Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

About Theo

  • Rank
    Heavyweight Boxer
  • Birthday 01/29/1950

Contact Methods

  • Website URL
  • ICQ

Profile Information

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

Recent Profile Visitors

792 profile views
  1. Theo

    Wheatstone concertinas (2)

    The anglo is simply a Lachenal, and one of their better models. Including Wheatstone on the title may confuse some buyers. Would be worth editing the listing if you can.
  2. Cheap and Cheerful 20 key CG. All the notes play and its pretty much in tune, but it's a cheap Chinese make. With a bit of tinkering it could be improved a little. It's might make a first instrument for someone on a limited budget, or a spare to keep in the caravan or boat. £70 including UK delivery.
  3. Theo

    Who made this one ?

    Just about all the 20b mahogany Lachenals I've seen have steel end bolts that screw into brass plates let into the bellows frames. I've seen only two Schuster concertinas. Both were English system and had metal action. Here is an earlier topic
  4. Theo

    Who made this one ?

    There is not a lot to go on in the photos but my gut feeling is that this is not a a Lachenal, (even with new ends). The fretwork pattern is somewhat like Lachenal but with some subtle differences, the ends are secured with wood screws, the buttons don’t look like Lachenal, the bellows, which are obviously old, don’t look like Lachenal. I suggest that one possibility is that it is a Schuster, a German copy of a Lachenal.
  5. Thanks Chris! I like to try first with a sliver of wood to tighten the hole, and if possible avoid using any sort of adhesive. I would also advise against using a hammer to insert the post. It should be possible to press the post into place. You can make a simple holder for the post from a piece of hard wood with a slot cut into the end grain to hold the lever and all of the post except for the pin.
  6. I think most people who tune more than the occasional concertina reed will go through something similar. This is what I do : 1 with instrument fully assembled make a record of the pitch of every reed. You need to prepare a simple record chart to write down the pitch of each reeds with a +/- cents deviation from the target pitch. 2 with the reeds on your chosen tuning rig first take a reading of the pitch, then tune the reed up or down by the amount you measured in stage 1. So for example if note A pull showed + 6 cents inside the instrument, and shows +8 cents on the tuning rig, then tune it down by 6 cents to leave it at +2 cents on the tuning rig. Do this for every reed. Then re-assemble the the instrument and repeat 1 and 2 above until all reeds sound the correct pitch.
  7. I use Peterson iStrobosoft and I'm sure the change in pitch Rod describes is not an artefact of the tuner, but a real change of pitch. So the question that really needs answering is how to find a consistent method of sounding concertina reeds that produces a stable pitch that matches the pitch of the reed in the fully assembled instrument. My method is a bit different from that used by most other concertina repair people who I know about. My tuning rig consists of a very large, foot operated, accordion bellows, so I have ample air supply to sound a reed for far longer than is possible with a concertina bellows. I sound the reeds while still fixed in the reed pan, so the acoustic environment that the reed "sees" is quite similar, though not identical, to that inside the concertina. I've found from experience that when the pitch stabilises while sounding the reed at low volume then that is a good match for the pitch when the reed is played in the assembled concertina. A good match in this context being within 1 to 2 cents of the target pitch over most of the range. It can be 5 or 6 cents out for the highest pitches on a treble EC, and the lowest reeds are generally a little more difficult to get a stable pitch. I've also found from experience that I need to have a general idea of how the owner of the instrument will be playing. Someone who plays at full volume much of the time will need a different tuning from someone who would usually play more quietly, even on the same instrument.
  8. Rod, I have an 81 key Lachenal Maccann with damaged ebony ends that would make a donor for this project. It’s an extended hexagon in shape and has good seven fold bellows, good reeds. If you are interested I can take photos.
  9. Theo

    old pitch and temperament - again

    If Colin tuned the concertina you should not discount the possibility that he tuned it to 1/5th comma meantone.
  10. Theo

    old pitch and temperament - again

    Agree with Geoffs point about the pitch centre for 1/4 comma. Also be aware that electronic tuners in pitch detect mode (the normal default) usually are unable to distinguish between enharmonic notes so if you see for example an Eb that is seriously flat eg 20+ cents, then it perhaps should be D#
  11. For sale Lachenal 30 key CG anglo with rosewood ends, bone buttons and nicely airtight original six fold bellows recent new pads and valves and in tune at concert pitch. This action has carefully upgraded with bushed buttons and riveted action. The action parts came from AC Norman, The result is a very fast action that allows a faster button return and makes a difference for quickly repeated notes e.g. the ornaments used for Irish music. Price £2000 which is a bargain considering the cost of parts and the amount of work involved in the action upgrades. Sold elswhere
  12. Theo

    Jeffries in B/F# (really!)

    I had one very similar to renovate a few years ago and had the same dilemma. I kept it in it's original pitch and found a buyer more quickly than I expected to. It is a delightful player. I rather think that the obsession with CG is well past it's peak, and after several decades of dealers retuning everything possible into CG (including Jeffries Duets) there are fewer original pitch instruments about,. and those that remain are in relatively more demand.
  13. Theo

    Duet concertina value?

    The photos you posted show bone buttons, and dark, almost black wood which I suspect might be black painted. Sometimes Salvation Army concertinas (many of which were Crane system) were painted black to tone down their appearance. I have one like this myself.
  14. Theo

    "tenor treble"

    Something else to bear in mind is reed and chamber size. Those low reeds on a TT will be much longer, and the chambers significantly larger than the notes you are proposing to change. This will result in poorer response and volume compared to the TT. Some people are more sensitive than others to that kind of difference, so it may or may not be important for you.
  15. Theo

    Anglo playing guidance needed

    Yes I have a copy of The Anglo Concertina Demystified by Bertram Levy, complete with two original cassettes! £12 including UK postage. I also have a copy of The Irish Concertina by Mick Bramich for the same price, or £22 for both,