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Posts posted by up-fiddler

  1. Hi all,


    Don Smith sent an email regarding a 24 button Lachenal I bought from him a decade ago and asked if I would forward the information to this discussion. 


    My pre1900 Lachenal has 12 buttons on either side. The four additional notes are located at the top on either side. To play it (G/C) in a regular manner you simply slide both hands down one button. To add any of the additional notes you simply move your index finger up one button. 


    The notes are as listed below:


    Bass side   C-Row  G# push/Bb draw

                       G-Row  E push/F draw


    Treble side   C-Row  C#push/Eb draw

                          G-Row  A push/G draw


    I hope this is helpful. Any other questions? 



  2. I myself am very grateful for the number of Lachenal 20 button concertina's on ebay, I love 'em! I buy 'em, restore 'em, play them, and sell a few...I started in the late 80's with a borrowed Scholer, then bought a Klinenthal in '89, played a Lachenal owned by a friend(1991) that I sent to Frank Edgley for restoration and it was then that I realized the difference in quality, playability, and sound, and longed for one for ages...got a Stagi in 1999, but, still longed for a Lachenal...then, in 2001, I discovered Ebay! Since then, I have bid on dozens, and gotten about a dozen of varying conditions, and key configurations....they are much better built, better sounding, better playing, and much easier to work on, than any german, italian, or chinese made instrument(excepting Jurgen Suttner's instruments). Some people on here, or elsewhere may buy them for parts, but I think the vast majority of people buying them on Ebay want a good twenty button instrument they can afford, and even taking into account the cost of restoration, they are affordable, and worth it. And, they are not that difficult to get back into playing condition! Restoring a 20 Button Lachenal is a very virtuous undertaking, and a lot of folks on here do it to get themselves ready for the more demanind task of of 30 button Anglo's, and 48 button English's, at least that is how it seems to me...


    As far as those being advertised as "fully restored", check on this forum first, so as to not have the problems encountered by the other posters to this topic...we know people on here selling concertina's who will not steer you wrong, this is a great group who actually looks out for one another in matters concertina related. (there is the other problem in that something that is "fully restored" in one climate may have problems after a journey to another climate, but, my mother is 91 and she doesn't like to travel either!)


    The reason the 30 button Lachenals are in such demand is that they are the cheapest of the English made ones, and, being for the most part chromatic,are in vogue for playing Irish traditional music, since you can play in G AND D(as the vast majority of Irish Traditional tunes are), owing to the extra row of accidental buttons. Plus, they have the sound and playability most desired by trad players...


    I think a 20 button Lachenal is at the least, a decent mid-grade instrument, at an entry level price. Depending upon the model, they can also be a professional level instrument, at no more than an intermediate level price. And, it being an heirloom, you won't lose money on it, unless everything collapses, and even then, you can still play them, and, they have that "honk"! Don't be afraid, jump in!

    take care,


    I own my first ‘tina which is a Rochelle, a Morse, and a 24 button Lachenal. I love all three but for different reasons. Playability at a low price point is the Rochelle’s strength. The Morse is an exquisite instrument that plays like a dream. The little Lachenal, however, is the first instrument I reach for when I want to play a ditty in my living room. How it got there is the purpose of this post.


    I bought her from Don through ebay as an instrument which he had replaced leathers and done some minor work. I paid $500 for her. She played, though not as well as I had hoped, and was certainly worth the money spent. Unbeknownst to Don, the Lachenal had two notes which didn’t sound fully when it got to me. Perhaps the folks at UPS or the climate here in the U.P. of Michigan were the culprits. Either way, Don wasn’t responsible and thought he was selling a perfectly playable instrument. The story could have ended right there but Don had followed up with an email asking how the Lachenal was. I explained and he immediately set up an appointment with Greg Jowaisis to have it repaired at no charge to me. Don proved that he was a stand-up guy who was good to his word.


    Once the Lachenal went to Greg’s, he took a look inside and saw that the fix was minor. I had asked him to evaluate the instrument and recommend what else might be needed to make her a great instrument instead of a good one. Long story short, Greg added a new 7 fold bellows, rebushed all buttons, fixed the fretwork cracks, and adjusted the action. It added another $500 to the price of the instrument. But in the end I have a truly great instrument that sounds sweet and is quiet enough to play in my living room without scaring the cat for just around a thousand dollars.


    I can’t say enough about the integrity of Don and the repair work of Greg. Thanks to these two fine folks I have an 1897 Lachenal that my kids are already fighting over who gets it in the will. A heartfelt thanks to both of them.

  3. Hello all. I currently own a Morse G/D with the Wheatstone layout and the rosewood stained ends. I am looking for used model in C/G. If necessary I would consider an ebony stained end model but it would still need the Wheatstone key pattern. PM me or email me if you prefer or simply reply to this post. I check in most days. Thanks, Dave.

    Hi t.here, I have a Tedrow 30 button up for sale. Concertina is c/g, rosewood ends, brass buttons, green bellows with jefferies papers with case. You can view a photo of it on Homewood Concertinas. thanks, jim

    Hi Jim,

    Thanks for the response. I looked at the Homewood site but couldn't find a used Tedrow up for sale there. Is there a link to the photos and price? Thanks, Dave.

  4. Hello all. I currently own a Morse G/D with the Wheatstone layout and the rosewood stained ends. I am looking for used model in C/G. If necessary I would consider an ebony stained end model but it would still need the Wheatstone key pattern. PM me or email me if you prefer or simply reply to this post. I check in most days. Thanks, Dave.

  5. FOR SALE: R. Morse & Co. "Ceili" Anglo concertina, G/D, Jeffries layout, rosewood - stained cherry ends, with fitted case.

    BARELY used, less than one hour ! Made 2007, bought for $1825.00 Asking price $1300.00


    I already have a G/D Morse that I bought new. If this was a C/G I would buy her in a heartbeat at this price. Someone is getting a heck of a deal on this. My stained cherry with Wheatstone layout was $1950 last spring. Are you certain it's not a C/G? (Wishful thinking.) Dave

  6. After much study here I started with a Rochelle. I like it and still play it even though I bought a Morse in July. The two are different but both are enjoyable for different reasons. I didn't trade the Rochelle in since it is a C/G and I ordered the Morse in G/D. I don't regret keeping it at all. As others here say, it is an honest machine at an honest price. Good luck and have fun with whatever you end up getting, Dave.

  7. I have given a lot of thought to buskering. I live in Ashland, Oregon, home of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival and there are tons of people walking the streets in the summer. What has held me back was my lack of repertoire and because I am a physician, I have thought that if people who know me, see me, they'll wonder what the H I'm doing in need of money. But, after reading your post, I think that if my impulse is to actually do it, I really should. I think it will give me confidence about playing in front of others and what a great time I might have talking about the concertina!


    Thank you for your post.




    Go for it and have fun, Yvonne. You can always put up a sign that says you are donating the $$$ to a local charity. Then it's a win-win for you and an organization that needs the $$$. Good luck, Dave.

  8. Rosie, the Button Box (run by Cnet member Theo) is the cheapest place I know of in the UK to get hold of Rochelle and Jackies, currently offering them at 295 UKP. That includes the soft case and the tutor written by Wim Wakker.


    Rochelles and Jackies are both concertinas, but they are very different instruments - the English fingering system (a Jackie is an English) is completely different to that of the anglo system (a Rochelle is an anglo). Jacks are also English system but baritone, e.g. they sound an octave lower than the treble: most English players start playing on a treble (e.g. a Jackie) and then start lusting after a baritone a few years later :)


    Personally, I'd strongly advise you to get your boyfriend involved in the research and purchasing decision now. Rochelles and Jackies make excellent beginners instruments - but it seems to me that you don't know which of those you need to buy, so it's time to reveal your plans and get the lucky recipient involved.


    The initial element of suprise will be lost; but imagine how you'll feel if he unwraps the concertina and ..


    it's the wrong one ....


    Agreed. Also, if the Anglo is the way he chooses to go then I would give a +1 for the Rochelle. It is a nice instrument for what it does and what it costs. jmho, Dave.

  9. I am unsure about the Rochelle, and am looking for an instrument that I can grow into and have with me for awhile.

    The $25.00 garage sale find was sheer happenstance, but it hooked me. Sadly the action was getting hooked too, under the lip of the faceplate and caused me too much frustration to want to deal with that kind of action again.


    Does the Rochelle have riveted action? does it use a reed pan or reed block?

    Neither question is addressed in the information I've read elsewhere, the reed block issue isn't as important but it is relevent but the action is important.


    I wish there was some kind of instrument rental available to me to tide me over until I can pick up the Herrington concertina I am saving up for.


    Everything you find for $1000 or less will have accordion-style reeds mounted on blocks. $1200 seems to be the starting-point for pan-set reed construction.


    The two kinds that might be worth considering are the Rochelle and a Stagi. I think I've heard that Stagis are lighter-weight, but Rochelle is generally considered to be of superior quality (despite being cheaper). The Rochelle does feature a riveted action. I haven't used Rochelle myself, but the action on her cousin Jackie shows signs of having been designed with great care.


    I have played the Rochelle daily since the first of March and find it to be very nice to play. I also have a new Morse (In G/D) and like that even better for the richness of sound. As far as playability the two are different but both are straightforward and with nice actions. The Rochelle is rather large but for the price it is the best I tried when I was looking for a 'real' instrument to start on. BB also offers a refund when you trade up for a better concertina so it is a no-lose situation as far as I am concerned. Others may chime in differently however.


    I am new to concertina but have played diatonic accordions and Chemnitzers for 30 years and I think I know what to look for in a smooth action. For my money, the Rochelle is the way to start. Good luck donw whichever road you choose. These instruments are ADDICTIVE. Dave

  10. My C/G Morse was practically new when I bought it. It was a bit brash then and has definitely mellowed in a bit. I should probably add that note to the review I have posted on the C.net static pages, since there are links to it.




    Mine is behaving similarly and I absolutely love her! A special thanks to all who responded. It seems as though I am continually in debt to the fine folks at this forum. Kudos all around, Dave.

  11. I can play them at an even slow speed, but my thinking time is preventing them getting quick enough.

    You have to learn to stop thinking.

    Quite seriously, if you need to think about individual notes, you will have to get that process "up to speed" before you can get your playing up to speed.


    Better is to be able to feel the tune, in your fingers, hands, and arms (the latter for bellows movement).


    Here's how (one method, at least).....


    .....Give it a try, and let us know how you're progressing.


    This list
    (omitted in post)
    was excellent advice. I am putting it to use as part of my regular practice. Thanks, Dave.
  12. A question for those who are in the know concertina-wise. I purchased a new Morse Anglo in G/D a month and a half ago. I have played it about an hour daily since then. While at a fiddle festival last week I was practicing in the afternoon of a very hot and humid day. The sound seemed thinner than usual and then one reed suddenly didn't sound but just a tiny bit. (B above high G) Afraid that I had ruined my new pride and joy I put her away immediately rather than forcing any more air through her and possibly damaging something. The following day was cooler and drier so I tried each button (Push and Draw) very gingerly to see if everything was all right. Then I played it a bit louder for a few tunes. To my surprise the Morse now had a pleasant low end 'growl' and some very deep overtones. It has continued to this day. I swear that I am not imagining it but wish I had an earlier recording of it to compare against how she sounds now. My question - (Finally!) Do concertinas 'play in' similar to violins and guitars over time and sound a bit looser and warmer? I honestly believe that it sounds and plays better now than it did before. Then again, I am new to Anglos and my technique could be improving without me being conscious of it. (Prior to this I played diatonic accordions and Chemnitzers.) I have played her hard since and don't seem to find anything wrong with it at all. I just think it suddenly sounds better. Am I daft? Dave

  13. Looks nice. Of course I am partial to a bird's eye maple concertina.


    Are you going for the UP market? One of the first things that was said to me last year at the Great Lakes Folk Festival last year when by some UP Finns was how nice the finish was on the one I have is. They like their Bird's eye maple in Michigan's North country.




    I am from the U.P. and while it is true that we love our bird's eye it is also true that there is a dearth of concertina players up here. Any that may be out there and reading this should feel free to contact me about getting together and playing. Dave.


    BTW - VERY NICE concertina in bird's eye Frank.

  14. I used to use the 1095 blue tempered spring steel which worked fine for reeds but was a little softer temper than I liked. I switched to some steel from Uddeholm strip steel Co. that is used for the reed valves of compressors which is a better temper and comes either in straight 1095 or a more modern alloy that shears cleaner. ....Dana


    In what thicknesses do you typically order for a C/G anglo? thanks, Dave.

    I use approximately ( since decimal inch sizes don't exactly line up with the metric, and depends on where you are ordering what units they will use ) but in Decimal inches, I use .032 for the lowest reeds, .025 for the next bunch, .020 for the mid range and .015 for the higher ones. Mind you you can use thicker blanks for the lighter reeds but you need to do a lot of filing. If you weight your low reeds, you can get away without the .032 but I'd stick with the other sizes. Cutting small reeds out of thick stock tends to generate twist and a good chance of invisible fractures that will cause a reed to fail. In general, I like to use the thinnest stock I can for any reed. Remembering that good reeds are never flat in profile. ( too stiff for the pitch ) The Uddeholm stock I got was all from 6 to 8 inches wide, so a strip that wide by about a bit more than an inch would cut into a few dozen reed blanks. The reeds should be cut along the grain of the steel so if the sheet you buy is say 6 inches wide by a foot long, cut off a strip that is a good bit longer than your reed and the full width of your sheet and cut your reeds off so they are parallel to the one foot dimension of your original sheet. ( like the teeth of a comb )



    Many thanks, Dana! I have been hanging about reading all I can and almost everyone seems to say get a good concertina and take it apart to learn from it. I don't really have the money to buy several good models for examination purposes. (I just bought a Morse to play and love it. Before that I had a Rochelle.) I fool around in the shop regularly and have built many things ranging from a violin to a large boat. I would like to get started on a concertina this summer. I thought that cutting reeds and reed pans and tuning them would be a good start and a bit of fun to boot. Thanks again, Dave.

  15. Hello Mary, I am located in the Toronto area, Ontario, Canada. I have two 40 button Wheatstone C/G's available, one is an Aeola (8 sided, 8 fold bellows) and the other one is a six sided concertina with 8 fold bellows.


    I also have a Mahogany 30 button Wheatstone C/G available.


    I will PM you with further information/


    (A donation will be made to C.net if I sell a concertina to any C.net member).


    Please PM me with info re:the mahogany Wheatstone. Thanks, Dave.

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