendly and have a full range of notes. They'd be priced lower than an equivalent Jeffries, Crabb or Wheatstone because their action is a little "looser" but a beginner should have few issues with that. The Koot Brits GD would be a decent instrument for a beginner who wants to play in "English" sessions where the home keys are those of the instrument. Like the Lachenal, the action is a litlle loose compared to a rivetted action concertina but that needn't be a big concern. The Bb/F instruments may not be so suitable for someone who wants to play in regular traditional music sessions. It's possible to play these in common session keys of C, G, D and A, but I'd suggest that's beyond the beginner. The same goes for the Ab/Eb Jeffries. They're fine instruments but probably not as a beginner's first "vintage" concertina Finally, the 62 key MacCann is a fine instrument if you want a decent sized Duet rather than an anglo. It's a New Model Lachenal so the action is better than the lower grade Lachenals I hope this long reply gives you some help - let me know if there's anything that seems to fit the bill for your son Alex West
  7. Bump Most are still available. I'd rather sell here than ebay so please take a look Alex West
  8. Fred I've got one I can fix up for you which would be less than £200. I can email you some pictures if you want Alex West
  9. I was just curious Simon, not touting for work! I'm sure Mike will do a good job Alex West
  10. The 39 key metal buttoned Jeffries has been taken so no longer available. The bone buttoned instrument is a strong player and worth consideration if that's what you're after Alex West
  11. Simon Indeed I do. Drop me a PM with your email address and I'll send some further information Alex West
  12. Thanks to coronavirus, I’ve finished a number of projects which have been sitting on the bench for too long and they’re now looking for a new home. Over the next few months, I’m looking to sell these and would like to offer them here first with the usual donation to Paul for the website. All Anglos apart from one; all button counts include the air key, all in equal tempered A=440 pitch unless otherwise stated Here’s what’s coming up; let me know if there’s anything you’re interested in and I can tell you more, send you some pictures and we can talk about prices. · Lachenal 33 key C/G Steel reeds, fancy fretwork · G Jones 32 key Currently in B/F# but could easily go either to C/G or Bb/F in modern pitch – nice player Now taken · Koot Brits 41 key G/D · C Jeffries 27 key Ab/Eb, metal ends, metal buttons ¼ comma meantone · C Jeffries 30 key C/G, metal ends, bone buttons · Crabb 27 key C/G, wooden ends, bone buttons · C Jeffries 39 key C/G, metal buttons originally built & tuned for a semi-pro player by Colin Dipper. Already Taken · C Jeffries 39 key C/G, bone buttons · Lachenal New Model 62 key MacCann Duet · Shakespeare 39 key Bb/F Crabb 30 key Bb/F, very fancy wooden ends · Lachenal 31 key C/G Brass reeds, simple fretwork · Lachenal 31 key C/G Steel reeds, fancy fretwork Alex West
  13. When I've had this issue, I use a black aniline leather dye to get the stain into the leather, then use a high wax, low sovent shoe polish to take away the slightly bronze effect https://www.hewitonline.com/Aniline_Leather_Dye_p/ms-070-000.htm Alex West
  14. I'd been spending ages trying to track and fix leaks on this Jeffries. It's a great instrument, response was good and there was plenty of air for all uses but there were still sounds of air passing which was bugging me. I replaced the pads, strengthened the springs, checked the bellows 5 times, did a whole load of things before I noticed some tiny pin pricks to the underside of the action face which turned out to be hiding large holes where the wood was so thin that the button pegs were punching through. Here's my fix. I don't think it's particularly elegant, but it seems to be doing the job. Any thoughts as to how I might have done it better (without replacing the wood completely)? Alex West
  15. Marcus It sounds like a Hohner D40 Anglo - but to be honest, this is a relatively simple find on Google rather than something which needs the combined expertise of the concertina.net university. Have a look at what you can find on Google and if it's not clear from there ask again! Alex West
  16. Brian In normal times, you'd be welcome to come and visit and try out an anglo (and I know a number of English players near here as well) but I fear that's not on at the moment. Send me a PM if you want to tell me exactly where you are and maybe I can give you some suggestions (I'm in N Ayrshire). I'm sure others will chip in with suggestions around your price range Alex West
  17. Paul The 50 key Ab/Eb Praed St Jeffries you sold me weighs 4lbs with 7 fold bellows so heavier than this one, and my 46 key GD Jeffries is 3lb 8oz so comparable - and that's by no means slow. No reason why this instrument shouldn't be good for fast playing (although the lowest reeds might slow things down a bit) but maybe the reeds need voicing? As I've advised someone else recently, unless you're standing, most of the weight is carried on the thigh anyway. Agree with everything else you say Alex West
  18. Neil If Mike's don't work out, I've an old empty right hand one. Don't know what happened to the left hand Alex West
  19. I could be mean and say that accordions are out of tune by design so no-one notices when they're out. I speak from experience having played in many sessions in Aberdeen with 1 or 2 fiddlers and umpteen accordion players. See the thread on reed tuning to see Dave Elliot's thoughts on the perceptions of concertina in-tune-ness. Again from experience, concertinas can be way out and still playable in sessions. As an aside, I've a concertina here at the moment which is over 100 years old, hasn't been tuned since the day it was born, spent a long time in America and still plays acceptably in-tune (albeit in old pitch) Alex West
  20. I called a couple of days ago and was told he's busy rewiring the workshop so couldn't get to the phone. I suspect that's all it is. Be patient Alex West
  21. Alex You clearly know more about UV than I do! Looking back at the Internet source I used, it was only 24 hours and I used an "ordinary" 15W Energy Saving Black Light bulb. I figured that whilst UVC was "best" I could use an ordinary source and simply soak teh bellows for longer. I didn't get anywhere near the light when it was operational as it was shielded in the bellows Alex West
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