Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
RP3

30 button Crabb? finished on eBay today

Recommended Posts

Today an auction finished and there was no one talking about it on this forum -- normally people here are quick to draw attention to it:

 

http://cgi.ebay.com/30-Button-Anglo-Concertina-w-CASE-SUPER-VINTAGE-/280569471412?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item41533e61b4#ht_5158wt_1141

 

The concertina was not in very good shape and I tried to work with the seller to determine the pitch but was unsuccessful. I'd be interested to learn what others have concluded about this concertina and whether they think the buyer (not me - my bid was too low) got a good deal or not.

 

Regards,

 

Ross Schlabach

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, you never know until you get your hands on it but I think it was a safe bid unless the reeds have been messed with. I suspect it may have been a Jeffries. I didn't win it either - but nearly...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Paul,

 

I was thinking along the same lines, but I had the seller look all over the outside of the instrument and there was no stamping anywhere. I did compare the filigreed ends with my 28 button Jeffries and they matched perfectly and the filigree work was much finer than any I had seen on similar vintage Crabbs or Ball Beavon concertinas. When I spoke with the seller and she tried playing different buttons, multiple notes sounded and made it almost impossible to evaluate the instrument -- soundwise or pitchwise. Without looking at the reeds, it would have been very hard to come to any conclusion and even there it would have been at best an educated guess.

 

The instrument had apparently had the pads redone at some time cause they looked too new to be original. And, of course the bellows had the same papers and stamping as on Jeffries, Crabb and Ball Beavon so no help there. Any other reasons you suspected it to be an unstamped Jeffries?

 

Ross

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How do you know what it is? Or what key?

 

Do those look like Jeffries ends or Jeffries papers? Not to my eyes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi David. The ends look just like my 28-button Jeffries and the papers look the part to me also. Without the stamp, though, it could be any of the similar makes.Regarding key, at that price I wouldn't be too bothered.

Edited by Paul Read

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

David, I agree with Paul. I too have a 28 button Jeffries and the fretwork was identical. The ends on my Jeffries are the same outline and the same color - stained wood, not black. The strap adjusting knobs looked the same too. We couldn't determine the key -- other reeds were sounding. That could have meant a stuck button or a warped reed pan or whatever. Can you explain why you thought it didn't look like a Jeffries -- other than the obvious of no stamped name??

 

Ross Schlabach

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest HallelujahAl!

Interesting, as looking through the ends I could quite clearly see that it had very new looking pads, perhaps suggesting it'd been recently overhauled?

Means nothing, I guess.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
and then there is this one. Looks like the same buyer got both. wonder what the bids were.
Here are the bids on the 26-button, and here are the bids on the 30-button. I wonder who bought them - I had a guess, but was wrong. The same seller also just sold a Jeffries Duet, mis-labeled as an Anglo, that was discussed in another thread here.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Can you explain why you thought it didn't look like a Jeffries -- other than the obvious of no stamped name??"

 

It isn't that I thought it was not a Jeffries. Just that I wasn't sure what it was. I haven't ever seen a Jeffries with no name stamp, so that's a very important determinant. I have seen other concertinas that looked just like Jeffries that had no stamp - and they turned out not to be Jeffries, or Crabb, etc. Once burned, twice shy. Azalin can tell you something about that (an unstamped Jeffries/Crabb look-alike). Have you ever seen a Jeffries that was not stamped with his name?

 

The bellows papers had sort of a greenish cast, at least to my eyes and on my screen. Old Jeffries that I'd seen had papers that tended to be more yellow than green. The papers are irrelevant to determine a positive attribution, though if they do not match we'd think that would be enough of a turn-off.

 

Add to that the need for some additional money for repair. Who knew what you'd find inside? Sure, at $3,500 a Jeffries would be a good deal, no matter what the tuning, and even if you had to put in over $1,000. If it turned out to be a fair-to-middling Crabb in a weird tuning you'd still be ok. But something about the wear on the leather on the frame turned me off. The leather looked cheap. I'd never seen a Jeffries wear like that. Frankly, if it had turned out to be a Jones I wouldn't have been surprised. Put all my doubts together and I didn't even bid. I don't think there is any cause for regret. It would be better to buy the real thing at a high price than to buy a pig in a poke like this one. And, obviously, people here who know more than I do agreed with me.

 

Will we ever know?

Edited by David Levine

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Correct David. It was a gamble. I've had ones that came off and ones that didn't. There definitely were instruments made that looked like Jeffries but that were of poor quality. However, if it was a Crabb or, even better, a Jeffries, then you've scored. I have a Jeffries with greenish coloured papers so that didn't put me off. Without a stamp, you have to assume it is not a Jeffries but it still could be a Crabb, Shakespeare etc. The other big unknown was the internal condition - rusted reeds, poor re-tunes etc. A gamble like this isn't for everyone (although I'd have guessed you were in the gambling group).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

both of the winning bids were apparently the minumum increase over the next highest......suggesting that the winning bidder actually bid higher. I was just "wondering" how high someone might go for the "pigs in the poke" I was at about 50% on the 30b. would love to get winner's feedback on these.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Maybe the winner saw them in hand. A luxury not available to most of us.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From conversations with the vendor, it appears that the original owner of the three instruments was a NASA engineer of German origin who worked at Langley.

 

The stickers on the case for one of the instruments indicate that he'd been to the NorthWest Regional Folklife Festival in Seattle and was associated with Mystic Seaport in Connecticut and the Mariners Museum in Newport News so maybe there's also a connection with the sea and shanties?

 

Who knows - maybe someone here met the owner and his instruments over the years?

 

My reading is that this was a person who knew his instruments and bought quality; but I guess I'll never know

 

Alex West

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...