Jump to content

Mike Jones

  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by Mike Jones

  1. Take a look at the Barleycorn stock pages from Chris Algar at http://www.concertina.co.uk/stock-selection/?concertina=2958. The guy who owned it until Saturday was playing it at the WCCP Kilve event until he upgraded to a nice vintage Lachenal with this as the trade in. It works OK, sounds OK and may well be suitable for your purposes and is not too far south of you in Shropshire.
  2. Hi Tarquin, have you thought about joining a local concertina club or band such as West Country Concertina Players, Kettle Bridge Concertinas , or SqueezEast (there are others dotted around the UK)? That way you you could hire or borrow a concertina for a short period and get to learn how to play it. If your chosen instrument does not suit, you can then try a different system. This way you get to try without expending lots of cash until you are sure plus get some expert tuition as well as making new friends with similar interests. have a look at the International Concertina Association for links to concertina clubs or do some on-line searching. All the best with your quest. Mike
  3. Hi Daniel, I echo Robin and Andrew above, I too am a member of SqueezEast but also a past squire of Kemp's Men, so if you would like to dance or play for the Morris in Norwich as well as join our little concertina band after your move please do get in touch. Mike
  4. I have taken my 'tinas to Germany and France several times to folk dance festivals. I get 30 days cover on my house contents insurance that lets me do this as long as I am not a professional musician, likewise for the SqueezEast Concertina Band and the value of individual items is less than £5000. IT is a premium contents cover though and costs a bit more than standard. It may pay to make some enquiries. Mike
  5. Hi Lynne, I gather from Andrew, another member of SE when we had a practice today that you have been in touch with SqueezEast and we are looking forward to seeing you and giving what help we can. Rob is also a member of SE albeit currently in absentia so, like myself, may be biased towards our little group, and it may turn out that you know more then one of us anyway. Mike
  6. Hi Lynne, Why not come along to SqueezEast Concertinas, look at our Web pages http://www.squeezeast.org.ukor Facebook https://www.facebook.com/SqueezEast-Concertinas-1564910423765753/ for more information. Several of our members live near KL and we practice in one of our homes to the West of Norwich usually about monthly, which is only 45 mins or so from KL. Several members play Anglos and are prepared to tutor as well, indeed one of our objectives is to promote and teach concertina playing of all types. Inability to read music is not a problem, You will be very welcome. Mike
  7. Hi Robin, My Lachenal also squeaked, after much searching it turned out to be two locating pegs on the bottom of two keys, rubbing against the side of the holes they locate into in the action board. A little beeswax on the peg and a slight adjustment of the key location on its brass pivot lever solved the problem. On the matter of Bushing, Dave Robertson here in Norwich bushed mine and it is noticeably better, quieter and smoother in action so I can recommend bushing. At the moment I am practicing drilling, reaming and bushing so I can do my other Lachenals, but feel I am not skillful enough yet to take the plunge in case I ruin what I have, so I can't recommend a DIY approach. All the best Mike
  8. I went over to see David this afternoon, David kindly unpacked it for me and I was able to have a good play. Your box is very nice, plays well but sounds too close to my own rosewood ended Lachenal of the same age (only 3000 difference in numbers) and I was looking for something louder and with a bit more "attack" to mix it with the Wheatstone ECs and the Jefferies and Wheatstone Anglos in our local concertina band. I hoped your metal ended Lachenal would be it. The extra buttons are potentially useful though. However, I have decided not to buy, sorry, but I am sure you will have no trouble selling it. Mike
  9. Thanks Simon, it as not on his website when I looked early last week. Another of his excellent restorations and finishes I see. I'll give him a ring. Mike
  10. Hi Simon, Is the 'tina with David at the moment? I am interested and would like to try it, assuming it is a C/G, and I can get to his place very easily.
  11. SqueezEast 2015 For the 11th Year SqueezEast will again be held at The Arts Centre in Stamford, Lincolnshire, and this year on Sunday 7th June. This event is both suitable as an introduction to playing in a Concertina Band, and also for those who have enjoyed the informal atmosphere of previous events here. Playing is from prepared scores in parts, aimed at Intermediate Level players, mainly played on English system instruments but with some Anglo system players. Once again the Musical Director will be Paul Barrett. Registration is now open, by contacting David Nind by email david@lomil.co.uk or by telephone at 01526 323012. Further details are on the website www.lomil.co.uk with travel information and reports on previous events. We look forward to seeing you.
  12. East Anglia Concertina Players (EACP) has been reborn as SqueezEast Concertinas. We play mostly folk tunes and concertina band parts and are based in Mid-Norfolk If anyone would like to join our small convivial group of mixed ability players (of various systems) we welcome you, especially beginners, or, to find out more, please Contact: SqueezEastconcertinas@gmail.com, or send a personal message. Mike
  13. Hi Andrew, Good to see you joined up. See you Sunday. Mike
  14. Marcus built me a G/D special (625) in 2011, I've had to tune one reed since. I asked for a light low action, which is what I got, specified the drones (I wanted a non-standard set-up) and have thoroughly enjoyed playing it ever since. I visited their workshop when on holiday and tried out several models before making a decision, but I have also tried out other hybrids as well, and to my ear the Marcus was less shrill and suited my style of playing best. I found them very helpful, prompt and good to deal with. The guarantee I got with my instrument was for as long as I keep it, worth thinking about. I have four Lachenal Anglos (3 x C/G and Bb/F) and a Wheatstone EC as well. The Marcus I generally play outdoors for Morris or in a small concertina orchestra and practice indoors on a brass reeded Lachenal 24 button so as to not annoy the wife. My only complaint was the corners of the steel ends pressed rather too hard into my palms, so I glued some thin HD foam on the corners and this has solved the issue for me. Good quality, good sound, easy to play, and thus recommended.
  15. Hi Ollie, Good to hear from you, and with yet another type of instrument to play too. Maybe see you at the DD Ale in March. MIke
  16. Hi Tom, You could have refurbed the 24 button you have just sold me and used the C* s on that. I'm planning to juggle the reeds, etc. once I have it working to try and come up with a C*/C or B/C just to see how it goes. The intention is to use the additional buttons to keep some of the reversals and maybe add a drone. I already have another 24 button (Brass reeds) that I got working again and think it probably feasible. Mike I fear the day after I sell the Rochelle I will want to play a tune with c sharps in it.
  17. David, I was fortunate enough to pick up a dead 24 button two row a couple of years ago on Ebay. OK, I spent abut £150 buying it and a further £100 or so on parts but It is great fun with its brass reeds and the extra buttons are C*/Eb, G*/Bb over two octaves, which still enables me to play tunes in C and G, as before, and some tunes D, A, Bb and F, although the range is less than with a 30 button and sometimes the button you want is on the wrong side and in the wrong direction. Even so it is cheap fun and I play it at home more than any of my other Anglo's despite its floppy bellows, leaks and five folds. So, Keep looking, they do turn up. Mike
  18. Doh, hit the wrong button! Solution: remove the offending buttons/keys from the brass operating rod slightly move the brass rod aside and with a sharp drill of the same diameter of the hole in the fingers, insert said drill and rotate smartly, blow out the hole to remove swarf, dead spider legs and dust, etc. rotate the pin end of the button against some beeswax or and old candle, and move up the peg/pin and down in cleaned hole. reattach key to brass rod , reassemble 'tina and try. if still sticky it may be the rod is slightly bent and judicious gentle use of a pair of pliers against the rod may be needed. My experience with old (edwardian and earlier) 'tinas is there should be enough wear/play in the pivot rivets, lachenal hooks, simple staples to minimise this latter adjustment. This what worked for me, it is not necessarily the recommended or best way. Anyway, best of luck. Mike
  19. This happened to me with an old Lachenal Anglo clone I bought to practice restoration. My solution was to
  20. Nice one Alex. I am toying with the idea myself, have been for sometime, because they are a local tradition; see this URL http://www.eatmt.org.uk/jigdolls.htm. EATMT recently organised a day for fledgling puppeteers , but I had to miss it. Mike
  21. On my first concertina, a Hohner badged Stagi, I had problems with both the buckle and the width of the leather as well as the tightness of the strap, so I made my own copy of one from a Lachenal owned by a friend, from leather offcuts, some diluted PVA glue and hand operated Singer sewing machine. I found two or three layers of leather (depending on the thickness of what you can get hold of ) was ideal, so the overall thickness is about 3mm. Experience now tells me to put the nap side inwards, this soon picks up skin oils and becomes smooth and comfortable. My first set of straps are now 10 years old and still in use, although I have made others since for other 'tinas I have owned/own of similar designs, but generally with nice wide bits to cover the back of the hand, leaving the fingers mostly uncovered. a small square of the same leather glued to the point of the button box/action box where the palm of the hand rests also helps with comfort and from an ergonomic standpoint I have also made new plam rests in different sizes for different boxes so that I do not have to overstretch to reach the buttons or curl the fingers under too much either for the inside rows, easy to do. Don't play any better as a result but it is comfortable and pain free. Mike
  22. I got my box (with my G/D hybrid) from Marcus Music and its one of the best I have come across in the UK, bar bespoke makers. Marcus sells them separately as well. Have a day out there? Marcus is welcoming, at least he/they were to me when I visited (my wife had to drag me out after an hour or more of mardling and trying boxes) and subsequently at a distance and the historic house in whose grounds they are situated is worth a visit as well Also have a look at Piano Covers on LIne, a friend of mine brought his box for his C/G Lachenal from them cheaper than Hobgoblin and in three different sizes. Mike
  23. Dave Townsend also occasionally sings to his own playing using an Tenor/treble EC or Baritone, but mostly in concert, not often recorded.
  24. I made and fitted the modified hand rests because I could not "curl "my fingers sufficiently to use the inner row of buttons, which gave me cramp and the longer extension with the modified hand rest worked well and I could more easliy touch the inner row and still reach the accidentals. I have no trouble with other makes of Anglo such as my Lachenal, a Wheatstone I borrowed or the Marcus G/D (lovely instrument I think) that replaced the Gremlin. Marcus made the action lower and lighter for me on request when I went down to try and subsequently order the instrument. From a previous/different strand, I trained as an ergonomist in later life as part of my health and safety professional training and one of the causes of so called repetative strain injuries leading to all sorts of musculoskeletal conditions was 1. hitting keyboards too hard and 2. not having the correct design for the person rather than making the person conform to the design. I used to reassemble the Gremlin upside down, so the buttons hung downwards and slotted into the ends/holes more easily, when I effected repairs or modifications. Best of luck with it. I really disliked playing it, both the tone and the action. It was worst than the Hohner C/G (another Stagi clone?) I had and I got rid of that as well. I am now having similar problems learning the Wheatstone English Model 21 when reaching the lowest notes on each side and have had to modify the thumb strap slightly as a result. I have quite long fingers. and used to find that I was always putting my fingers through the ends of surgical gloves when I worked in the NHS, which was a slight problem when working in asceptic conditions (as a blood transfusion immunologist).
  25. Thanks Alex, I take your points about the end bolts and fixings. Originality was not an option really but i do like to conserve as much as possible. My concern was the mahogany (no veneer) of the reed pan box is only 6mm thick and drilling it to insert self tapping inserts is likely to thin the sides to an extremely weak thinness and thus lead to cracking/loss of the mahogany and ultimately a new box being required. I think I'll try Model Fixings as you suggest in the first instance, once I have measured the end bolts for TPI and procured some. With such a large number of turns per inch I don't think that variation in pitch will be much of a problem. I do need to measure to make sure the bolts are long enough. The steel end bolts are 1" 5/16 inch or 33 mm (31 mm for my lachenal and Wheatstone but 35 for my Marcus, although with these the shaft length is the same as the steel, i.e. the head size is larger) and 3/32" thick and approximately 44 turns per inch. I was resigned to having to use two standard springs for the air button, there is plenty of space for them. I have to get some more springs anyway as several are broken plus a few spares may come in handy. I'm definitely not looking to make my fortune. the intention was to find a winter project for those dark hours when I can't get in the shed and I have had enough of practice. It will make a change from scanning and cataloging my family photograph collection (back to about 1870). Eventually I hoped to be able to make something live again that is playable; enjoyment and an intellectual and physical challenge is almost as much a priority as cost. Regards Mike Jones
  • Create New...