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Hi

 

So yesterday I was saying about my idea for making a 40 button concertina. I said I don't mind what ever size it turns out to be. While this is the case I was wondering: although I have to remove the Reeds from their block to tune them anyway would I be able to forget using the Reed block entirely and hold down the reeds using 2 screws at each end and have a hole where the Reed is? I ask because I understand stand reeds work by air trying to escape through them causing them to vibrate that being said I don't quite understand the movement of air. 

 

Thanks 

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The tone of a free reed is produced by frequently cutting off the air flow. Of course the reed(s) can be mounted flat upon the reed pan, but there may occur certain issues re available space and possibly as well sound  The latter would be subject of trial and error I guess...

 

(Vintage concertina reeds are mounted in rooted slots, thus positioned in a rather small distance to the respective "other" surface, and a reed just mounted upon the surface might tend to sound squeaky.)

 

Best wishes - 🐺

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I don’t think you need to worry about airflow.  Much more significant is how you will fit the number of reeds you need.  The first thing you need to do is to make some detailed design drawings showing how you will arrange the reeds and the action. 

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2 minutes ago, Theo said:

I don’t think you need to worry about airflow.  Much more significant is how you will fit the number of reeds you need.  The first thing you need to do is to make some detailed design drawings showing how you will arrange the reeds and the action. 

That's a good start lol. The reason I ask about airflow is because I'm wondering whether I could get the reeds and just stick them on with a small piece of wood to hold it in place and not obstruct the reed. 

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I don't understand what you  mean by "just stick them on". The reed needs a position to occupy, an air vent controlled by a pad, a lever and button to operate the pad.

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What I'm saying is I've been playing accordion for quite a while and really I only started 30 button maybe 4 months ago. If I look at my concertina it has accordion reeds in accordion Reed blocks. What I'm asking is does there need to be a chamber for a reed and if it does does it really have to be the size of an accordion Reed block chamber  or can I just make a little chamber from wood with a hole in it for the air to get in and out? If you don't understand me I will draw some quick diagrams in paint when I get home 

Edited by accordian

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3 hours ago, accordian said:

 does there need to be a chamber for a reed and if it does does it really have to be the size of an accordion Reed block

 

Yes each reed needs a chamber and the size of accordion reed chambers will be a good guide.   Lower pitch reeds need bigger chambers, higher pitches need smaller.  There is some latitude in the size of an individual chamber.  At a minimum there needs to be enough space for the reed tongue to move and for the valve on the opposite side.  Both must be free to open as far as they need to.

Edited by Theo

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13 hours ago, Wolf Molkentin said:

look here

That's exactly what I was asking if I could do. Thanks for that all I wanted was to know if I could mount the reeds like this. Rather than having huge reed block sticking out like my concertina. 

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There is still a chamber there for each reed.   Don't dismiss the idea of the upright reed block, it might allow you to fit in more reeds.

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4 hours ago, Theo said:

There is still a chamber there for each reed.   Don't dismiss the idea of the upright reed block, it might allow you to fit in more reeds.

So the picture that wolf was showing they are still called a chambet

chamber? I thought a chamber was a space for air with 2 holes? Think I got a bit muddled up some where. As for the reed blocks it is quite true I might be able to fit more reeds but when I have to remove every reed and tune it I might as well just screw it straight to the board as wolf showed. 

 

I think the most difficult part of all this is going to making the buttons and levers with the pads on as I have no access to metal so wood is my only option. 

 

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20 minutes ago, accordian said:

I thought a chamber was a space for air with 2 holes?

 

indeed - the reeds are on one side, and the hole, to be closed by the pad, on the other - it happens when everything is assembled, with the chamois as visible per the picture providing an airtight seal.

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Accordeon, With regard to your post of using accordion reeds for a concertina, you can cut every accordion reed plate to a smaller size. Time consuming but it works well. Or contact the Melodica makers in France to get their more narrow reeds which now have stainless steel reeds. These are nice and flat and easy to work with. The main problem hasn't been addressed and is very important. I have seen many new, very well made concertina's but often the sound is mediocre. This has to do with the size of the reed compartment. Too small and it will 'choke' the sound. Too large and the sound gets tardy and subdued. Many years ago on my bi-annual trips to the accordion factories in Italy it finally clicked. I wanted a special button accordion made from C/G to D/G. The factory refused, telling me the C/G was especially made for a C/G to get optimum sound and turning it into a D/G would stifle the sound projection.. As I was also making wind instruments at the time I applied this knowledge to my instruments which worked very well and got some extra technical literature from about 1850 which confirmed it. Wind turbulation and air compartment size are a most important aspect to produce a purer and richer sound. With my own instruments, concertina and accordions, I re-adjust reed compartments volume where needed. It is time consuming but in the end very worthwhile. Also important to remember is the air pressure you are working with. I have taken many air samples from England, France, Germany, Austria and The Netherlands and found tuning variations in each of these countries from A440 showing as A438 to A442 so don't be surprised if your instrument is out of tune playing in different countries or even close to 1km up in the mountains. Playing up in mountains, 1km high and higher, can mean your instrument does not show the same tuning reading as at sea level. Overall I found the English air pressure playing havoc with tuning and tuned my instruments at A443 in Australia at sea level to have them playing at A440 in England. A concertina not sounding bright, slow in response or just not sounding good enough may well mean for you to check out the reed compartment. Just even out the tuning won't  fix it. Sorry about the long blurb but nobody seems to address this that I know of.

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