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Geoff Wooff

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About Geoff Wooff

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    Heavyweight Boxer
  • Birthday 04/24/1950

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    playing music on English concertina, uilleann pipes and hurdy gurdy (among others). Making instruments, keeping healthy in my old age, chatting with friends. Now learning to play MacCann Duet.Latest project is Learning the Hayden Duet.
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  1. Geoff Wooff

    A Christmas present?

    Tortoise = slow. I've seen a picture and it appears to be a standard 48 treble + 2 very high notes beyond the normal range , looks like a C# and an Eb ? But I could be wrong.
  2. Geoff Wooff

    Scottish On English Concertina

    I'm happy if something I wrote is of help Rich CR. I should clarify what we were talking about here was the 'Scottish' a dance form popular in France and Belgium , a local variant of the Schottiche, a couples dance in 4 time. Happy music to you, Geoff
  3. Geoff Wooff

    Are sampers necessary?

    What Greg and Alex said.
  4. Geoff Wooff

    Seeking advice on buying the next EC

    By all accounts you can rely on advice from Greg Jowaisas and what better person to buy a refurbished classic from if you live in the States, but let me suggest that you may as well buy the best you can afford whilst upgrading. My advice is to go for a good grade of Wheatstone or Lachenal from the 1900 - 1930 period . Some of the metal ended versions are in better condition but can be piercingly loud, the wooden ended types are usually less expensive. A Lachenal 'New Model' with wooden ends or the equivalent Wheatstone would be my choice. Good luck with your search. Geoff.
  5. All the buttons look quite high, with the pegs getting close to exiting their location holes. Could it be that your concertina has had ne Pads recently and with some settling of things the pads have flattened a little ? This would allow the buttons to rise. You might cure this in several ways; the simplest is to un glue the pad from the end of the lever and add a small piece of cardboard, leather etc . between the lever end and the pad. Other ways , like bending levers, are more complex. The other thing to look at is the lever pivot post.... has it come out ( lifted up) of its hole, even slightly ?
  6. I cannot see why you should not try other keyboards. The EC is very specialised, different from anything else. Having a single keyboard divided alternately over both sides it is completely different from other keyboard types and I find the only detraction is the playing time shared with whatever else one wishes to try. I have played the EC for nearly 50 years, but in 2010 I took up the MacCann and in 2013 I branched out to the Hayden. I found that this made no difference to my abilites on the EC but I had to choose to continue either on the MacCann or the Hayden because these two keyboards had similarities of hand movements but yet confusingly different. I wish I had stayed with the McCann because at one stage I had two superb instruments and although I did manage to find a good Hayden it had limitations (not enough range) and to get what I wanted , the same quality as those McCanns, well there just ain't hardly anybody making stuff like that and the only one who might did not appear interested... and who can blame him for that... making a super instrument for some old duffer! In the end my wife , listening to me playing in the next room asked which Duet I'd been playing and I answered the EC " oh! You should stick to that" she said .Hmmmm.... I took up the Chromatic accordéon instead and still nothing detracts from the EC except time spent on each.
  7. Geoff Wooff

    My baby just cares for me

    What can I add to all the very positive comments ? You are an inspiration... all of you.
  8. Geoff Wooff

    Hornpipe and polka rhythms?

    To Clarify what Peter is refering to here are 'Sets' of Quadrilles . There are several ' Figures' or sections for these dances and musicians use Jigs ,Reels and Hornpipes etc. , as apropriate, for each figure.
  9. Geoff Wooff

    Colin Dipper Pride of Albion Anglo

    I imagine using Sterling Silver would warm up the tone a wee bit, even give a nice 'bell like' quality to the notes. It might depend on what state of hardness the silver was left in after working. Tarnish could be a problem but choosing the alloy Argentium should reduce the need for cleaning by a considerable amount. Argentium is a silver alloy that has the addition of Germanium and a higher silver content than Sterling... it also costs a little more . A few years ago I had an Aeola with ' Brittania Metal' ends according to the Wheatstone Ledgers, (not to be confused with Brittania Silver)... however this 'softer' metal ended instrument had the most beautifull tone I have ever experienced on a concertina... ok it was a 'special' and a top of the range MacCann Duet from THE very best period but I am sure the type of metal had an important affect on the tone quality.I do wish the current owner would make a few recordings of this great instrument.
  10. Yes the chambers have an impact on pitch but all you need to do is measure the pitch of each reed whilst they are all still in the instrument... make a chart of some sorts to note each reed's exact pitch. Then when each reed is on your tuning jig measure the pitch again and tune the reed up or down by the difference between the two measurements.. Say a reed is 8 cents sharp of your required pitch when played IN the instrument and on the tuning jig it shows 13 cents sharp then you need to flaten the reed until your tuner reading is +5 cents. This should get you very close to where you want each note but ' some settling of the contents' is inevitable and second and third checks on the pitch of each note will be needed.
  11. Geoff Wooff

    Concertina care

    That is good news regarding the internal condition Sean ! Hope all goes well with the restoration.
  12. Geoff Wooff

    Concertina care

    Just this last week there was an interesting Wheatstone English for auction on ebay france. Interesting because it was a model 7 ( which is a flat ended Hex. 56 key Tennor Treble) which is quite a usefull budget model. Also of interest was the address of the seller , the town of Guérande on the coast of Brittany, a place famous for its salt industry and sandwiched between the sea and a large wetland area. I was encouraged by the low bids to look hard at the photos but every steel external part had sure signs of rust. Short of detailed internal pictures I decided it might be too much of a gamble, with the distinct possibility of rusty reeds. I hope that whoever the winner is finds a good set of reeds !
  13. Geoff Wooff

    playing topsy turvy

    I would say ' If it suits you , go for it'. I have done this with duets but also with the English, albeit in a different way. in that changing octaves ( on the EC) throws each note onto the other hand. It appears that one hand is dominant and the other follows it . The results of this ,on the English, are that playing a tune in one octave can feel more natural than in another octave. Practice, of course ,overcomes the difficulties but the movement flow ( of the tune) remains affected by this shifting of 'control' from one hand to the other. More recently I have been learning the chromatic accordéon and there it appears I am 'left hand dominant' though not left handed as such.
  14. Geoff Wooff

    Remaking ends by hand

    Do watch out for that Rosewood dust Rod, it can be toxic, depending on the species. Best to use a good mask and protect your eyes too. Good luck with the work, Geoff.