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  1. Thanks for those kind remarks. Its actually not a retrofit, this is a new instrument. The ends are machined entirely from solid timber on my CNC machine! The mechanism is almost identical to a traditional Jeffries. There are many difficulties developing something like this, namely speaker enclosure/size/shape, battery type/size/location/lifetime, MIDI expander location, amplifier power/voltage/current consumption/efficiency, bellows pressure measurement, SOFTWARE, the list goes on................. Bellows are relatively easy to make, even in the traditional way but even cheap ones cost £150+ in the UK. When it comes to mass production, definitely possible BUT expensive to set up. If I wasn't already an electronics engineer AND a concertina maker/repairer then I would need to find people who were! The instrument in the videos is packed with separate electronic 'modules', some off the shelf and some (4) of my own design and construction. These would need to be re-designed and a TOTAL of 4 modules/pcb's should suffice. Luckily I found a guy (in the videos) who was prepared to invest and who had the patience to wait while I tried various ideas. My own opinion is that to flood the market with cheap, plastic, printed instruments would be akin to replacing the worlds pianos with xylophones. (I cant stand what Bose has done to traditional speakers) Ok, you cant print wood.......................... or could you? The danger is going too far and producing a toy. Something in-between would be better. How about CNC ends and printed mechanism. Finally, have you seen how slow a 3D printer is? Cheers for now
  2. OK, well here it is............................... I believe this to be the very first totally self contained MIDI concertina!!!!!!!!!!!!! If anyone knows of an equivalent then I shall withdraw that statement if you show me video evidence! . It's a 36 key Anglo, traditional riveted action, BUT in place of the reeds is a MIDI controller/stereo GM expander/power amp/speakersx2. It's battery powered (12 hours), has 'clever' bellows sensitivity and a hefty audio output from the full range enclosed speakers. It also has a stereo 'line out', a mute for the internal amp and the controller/expander can run from a normal power supply with or without batteries. This has taken MANY months to complete during my quieter periods BUT is possibly the most satisfying project that I've ever undertaken! This instrument FEELS real because of the vibrations from the speakers, something I had not truly anticipated. This particular instrument is now in the hands of it's very patient new owner/test pilot............. Please watch the following Youtube vids: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lo8VGP4nTOE https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NjbiflsBvgY https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zxzwN6vTpQ0 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ciD7Mz0J3zo https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NIRwnU-6hBI
  3. Well............. regarding value, did I mention how rare this is? I'm not sure right now how much to ask, I'm in no particular hurry. If you do a search for this very instrument like I have I think you will end up with a blank page! The only B/F# I can find with reed shoes like this one (actually stamped as being those of a 'real' B/F#) is another Jeffries, but with 38 keys. Searching for 22 key instruments reveals only Lachenal and George Jones instruments. I'm not saying that there aren't any of these around but my goodness, I cant find one anywhere. Roy
  4. This is a Jeffries stamped 22 key rosewood/bone button B/F# Anglo in concert pitch. This was basically a scrapper but I've restored it to 'used' condition because of it's tuning. I have read much about B/F# tuning and have read that this is really a Bb/F in a different pitch but in this case I must disagree. The tuning is correct as each note is tuned as per what is stamped on the actual reed!: The ONLY exception to this is the extra right hand button D5/C5. Left hand; B2/F#3 F#3/A#3 B3/C#4 D#4/E4 F#4/G#4 F##(G)4/A4 A#3/C#4 C#4/F4 F#4/G#4 A#4/B4 C#5/D#5 Right hand; B4/A#4 D#5/C#5 F#5/E5 B5/G#5 D#6/A#5 D5/C5 F#5/E#(F)5 A#5/G#5 C#6/B5 F#6/D#6 A6/F6 My intention was to retain as much original material as possible, especially in the bellows so although the leather has been restored (very carefully) the papers are all original. All reeds have been dismantled/cleaned/reassembled and tuned. It wasn't far off concert pitch so I sharpened it a little. It has a lovely rounded wooden ended sound, the reeds are very responsive and it is quite LOUD. New Springs/Pads/Valves/reed pan leather strips etc. It is now for sale, I've listed it here first for one or two weeks and then it's Ebay. It can be viewed at my workshop in Cheshire. Cheers Roy Whiteley, Accordion Magic Tel:07519064196
  5. Hi all, Here's a reminder of where we were 11 years ago: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OWWDabRGvW8 Here's where we are now: https://youtu.be/nyDqflcRDnY In this latest incarnation the whole thing is self contained............ Roy
  6. I can't get hold of small quantities of small diameter black delrin but have loads of 6mm white. This can be dyed very easily using the correct dye to almost any colour, handy for special buttons with special function etc. Delrin is extremely easy to turn and leaves a smooth finish after turning that doesn't need polishing further. Dyeing Delrin results in a deep colour layer that cannot be scratched off.
  7. Hello all, Roy Whiteley here............... Hello Bruce, I don't know whats happening on the communication front? i'm sorry that you've not been able to reach me. No clue regarding phone but I'll check my junk email on Friday (not in work tomorrow). My MIDI concertina history: First English completed in 2004. There are currently 40 something instruments out there, customers in UK, USA, Australia, Japan, South Africa, Spain, France............... Any concertina can be converted, English/anglo/duet/Chemnitzer, British/American/German or Chinese. Various methods exist mechanically, always magnets and sensors. Inside or outside of bellows. Mechanism always opens holes to simulate reed air consumption. Real time processor always, not pi. The pi is quick but not real time, it WILL miss events better used as a synth. Bellows pressure always measured and used with look up table and algorithm. Raw data can't be used. Internal GM MIDI expander can be fitted. Batteries should not be fitted deep inside the instrument. Currently assembling first MIDI concertina with internal expander and amp/speakers. When finished it will be fitted with OLED screen to improve the instrument setup system. It has 2 part ends milled from solid, I have the g-code and a CNC machine. Buttons turned from white Delrin dyed black, bushed. Bellows traditional. When it's complete I'll post images. Radio is coming also BUT forget ANY system that channel hops and handshakes, just too slow! The secret is NOT to send MIDI at all but something else and that's all I will say on that matter. I have provided kits in the past but I actually found this quite a job............ there are so many bits and pieces and an instruction manual to provide. More work than you would imagine. My intention is to make these available in larger quantities and cheaper than my 'gold' Jeffries type acoustics. I don't believe that you can make an instrument that feels like a real one for pennies though. Roy.
  8. Hello All, You may be interested to know that John's collection of concertinas (including the MIDI that I built for him) are going on sale this month from 14th/15th at public auction. Here is the link to the auction site (good pictures of each concertina): Adam Partridge auction Here is the MIDI in action: Cheers
  9. Hello and in summary then; Has anyone come across this pattern before? I am restoring this 31 key Anglo Lach Number 200234 Yes, some people have seen it before on both late Anglo AND English Lachenal models. These come with fibre boxes and Erinoid buttons and the words MADE IN ENGLAND or in the case above, just the word ENGLAND stamped on the side of a wooden end. So it's 1930 something at the end of production but are those Swastikas or 'patternations'........... or what. It's actually just a repeating 'Art Deco' type of pattern that some people see as overlapping lines such as those seen in basket weaving and Tweed fabrics and some people see as symbols resembling the 'swastika' symbol of the 'bad' WWII period and the 'nice' period before. Some people can only see one of the patterns (there may be dozens), others can see more than one at the same time and some people can choose which one to see ..... some people refuse to see I dont suppose Lachenal would have got away with this after 1939 or even earlier? any ideas? Well, I dont mean that he would have tried on purpose! but I think, given that at least some people can see the symbols that he would have changed the design at the time, had he still been in business. Anyway, should I replace these five fold bellows for a new set, would it put off potential buyers if they were left on after some repair? So long as I show the potential customer the paper design without uttering the words 'swastika' or 'symbol' or 'Art Deco' then they might actually like the design and buy the instrument so I will leave them on and fix em up like new. Before anyone asks, they are definately original. They are! Cheers and thanks to EVERYONE for this interesting thread. Roy
  10. Stephen, Yes, I've also seen these markings........ many times, but never associated them with.......well, anything! but thanks for pointing it out. Regarding my phrase " get away with it"; perhaps a bad choice of words. My real point was that perhaps the Brits amongst others would have preferred not to see these particular symbols during WWII even though Lachenal and the Brits would at the time (before the war) have considered the 'pattern' a completely innocent one and quite rightly so. Unfortunately, despite the immensely long and varied history of the symbol prior to WWII, it's meaning was changed dramatically by the Nazi's during WWII and is banned in Germany to this day! The following quote sums it all up; "Sixty years after World War II, few symbols are more immediately recognizable and more laden with horrific, historical baggage than the swastika. It stands for the Nazi machinery of murder, for the genocide perpetrated against European Jewry and the continent's Sinti and Roma population -- not to mention world history's most violent dictatorship. In Germany at least." You can read the rest here, http://www.spiegel.de/international/0,1518,337722,00.html So actually it's not just me! Dirge, I'm sorry you cant see them but hey, good for you. If you like the pattern for what it is, just that, a pattern, then thats fine. I must tell you this little story though............ In my former life as an engineer, I was priviledged enough to travel the world and worked in South Korea at the POSCO steel plant in Pohang a couple of times. During one stay I ventured into town to find some western food and as I walked through the high street I could see in the distance a flag jutting from a shop front, it was a black swastika on a white circle on a red background! As I neared the shop, the flag waved in the breaze and I tried to anticipate what on earth it could be, could it be the South Korean Nazi headquarters? surely not, did the Koreans get involved in WWII? I know they had big problems with the Japs, were they on our side? I eventually reached the shop and stood facing it, people walked in front of me and behind me as I stared at the clothes in the shop window and the sign over the door which said.........HITLER JEANS Work that one out unbelievable! The shop is there! This is a very sensitive subject in the west and must never be understated! I'm not sure whether to restore these strange bellows to proper working condition rather than replace them but I do also think that the papers are a nice period piece of the instrument! Cheers for now.
  11. OK everyone, thanks for the replies, I wasnt actually insisting that this was some kind of Nazi party Lachenal but just wondered if it was a Lachenal standard paper toward the end of production. Yes, I've seen them before on late-period Lachenals; the instrument probably also has buttons made of Erinoid plastic, a square fibre-board case, may be stamped MADE IN ENGLAND on its side, and could even have ferrous reed shoes? Yes to the buttons, fibre box is hexagonal, shoes are brass, MADE IN ENGLAND....yes its there. But I can't imagine how anyone could interpret the design as "swastikas" , it's simply Art Deco, like Odeon cinemas used to be, and would have been considered very fashionable and "modern" at the time. I think those papers are very attractive. I do understand the history of the symbol, if I didnt say 'Swastikas' how would you know what I meant? The design might have been considered fashionable at the time but taste is a personal thing ofcourse. The "swastikas", if that's what you want to call them seem to be incidental, an artifact of the way larger design elements meet at their corners. In fact, if you look again you should see that there are equal numbers of right-facing and left-facing "swastikas". Yep No, I don't think they would have gotten away with it more than five years after they closed. Humour I think if you don't mention the word "swastikas" while showing the concertina to anyone, I think they wouldn't mention "swastikas" either. To me it looks like a woven chair seat...under...over...under...over. Try to look at it differently. I suppose a few potential buyers might be put off, but I doubt that most would care, some might prefer the individuality, and many might not even notice the "swastika" if it weren't pointed out to them. In fact, I'm not sure I would have noticed. As I said, I'm sure it's an incidental artifact of the larger design, which reminds me of tweed. Hmmm, I've tried to ignore them but they wont go away! so far, no one has missed it, all I need to say is "what do you think"........ If my tweed jacket had that pattern on it I wouldnt bloody visit Germany! Cheers everyone Roy
  12. Hello everyone, Has anyone come across this pattern before? I am restoring this 31 key Anglo Lach Number 200234. So it's 1930 something at the end of production but are those Swastikas or 'patternations'........... or what. I dont suppose Lachenal would have got away with this after 1939 or even earlier? any ideas? Anyway, should I replace these five fold bellows for a new set, would it put off potential buyers if they were left on after some repair? Before anyone asks, they are definately original. Cheers Roy
  13. Hi folks, Well finally here it is, my Jeffries based concertina with the gold plated bits and bobs. This one is now the property of Chris Algar, I will be making more, exclusively for sale by Chris. Metal ended next. Yes, those are Lachenal reeds but the Jeffries style construction does indeed seem to bring them to life. The construction is traditional where possible, kiln dried quarter sawn sycamore is used for the reed pans, action board/sound board and bellows frames with Rosewood veneered Mahogany everywhere else. The bellows are constructed from individual card pieces with a coloured paper top layer as shown, muslin hinges inside and under the morocco grained sheepskin. The leather is hand cut and skived from the same hide. All metal parts except for the springs are gold electroplated, this looks good and stops the rot. The end bolts are gold plated stainless steel. Hope you like it
  14. This is a Jeffries copy made entirely from scratch by myself. The rosewood ends have my own fretwork design but otherwise it is very similar, particularly the reed pans. It's in the final finishing stage now and will be finished by the end of the week. It has been my desire to produce a fine instrument and as such I believe the insides should reflect the same level of quality as the outside even if it's hidden from view! No expense has been spared. Hopefully the first of many. Roy
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