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Charlie Butterworth

Padded Straps For The Anglo

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I have a Bastari 30 button anglo and finally got around to learning tunes on it.

 

There is one problem however, the leather straps cause pain where thet cross over just behind my index finger knuckle. I do have rather small hands, so I suspect that this may be the problem.

 

JimLaabs music stocks Excalibur padded concertina straps, although they're not cheap. I have tried softening the straps with leather conditioner and saddlesoap.

 

I'd appreciate any suggestions.

 

Thanks,

Charlie

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Sounds like your straps may be too tight, try loosening them a notch or two. Mine are adjusted so that there is 1/2" clear space between my palm and the handrest. Looser straps will help you reach all the buttons easily - especially if you have smaller hands. It's pretty common for those new to the instrument to dog the straps down fairly snug to anchor the hands in place.

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I've added padding to my straps and it works very well. I took an old fuzzy berber sweater, cut and sewed tubes to fit around the straps. Slip the strap through the fuzzy tube, reattach the strap and bingo!

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It's pretty common for those new to the instrument to dog the straps down fairly snug to anchor the hands in place.

 

Charlie,

This is true!

 

I believe Bastari is the precursor of Stagi, and my Stagi anglo has broad, thick, stiff leather straps, which give me control of the instrument even when as loose as sqzbxr says.

When I got my vintage Crane duet, it had well worn-in, soft straps, and I felt I had to adjust them tighter. However, when I fitted a pair of new, stiffer straps, I was able to slacken them off, and still feel in control.

 

When you've gained a little experience, you may also find that stiffness is more important than tightness for giving you control.

 

Cheers,

John

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On my first concertina, a Hohner badged Stagi, I had problems with both the buckle and the width of the leather as well as the tightness of the strap, so I made my own copy of one from a Lachenal owned by a friend, from leather offcuts, some diluted PVA glue and hand operated Singer sewing machine. I found two or three layers of leather (depending on the thickness of what you can get hold of ) was ideal, so the overall thickness is about 3mm. Experience now tells me to put the nap side inwards, this soon picks up skin oils and becomes smooth and comfortable. My first set of straps are now 10 years old and still in use, although I have made others since for other 'tinas I have owned/own of similar designs, but generally with nice wide bits to cover the back of the hand, leaving the fingers mostly uncovered. a small square of the same leather glued to the point of the button box/action box where the palm of the hand rests also helps with comfort and from an ergonomic standpoint I have also made new plam rests in different sizes for different boxes so that I do not have to overstretch to reach the buttons or curl the fingers under too much either for the inside rows, easy to do.

 

Don't play any better as a result but it is comfortable and pain free.

 

Mike

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Thanks for the replies.

 

I have slackened off the straps and this has helped. I'll also try adding some padding and see how that works.

 

Then, I may trim the straps in the offending knuckle region as I can always buy new straps.

 

Regards,

Charlie

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I have a condition that means I have cannulas in the back of my hands on a regular basis. When these are removed it can be uncomfortable for a few weeks until the bruising goes down. I thought of all different ways to pad the straps without spoiling the look of the concertina. Then in a flash of inspiration I realised my mistake. Pad your hands, not the box, and the easiest way is soft fingerless gloves.

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