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Chris Ghent

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Everything posted by Chris Ghent

  1. This looks like a very easy fix if you are used to working with metal. I doubt it is steel, if it was then the force needed to bend it would be an event you would definitely have noticed. If it is nickel copper ( sometimes called German Silver and often used in ends) it is very soft and could be bent back by hand but my weapon of choice would be a dead blow hammer.
  2. I retuned the D# to a draw E but found when I wanted to use it in a sequence the finger I needed was often already in use for the note before or the note after. In the end I put an extra reversed F/E button on the right hand side at the top of the C row. (F because I already have a low F# on the push instead of one of the RHS D#s.) The issue with a thumb button for melody on the left for me would be that my thumb is actively holding the concertina down on to my thigh. If you are not doing that then I don’t see why not. But reverse engineering a thumb button into an instrument without one would be major work. The reason some roll/crans are easier to make sound crisp on the pull is the pad is being sucked shut. On the push it is having to rely on spring pressure against the air flow and the result is less precise.
  3. The material the end is made from will make no difference as the potential warping is in the reed pan and pad board. As far as the sawdust goes, you have misunderstood the use of it.
  4. Sadly it seems Sean died yesterday or the day before...
  5. Simple ABC systems are OK for simple music. The Irish system (all capitals, comma after the letter for lower octave, no punctuation for middle octave, apostrophe after for high octave) can be sight read at speed by people bought up in that system. ABC Notation can handle very complex music; here's a couple of lines in a tune I transcribed recently for a friend in a different country. She put the script into the aforementioned mandolin tab site to read and print it. The question mark was a note I couldn't pick! ({c}[DAd]2{f}[ADd])A ([DAd]2{f}[ADd])A|([CGc]2{e}[CGc])A ([CGc]2{e}[CGc])A|([DAd]2{f}[ADd]) ([DAd]2{f}[ADd])|[Ae]"?"([Aea][Aea][Aeg][Ae])ed{e}d| [DAd]edA [DAd]edA|([CGc][CGe][CGc])A ([CGc][CGe][CGc])A|GA[Gc]d (3ege dc|{B}Ac{c}GA ED{A}DD|
  6. When the instrument is not loud or fast it is tempting to push and pull harder to be able keep up and to hear yourself. Cheaper accordion reeded instruments and old Lachenals suffer from this in a session environment. Try playing at home for the same length of time and don’t push the speed or volume and see how wrung out you feel. A good instrument takes very little pressure to make a lot of noise.
  7. Not likely to resolve itself. Most likely quick reasons are either a valve pulled into the slot or more likely, something fouling the reed. As David says the frame could be loose but this is usually accompanied by symptoms such as a clattering as the frame moves in the slot, which you don’t mention.
  8. Take your finger off the button and put it back on for the new note in the other direction. If it is a valve issue that will usually quiet it.
  9. I get all of the lightening but try as I might I can’t think of a single reason why being able to touch the end plate when the key is down is a good thing. I see it as a problem and have put much effort into making sure it no longer happens for a couple of concertina owners. I have a Jeffries G/D of my own waiting for that very fix; I am going to make it a new set of longer metal buttons. Is it because you have owned an earlier instrument with this problem and became used to it? I can see it might tell you when the button is approaching fully down but this is something the fingers will learn anyway. I find you have to push harder to reach the fully down position because you have to flatten your finger tip. The act of lifting the finger then becomes a greater act. Maybe I’ve missed something.
  10. This is an excellent method. It also aids in finding pads which move sideways a little when the end is put on because the lever is not perfectly above the button spigot hole.
  11. They would also have been pressing other items depending on the period; levers, posts, clamps etc. I would think there would be a toolmaker swapping diesets and doing maintenance on them.
  12. Jake, I think I read in a description of Lachenal’s factory, no idea where I saw it or in which period, that they had a row of 17 fly presses. This was part of a reference to a person who had worked for them for a long time as a fly press operator. He would have had one big arm!
  13. Sorry, was a little unclear, I push all the way through. The marking is just to check it is lined up. The success rate is around 90%, when I was using the punch hand held it was much lower.
  14. i agree with the drill first/punch later method. One extra move; I put the punch in the quill of my drill press (I don’t turn the drill on!) and this keeps the punch parallel to the drilled hole. I find if I gently bring the punch down it will make a faint impression on the leather and I can then adjust if it is not concentric with the drilled hole.
  15. I endorse everything Alex has said in this thread.
  16. I hope this does not offend anyone’s copyright; I was fascinated to see a factory photo in the interview with Bob Minting shown as part of the Feb 6th celebration. I can see a small table saw on the right with a spindle moulder beside it. A little further along is a person working on what may be action though it also could be a reed pan machine. A long line up of fly presses is on the left and what a fantastic set of different shaped castings the frames of them have. Back right could be the surface grinder. What else can people identify? Are there any more photos like this..? Can anyone date and locate this one? Who has this one and is a better resolution image of it possible?
  17. I would endorse everything Alex has said in relation to CPL in this thread…
  18. Columbia sells smaller pieces than a whole skin, from memory they are about 12” by about 6”. Their pneumatic leather is ideal though in practise almost any leather of the right thickness will do as most of its usual characteristics (strong, flexible, relatively airtight) are voided when it is glued to the felt. It does not need to be thick, the felt is doing the cushioning. The cardboard is the frame, (choose cardboard that does not delaminate when punched) the felt is the shock absorber and the leather is the seal. Experiments by Terry McGee showed using the leather soft side down sealed best.
  19. Somewhere in these discussions over the last 20 years, perhaps erroneously, I have picked up the idea the SA went for Bf/F over C/G because Bf was a more common natural place to pitch the human voice than C was. Could it be B/F# was the result of manufacturers finding a market amongst those looking for a singing accompaniment somewhere between the two. This would mean the instrument was not intended for playing in large ensembles of mixed musical instrument heritage, more for an individual singer or a group of singers with one instrument.
  20. Your drop speed will not be affected by a leak between pan and bellows frame. To locate leaks here are a couple of tricks. Put a couple of pieces of printer paper between the action boxes and the bellows and screw it back together (just push the screws through the paper) and see how it drops. If it is at about the same speed the issue is in the bellows. If it is in the bellows put pressure on the bellows and place it near your face and you will feel air on your face. This is best done by running your tongue through the valleys as your tongue will more easily feel any jet of air. Don’t touch the bellows with your tongue. It tastes awful. Don’t ask me how I know. The gap between pan and bellows frame will be affecting the performance of your concertina. Lifting the chamois and putting card behind will work. You will not have to lift it all, just 6 contiguous facets. Don’t glue the chamois plus card back down until you are satisfied the card is adequate to make the chamois seal. I wouldn’t use water on the chamois, others may differ. I have always worried about tearing the chamois when lifting but it has never happened. That is not the same thing as saying it won’t!
  21. Thats a sound that could easily be made by a valve but I have been fooled by this a couple of times with waxed-on reeds. They can be cracked in the wax and when you put pressure one way they work perfectly because the pressure holds the reed plate against the wood. The other way though the plate is pushed away from the wood however much the shape of the crack will allow and then they chatter. The ones I fixed I did by holding a hot solder iron close because I am not set up for waxing.
  22. There is plenty of advantage in having more than 30 buttons for Irish music; the foremost (to my mind) is to not be forced into particular phrasing, to have choice. I am not suggesting 40 keys, I think around 33 could be adequate (ie. supplying reversals of the C,E,F,F#,G#,A# from the left hand side and the f#,f,g# from the right hand side including changing the pitch of some of the dog whistlers). However there is a point of view in Ireland favouring the traditional 30 key. The justification is the limitations of the instrument have forced particular phrasings into the music and these are emblematic of the concertina in Irish music.
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