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I've not tried to make my own, but in the last seven years I've seen two Anglos made by others. One was apparently based on a Wheatstone instrument and the other on a Dipper County Clare design. Both were playable, but I don't think either was as good as the original they were modeled after. In each case I believe the folks that made them did so as a one-time home project and so had to puzzle out the details of construction as they went along as well as manufacture the various parts with tools at hand (with the exception of the reeds). I know that one was made with salvaged reeds, but I don't know what the reed source was for the other. As individual efforts each was pretty impressive, it is no small task to make the bellows and other parts, let alone fit them all together into a working package. Had either home-builder had access to a kit of pre-made parts I imagine they would have produced instruments as good as the models they were designed after.

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Henrik Muller has made a fantastic English concertina of his own design. Haven't seen it personally but have been reliably informed that it's a superb instrument.

 

Henrik chronicled the whole project in words and pictures, and there are links to it on his profile page here:

 

http://www.concertina.net/forums/index.php?showuser=448

 

Michael.

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As Daniel said, I made my own. The thirty button looked pretty enough, but I never got it in working order. As for the mini I'm really pleased with the way it works, action is smooth and fast enough and it's nice and loud. I didn't take parts from other concertinas but I bought parts from different people. Levers and most of the inside pieces were from concertina connection and the reeds and bellows were from Bob Tedrow.

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I'm away from my tools these days, but someday I'd love to build something like this:

 

Case-and-Concertina.jpg

 

I like the old primitive boxes, and the "cabinetry" looks to be simpler on this kind of box. I do note that the staggered rows format would be conducive to using the Hayden pattern, which would be a neat old/new twist.

 

Am I correct in thinking that this kind of box might be easier than later versions, or am I overlooking the aspects which would make this tricky?

 

(Concertina.com has full photos here: http://www.concertina.com/duett/wheatstone-duett-no-64/index.htm )

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I'm away from my tools these days, but someday I'd love to build something like this:

 

Case-and-Concertina.jpg

 

I like the old primitive boxes, and the "cabinetry" looks to be simpler on this kind of box. I do note that the staggered rows format would be conducive to using the Hayden pattern, which would be a neat old/new twist.

 

Am I correct in thinking that this kind of box might be easier than later versions, or am I overlooking the aspects which would make this tricky?

 

(Concertina.com has full photos here: http://www.concertina.com/duett/wheatstone-duett-no-64/index.htm )

 

 

looks similar to this ;

 

http://hmi.homewood.net/harley/

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Hi, everyone. This is my first time posting here. I'm interested in this thread, because my wife wants a concertina. I'm a musician and guitar maker - www.toddroseguitars.com - so I'm thinking about making her a Hayden duet. I figure I've got a good jump on it with all the tools and skills I have as a guitar maker, but, until a week or two ago when I started looking into this for my wife, I didn't know the first thing about concertinas. I hope that some of you may be able to help point me in the right direction. I'll start by studying Bob's photo essay and looking into what parts are available, but any other leads and guidance anyone can offer would be much appreciated. In guitar making, there's a great community of makers, both hobbyists and professionals, who help each other out a lot, and lots of resources for learning, obtaining tools and materials, etc. I get the impression the are very few people making concertinas, so the community and resources aren't really there in that way, but I'm here to seek out what is available.

 

I am also open to the possibility of trading with a professional concertina maker who would like a fine, unique, handmade guitar.

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I don't write this to scare you off but do keep in mind - not least as you are a craftsman already - there is no such thing as "making one instrument" from the beginning and getting satisfied with that.Whatever you make, be prepared for at least 3 prototypes which become failures more or less - usually more...

And IF you want to spend/waste your effort DO it on something entirely new - that is if you have some invention you want to make real.

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Interesting perspective, Ardie. My intention in this response is not to argue, but simply to offer a different perspective. Also, my intention is not to brag, but just to share my experience and suggest a different set of possibilities from what you suggest.

 

I feel that every instrument I've ever made has been a success. I've made drums, rattles, flutes, guitars, and other guitar-related instruments. Some of these have been more-or-less standard designs, while many others have been unique, original designs I dreamed up and built. In one sense, I am never fully satisfied, and that is part of what drives me to keep making instruments, developing new designs, and working to develop my skills and insights into what makes the instruments tick. On the other hand, every instrument has come very close to being what I envisioned and heard in my mind's ear before making it, and many have exceeded my hopes of what it might sound like. Always there are pleasant surprises. Every instrument has been a discovery of something wonderful and musically compelling. I still play my first guitar frequently. It has a beautiful sound and is a delight to play (and that's an opinion shared by other guitarists whose skills and perceptions I hold in high regard).

 

I have no doubt that if I make a concertina, it will be a lovely instrument, inspiring to play. I don't think I'll ever make another - I've got lots of guitars to build - but you never know.

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As Daniel said, I made my own. The thirty button looked pretty enough, but I never got it in working order. As for the mini I'm really pleased with the way it works, action is smooth and fast enough and it's nice and loud. I didn't take parts from other concertinas but I bought parts from different people. Levers and most of the inside pieces were from concertina connection and the reeds and bellows were from Bob Tedrow.

 

Did you get the reeds from Concertina Connection?

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No, Bob Tedrow sold me reeds. They are the same reeds that he uses on his hybrids (Antonelli accordion reeds made in Italy). If you are looking for real concertina reeds ask Carroll (concertina maker) or Suttner.

 

-Lep

 

Thanks. I don't yet have a clear understanding of what the differences are between accordion reeds and real concertina reeds. All I've gathered so far is that hybrid concertinas using accordion reeds are considerably less expensive than those that use real concertina reeds, so I am assuming that making concertinas less expensively is a primary reason, or perhaps the only reason, for using accordion reeds. That would suggest also that real concertina reeds are preferable for sound quality, if one can afford a concertina made with them.

 

I haven't yet gathered whether the reeds themselves are substantially more expensive, or if there's some other factor involved in making a concertina with concertina reeds that makes the instruments more expensive.

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Thanks. I don't yet have a clear understanding of what the differences are between accordion reeds and real concertina reeds. All I've gathered so far is that hybrid concertinas using accordion reeds are considerably less expensive than those that use real concertina reeds, so I am assuming that making concertinas less expensively is a primary reason, or perhaps the only reason, for using accordion reeds. That would suggest also that real concertina reeds are preferable for sound quality, if one can afford a concertina made with them.

 

I haven't yet gathered whether the reeds themselves are substantially more expensive, or if there's some other factor involved in making a concertina with concertina reeds that makes the instruments more expensive.

 

Just the other day, Wim Wakker made a great explanation over in the "Clover Anglo" thread. I bet the expensive part is when you pay for a master concertina maker to sit there and adjust the voicing on every reed. =)

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Against my better judgement, I feel the need to point out that though there is a lot of good information in the above linked discussion, there are a number of assertions that I don't agree entirely with especially regarding the difference between concertina reeds and accordion reeds. They are each designed to meet the needs of their own instruments and features useful in one are detrimental in the other. There is no question of superiority involved, only what works best in one type of instrument and what works best in the other.

Concertinas are more complex than they appear with details that are often visually very difficult to perceive and are hence often overlooked even by people who have been making concertinas for a few years. Usually lack of satisfaction with the way the concertinas play leads them to discover what they had overlooked and do it in a way that fits the rest of their design. This holds true for all the good concertina makers I know who make excellent concertinas now. I wouldn't discourage you from making your own concertinas at all. It is very possible, but if you are hoping to make a really good one, be prepared to work as hard at it as everyone else who has done so. The best thing you can do is strike up a relationship with some good concertina makers who would be willing to share some of their experience. Copying a really good concertina is a difficult thing to do not least because the things that make it really good are features that you won't even notice enough to copy.

Dana Johnson

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