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Geoff Wooff

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Everything posted by Geoff Wooff

  1. One of my concertinas is from this same period and also has the very thin pads. Luckily mine are all in good condition and the instrument is very airtight, but I'd hate to try replacing them with modern pads and I am grateful that it had not been subjected to a 'throw new parts at it' type restoration prior to my ownership because there is precious little room for the action as it is. Thicker pads would inhibit the 'lift' room as the lever ends would hit the inside of the fretwork , even after resetting and bending all the levers. I agree with Alex that making new pads of the original thickness would be best.
  2. Stephen, it is a Wheatstone and there should be a 5 digit serial number on the left hand side's metal badge. If the badge is missing then you may find this number inside, usually stamped into the woodwork. By the 'LOOK' of it I would suggest it is from the 1930's but looks can be deceiving .
  3. Another option in the accordion world is the Harmonéon , a French developement of the late 1940's. leboncoin.fr/instruments_de_musique/1833130071.htm/
  4. Well done RAc , sounding very like Tommy Williams there.
  5. Impressions are always influenced by where one is coming from but the Geordie looks to be a much better size for the baritone range, especially with the optional 7 fold bellows.
  6. Ken, it must have been the Albion. I tried it at one of the Hobgoblin shops in the UK about five years ago.
  7. There are 48 key Baritones which have the same range as the treble EC's but are an octave lower in pitch. Usually slightly larger than the Treble instruments which helps to increase the available air in the bellows, the larger reeds use more air. Which brings me to the Button Box Baritones; I tried one a few years ago and although the small size is very nice , for me there was insufficient air capacity. Sure, it was ok for playing single note melody lines but throwing in a few chords left me gasping. I use a Baritone / Treble, the smaller 56 key Aeola version .... yes it appears large after a standard Treble but soon becomes a new normal. I find there is something comforting about the steady hold and capacity and find my Treble feels like a toy after. Weights: my 6.25" Treble is just under 3lb (1327g) and the 8" Baritone/Treble is 4lb 5oz.(1968g).
  8. I've played the English for close on 50 years and managing chords with melody is quite doable but I made a deep forage into the Duet a few years ago. Firstly on a McCann where there are lots of very fine instruments available, from small to large. Then I tried Hayden and that is a very accessible keyboard IF there are enough buttons. After a year on the Hayden, I had a quite nice 46key but was looking for something better and I just did not find it. I had by then forgotten how to play the McCann... so all duets got sold and I moved on to the Chromatic Button Accordéon which is a very popular instrument in France, where I live. As Little John says the CBA is more compact than the Piano Accordion and models do exist that are closer in weight to a medium/large Duet. Changing keys is easy though, like all instruments, you only get out of it what you put in. I still play the English and for me it is the most versatile probably because I learned it when I was young.
  9. How enjoyable is that ?!!!! Thank you both for posting. Comme c'est agréable... Merci à vous deux .
  10. According to Wikipedia Thuya (or Thuja) is a fast growing evergreen that is a popular hedging tree. I cannot imagine Lignum Vitae growing quickly. The wood veneer on this concertina , and its case, looks more like a Walnut burr.
  11. I could be facetious and suggest using your little fingers to play notes but I think it would be more helpful to say remove the pinky rests or just put those fingers on the fretwork ends until they are needed to press keys. I always thought I used them until someone asked me what those little brackets were for and after I explained they said " but you are not using them, I've been watching you". Well, I do and I don't. So If your fingers slip on the metal you could try sticking some material on them, early concertinas often had them covered with thin leather and David Eliot describes how to re-cover them in his book on concertina maintenance .
  12. That looks to be a superb concertina Alex. To my mind the use of 1/5th Comma Meantone tuning is very desirable and be even better with both G#'s and Ab's, D# and Eb's.
  13. I can see there is a lot of difference between gold dust or gold ore as one hopes to find when prospecting and powdered gold, which is what I found. This powder is so fine that touch a finger to it and smear it very finely on your skin , like make up,. It is as smooth as silk .
  14. Hmmm ! That is a considerable sum. Thank you Stephen !! Perhaps I might get an Amboyna or Tortoise Shell Aeola out of the proceeds if I can find anyone to buy the powder.
  15. I cannot see why you should not put a ' for sale' advert on here, with pictures and any information you have. Many people have offered their inherited concertinas for sale on this forum... perhaps the audience here is not huge but certainly very interested in the subject. Personally I have bought and sold several concertinas successfully through this forum. Good luck, Geoff Wooff.
  16. Thanks Alex, I'll check them out.
  17. Alex, a small fortune ? Maybe the value of a nice concertina? I took it to one of those ' We Buy Gold' shops and they said yes it was gold alright, probably 24 k but in powder form it was not possible to re use it by melting. I guess there must be a chemical way of re-claiming it like they do with silver that has been dissolved during film processing.
  18. Some years ago I came across 60 grams of powered gold in a carton full cobbler's tools and materials. Have never yet found a use for it but I assume the cobbler was embossing boots and other leather goods or making 'gold size' perhaps. Anyone interested in making an offer ?
  19. I am inclined to give the " buy a good vintage concertina" advice. These cheap starter models , made in China, with hardly a sufficient range of notes are worth next to nothing when trying to upgrade, which is a situation that can arise quickly after initial purchase. Yes , some dealers offer a trade-in to upgrade policy but those basic ' taster' models really don't offer a good concertina experience. A vintage concertina will hold its value, or at least they have been holding their value, going up in value faster than inflation to my knowledge these last 50 years... apart from a local hiccup or two caused by over inflated values and the odd economic crisis. You'll get 48 or more buttons with a vintage instrument ,fully chromatic, and you don't have to have a Baritone model for song accompaniment, though it would be nice. So, I suggest to 'invest and enjoy'... if you don't enjoy then re-sell it, usually at no loss.
  20. That is certainly diatonic but the lowest notes might be out of sync with the 'system'.Better to look for the 'key' notes of each row. Go a little further up the keyboard to find four consecutive buttons that , on the push, give a major chord.... Tonic, Major 3rd, Major 5th and Octave..... as in Doh - MI - Sol - Doh .
  21. Yes lots of good tunes from Vacher, he wrote many of them and others were by his piano accompanist. Generally thought of as the instigator of the french 'Musette' style Vacher never changed over to the Chromatique Button Accordeon that most Musette players adopted. I doubt the Mixte was a french development, more likely of Italian origin, in the marrying of the Stradella bass with the diatonique accordeon. What you have there looks to be a generic model produced in their thousands in Italy.
  22. If it is, as you say, Diatonic then it is what the French call a ' Mixte' accordion. A 60 bass Stradella left hand married to a three row diatonic right hand. There are many permutations of the right side keyboard . This was a popular style of accordion prior to the 1930's and it's most well known exponent , Emile Vacher made many recordings and can be found on Youtube. Claude Aubrie, who plays in a band with my wife and I ,is one of the very few in France who still plays the Mixte , his has the row layout of G / C / B .
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