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About Theo

  • Rank
    Heavyweight Boxer
  • Birthday 01/29/1950

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  • Interests
    I tune/repair/restore and buy and sell concertinas and melodeons.
  • Location
    Gateshead, England. Land of the Angel of the North!

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  1. A friend has a Wheatstone miniature 19 key Duet for sale. Its in excellent original condition, no signs of wear and plays in concert pitch. Serial number is 35309 July 1940, 3 1/2" across flats. Ebony end frames with metal fretwork with turned edges. Potential buyers please send me your email address and I will put you in touch with the seller.
  2. Nobody seems to have mentioned the Lachenal trade mark which is usually stamped into the right side hand bar. All but the earlies Lachenals have the mark.
  3. Shakespeare 38 key Anglo tuned BbF, with nickel ends and buttons, steel reeds, and tuned to concert pitch. Marked internally “Thomas Shakespeare Maker”. Shakespeare was a minor maker who modelled his instruments closely on those of Crabb and Jeffries, though his instruments never reached the level of of performance of the masters. Nevertheless its a very nice concertina and much less money than a Jeffries. Original six fold bellows with new edging, new bellows frame binding and gold tooling new pads fitted in recent years. New valves and full retune June 2019. Comes in a modern hard case. Asking £2950 or near offer
  4. You are welcome here any time. The Metro Centre is still here! And I wish to visit Italy again before too long, Castelfidardo of course.
  5. I agree with what Dave Elliott says about possible leakage through pads. A pad tester is a very simple and very useful device. I made a very simple one from a piece of plastic rod about 18mm in diameter and about 75mm in length, you could also use wood or metal. One end should be flat and smooth with a piece of soft leather glued on the end, and the whole thing has a 5mm hold down the centre. To use it press the padded end over the pad hole from the opposite side. Place you mouth over the free end and blow gently. You should not be able to hear air passing through the pad. Check all pads and adjust them until there is no air leakage.
  6. Don’t assume that it’s a Wheatstone because of the straps. If it’s a Linota you should find that name lightly impressed into the wood that the strap is attached to. If it says Trade Mark English Make then it’s a Lachenal.
  7. Better quality concerto has don’t have steel end bolts.
  8. What is the measurement across the ends between the flats? I have a suspicion that it is smaller than the typical 6 1/4".
  9. Agree with Geoff's comments above, and would add that some valves in use in recent times have been over heavy in the smaller sizes which can cause dulling of the sound. Valve colour has at best an indirect bearing on the issue. Valve leather can come from various sources and colour is not an important property. I've used black in the past, and presently using grey.
  10. It is a Jeffries. I've worked on it.
  11. Worth a look but it has accordion type reeds, not traditional concertina reeds.
  12. Pleased to hear I’m not alone! This method is possibly a little slower than using the traditional concertina bellows where you can file the reed in situ. On the other hand I think that tuning in the reed pan where the reed is in its own home gets the pitch closer to that inside the instrument.
  13. I work on accordions and concertinas. I have a simple tuning bellows with a couple of holes on top where I can place an accordion reed block. When tuning concertinas I place the complete reed pan over the hole and close the side of the reed chamber with a finger. It works well, but I don’t know anyone else who uses that method.
  14. That’s certainly one possibility: the reed tip may be set too high or too low, may be obstructed by dirt, may be off centre in the frame. It could also be valves that are curled and stiff and don’t open and close as easily as they should.
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