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Jake Middleton-Metcalfe

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Posts posted by Jake Middleton-Metcalfe

  1. I hope I have not missed any details in my research of post Brexit movement of musical instruments but - to my knowledge I cant think of a reason why there would be any problems with travelling with a concertina between EU and UK provided it did not contain any protected or endangered materials and it was declared as luggage. Normally airline tickets allow 1 item of hold luggage and 1 of hand luggage. A concertina would easily fall under hand luggage. 


    Sometimes people have a small screwdriver or other such things in the case - best not to when flying, airlines would tend to confiscate such things in my experience.


    Don't take me as a definitive source on this but to my knowledge what I have said is true.

  2. have you tried a Suttner concertina? They are rather popular in Ireland but made in Germany, you could probably go and try one when lockdown measures are lifted (I am not entirely sure of the rules regarding that in Germany at the moment), I believe Jurgen Suttner keeps display models. 


    Sorry I have not tried the Vintage from the Irish concertina company though.

  3. I haven't explored this make of reed you are mentioning but I have a warning to make: You have to be a bit careful with taking the accordion reeds out and replacing with other ones - they may be actually a quite different size and not fit into your reed pan. You should be able to get some sort of drawing from the manufacturer to compare. I know that is not really what you were asking about but its something that the accordion reed maker I used to buy from warned me about. (Their Tipo a mano and a mano were actually scaled differently and the plate was a different size, that manufacturer was Voci armoniche)


    Also un-related but I am interested: you mention the reeds are by salpa - I understood that Salpa no longer exists, it merged with Antonelli to become Voci Armoniche. Are those reeds old stock perhaps? Or do salpa continue a small arm of their own brand, I have seen businesses do this sometimes when bought out or merged.

  4. On 12/19/2020 at 5:30 PM, Pgidley said:

    I enjoyed watching your instrument being built on Alex's page. A lot of work went into it!


    Here is my new Dipper. Hard to describe how happy I am with it. I guess the best way to describe it is that it plays and sounds as good as it looks.




    special 2 degree taper reeds by Colin Dipper, that sounds interesting. Those Dippers are ever so good with their innovations.

  5. 9 hours ago, Chris Ghent said:

    I know Geoff, he visited here about 15 years ago.  He loves to talk about making concertinas and it is all interesting.

    wider gap. Leaving those reeds aside and talking about every day reeds,  it sounds like you do similar things to me on the underside, on the top side I hit it a little harder, but yes, I’m talking microscopic. 


    I think I might have misunderstood what you were originally saying about the experimental reeds, sorry.



    Ah Geoff is great, I sometimes have a new idea or want to try something different but encounter a problem or obstacle and he would say something like "well actually we tried that in the 60s and xyz was the best way.." 





  6. 6 hours ago, Chris Ghent said:

    Jake, I am not wedded to the idea that reeds need to have a precise bottom edge. I certainly round the top edge but that is a defence against burrs which don’t have to be very large at all to hit the frame. The bottom edge I take the sharpness off. What are your thoughts?


    Its a practice I picked up from an older concertina maker over here, Geoff Crabb. I believe the thinking is that when the edges are rounded underneath you are creating clearance which will not help the response of the reed, but all I was told is "square edges on underside of reed tongue is good for response". It stands to reason that rounded edges on the underside of the reed tongue would just make a wider gap for air to get through before the reed starts and make the response slower. I do de-burr the underside edges and top edges very lightly with probably 800 grit paper after they are filed to fit the frame and with square edges, but not to any degree which would cause a little 45 degree angle that wasn't microscopic. I hope this explains the reasoning well enough.


  7. hmm, if you have not seen this already you might be interested in the ergonomic developments of Henrik Muller. You can learn about it here: http://www.concertinamatters.se/page38/page38.html 


    Maker Alex Holden has done some work based on this new ergonomic idea, producing some instruments (or converting older ones? I can't remember). Having heard Henrik play, I was quite impressed by the different articulation and expression he was able to achieve. 

  8. 3 hours ago, Rod Pearce said:


    Thank you for the tip. I have just taken delivery of 30 'new' brass levers courtesy of Steve, so I can replace all levers and know they are all of the best standard. Steve was able to supply them from unused Lachenal stock.





    ah great. I knew he had the tools, I didn't realise he had a lot of them stored as well. He used to make a cheaper version of his instruments which used those parts.

  9. plenty of playing music with my wife and I discovered a great way to practice is take my son for a ride in the pram until he falls asleep then stop in the park, get out the concertina and play solidly for about an hour. That led to an interesting interaction with a retired royal artillery man - needless to say I played him the "train of artillery" tune which pleased him greatly. 


    Do very much miss the sessions though. Very much, there was a very good one nearby. 

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