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Everything posted by MatthewVanitas

  1. I own a 35b Crane (not planning to sell it) that I bought here. Iirc when I found the ad it was a good six months old because nobody jumped on it. I would suggest you place a "WTB" ad on the Sales sub here, asking for a 35b or 42b Crane, and just be prepared to wait patiently, and check the sub once a month or so to see if anyone posted WTS for a smaller Crane. You might also want to peruse Sales as far back as a year to see if anyone posted a Crane that never ended up moving.
  2. *sighs* Fiiiiiiiiiiine. Huh, frick me, it's a riveted action, not rubber gaskets... Shall I post the photo series in the Construction/Repaid subform? Any special requests for photos beyond just my guessing what folks want to see?
  3. Funny you mention, I just picked up a Frontalini, intending to repair and flip it (not for profit, just to get it to a noob), but it's actually playing pretty fine so I just listed it as-is with a clear descriptions of the good/bad about it. I kinda want to open it up and check how different it is inside, but I'm also lazy and hate having to align all the buttons just-so to get the end back on. As far as you know, is the action of a Frontalini the same "rubber gasket" linkages as a Stagi/Bastari, or might it actually be interesting inside and I should open it up and take photos for this forum?
  4. This item has been Sold I picked up this concertina thinking to repair it... and it turns out it works well just as-is, so I'm looking to sell it to some noob needing a really affordable first instrument. Body is overall in good shape, keys are working (buyer should probably spend $4 for tubing to replace the linkages just to make it yet better). It's in tune with itself and running a consistent-ish 1/16th of a tone sharp per my phone, so not really much off concert pitch. The compression is decent but not perfect, buyer might want to tighten it up just a smidge. The main downside is the hand-straps aren't adjustable and the straps to close the instrument (which aren't mandatory, True concertinas generally don't have those anyway) are torn. Not to be getting all picky, but since I'm not making a profit on this one, I'd like to sell it to someone who's really on a tight budget. If you can afford $300 for a used Rochelle instead, that's probably an even better deal for you, so I'd prefer to sell to someone who's totally fine with 20-button (like wants to do folksinging or sea shanties or whatnot) and is on a tight budget, because we don't have too many boxes this affordable posted here. UPDATE: here's a demo of all the reeds sounding: Asking $135 plus actual shipping costs to you from the US East Coast, or if you're in the DC-NYC stretch I might be able to meet you in person once quarantine dies down.
  5. Yup, a seller on Amazon has it for just over a buck a foot, so I got 4ft of each diameter (models 221 and 222) so I can try them out. Fortunately/unfortunately the old Italian concertina I got in the mail seems to be playing fine despite the old linkages, and I'm reluctant to crack it open and have to deal with little bits if it's not totally necessary. So I'm fixing to just play it a few days, check the tuning on my app, etc. and then flip it for what I paid for it on the Sales section her for a novice wanting a starter 20b. That's basically what I did in the past, just buy cheapies on eBay and then pass them to others either after replacing the rubber linkages with silicone, or if it had less/more problems just listing it here with a clear description so novices could buy it off me for around what I paid for it without having to buy totally blind on eBay and risk being disappointed.
  6. I and others have written about this process in the past, how older Italian-made concertinas had a clever/cheap system of using rubber linkages to connect the buttons to the lever arms in their concertina mechanism. Over the decades the rubber dries out and cracks and buttons slip down inside the body of the concertina (if you're lucky!) and it's unusable. But broadly speaking most of them can be gotten back up and running by replacing the rubber sleeves. Apparently most folks (including myself back 7yrs or so ago) use silicone tubing that's normally sold to model vehicle enthusiasts for fuel line, since it has the right texture and is available in the right diameters. I looked at some older threads, and it appears the recommended brand (AeroTrend) is defunct. Does anyone have a recommendation as to what is now the preferred brand, and which ID/OD of fuel line tends to be best for Stagi/Bastari/etc concertina to replace the button-lever linkage? I'll say just to repeat it, but at least around 2013 when I did repaired quite a few of these on my kitchen table for kicks, I tried something I hadn't seen many other repairers mentioh, which is I'd cut the linkage a little longer than needed to connect the button and arm, but then cut a small slit partway down it, and in my brief experience that gave it more grip while still allowing it to depress properly, and at least the ones I tried didn't seem to tear any further up the slit. Just an option to try out for anyone else doing kitchen-table repair of cheap Italian concertinas.
  7. Is it definitely by Stagi, Bastari, Rigoletto, or any of the other common Italian manufacturers? Or is it some other brand that basically bit their style but is technically a separate company? I've never been clear on how many actual Italian brands there were making basically the same thing, or if it's just one factory stamping different badges on things. Or maybe it was a constant flow of companies making the same thing and buying each other, splitting, joining, etc in some glorious muddle. The only one of those still making hybrid concertinas in Italy to this day is Stagi, yes?
  8. https://www.ebay.com/itm/36-Button-Concertina-Made-in-Italy/193262685452?hash=item2cff5a8d0c%3Ag%3AT8wAAOSwoQdd-nZU&LH_ItemCondition=4|10 36b is kinda interesting, and though it's still the usual "Red MOTS". It's asking $215 +$25pp, which might not necessarily be bad for a slightly unusual variant, and usually these kind of Italians are pretty easy to clean up. Does anyone recognize this model? Just thought folks might find it interesting.
  9. Hello, and let me just say for anyone who recognizes my name that I apologize for my long absence. Very very long story short, life went pear-shaped but is getting back on track. I did not mean to slight anyone by my absence, and really appreciate this community. So, I have a friend who for a couple years was borrowing my absolute monstrosity of an Italian 30b English. The action and bellows were just good enough it was worth having as a cheap loaner for folks to try out, but it's a red celluloid jobbie far larger than a Stagi or Jack, just a whale of a box. And the rotted straps I replaced with pieces of a slim women's belt I got at a thrift shop for $3. He played with it idly, but is considering getting more serious and finding a tutor over Skype (recommendations?) and getting into the hobby. If he's going to be at all serious, he needs a better box. He's somewhat flexible on budget for the right box, so our baseline is a Jack or Jackie, open to a Mayfair (Wheatstone's budget Hybrid, usually pretty affordable), or any basic Vintage like a simple-grade Lachenal, or if someone has a modern Hybrid that isn't fancy or has some wear. He hasn't named a number, but just for the moment if someone has something cool they aren't using, I'd say up to $800 would be a possibility if it's a nice box he won't quickly grow out of. US would be preferable, but overseas sellers should be fine and we can put a pin in it until postal service is reliable as global conditions stabilize. Apologies again for my absence, thanks for any leads on a starter English, or recommendations for Skype tutors (he's in US Eastern time zone).
  10. Like the title says, looking for the big square Bastaria Hayden. I'm expanding my collection of Hayden/Wicki instruments. I have an Elise, a Beaumont, Stagi hex, searching for the right Wheatstone, and having a certain maker build me more... This purchase is for my music education non-profit, so I'll be loaning the instrument out to musicians who can borrow it for gigs and recordings. I know these aren't the smoothest players, so I figure some of the folks who own them must have them mostly sitting in a closet doing nothing, so if that's you, rest assured I can put it to work getting played regularly and introducing novices to the world of concertinas. I'm based in Montreal, but also have an address in Paris I can have it sent to if you're in Europe, or Bogota if you're down south. Hope we can make a deal to get it out of the closet and playing!
  11. I'm having it sent to Greg Jowaisas shortly, so we can all look forward to his photos of the internals, and his assessment of the quality!
  12. Dang it! But on the bright side, turns out Greg Jowaisas has a very reasonably small Mayfair English, so I got that as my consolation prize.
  13. I recently picked up a 38b German bandoneon, cute little thing, on eBay. It needs some work, though the reeds look reasonably good and the action just needs some tweaking, bellows maybe more so. Can anyone recommend anyone (preferably in Europe or North America) who can do bandoneon repair, and who doesn't cost a huge amount for such an inexpensive instrument as I have?
  14. I'm not doing the work myself, as I am unskilled and lazy, but I got a guy...
  15. I have a re-reeding project in mind, that calls for a donor 40b hybrid-reed box, like any Italian/Germany/Chinese cheapie. I realize a 40b will sell for more than a 30b that sells for more than a 20b, but for my purposes condition is pretty immaterial as long as it has vaguely-working bellows and the body is solid and keywork functional. I'm in Montreal, but am often in the US and have friends in Europe who can courier packages for me, so open to buying from any of those areas, or a good deal globally.
  16. Actually, tell you what, I have a cheap Italian-made English concertina sitting around at a friend's place, and I think he's done playing with it. Email me and I can cut you whatever deal needed to fit your budget. No point getting an Anglo if that's not what you *really* want, also I don't need you bidding against me on cheap Anglos on eBay!
  17. I've mucked around with a number of clunky old Italian cheapies off eBay (US) and maybe I've had good luck but out of dozen+ I only had maybe two that were simply unplayable. A lot of them aren't playable at first because the little rubber linkages rot away over time, but you can replace them with about $2 of the right size of vinyl tubing and 20 minutes of unskilled work. If the reeds are damaged or out of tune, that's a different matter, but I've had good luck. Cheap Italian (or more recently Chinese) used boxes on eBay are 95% likely to be C/G Anglos, but that said I did once buy an English on eBay for $75, and it was huge and clunky but functional buttons and played in tune. Of your options, the best is probably trying out all the various systems at a social event, then renting/borrowing a moderate cheapie (decent modern hybrid, or beater vintage). Alternately, haunt eBay and buy an Italian/German/Chinese cheapie and expect to do a little unskilled work on it. On a dozen occasions I've gotten eBay sellers on the phone so I could hear the buttons played individually and together (to see if the harmony sounded right) to confirm before buying. You assume *some* risk of a dud, but if you hear it played over the phone and it sounds okay, for under $100 I'd say go for it! And just be ready to replace rubber bits, or glue a fallen-off pad, or whatever else, just basic grunt-work. If you want Anglo that's easy, but you'll have to browse a little bit on eBay, Craigslist (or your local equivalent), Hobgoblin's used listings, etc to find a cheap English, and for a Duet there's really no option short of a used Elise for about $300 or so. That said, if you think English is the best fit (and note you can download music apps for your phone that let you try out Anglo and English key layouts on your device), don't compromise on an Anglo just because it's cheap and available, just keep a more vigilant eye out for a cheapie English. So in summary, try and meet some folks so you can try various boxes, then rent or borrow one of the type you like. Or go on eBay but be willing to ask the seller to just press the buttons and squeeze over the phone to verify it sorta-works, then be ready to use your woodworking skills on some basic maintenance and upgrades. Speaking of which, the little melodeon you have can, with a little semi-skilled mockery, be converted to use higher-quality Italian reeds, put on better valves, etc. and it'll be at least three times better than it is now. I've owned several such "toy melodeons" converted by Irish Dancemaster of Florida, and they're simply worlds better than the unmodified instrument.
  18. Long/short, I'm living in Montreal now and looking to start a "musical instrument lending library" where people can pay a deposit slightly exceeding the eBay-able value of an instrument, borrow it for 30 days, and return it for full refund minus a small fee for admin/maintenance. For those purposes, I'm buying cheap-ish instruments that are less likely to be stolen and hocked, *but* I'm willing to put money into improving them and making them more durable, since a $600 Stagi Hayden with $300 or work would still only sell on eBay for $600. So even if it's "not cost effective" I'm interested in upgrading some import boxes for use as rentals. I just bought a Stagi Hayden yesterday on eBay (did I outbid anyone here?), so that'd be a good place to start. Do we have any members in the US or Canada who are able and willing to "hot rod" say my Stagi and my Elise to make them smoother players and tougher, for use as rentals? I'd be happy to compensate you for time and parts, either with money, or if you prefer with a gift card, or buy you some piece of hobby gear you've had your eye on so would enjoy getting guilt-free. Please let me know if interested, and also if anyone has *any* old hybrid concertinas that are playable but could use some work (old Stagis, cheapie pearloid Italians, Scholers, etc) please let me know as I'd be interested in buying them off you and using them as rentals in Montreal, and/or once I register this as a non-profit I may be able to offer tax credit on donations. Very excited to be out popularizing concertinas soon!
  19. Reviving a dead topic; I'll go and search for more audio tracks and YouTube videos. Meanwhile, and of y'all have any other examples to add to the list?
  20. Really cool and different take on the tradition! Have you checked out Tim Edey's YouTube clips or instructional DVD on playing Irish on the unconventional D/G melodeon? http://forum.melodeon.net/index.php?topic=2813.0
  21. Hello aust88, just so we can help advise you right, is your intent to learn to play the instrument, or to assess its value for sale, or simple curiosity? It's fine in whatever case, just it'll be easier for us to advise if you give us an idea of your goal. Glad you found the right place!
  22. The Elise is a ton of fun, if you're looking to do song accompaniment or do some keyboard/organ-like vamping above lower bass backing, the Duet is a great instrument! I'm a duet player myself, had an Elise a couple years before I started playing it regularly to accompany a guitarist friend for house-party gigs, and then swiftly upgraded to a More Beaumont (the CC Peacock is a great middle-priced alternative). Playing it a lot more since I got back to the US, just need to find folks in Austin that could use some concertina backing for home recording projects or casual local gigs. If you want to see song accompaniment with Duet, lakeman is a member here and plays the Crane Duet (but same concepts apply), and his channel is really worth a listen: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCb0RPKsGLVEEC6OqFjxplwA (I especially like his rendition of the ballad Jim Jones). Good that you mention music theory too; the Hayden system is just brilliant for understanding intervals and chord formations since the same finger motions apply across all keys. Note that the Elise is a pretty simplified Hayden, so great for starters but if you get seriously into it you'll be in the mood for an upgrade before too long, though in the short term it's great particularly if you play mostly folky stuff in limited keys. Excited for you, and kudos to Ken for meeting up to let you try out gear! I've also met with friendly Cnet members in two different states I've lived in to check out their gear to help inform my purchase decisions, really friendly crew here.
  23. Can you measure your button for size? I have some spare Stagi/Bastari buttons (I think I bought them from The Buttonbox through the mail, though Bob Tedrow might also sell spares if you email him on his site). That said, there are a couple different sizes of button common in the old Italian concertinas, and some of the 20b concertinas had these big round German-style buttons. If you can post a photo of your instrument, maybe with a coin sitting by the buttons for scale, we can figure out what size you need.
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