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20 key Anglo - Craigslist find that needs some work

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Hey guys. 

 

I just purchased a 20 key Anglo from a gentleman on craigslist for only $20.  I play English concertina and have been interested in branching out and trying Anglo, but didn't know if I was ready to spend the money yet.  However I figured at $20 - despite being only a 20 key and needing some serious work - this would be a fun place to start and a nice busy project to boot.  All the buttons are recessed in some way, a few are bent and stuck in the pressed position but mostly in tact and seem to function but are all pretty loose.  There reeds sound alright too.  There's a lot of rattling inside which I can only assume are pieces of broken keys, so I will have to open it up later for a closer look. The gentleman said this concertina belonged to his father about 50 years ago and aside from MADE IN ITALY stamped on the side there's not much else to it.  

 

So, I've never repaired an instrument in my life.  I'll take some more photos when I get a chance but what do you guys think?  Will this be a large undertaking?  Is it worth doing, versus just buying new?   Any advice or recommendations?  The concertina doesn't seem to be all that unique so if it ends up not working out I won't have my heart broken lol

 

Thanks folks,

Lunchbox

image1_(2).jpeg

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If the bellows are intact and all the buttons sound on the push and pull and are relatively in tune then it shouldn't be too big a project.  The buttons will either be glued to wooden levers and just require a re-gluing, or may be attached (or not) to metal levers- there is good info on this forum for repairing those as well.  It looks like the ends are held on with friction fit pins.  Carefully pull those pins straight out with pliers or a tack puller to see what you are dealing with.  Be careful when disassembling- these are made from cheap materials, and it is easy to strip screws, split wood etc.

 

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3 minutes ago, Bill N said:

If the bellows are intact and all the buttons sound on the push and pull and are relatively in tune then it shouldn't be too big a project.  The buttons will either be glued to wooden levers and just require a re-gluing, or may be attached (or not) to metal levers- there is good info on this forum for repairing those as well.  It looks like the ends are held on with friction fit pins.  Carefully pull those pins straight out with pliers or a tack puller to see what you are dealing with.  Be careful when disassembling- these are made from cheap materials, and it is easy to strip screws, split wood etc.

 

 

Sound advice!  Thank you, it does feel pretty cheap so I'll keep that in mind when I go noodling inside.  Could you direct me to where on this forum I'll find info on repairing the buttons? 

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Update to whomever reads this: Opened it up, all the levers are actually intact but the buttons were held onto the levers with bits of rubber/plastic that have since dried out and broken.  That's what the rattling inside was, so I'll just need to reaffix the buttons to the levers and the squeezebox should be ready to go.

Edited by Lunchbox

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12 hours ago, schult said:

I used bright yellow fuel line from Amazon

Schult, thank you.  Those links were super useful, I was unaware of what the dried rubber bits on the buttons were so this helps me quite a bit.  Fuel line seems to be a good fix.

 

 

Roger, I'd like to know too!  No evidence of marks, letters, stickers, nothing at all on the instrument.  No markings on the inside either, but to no one's surprise really - this thing feels and looks very cheap so my guess is an unbranded tourist piece.  Surprisingly it sounds alright!  

 

Went ahead and ordered a foot of fuel line as per the suggestion, will need to replace the leather straps too I think.  I'm relieved at how minimal these repairs are!

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1 hour ago, Lunchbox said:

Roger, I'd like to know too!  No evidence of marks, letters, stickers, nothing at all on the instrument.  No markings on the inside either, but to no one's surprise really - this thing feels and looks very cheap so my guess is an unbranded tourist piece.  Surprisingly it sounds alright!  

 

I was comparing it with the illustrations on this offering on bonanza.com. They look pretty similar to me? Roger

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Roger I think we have a match, that's the exact same one!  Good information to have.  I'm very new to the world of concertinas.

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11 hours ago, Lunchbox said:

Roger I think we have a match, that's the exact same one!  Good information to have.  I'm very new to the world of concertinas.

 

However you will note that it says „Bastari/Stagi Type“... 🤓

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4 hours ago, Wolf Molkentin said:

However you will note that it says „Bastari/Stagi Type“... 🤓

 

Indeed! To muddy the waters even further, this old article by Ken Coles illustrates what looks like another

similar instrument which is designated as a Renelli. The article is not primarily about this instrument, but

is pretty interesting...

 

I also found this comment:

 

"You'll see pretty much (maybe identical) designs sold under the names "Bastari", "Stagi", "Silvertone", and other house-brand

names. Generally all Italian-made, post-WWII and made in largely this design up to the present."

 

in this 2016 thread.

 

Roger

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That first article was a great read, even if it reminded me that 2001 was 17 years ago... 😄

 

I agree it does look like that Renelli, and in that second thread someone mentioned a red cellulose Renelli as well (although I understand all cheaper concertinas have this funky cellulose “veneers”).  And it seems on all the known less expensive Italian brands there is a basic red cellulose model.

So,

Must be some sort of Bast-stagi-tone-nelli? 🤔

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11 minutes ago, Lunchbox said:

And it seems on all the known less expensive Italian brands there is a basic red cellulose model.

 

Not quite - they don't need to have celluloid "veneer", Mahogany is common as well.

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Of course!  I just meant that this certain red/otherwise colored cellulose seems to show up under several different names.  There is something charming about it!  

 

I am also going to have to replace the leather straps as well, it seems.  

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If anyone is new to this, time to tell them that the red celluloid is properly referred to as MOTS. 😎 [See if you can guess; it's a spoof on Mother-of-Pearl]

 

Ken

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3 hours ago, Lunchbox said:

That first article was a great read, even if it reminded me that 2001 was 17 years ago... 😄

 

 

Must be some sort of Bast-stagi-tone-nelli? 🤔

Thanks! All those years are a shock to the author of that article too! I've heard more than once that all or many of those concertinas came from one Italian factory.

 

Ken (another Pennsylvanian)

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14 minutes ago, Ken_Coles said:

(...)referred to as MOTS(...)

 

Hmm, I'm lost on this one!  How about a hint?

 

14 minutes ago, Ken_Coles said:

Thanks! All those years are a shock to the author of that article too! I've heard more than once that all or many of those concertinas came from one Italian factory.

 

I could see it, one factory to rule them all.  Would explain the similarities, I used to refurbish computers and you'd see something similar with cheaper units that all looked and functioned the same but with different brands on them.  I can't wait to get this thing ready to go!  I have found English concertina to be very fun but a little somber too.  I like the bounce and flight of the Anglo concertina so it will be nice to at least have something to tool with until I can afford a proper 30b C/G Anglo.  Maybe I can find some lessons too!  

 

 

14 minutes ago, Ken_Coles said:

 

Ken (another Pennsylvanian)

Cheers!  I have just moved up here from North Carolina.  I found this concertina  in Brookhaven PA, just south of Philly.  

 

Nikos

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