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Mike Pierceall

Seeking A 17A Wheatstone (Tenor)

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Years ago, I spotted a rarish Wheatstone Tenor on Ebay. Rarer still was that it was located a half-hour's drive from me in Southern California, so I drove out and inspected it. Sadly, at least for me, I was outbid in the final seconds. I believe it went to someone in the UK. Anyway, I'm renewing my search for another, long shot or not. Mike

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I would kill to have one of these also. Or any high-quality "Tenor 48" with a robust, bright sound and metal ends. I am now playing a Morse Geordie Tenor with upgraded TAM reeds and find this the ultimate configuration for dance-music-based instrumental world folk music. (The conventional thinking consigning Tenors only into a "song-accompaniment" box for playing "a fourth down" is weirdly narrow and unimaginative. This is the ultimate concertina for instrumental melody playing in all pitches: It is still compact enough to respond quickly for dance playing, and you get those groovy low notes for two wonderful uses---bass touches, and outright "baritone" melody playing on 75%to 85% percent of folk melodies in genres such as ITM. And, yes, it is great for pitched-down song backgrounding.)

 

I was advised by Chris Algar that "true" Tenors are very rare and hence very expensive when they do show up. He also advised considering TTs for this reason. Within the last year, The Music Room in the UK had a metal-ended Tenor with raised ends (I assume a New Model though they didn't tag it a New Model), that looked pretty raggedy-ass and unrestored. And their price on the thing was going close to US $7,000.00. It sat there for a very long time indeed, but eventually disappeared from the listings, I believe soon after posters mentioned seeing it in the Music Room booth at one of the UK festivals. I'm guessing it sold at or through the festival, but don't know.

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There is a Crabb Tennor on Ebay today... I'm no good at posting links,( maybe someone will show me how to do this one day)... but I sure it is easy to find.

 

This is being sold by Chris Algar, whose photos on Ebay are getting worse by the way, perhaps his camera is playing up or he needs new glasses!!

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Crabb 9609 was made in 1940.

 

Approx 30 Crabb Tenors were made from 1929 on.

 

14 were made between 1971 and 1989 (closure), nearly all for USA, so there should still be some good metal ended ones about.

 

Geoffrey.

 

 

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I believe Geoffrey Crabb said that an imaginary line from the middle of the thumb strap to the centre screw on the finger plate should pass through middle C, whetther the instrument is treble or tenor. In the photo here, it seems to pass through what would be middle C on a treble, but if it is a tenor, the 1st button on that row would be F. Is it possible this one is converted from an original treble instrument?

 

- John Wild

[edited to improve clarity of my meaning - hopefully!]

Edited by John Wild

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Since Chris Algar is selling the instrument, I would suggest that he knows what he is offering. The position of the thumb-strap doesn't look like Tenor.

 

I bought an unrestored Lachenal new-model off Chris a few years ago, which was in an odd tuning - neither tenor, nor treble. With a few changes David Robertson put it back into - what we suggested - an F Tenor. If played like a treble, it sounded a fifth down. These instruments were made especially for the salvation army - to make the playing with brass-bands easier.

 

So this one might well be an F-Tenor, which was converted to Tenor ( which can easily be done! )....

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Chris has kindly looked at the instrument again and has confirmed that all the reeds are note stamped as expected so it does not appear to have been altered since manufacture.

 

Another instrument, made two years earlier, with the same keyboard/strap/ finger plate relationship confirms that two 48 Tenor models were available. See attachment.

 

 

 

Geoffrey

 

Edited to add: The terms 'Æola' or 'Edeophone', being proper to Wheatstone and Lachenal respectively, should be avoided when describing Crabb instruments which are: Hexagonal, Octagonal or Twelve sided.

Edited by Geoffrey Crabb

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( which can easily be done! )....

 

Now I seem to have got it, you mean by just replacing the B with the Bb reedshoes... (which I would do then vice versa...)

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( which can easily be done! )....

 

Now I seem to have got it, you mean by just replacing the B with the Bb reedshoes...

 

Switching the B's and Bb's would give you an instrument "in F", but it wouldn't be quite strictly transposing from a treble in C, because one of the other accidentals (in each octave) would be wrong. Specifically, to be a fifth down from A and Ab, a strictly transposing instrument should have D and Db, not D and D#.

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( which can easily be done! )....

 

Now I seem to have got it, you mean by just replacing the B with the Bb reedshoes...

 

Switching the B's and Bb's would give you an instrument "in F", but it wouldn't be quite strictly transposing from a treble in C, because one of the other accidentals (in each octave) would be wrong. Specifically, to be a fifth down from A and Ab, a strictly transposing instrument should have D and Db, not D and D#.

 

 

Of course you're right Jim, thank you for the enlightenment once again!

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Chris pulled the auction before the end!? In Germany a judge ruled today that a buyer who bids on a lot has a right to buy it at that price, even if the seller withdraws the lot!! An interesting decision!

 

Nevertheless - the instrument could well have been a F-tenor - all the reeds are the same as a tenor ( except for the D# / Db! ) and marked the same way!

 

If you want one, you can try here ;-) http://www.wheatstone.co.uk/wheatstone/concertinas/english.htm

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I suppose pulling an item can occur for a number of reasons, but since there were no offers, it wasn't in play, technically, I think. I too wonder if it were a Tenor C to F or a Tenor in F. I also would have loved to see what the selling price would have been. Mike

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