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Dave Prebble

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Everything posted by Dave Prebble

  1. Hi Greg, Thanks for the Info. Yep! Certainly seems that you are straight in at the deep end with that one! Your news of the worn out/stripped end bolts comes as no surprise whatsoever to me. Far too often when leakage problems present, folks tighten down the end bolts as far as they dare and then just can’t resist that last fatal extra turn. This does nothing to address the original problem but merely creates a new one. Light finger pressure on a well fitting small screwdriver is all that is required. These are delicate thin fixings and not truck cylinder head bolts! You have inherited the results and, I think you will agree, a lot of extra work. I shall take that you have already cleaned up the old glue. Do take a couple of minutes to check all the partitions for any signs of damage. Now is the best time to repair any faults there. For the partition seals I would tend to use liquid hide glue applied to the wood partitions and not directly onto the leather. Use sparingly or it will soak into the leather and cause hard spots. Get a feel for the job by gluing up some scraps to wood before you start. On the seals that extend over the ends of the partitions and contact the bellows seal, leave these about a ¼” over length. I find these easiest to trim to a chamfer once they have firmly dried in place. If you have large fingers like me, you may find that working round the pan doing alternate seals results in less accidental disturbance of just completed work. Each time I place a seal, I invert the whole pan and press down lightly on a flat surface (the glass top sheet of my light table usually). This helps to ensure even thickness and consistent results. I shall take it that the bellows end frame is still sound. I have seen pans jammed in to the extent that the joints give and the whole end frame starts to expand! As before, make good any repairs needed before starting to reline. Use some off cuts to try and determine what thickness of leather will be required to form a smooth but not over tight seal. Though many concertinas have the Chamois sealing leather glued throughout, I am in favour of gluing just the onto the ends of the bellows, ie the faces that mate to the action box when bolted up. For this joint, again liquid hide glue is fine. Prick through your bolt holes and, placing a sheet of ‘greaseproof’ ..ie non-stick!. kitchen paper in between, make use of the concertina end as a clamp by fitting them to the bellows with the end bolts. (leave reed pan out at this stage) Once this has thoroughly dried, You now can shape the unglued section of the seal and make a trial fit of the pan. The idea behind leaving this section unglued is that paper strips can be gummed to the wood behind the seal to shim out for a perfect fit. When the seal has been adjusted you may find that it tends to pull out a bit with the pan, If so, a little hide glue along just the bottom edge should prevent this without making it too hard to make future adjustments. One further point to bear in mind is that the bellows blocks that limit how far the pan will push into the bellows end frame may well have to be adjusted to account for variations in the partition seal material thickness. Either gumming little triangular card scraps onto the block or taking a thin shaving off the block with a craft knife blade will afford a means of accurate adjustment. Be patient and work slowly and methodically. So that all sounds easy enough on paper. You will find it to be quite a fiddly and frustrating job at times but be patient and don’t rush and you will get there. One tip in gluing up is to keep handy a few fine dressmakers pins or ‘notice board’ pins. These make great temporary ’third’ hands I hope the above is helpful to you Regards Dave
  2. Hi Greg, Sorry, you seem to have been left a bit by the wayside in this thread. You don't say why you intend to replace the chamois partition and pan seals though I take it from your posting that you are having some leakage problems, either from one chamber to the next or past the sides of the pan?? The answer to the glue question is simple enough though the tasks that you have in mind can be a lot more complicated than at first expected. Before getting to that stage, I should prefer to know a little more about the symptoms arising from the leakage? If you have a look inside the instrument, - What is the general condition of the pads and valves and are they all seating properly? - Are there any signs of localised blackening on the partition seals? - Look in or near the corners of the inside of the wooden bellows end frames. Are all the pan support blocks there and are they still firmly stuck in place? Are there any telltale glue residues that might point to other blocks having once existed? - If you place the pan, partition side down, on a true flat surface, is there any sign of rocking that might indicate the presence of warping? - If you look inside the bellows end frame, is the chamois pan seal glued down to the inner face of the frame, (as opposed to the face that mates with the action box when bolted up) or is it loose? I ask these questions because in a high proportion of cases leakage can be resolved without all the hassle of ‘major surgery’ Regards Dave
  3. Hi All, Firstly to Frank. Having gone back and re-read the postings, I really should have known straight away that you would never even consider fixing valves using a glue of the type I described and I should like to offer my apologies for not realising immediately that there must be some misunderstanding – My apologies to you Frank. Now then Dave. We have had similar discussions in the past and remained good friends so I will chance my arm and have another try for at least a partial conversion towards reversible glues. < Dave - re- bushing key holes, the job is supposed to last another eighty years…> In my experience, bushes compact and wear with use, rather than fail due to weak glue. Indeed the use of weak glue may have been intentional to allow for easy renewal. They are certainly to me a ‘standard service’ item. In an instrument that gets very regular use I would say your ‘80 year lifespan’ is out by a factor of 10 or more. The Pad, I would agree is a throwaway item that would not normally be repaired and, I suggest, if you use non-reversible PVA glue, your lever arm nuts or ‘spuds’ become throwaway items too. Again, if one considers bellows to be expendable items (in the long term) and are always prepared to ‘patch over’ rather than replace damaged parts, then non-reversible glues are OK. I would always avoid their use, however on original vintage bellows < Dave - Wood glue failure on veneers, framing, and all manner of wood working activity, we want these to be permanent so PVA is OK there too.> The hide glue structural joints in old concertinas have lasted (excepting ill-use or accident) in good condition for a full century before PVAs were even invented…. How permanent do you want? The traditional glues are not only reversible but they are, to my mind at least, proved to be permanent. They were certainly intended to be permanent when first made though I somehow doubt that Messrs. Wheatstone, Crabb, Jeffries et al. realistically expected their instruments to still be intact, played and so highly prized, after the passage of anything up to 170 years, and I might add, looking 'odds on' to still be in good playing condition a century or more from today! Over such long periods of time, accidents and periods of abuse or neglect are bound to occur. I would suggest that, had high strength non-reversible glues been universally available and used by our forebears, far fewer instruments would be in such good condition today. Many more accidental fractures would have occurred in the wood itself rather than along glue lines and damaged parts could not have been so easily removed to facilitate repair or replacement. Similarly, what we do today should not be considered to be ‘one off, fixed for all time’ solutions as it is clearly just as impossible for today’s repairer/restorer/maker to predict whether or not his work or his repairs might need to be reversed or re-done perhaps many years into the future. Using non-reversible glues seems a bit like welding up all the nuts and bolts on a vintage car engine on the grounds that it has just been rebuilt and should ‘last for years’ and that welding would permanently prevent them ever rattling loose. There are plenty of better alternatives than welding.....all of them reversible! My views on the principle of reversibility have, I freely admit, been heavily reinforced by years spent undoing the harm done to antique furniture by well intentioned, but totally ‘cobbled up’ repairs very often involving intractable modern glues and hidden nails! I hope the above missive will go some way to explain my feelings about reversibility and I am only thankful that very few folks have attempted to nail broken concertinas back together! The only advantages you offer for the use of PVA glues for 'permanent' fixes seem to be that they are cheap easily available and easy to use, along with the fact that a certain maker uses them; though it certainly seems to me that not everyone agrees with all his working 'practices'. Your main objections seem to be on the grounds that traditional alternatives are hard to obtain and difficult to use but your use of the word ‘fancy’ in relation to shellac and hide glues, does suggests to me the presence of that 'aura of mystique' I spoke of previously. As regards cost: Shellac Flake or Shellac buttons 250g - £5.00 sufficient for 1 1/2 pints of 3lb cut polish or 3/4pint of 6lb Methylated Spirits 500ml - £ 1.40…(£1.60/pint) (local hardware store)……(De-natured Alcohol in US?) The above works out at: £8.25/pint of thick 6 lb cut polish or £4.93/pint for 3lb cut suitable for polishing Pearl Glue (dry pellet form) - £3.80 /250g Rabbit Glue ( Ditto) - £6.40 /250g All the above materials will last for years and years in airtight containers and can be mixed easily in amounts as small as you wish. The costs per litre are pretty much equivalent to basic PVA glues bought in similar quantities. One further point might be that you can’t re-polish the concertina’s woodwork with PVA The above glues and shellac are all ‘Liberon’ products which, although good quality, are far from the cheapest available brand so shop around. I quote their prices because they supply nearly all the Big D-I-Y and craft Superstores and are thus easily available. I pay £3.75 / pint for ready mixed 3lb button in gallon cans. For smaller quantities, try ‘Rustin’s ready made button polish which is widely available at approx £3.50 per 250ml and £6 per 500ml. Franklin's Liquid Hide Glue £3.75 / 8 Fl.oz. As far as left-overs are concerned, I reckon that anyone handy enough to undertake repairs to their concertina would soon find uses for the excess. … learn how to polish perhaps?? In all, I would say that UK availability and cost should pose no problems. (Dave, perhaps the polish you bought was a premium grade or pre-coloured polish. This might easily account for the unusually high price as certain spirit colour pigments are expensive.) As for ease of use, the postings above describe the processes and the only really difficult part is to remember to prepare the shellac or soak the pearl glue 24 hours or so in advance. Beyond that they are pretty easy to use and, in doing so, you may just be earning the thanks of an, as yet unborn, restorer or repairer. Go on give it a try .... You know it makes sense!! Regards Dave
  4. Hi Frank, Thanks for your clarification, I guess we have a 'Trans-Atlantic' problem with trade marks and product names. The solid glue sticks you seem to be describing appear to be marketed over here as well under the name UHU 'Power Sticks'. These look to be a similar sort of product as a glue commonly known over here as 'Pritt Sticks'. That being so, I would have no problem in using either product for fixing valves. What I was referring to in my post, used to be sold by 'UHU' in the UK and was a colourless tube glue which smelled much like the 'airfix' plastic cement (used for model airplane kits) but had similar consistency as hard rubber when set. It looks like this is still available in the UK and goes under the name, UHU 'All Purpose Crystal Clear' though I have no idea if it is sold in the USA and I havn't yet bought any to check that this is definitely the same stuff it used to be. The UHU brand also market Cyanoacrilate superglues and some spray glues. It seems that we may have both shortened the name to just the Brand name 'UHU' and thus arrived at a mis-understanding. I hope the above clears things up. Regards Dave
  5. Hi All, I very much agree with Richard. ‘Reversibility’ is the key. I consider it good practise when approaching any restoration problem to ask: - Does the job really need doing? - What could go wrong? - Can I get things back to the point I started from?…. and if not - What is my fallback solution? It should be noted that for at least the first hundred years of concertina production, probably only three or four types of glue were used; namely Animal/Hide glues, Natural Gums, Starch glues and Shellac. While I have no great objection to the use of the correct grades of specialist PVA glues, with a few exceptions, I see little real need, or advantage in, departing from the original materials especially where restoration work is involved. One difficulty, in the UK at least, is that virtually all the PVA glues easily available from hardware stores range from ‘difficult’ to bl**dy nigh impossible’ to reverse. This might be considered to be a positive advantage in some ‘structural’ repairs but if there is an equivalent strength ‘reversible’ bond available this will nearly always get my vote. If you feel you must use PVA then look to Bookbinders or Conservators suppliers for specialist grades of Reversible or Plasticised conservation grade glues. Do not be put off by the aura of mystique that seems to have formed around the use of hot animal glues. They are cheap, easy to obtain and prepare and in my opinion, no harder to use than other modern ‘equivalents’. The commonest form is Scotch’ or Pearl’ glue which comes in the form of 1/8” diameter honey coloured, hard pellets. (These will keep virtually forever in a dry sealed jar). Take a tablespoon full of pellets and place in a small glass jar, (baby food jars are just right) add just sufficient water to cover the pellets and leave 24 hours to soak in. The result is a thick jelly ‘glob’. Take an ordinary domestic Iron, invert it and clamp it in a vice… a cheap variable temperature ‘hotplate’. Place a small tin can, half full of water, onto the sole of the iron and stand your glass pot in this...... A cheap effective double boiler or 'Glue kettle' Heat slowly whilst stirring and do not allow it to boil. If any scum forms on the surface, skim off with a small spoon. The glue is ready to use when it runs off your stirring rod with the same consistency as fresh engine oil. If too thick, add a little water and bring back up to temperature; if too thin, leave on a low heat for a little water to evaporate. This glue is unusual in that it gains its initial set or grab from hardening as it cools, thereafter continueing to increase in strength as the water evaporates. It follows that a warm environment and a little pre-planning of the work is advisable so your glue does not chill too soon. Have a play around with gluing up some scraps of wood, leather card and cloth to get a feel for the glue before starting your repairs. For pads, simply place the new pad in position over the hole, add a small ‘blob’ of glue to the pad centre with the tip of an artists brush or even a matchstick, line up the button and lever and lower the leather ‘spud’ onto the glue. If you need to make later fine adjustments, for a few hours at least after initial set, you can soften the joint by holding the tip of a soldering iron near to, but not touching, the glue until it melts sufficiently to make your adjustment. Place a tight fitting lid on your hot glue pot and it will keep without harm for several days, merely requiring re-heating and the occasional drop of water to keep the mix right. To make life a little easier, there are ‘liquid hide glues’. I can’t say what brand Frank Edgley uses, but I have found Franklin’s ‘Titebond’ Liquid hide glue (LHG) to be an excellent reversible glue for all manner of repairs to wood card and leather (Available in UK and USA). These liquid glues are based on the same animal glues but have chemical additives that prevent polymerisation and thickening at lower temperatures. These glues rely solely on ‘drying out’ to gain bond strength and therefore have a slower initial grab (or conversely, longer ‘open’ time). This makes them more forgiving in their use, allowing for work at a steadier pace and giving longer for positioning and re-positioning component parts; at the expense, however, of a longer drying and hardening time. Where a flexible joint is require you can add about 5% pure glycerine oil to LHG and this will act as a plasticiser. I have used this glue successfully for bellows making. (Glycerine can also be used to plasticise PVA and Hot animal glues as well!) Clean up excess with a damp cloth and reverse the bong with moisture and warmth. If you dilute LHG with around 30-40 % of water, you will have a glue suitable for sticking valves though, personally I prefer the shellac as this give a faster set with less risk of you disturbing valves you have already completed. Shellac is again simple to obtain, prepare and use. Simply buy a small bottle of ready made Shellac ‘Button polish’ or ‘French Polish’ from your local hardware or paint store. (Avoid ‘Bleached’ or ‘White’ Shellac). Simply pour about ½” into the bottom of a small jar (baby food again!) and leave with the lid off in a warm place for some of the solvent (alcohol) to evaporate off. This will take some hours so prepare ina advance. As this happens the polish becomes thicker and when it has lost about half it original volume give it a try on some sample material. If too thin, it will tend to soak right into the leather and will dry stiff; if too thick, as Goran said, there is a tendency to form a thick layer lifting the valve off the wood and allowing for slight leakage. Trial, observation and a little common sense will indicate the right consistency. The ‘Glue’ can be reversed by the application of a drop of Methyl or Ethyl Alcohol (Meths in UK) or when perished, by scraping. With an airtight lid, the thick shellac will last indefinitely and can be re-diluted if required with meths. While on the subject of valves. I can’t think of any circumstance when I would re-use a valve. At a few pence (cents) each it simply is not worth accepting second best. Another simple reversible glue useful for spot application such as valve fixing is natural gum glue of the type that is used extensively in schools and craft classes. The type I use is ‘Gloy Original Gum’ and is readily available in stationers and craft shops. (is this your ‘Brown Gum’ Dave?) It dries by evaporation and is fairly slow setting but fully reversible with a drop of water on the leather of the valve. Coming in a handy tube, it is part of my travelling first aid kit. It is this glue that I prefer for fixing bellows papers. It sticks well, allows ample time for positioning and any excess is readily and cleanly removed with a damp cloth. Though I have never used the starch based glues favoured by Goran for valves, I shall certainly give it a try and, bearing in mind that a simple starch glue made from flour, water and glue size was the main glue used in all Crabb Bellows, I shall also give that a try on the next set I make. I use a specialist leather contact glue, (probably similar to Dave’s ‘Evostik’ or The US ‘Barge Cement’), solely for the gluing up of English Thumbstraps. Dave, I have used ‘UHU’ in the past and it is just like ‘Bostik’ which you may be familiar with. They are both , I think, styrene based and are equally vile and messy to use and produce long strings of waste. Any such spillages will dissolve or damage many wood (and leather) stains and surface finishes. No room at all for these in my workshop. While on the subject of ‘Nasties’…. Please avoid the use of all silicon based glues, sealants and wax polishes. Silicon products can bleed into bare wood, even through minute cracks and scratches and can prove all but impossible to remove. The result is that if the joint has to be re-glued, nothing will stick and all traditional surface finishes I know are strongly repelled by silicon making cosmetic repairs very difficult. I do use a synthetic glue for one other application – Gluing up the composition leather/felt/card sheets out of which I punch new pads. I use a spray can of general purpose upholsterer’s glue which gives a quick thin and even coating. Simply spray on, assemble the ‘sandwich’ and press lightly for an hour or so. Brushed application of other types of glue tends to soak in too far and causes hardening of the felt cushion and leather seal. Regards Dave
  6. Hi there, sad news for the guy who wished to buy the magnificent beastie but he obviously plays well and is already a total addict. The good news is that we are welcoming another lost soul into the fold.....You! Act now while you are 'fired up' and work hard for a while to learn and you will never regret it. With a little encouragement, it really does not take long to get to the stage of really enjoying what you are playing Do keep in touch with the guys here, you will find all are most happy to help out. God Bless and Happy Christmas. Dave to the guy who 'missed out' my thoughts are with you......I've been there too! Dave
  7. Hi Lester, Take charge, get stuck in and educate your friends to the delights and G & D on the Anglo ! ...... but why not transpose and take copies of your favourites in G/D just in case? Have fun and all the best for Christmas and the New Year Regards Dave Ps..... key of "H" ..... a certain 'early bath' for a G/D player
  8. Hi Folks, Alan helping folks out is nothing new though with the C.Net he can cast his net somewhat wider. I learned my chord playing and owe much of my style to the teaching, some 25 years ago, of a dear friend to me and another of our members, Brian (Trooper) Hawes from Sussex. (Trooper, you have been a bit quiet lately.... age getting to you?? It was only by accident that, last year, I discovered through c.net that it was Alan who had taught the very same skills to Brian only a couple of years before it was passed on to me. I raise my glass to both you fine gentlemen! Dave Trooper...Truly sorry I missed the party.. Dave
  9. Hi Goran, Whilst all we poor conservative, indolent, ignorant numbskulls sit peacefully and contentedly with friends and family round our Christmas trees, comfortably playing traditional carols and merry airs on our useless, stupid and unergonomic instruments of torture, I at least, shall spare a special thought just for you on Christmas day, as you happily while away the hours banging your head against the brick wall of universal 'scepticism'. Seasons Greetings Dave p.s. I did ask Santa Claus to bring me an ergonomically designed 40 key 'Jeffries copy' Anglo for Christmas but all I could get out of him was a resounding Ho Ho Ho Ho........!!
  10. Hi Jim, I strongly suspect that your problem has nothing to do with lubrication but can't remember too much about Bastari innards so will offer no specific advice. As Regards lubrication, your instincts are spot on! Neither piano nor concertina actions should ever see the oil can. Oiling pivots will at best lead to a sticky build up of grime and dust and at worst, with repeated applications, the oil will migrate down the pivot uprights and soak into the wood of the action board eventually causing the wood to relinquish its grip on the stems of the posts which can become loose and fall out. Re-fixing posts in oil sodden wood is no simple task. The only lubrication I ever use is a very light rub of candle wax on lever arms where they pass through the button bushing and occasionally a minute puff of finely powdered PTFE on slightly sticky felt bushings in the endplate, though there are probably others here who would disagree with even that level of 'lubrication'. Regards Dave
  11. Hi Sharron, No more excuse! I won't listen to any more arguing just do what you are told and get down to the Doctor's now ...remember my girl, you are not too big to go over my knee!! Regards and best wishes for a speedy recovery Dave
  12. Hi Tom, I hesitate to say it, but the safety pin is quite likely to last you a good while. Certainly long enough to order a new full set of springs It is a fiddly job but is straightforward if you are reasonably handy. A good starting point for a supplier would be to contact one of the sponsors of this site. Do remember to count up and specify the number of left and right hand hook springs and don't forget the air button. When one spring goes it is often an indication that a goodly proportion of the others are about to throw in the towel....if springs can do that? As for safety pins, I once bought a cheap 20 key Lachenal that was sprung throughout with safety pins and pretty heavyweight ones at that. I guess that all started with one spring failing but the local shop must only have sold them in packs of 20. The result was very heavy springing which made it a quirky box to play with a feel not unlike a single row melodeon and produced a strange clipped quality to the sound. I never did find the heart to change them! In an emergency I have also used a snip from off the end of a steel guitar string wound round a thin screwdriver to make a spring. A good stop-gap when out and about but best soon replaced. If the guitarist is a 'bit of a pain' about it, take the snip from the middle;) A rubber band passed under the lever and tied off over the fretwork is another bodge-dodge I have seen. This saves opening the box in the middle of a session. By far the best way is to always carry spare springs and a screwdriver in your case and if you frequent dark dingy pubs like me, a small flashlight! Regards Dave
  13. Hi All, Plenty of sound suggestions there. Just a couple of points. The small size screws have very little to grip to and are hard to find new. This is quite a common problem and really should be 'nipped in the bud'. Once these small screws have become loose or failed, there is opportunity for the thumbstraps to move about and cause flexing of the thumbstrap bracket, the wooden ends and the long screw that runs through the post to the action board. This leads to the long screw failing* or wearing the hole and pulling through the bracket and in either case very often damages and weakens the wood around the bracket area. To my mind the ideal is to make a brass plate (for argument say 1" square but make to fit in) with a hole drilled in it to allow it to clear the post and to then secure this plate to the inside of the wooden end. Instead of screws, use small bolts through the thumbstraps either threaded into the plate or bolted through it. This will acheive the same result as Pete's method but will spread the load considerably - especially important if there are already signs of the wood splitting in this region. Regards Dave * If this long screw fails your only hope is to get one from of the repairers. I am told they have not even been manufactured (In the UK at least) for many decades. If any one out there does know of a source of No 1 or 2 gauge woodscrews in lengths between 3/4" to 1 1/2" , I should love to know. Dave
  14. Hi Paul, You could well be right about non-sequential numbering in general and I too have noticed anomalies where Jones Boxes are concerned. There is so little information and hard data available that we do have to rely on extrapolation, assumption and pure guesswork. Results are only as good as the data. Back to the original enquiry I would say certainly do not dismiss Jones simply because he was one of the smaller makers. He certainly made some fine concertinas. Of great importance however is what has happened to them since they left his hands. You really must 'try before you buy' and remember to choose with you ears and your fingers and not get too bogged down by Famous (or otherwise) names or how flashy an instrument looks. Regards Dave
  15. Hi Paul. The buttons on my Jones English are 5mm Nickel silver tips on wood stems Spacing is 1/2" between rows and 13/32" between centres along the rows ..... very slightly greater I think in both respects than Wheatstone of Lachenal 'standards'. One possibility for the 'earlier date' broad reeds might be that some instruments made their way back to the shop in later years for re-furbishing and resale and were re-reeded then, though it could just as easily be an idea he experimented with in early days and then shelved for some years, Who can tell? It would be interesting to compare reed shoe widths to see if this were a possibility. Regards Dave
  16. Hi to All, There is and excellent article about George Jones much of which comes straight from his memoirs. "Recollections of the English Concertina Trade by George Jones, with comments by Frank E. Butler and Neil Wayne". This can be found at DoN Nichols web site:- http://www.d-and-d.com/contributions/tinas-jones2.html In this article Jones says :- "In 1870 I manufactured the first Broad Steel reeds, later advertised with the slogan "Never wear out. Never go out of tune". It was necessary to enlarge the 48 keyed English to take them, and the result was the most powerful instrument made." I have one of these larger English concertinas, if memory serves 6 3/4" Across Flats. As Jones certainly claimed and Paul suggests, this a very loud instrument. The volume is not as is so often the case, associated with a 'hard tone'. The overall sound is mellow and well rounded. The instrument has a good quality rivetted action and appears well made throughout. It came with badly damaged ends and virtually no fretwork left and now sports a pair of finely fretted solid amboyna ends. It really does deserves to look as well as it plays. The only Jones Anglo I have had was a 30 key Rosewood ended Anglo though I cannot recall whether it had broad reeds or not. It was certainly the equal in all ways to the Lachenal Rosewood ended model. Regards Dave
  17. Hi Pete, I have noticed there are a number of different ways of marking time. As Pete hinted my toe normally taps at double speed, so in 2/4 time there will be 4 taps but with the ones on beat, emphasised. Why….only the Lord knows. This doesn’t seem to be one of the more common traits I have observed… Alright! So I’m the only one I know who does it. Perhaps vaguely related to potential push pull action of the bellows played ‘English’ or ‘Morris’ style?? I have noticed that a lot of Anglo players tent to tap alternate feet while the often more demure, English concertina players, delicately tap away with one foot…..Bellows again? One thing worth noting is that for someone playing seated with the instrument on the knee. Fairly aggressive heel tapping can do a lot to accentuate the tune and add ‘lift’ to the music. Try playing a sustained note with your box on your knee and tap the beat with the heel….you will see what I mean. A similar exercise on the old Hohner 4 stop single row used to produce a sound somewhat akin to a didgeridoo ! Have fun and experiment Dave
  18. As a predominantly English 'chord and melody’ Anglo player my style was once described as “percussive rumpety pumpety”. Clearly, far removed in sound and playing concept from the ‘Irish, across the rows’ method. I am considering, if I live long enough, (oh those waiting lists!), investing in a ‘top notch custom made C/G Anglo solely for the Irish style of playing. Who better to ask for opinion and advice than those folks here who have played in that style for years. My question to you all is, assuming no financial limitations (If only!), what particular features and qualities would you want to be built in to your new ideal dream ‘Irish Anglo’? I am not looking here for particular makers or models but for the things about them that you find important and useful. The subject of Wheatstone/Jeffries accidental row layout has been covered recently by the forum and having played Jeffries instruments for 25 years I shall stick with what I know. I think we might also avoid the ‘button size’ argument for the time being’ eh Folks ? It is your own experience and views I am seeking out but, just to stimulate thought, perhaps the relative importance of the following factors might come into the discussion: Concertina size and weight, Useful additional notes and their ideal location (over and above standard 30key anglo) Drone button? Tone eg ‘hard and bright’ versus ’rounded and mellow’ Bellows capacity 5,6 or 7 folds. Botton touch – light medium or heavy springing Type of action Etc…….. So how about it? What are the specifications for your dream ‘Irish Anglo’ Regards Dave
  19. Hi, Is anyone else having trouble with this feature ? Despite having 'cookies enabled' and the tick in the automatically log me on box, I find I am now having to log on each session. Is there a system problem? Does the server not share my views? Do I have to 'blame ' my son for screwing up my system (it's never Me!!) Come to mention it, the whole system seems to be running at somewhat less than half speed today. Regards Dave
  20. Eh Up Jim! I'll wipe No1 off your list straight away I can't afford one !! (nor as some might suppose,were I to find one 'going for a song', would I convert it to an Anglo. I have seen several such conversions and they have always been disappointing to me.) Dave
  21. Hi All, I would just like to echo Peter's comments and add my thanks to Geoff and his wife for a wonderfully informative and inspiring day. I know it is a bit of a long shot, but do we have any Geophysicists amongst the forum members ? Geoff is trying to source a Seismograph with which he proposes to do the final tuning. Regards Dave
  22. Hi Clive, I like your ideas regarding 'Arguing the Toss' and certainly agree that it carries strong overtones of 'arguing for the sake of it'. Nice one Turning the original idea on it's head to form a 'Pub Chat' Now that is much more the mark! It works for me and I would think would soon become a home from home for quite a group of 'regulars' Will they serve Marstons or Theakstons I wonder ?? Regards Dave
  23. Hi Richard, I am inclined to agree that, now the facility to go 'off topic' under a re-named thread line has gone, when we do need to digress from the original , we need to give more consideration as to whether we really ought to be starting a new thread. As to the meaning of 'Arguing the Toss'. When I hear (or use) the expression it carries (for me at least), the suggestion of noisy and extended antagonistic argument about something of very little consequence. I had assumed it to be related to the toss or flip of a coin to decide a matter, though the Oxford dictionary records the use of 'toss' as having (in 1540 at least) the meaning: 'to bandy a question or subject from one side to the other in a debate' Like so much in the English language , we shall probably never know its origins. To convey a similar meaning, my Grandfather used to use the expression: 'Arguing the leg off an iron pot' Having said all of the above, it is more appropriate really that Clive should comment on what the phrase means to him - after all, it is his thread title. Dave
  24. Hi Clive, I must admit that I have ‘hung back’ a bit to see what response this thread would get but am perhaps a little less surprised that you at the deafening silence. I maybe expected a little more response from the newer members but those who participated in the old forum have seen time and again this very discussion about a separate room for ‘punch-ups’ and whether or not ‘offending members’ should be censored/censured or even blocked out, and may be pretty tired of the subject. I am quite sure that during the forum's argumentative phases, and they do seem to be phases, many folks who otherwise would, are deterred from posting, for fear of attack. I personally dislike the line-by-line dissection and rebuttal of posts and when I write, by and large, I try to avoid this and set out my case in a more standard prose format. This can result in quite long posts, perhaps long enough to deter some folk from reading them, but I sincerely hope, never of a character to deter anyone from posting a reply. Short of outright censorship, which I am sure no one wants, contentious subjects will continue to result in head-to-head discussion of widely varying and firmly held points of view. It can only ever be the responsibility of each individual to carefully read and consider what others write and then to respond fairly and honestly and exercising all common courtesy. I too miss the old format which allowed you at a glance to see who had responded to what thread or offshoot and to make a direct reply to a particular person. It was also easy to avoid the flare-ups and did make it easy to rename and make ‘followable’, the sometimes wild tangents that often flew off from the original topic. For me that was part of the fun of it. We have the new forum now and those particular attributes are no longer available. What I hope we do still retain is a friendly and caring group identity and we should each do our best to lead by example though I am sure occasional failures will continue to be forgiven....... mea culpa! I most certainly don’t think a new separate ‘Bear Pit’ Forum for messy or protracted arguments would in any way help matters. The very presence of such would serve to condone the existence of an antagonistic culture. There will be those newer and quieter members who feel sufficiently intimidated to prevent them from making a first posting or have real concerns that they might be attacked, stamped down or ridiculed. To them, all I can say is that really most unlikely to happen. Even the most ‘battle scarred’ argumentative old reactionaries here only tend to round on their own kind and are always polite and helpful to all others. In the unlikely event that someone did step out of line there would be plenty of 'good guys' to come to your support. Please, stop lurking, seize the moment and start your own post!! Regards Dave
  25. No chaps I reckon you've got it wrong, must be a typo error: Jeffries made Crabb Violins ....... and did a swap with him for top notch Anglos !! So now you know .... the 'missing link'! Dave ('Stradivarius' ? ...... probably a Stagi re-badged by a dealer on the fiddle )
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