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Wheatstone 46 key MacCann duet on eBay


SteveS
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The columns of buttons are very strange.

 

The Eb's are set off to the left; you see it occasionally.

 

 

 

 

And the B's and Bb's are out of line. Perhaps this allows the player to 'feel' their way around the keyboard? I'm also thinking about the chord shapes and if it might be more comfortable to play in certain Keys with these offsets. It can be a long sideways stretch to low Bb on the righthand... but there again low F# can feel like and even further leap into the corner.

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I was considering making a punt on this one. Is it definately a Maccann?

 

 

 

I had also thought seriously of making a bid, but one thing that puts me off ,perhaps more than the out of line rows, is the likely tone and playability of a small duet with so many buttons. The size looks to be 6.5" across and that is small for a 57 (or how many) key. The six fold bellows is not going to have huge capacity.... but then perhaps it just might be a very nice instrument.

I feel sure it is a McCann (could it be something else?) but it might be centred in a different key perhaps. Good luck if you go for it Ann :)

Edited by Geoff Wooff
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I was considering making a punt on this one. Is it definately a Maccann?

Sure is: I have a 55-button 8-sider from the same era, with those same offset buttons. Mine is small & light (50oz) and its home key is C.

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Thanks Geoff, It does look like a 6.5" across box, very similar to my 55 key Lachenal, it lso has an extra key on the R so it's 58 keys, not 57. There are 6 keys on the second from R (Pinkie) column and an extra reed, screwed in across the radial line on the reed pan. I had assumed 57(or whatever) key box would start at C, maybe I should check. The seller does seem to be an instrument dealer so might be able to find out.

 

Typo edited.

Edited by Ann-p
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Made a mistake, he isn't an instrument dealer and says he doesn't know what key it's in. Anyone any ideas on this?

Now I've had another look at it, I reckon it only goes down to middle G on the RH side (like a 55b normally does). That's not what you're after, is it?

Edited by mac
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If you look at the third picture from the top (in the ebay listing)... and we take the 'out of line' button in the far right row to be the Bb, then the patern would suggest that the keyboard extends down to D and that there looks to be a missing Button and a 'filled in' hole where the low C would normally be.

Intriguing ;)

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Geoff, I have seen the filled in hole and couldn't come to any conclusion about it. The key to the right of it should be E flat on a normal 57 key layout, with the middle C shown as above the filled hole. I have looked at charts on Concertina Library. Quite what key 58 is goodness only knows! On a 55 key the E flat is on the third finger row, not the second. I feel that this may start on middle C, but since specials were made, who knows? Is it possible that the extra hole, (filled) was a "bells and whistle" button now gone?

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Geoff, I have seen the filled in hole and couldn't come to any conclusion about it. The key to the right of it should be E flat on a normal 57 key layout, with the middle C shown as above the filled hole. I have looked at charts on Concertina Library. Quite what key 58 is goodness only knows! On a 55 key the E flat is on the third finger row, not the second. I feel that this may start on middle C, but since specials were made, who knows? Is it possible that the extra hole, (filled) was a "bells and whistle" button now gone?

 

 

 

 

Hmmmmm, yes Ann, you could be right... all a bit confusing.. the picture of the action board ,showing the air, key would suggest that there never was anything in that blocked up hole... perhaps just a mistake in manufacture ?????

 

Still, that offset Bb in picture 3 looks to be lower (closer to the hand rail)or at least level with your identified middle C button and it aught to be higher up the picture, I would have though.. well, the angle of the photograph is not ideal for identification I suppose.

A hands-on examination would be best... still if the price is right, could be worth a punt.

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The offset buttons: Brian Hayden says that was for brass band use where they'd need to play in flat keys a lot. I THINK, nothing more, that the ones I've seen are all from about 1900ish and I wonder if this was a short lived 'improvement' to the layout; the thinking being that Ebs are easy stumbling stones, so offset them so the player knows he's about to hit a wrong note. The Bb being out of line perhaps favours Brian's theory.

 

The LH looked normal but I could make no sense of the RH; I didn't twig that it might be a 'lowest note G' instrument extended down to C though, so I didn't think that one through. If I was considering having a go I'd go back to Bob Gaskins charts and see if it can be made to 'fit' one of them with a downward extention from G on the RH given that we think we can identify some of the flat notes. I'd suggest one good thing about it is that the ends tell us that it's a factory job, designed like this.

 

Very tantalising, things like this. The 'something for nothing factor' is strong! I do NOT need it.

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Ive been looking at Bob Gaskin's charts and there is a 1910(I think, without getting it back up) Aeola 57 key that fits with it starting on C, but without the sideways bend of the E flats, Haven't looked into the B flats. What about the 33rd key on the R!!!? Also the general standard charts are the same.

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