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Chris Ghent

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    Blue Mountains NSW

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  1. Find yourself some harmonium or reed organ reeds as a source of the brass. They will be around, almost no-one keeps the instruments but people sometimes keep the reeds. Take the reed from the harmonium reed frame; it will still need drilling, filing to fit , riveting (the secret there is to have a hole in the reed a little bigger then the rivet and this will allow you to adjust the position of the reed as you rivet it) and then filing to pitch.
  2. Looking at the reed in the foreground, if that one is not sounding quickly then no surprise. While people often say the tip needs to be raised up above the frame, in fact the reed needs to be raised up above the frame from about 1/3rd of the way along the frame from the root, not just the tip.
  3. If you have the right file getting your .5mm down to .25 or 2 will take about 90 seconds per reed.
  4. A book binder offered to do one retrospectively for me, in fact he said it would be his preferred method. Only thing was, he wanted a piece of the leather to do a test on, some tanning methods make it difficult to do successfully. I didn’t have one, or the blocking die either so it did not go any further. There is a fellow in South Australia had a device built with 6 Jeffries style dies on a wheel. You feed a strip in and turn a handle and the strip comes out with the impressions all in a line. I have seen a few, it works, but getting them to line up in the exact place when fitting must be a struggle. It hasn’t been used in 20 years and could well be for sale.
  5. Yes, one of the RHS d#s in the Jeffries layout. My point about the drone was not that it could be converted to extra reversals but that the space it occupies on the reedpan (which I don’t really have a grip on as I have had little to do with hybrids) could be used instead to supply one more of the usual accidental row buttons.
  6. I put an E in the same place on my own concertina a few years back but never did convert to using it. You couldn’t pull from D to E because it was the same finger but apart from that worked OK. I have found putting non-reversed notes (typically E/F and A#/G#) from the left onto extra buttons on the RHS works well. Typically when your left hand is busy your right is not. And there is more real estate available on the right. Every instrument I have made has had the low F# reversed on the second button RHS accidental row instead of one of the d#s, a Dipper mod. Speaking of real estate, could you achieve another accidental note if you dropped the LHS drone?
  7. I suspect the transition from an incomplete (sorry, sounds pejorative, don’t mean to be, supportive of this project) learner instrument to a standard instrument would be easier if all of the buttons on the learner instrument had the same pitch values and positions as the equivalents on the more complete instrument. Is G minor a typical key for an entry level player? I found in my own playing using both A and G on that button made a huge difference to phrasing in my playing (including using the G in G minor) and I find encouraging students to use that G/A button early on is better than converting to that way of thinking later. As a teacher (of ITM) this would be a deal breaker for me. I have a laser cutter too, uphill learning curve! Struggle!
  8. Some cheap bellows are made with folded card rather than hinged card. They may break in eventually.
  9. Totally personal but I’d hate not to have the A/G reversal on the left end accidental row. A lot depends on the canon you are making the instrument for. A learner Irish player would be better off for future playing with the A/G than the Bflat/Aflat.
  10. I think you have misread Dana, Tom. You are in agreement. Tom, your man with the bandoneon; my guess is he doesn’t know much about his instrument but knows he can get what he wants out of it, so he imagines it must be right.
  11. Richard, don’t know if he is still in business, he is getting on, but try Peter Saville from JamesDeanDesign@bigpond.com.au, 0414 992 000. He is on the Princes Highway in Tempe, Sydney. He made a couple of knives for me a couple of years ago, well made. He has been in the shoe manufacturing business all his life. I think the principal at Lucris might have retired, his daughter is running it now. Both use a form of strip steel which they have on rolls. It has one sharpened edge (single sided) and they bend it to fit. It must be possible to buy it but whether it would be at an economic length would be something else. Either Lucris or Peter might tell you what it is called, which would make it much easier to find. Lucris used to work from a cardboard template, specifically manila folder! Peter worked from examples. The only good reason for wanting a set of knifes is you can stamp out a large number of valves quickly. The shape of them is usually a taper with rounded ends. While the rounded ends have no function once the valves are installed, the taper may make a difference as the smaller tip area would have less square area and the root end would be similar in stiffness to a parallel one meaning the speed of lift and return could be different. But you can cut a taper into a square valve easily if you want that. I often find my standard valves will not fit a repair or some of my own chambers and have no hesitation in cutting one from scratch with square ends or trimming the sides down on an existing valve. If I was reordering a set of knives I would get a number of shapes in each length.
  12. Alex, sorry,somehow didn’t notice you had given all of the same info...
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