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Relative price for duets


Don Taylor
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I noticed this listing on eBay for nice looking Lachenal Maccann:

 

Lachenal Maccann

 

There have been no bids at all against a starting price of 900 pounds, and the listing only has two days to go so I was wondering if the price of a duet is significantly lower than an English of comparable quality?

 

Or maybe the potential buyers are all waiting until the last moment?

 

Don.

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This is a handy size of Maccann. I tried one recently that was exactly like this and liked it very much but there is not a huge amount of air in the bellows for those large and long chords. Still the price for one of these should not be high and it would make a very fine starter instrument.

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Considerably more scarce - Ebay listings, although hardly an objective source, would suggest a ratio of c.8-10 Maccans:1 Crane.

The rather more straightforward key layout of the Crane system might be considered easier to play, particularly for those used to the English layout. Demand for Cranes and their relative rarity would seem to drive a higher price when they do appear.

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Considerably more scarce - Ebay listings, although hardly an objective source, would suggest a ratio of c.8-10 Maccans:1 Crane.

The rather more straightforward key layout of the Crane system might be considered easier to play, particularly for those used to the English layout. Demand for Cranes and their relative rarity would seem to drive a higher price when they do appear.

Another factor is that a 48-button Crane is quite useful, while I believe that Maccann players don't usually recommend a Maccann with less than 57 buttons.

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Considerably more scarce - Ebay listings, although hardly an objective source, would suggest a ratio of c.8-10 Maccans:1 Crane.

The rather more straightforward key layout of the Crane system might be considered easier to play, particularly for those used to the English layout. Demand for Cranes and their relative rarity would seem to drive a higher price when they do appear.

Another factor is that a 48-button Crane is quite useful, while I believe that Maccann players don't usually recommend a Maccann with less than 57 buttons.

 

Now that’s not true Daniel, some may but they are probably the ones attempting to play it like a piano, that is to say harmony in the left hand and melody in the right hand. Some of us, especially when we play the smaller instruments, play it the way it was designed to be played.

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Considerably more scarce - Ebay listings, although hardly an objective source, would suggest a ratio of c.8-10 Maccans:1 Crane.

The rather more straightforward key layout of the Crane system might be considered easier to play, particularly for those used to the English layout. Demand for Cranes and their relative rarity would seem to drive a higher price when they do appear.

Another factor is that a 48-button Crane is quite useful, while I believe that Maccann players don't usually recommend a Maccann with less than 57 buttons.

 

Now that’s not true Daniel, some may but they are probably the ones attempting to play it like a piano, that is to say harmony in the left hand and melody in the right hand. Some of us, especially when we play the smaller instruments, play it the way it was designed to be played.

 

I was told this when buying my first one but I don't agree either. More notes gives you more choices and is worth paying for of course, but I have a 46 as well as my 'concert grands' these days and I like it a lot. It's a horses for courses matter. I manage to play chords in the LH and tune in the RH so I don't understand your last comment, Tony, especially as I thought the ability to do exactly this easily was the major selling point of all duets.

 

I haven't noticed a price premium for cranes and I'd have guessed a ratio of 10 or 12 Wheatstone duets to one Crane myself. Top flight Cranes with decent ranges are disproportionately rarer because many (most?) of them were made for the Sally Army. Only a few Crane players seem to have commissioned their own instruments.

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Now that’s not true Daniel, some may but they are probably the ones attempting to play it like a piano, that is to say harmony in the left hand and melody in the right hand. Some of us, especially when we play the smaller instruments, play it the way it was designed to be played.

TONY.

 

 

 

Never the less Tony,

having a Maccann that starts at Middle C on the Right hand is very practical. I took this "buy a 57" advice and am pleased I did.

 

It would be interesting to hear your views on "play it the way it was designed to be played".

 

For my part, as a Maccann begginer, I'm taking two paths:

 

The reading the dots path, using arrangements by Stanley and Cornell before branching into interpreting Piano scores.

 

The take a melody and making my own arrangement by ear approach. This way I am ending up with a cross between, block chords on the left being thinned out to balance volume of melody lines on the right, and two voiced melodies. The two results being mixed during the playing of a tune.

 

We are all, I am sure, awaiting the release of "Duet International" so that we can hear what music other players are making .

Edited by Geoff Wooff
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...having a Maccann that starts at Middle C on the Right hand is very practical. I took this "buy a 57" advice and am pleased I did.

But an important aspect of this instrument that didn't sell is that although it's only 55 buttons, it does go down to middle C, though the "standard" 55-button Maccanns from Lachenal do not. So in practical terms, this appears to be a "57", just missing the highest F# and G in the right hand. (As it happens, this is exactly the range of a standard 55-button Crane duet.)

 

I'm surprised it didn't sell. Did potential buyers only look at the number of buttons and ignore Chris' statement about the range?

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...having a Maccann that starts at Middle C on the Right hand is very practical. I took this "buy a 57" advice and am pleased I did.

But an important aspect of this instrument that didn't sell is that although it's only 55 buttons, it does go down to middle C, though the "standard" 55-button Maccanns from Lachenal do not. So in practical terms, this appears to be a "57", just missing the highest F# and G in the right hand. (As it happens, this is exactly the range of a standard 55-button Crane duet.)

 

I'm surprised it didn't sell. Did potential buyers only look at the number of buttons and ignore Chris' statement about the range?

 

 

 

Indeed Jim,

 

Having seen, and tried, another like this just recently I am also surprised it did not sell. Although Wheatstone do not appear to have offered this particular layout as standard, Lachenal certainly did (in their catalogues) and so it is worth checking each 56 (55) that comes up for sale. The owner of the one I tried, who had bought his recently, contacted the vendor (an Antique shop) and got the proprietor to sound the buttons for verification.. smart fellow !

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It is up for sale again today and Chris has reduced the starting bid.

 

Thinking back to the very similar model that I played earlier this year which was a "New Model" with raised metal ends so it was an up market model whereas the current one on offer is a standard "flat ended" version.

 

My friend bought his for a lot less than Chris's starting bid but it had not been recently restored.

 

Looking through the "completed" listings on Ebay today it would appear that people are holding on to their money because there are many fine concertinas that did not sell. Why is this.... wrong season.. ecconomic uncertainty ???

 

PS; note that this topic has had 734 views so far which would suggest that a lot of people are interested in opinions on the current market values. B)

Edited by Geoff Wooff
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