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Good evening people, I'm new here and have a little gem to share with you.

 

I came across the site having been looking for information about a little concertina my wife and I found in the loft. I say found but I should have said relocated because my good lady knew it was there but hadn't seen it in years. It belonged to her late father and was left to her when he passed away at the end of the 1980's

 

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I believe Mr Geoff Crabb signs in on here now and again and it is possible he may have known my wife's late father. He was a builder by trade living in Tottenham but using this and a number of other concertinas, piano accordions banjos and harmonicas he used to do a bit of busking in the N London area. His name was Cyril Lewis so if Mr Crabb or any other London players can remember him please say hi.

 

The little concertina is in great condition and still holds a lovely note. One or two of the buttons are a little stiff but all work. The bellows are intact and show no signs of splitting or cracks.

 

Any info about the little gem would be appreciated although as it is the only thing my wife has from her father it's staying in the family.

 

I may even try and learn to get a tune out of her :)

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Oh, that's a real treasure. A miniature English concertina.

With luck, Geoff Crab will tell you something about it (does it have a serial number?)

 

Chris (originally from Potters Bar and Enfield)

 

The fifth pic shows a number 9039 but I'm not sure if that's the serial number or not. If not where would it be? I'm hoping Mr Crabb might be able to give a little info on it.

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Oh, that's a real treasure. A miniature English concertina.

With luck, Geoff Crab will tell you something about it (does it have a serial number?)

 

Chris (originally from Potters Bar and Enfield)

 

The fifth pic shows a number 9039 but I'm not sure if that's the serial number or not. If not where would it be? I'm hoping Mr Crabb might be able to give a little info on it.

 

 

 

It might be worth startng a new topic saying something about Crabb miniature EC to alert Geoff to the concertina.

I'm sure that he'd be interested especially since the paperwork is there too

 

Chris

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Chris and Tom Thanks for your replies,

 

I have sent Mr Crabb a PM so hopefully he will see that and have a looksee at this post.

 

I have been trying to find some information about it and had seen the video linked. I've also found these:

 

 

 

 

I've also read the interview/article by Roger Digby in which Mr Crabb's brother refers to 12 minitures being made in 1960. I do not know if the brothers made any others and hope Geoffrey Crabb can throw some information on this.

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What a coincidence! A C.net member brought one of these to the DC-Baltimore Squeeze In yesterday (Sunday) and I got a chance to play it. What a little delight! (The Squeeze In was a huge delight.)

 

More info, More info...... Please :)

 

May I ask who the C.net member was?

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More info, More info...... Please :)

 

May I ask who the C.net member was?

 

You can ask, but I can't answer! He introduced himself by both name and handle, but I forget both. I'll ask Jim Besser, the host, to look at this thread and respond.

 

Forgetful Mike

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What a coincidence! A C.net member brought one of these to the DC-Baltimore Squeeze In yesterday (Sunday) and I got a chance to play it. What a little delight! (The Squeeze In was a huge delight.)

 

More info, More info...... Please :)

 

May I ask who the C.net member was?

 

Randy Merris. Search for "Merris" on c.net, you can PM him.

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What a coincidence! A C.net member brought one of these to the DC-Baltimore Squeeze In yesterday (Sunday) and I got a chance to play it. What a little delight! (The Squeeze In was a huge delight.)

 

More info, More info...... Please :)

 

May I ask who the C.net member was?

 

Randy Merris. Search for "Merris" on c.net, you can PM him.

 

Randy's cnet moniker is Dowright.

 

Greg

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What a coincidence! A C.net member brought one of these to the DC-Baltimore Squeeze In yesterday (Sunday) and I got a chance to play it. What a little delight! (The Squeeze In was a huge delight.)

 

More info, More info...... Please :)

 

May I ask who the C.net member was?

 

Randy Merris. Search for "Merris" on c.net, you can PM him.

 

Randy's cnet moniker is Dowright.

 

Greg

 

Thanks Guys, I'll send him a message.

 

Things are happening about our little gem but I need to get a message before I can say anything more.

 

I am just a little bit honoured and proud.

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Chris and Tom Thanks for your replies,

 

I have sent Mr Crabb a PM so hopefully he will see that and have a looksee at this post.

 

I do not know if the brothers made any others and hope Geoffrey Crabb can throw some information on this.

 

Reply PM's sent but for benefit of the curious, 9039 was made in 1929.

 

'H Crabb' Midget English made 1929 - 1987 (closure):-

8 key = 3, 12 key = 57, 18 key =16, 20 key = 5.

 

'G Crabb' 12 key built 2008

 

 

Geoffrey

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Thank you Geoff for the info.

 

I have had a couple of PM's from Geoff about our little 'tina and having checked with him first I am very excited to say that ref no 9039 was made in 1929 by his Grandfather Henry Thomas Crabb for his own personal use! He tells me that his Grandfather passed away a year later and the company passed on to his father at the age of 19. No records of when it was sold on by the family or who had it between it being sold and it coming back to the shop. Sarah's dad purchased it in 1983 and paid £275 which for him was a lot of money for a London bricklayer with six kids.

 

The receipt is in the box and signed by Geoffs brother Henry Neville Crabb

 

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Also in the box is the key/button layout

 

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Another interesting thing is that it has a nine fold bellow. Geoff tells me that the max would be eight so unique in its build.

 

Does this mean that it was the prototype for the Crabb miniature concertina that ran from 1929 to 1987 when the company closed?

 

Geoff has invited us to take it along to him for him to cast his expert eye over and let us know if anything needs to be done to keep it in top condition. I've asked him for a demo of how it should sound so the video phone will be to hand to capture what may be an even rarer site ;) With his blessing I hope I can ask him lots of questions about his families company and the manufacture of these amazing machines.

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Well it appears that our little concertina may have a big brother. I have been speaking to the family as I know that Sarah's dad had a number of instuments that were left to the kids when he passed away. Sarah's brother tells me that he had the other concertina and knows it's a Crabb. He still lives in Tottenham and had it looked over some years ago at the Crabb shop. He thinks one of the buttons is broken/not working but wants to keep it the way it was when it was passed to him. He is coming up to ours at the weekend and if he can find it in his flat then he'll bring it up with him for me to have a look at.

 

He remembers that his dad had it specially built for him by Crabbs and he thinks at the time he paid around £600 although he originally thought it was the one that Sarah has that was the commissioned one. I'm interested to see what he has and when I get to look it over I'll post up the serial number and some pictures.

 

Last night our youngest and I had the little 'tina out and were pootling with some notes (remember neither of us can play any instrument). (see above post for our Charlies attempts at going through the notes ) The little one sounds lovely and after working through the note order I was starting to put together the basics of Old Lang Syne. It's hard work when you don't know what your doing and every now and then a button would stick and the note wouldn't play. It's also dificult to keep the airflow moving whilst your trying to concentrate on the note order.

 

Oh and one other thing, the dog and the cat went crazy! It must be the high pitch or something but they were both at my feet wondering where the noise was coming from. Already I have an appreciative audience :)

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at was the commissioned one. I'm interested to see what he has and when I get to look it over I'll post up the serial number and some pictures.

 

Last night our youngest and I had the little 'tina out and were pootling with some notes (remember neither of us can play any instrument). (see above post for our Charlies attempts at going through the notes ) The little one sounds lovely and after working through the note order I was starting to put together the basics of Old Lang Syne.

 

Sounds like your well on the way to joining the concertina lovers community! It gets addictive I warn you.

 

By the way - here's a tongue in cheek warning against becoming a hoodie -

 

http://ukesnotdead.bandcamp.com/track/oi-kid-dont-be-a-hoody

 

(lyrics perhaps not quite suitable for your young'un)

 

Tom

Edited by southcoastsounds
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