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larryjhs

Help with getting a reed to d# in Melbourne?

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I've got a very nice 30 key  AC Norman concertina tuned as a Jeffries with one or two oddities.

 

The right 1A key was tuned c#/c# rather than c#/d# for Irish music, but I'd like the d# back.  Now with Andrew Norman's advice I went in and altered it - yes, there was a bit of solder on the reed, and I carefully removed it,  but it is actually tuned now to c#/d rather than c#/d#.  The c#/c# was not tuned as such by Andrew.  Andrew also suggested I file it myself and use a frequency gauge or whatever the right term is to get it to d#,  but I am really scared of making a mess out it.  I can just mail the reed block (is that the word) to the right person?

 

I did discover a nice online tool in all of this. https://www.szynalski.com/tone-generator/

 

Click the sin on the right and a keyboard of different notes/frequencies pops up.

 

Please let me know (and the charge).

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Hi don't be too scared to file the reed to the lower pitch.

Use a trim to support the tongue.

File the reed more or less along the hole length but not on the tip.

You may use sanding paper glued to a stick of wood instead of the file. 

If the reed gets stuck in the slot adjust the tongue.

But clean the edges of the tongue first with the file as well.

Do little for little and check the pitch so yo don't get to far with the filing.

Check the pitch of other notes first to see where the other reeds are.

May be the hole instrument is a bit off tune. 

Is not a lot of work to tune one reed a semitone lower, and usually this should be possible.

 

Best regards Johann

 

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ik, maybe. But as it iS D, isn’t the purpose to get it up, not down a semitone, to D#. I am a mechanical virgin

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Sorry, for the case tu get it up 

just file the tip or in the last quarter of the tongue.

If the tip is already very thin then this may be a problem to get it up in pitch as much you want. 

 

Best regards, Johann

 

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Try downloading some free chromatic tuning software (AP Tuner for example). This will enable you to accurately check the pitch of the note as you make adjustments. I have cut and pasted the display screen from the help pages. The idea is to get the needle to 0 for the note in question, in your case D#.

 

Just google AP tuner, the download is available at a number of sites.

 

image.png.b6219dbf85e7d1e9a61e02c700a0f7be.png

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I would like to add, re the edges of the reed:

 

1. clean the edges with a scalpel, not a file!

2. when filing the tip, be careful not to compromise the edges!

 

Best wishes - 🐺

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Hello all, thanks for the encouragement- if I do anything it will have to wait for the weekend!

 

But the plot thickens...I downloaded a chromatic tuner- thank you Rod, and discovered that the whole box is pretty much in tune.  But....

 

The 2A button, as it is as Jeffries is D#/D#, rather than C#/D#.  I thought there was something funny at times. 

 

So so I actually have 1A D/C#. 2A D#/D#. Before there were 3 D#. 

 

It must have been due to some prior tweaking. I think I can live with that!  

 

Again thank you for all the comments but maybe others have this tuning as well. 

 

I did notice as I was looking for a musical staff/ button list that  Royalance Anglo-German Companion 1889 has  lots of tones tuned as flats in the Wheatstone arrangement for reeds, , but I am writing over it with Jeffries’ tuning in an effort to learn how to read music properly. I am sure the reason why is explained  online, but someone may wish to remind us. I like those old instruction books, but for learners like me, Gary Coover is +++. See the photos of Royalance. I like the cockcrow and bird whistle. I hope some had a train, which would have added to the steampunk dimension. 

6B0CB616-BA4B-4002-8FE0-3B982010B053.jpeg

4EE91B18-A0C5-486E-AD2F-DF6E97EDB736.jpeg

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2 hours ago, Rod Pearce said:

Try downloading some free chromatic tuning software (AP Tuner for example). This will enable you to accurately check the pitch of the note as you make adjustments. I have cut and pasted the display screen from the help pages. The idea is to get the needle to 0 for the note in question, in your case D#.

 

Just google AP tuner, the download is available at a number of sites.

 

image.png.b6219dbf85e7d1e9a61e02c700a0f7be.png

Uhm, I'd be very hesitant to recommend this strategy to someone new to tuning concepts without these words of caution:

 

1. This tuner app will probably assume equal Temperament Tuning. IF the Instrument in question is indeed tuned in ET (it likely is, but it's no given!), it's safe to use the "absolute" frequency (but see below). If, however, the Instrument happens to be tuned in something like mean tone tuning, adjusting the needle to 0 may make the reed sound really bad.

 

2. Prior to attacking the reed,  Larry should double check that the Instrument is otherwise not only in (ET, see above) tune with itself but also in concert pitch (meaning A should be tuned to 440 Hz). If that is not the case, meaning the Instrument is in tune with itself but not with respect to absolute Standard pitch, tuning the reed to a Zero needle will, again, make it sound off. If A is NOT tuned to 440 Hz but the Instrument is in tune with itself, then the 0 needle position for the D# must be adjusted so that it fits the relative Tuning of the Instrument. The tuner App possibly can do that, but it's sort of an expert mode.

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9 minutes ago, RAc said:

Uhm, I'd be very hesitant to recommend this strategy to someone new to tuning concepts without these words of caution:

 

1. This tuner app will probably assume equal Temperament Tuning. IF the Instrument in question is indeed tuned in ET (it likely is, but it's no given!), it's safe to use the "absolute" frequency (but see below). If, however, the Instrument happens to be tuned in something like mean tone tuning, adjusting the needle to 0 may make the reed sound really bad.

 

2. Prior to attacking the reed,  Larry should double check that the Instrument is otherwise not only in (ET, see above) tune with itself but also in concert pitch (meaning A should be tuned to 440 Hz). If that is not the case, meaning the Instrument is in tune with itself but not with respect to absolute Standard pitch, tuning the reed to a Zero needle will, again, make it sound off. If A is NOT tuned to 440 Hz but the Instrument is in tune with itself, then the 0 needle position for the D# must be adjusted so that it fits the relative Tuning of the Instrument. The tuner App possibly can do that, but it's sort of an expert mode.

RAc

 

I made the suggestion of using a chromatic tuner as Larry's original post was referring to a tone generator, which would have required a very good ear to tune the suspect reed. He was also only concerned with a single reed, not a complete re-tune. The suggestion was made in good faith.

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I have a question for the tuning experts, not advice to the OP!

 

A little solder is often added to the tip of a reed to lower its tone so is it feasible to add solder close to the root (or maybe the middle) of a reed to raise its tone?

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Hi Larrjhs.

If you really are not feeling confidant enough to tackle this, I would recommend Lewis Music in Russell St in Melbourne.    Roger did some pads, valves & tuning on a 20b Lachenal for me last September and I was/am very happy with it. I don't have the # handy but a quick net search will find him.  Cheers Gerry

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28 minutes ago, Rod Pearce said:

RAc

 

I made the suggestion of using a chromatic tuner as Larry's original post was referring to a tone generator, which would have required a very good ear to tune the suspect reed. He was also only concerned with a single reed, not a complete re-tune. The suggestion was made in good faith.

 

Sincere apologies to you, Rod; I did not mean to imply you were suggesting anything wrong. 

 

Yes, Larry IS concerned with a single reed only, but it was my Intention to point out to him that for a single reed to sound right in a given reed assembly, it has to be tuned to the system of all reeds in the assembly, not only to some absolute frequency (it is not unlikely that this means the same thing, but it's not a given either). Of course a complete re-tune is nowhere in the picture (I never mentioned that anywhere in my post; again apologies if my posting was unclear about this).

 

Apologies also to Larry in case I stated something obvious to him. 

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41 minutes ago, Don Taylor said:

I have a question for the tuning experts, not advice to the OP!

 

A little solder is often added to the tip of a reed to lower its tone so is it feasible to add solder close to the root (or maybe the middle) of a reed to raise its tone?

 

Almost certainly not so - solder on the tip is adding weight, as filing is removing wheight, but I don't believe you can add stiffness to the "belly" with solder (as oppposed to diminishing the stiffness by removing steel resp. brass material.

 

Best wishes - 🐺

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It would work at least for a short time but not recommendable. It is not a proper way to higher the pitch. 

 

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2 hours ago, larryjhs said:

Hello all, thanks for the encouragement- if I do anything it will have to wait for the weekend!

 

But the plot thickens...I downloaded a chromatic tuner- thank you Rod, and discovered that the whole box is pretty much in tune.  But....

 

The 2A button, as it is as Jeffries is D#/D#, rather than C#/D#.  I thought there was something funny at times. 

 

So so I actually have 1A D/C#. 2A D#/D#. Before there were 3 D#. 

 

It must have been due to some prior tweaking. I think I can live with that!  

 

Again thank you for all the comments but maybe others have this tuning as well. 

 

 

If I understand correctly, the button 1A previously had C#/C# (before removing the solder but now is D/C#) and button 2A is D#/D# ?

 

Rather than doing any filing of any reeds what about adding the solder back on the reed you removed it from, and then simply swapping the reeds between the two positions to get the more standard Jeffries arrangement of 1A with D#/C# and 2A with C#/D# - if that is what you want.   At least this would be reversible, while filing reeds is not.  I would guess that the C#/C# and D#/D# arrangement as found was likely the result of someone previously swapping reeds.

 

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Hi, one is in Perth, others are in NSW in the hills, there is an accordian guy somewhere. It is a bit country as you know.

12 hours ago, Tradewinds Ted said:

 

If I understand correctly, the button 1A previously had C#/C# (before removing the solder but now is D/C#) and button 2A is D#/D# ?

 

Rather than doing any filing of any reeds what about adding the solder back on the reed you removed it from, and then simply swapping the reeds between the two positions to get the more standard Jeffries arrangement of 1A with D#/C# and 2A with C#/D# - if that is what you want.   At least this would be reversible, while filing reeds is not.  I would guess that the C#/C# and D#/D# arrangement as found was likely the result of someone previously swapping reeds.

 

Hey, that's a good thought! But I'd have to play with solder...

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1 hour ago, larryjhs said:

Hey, that's a good thought! But I'd have to play with solder...

 

straight forward and easy to accomplish - there are several respective threads in the forums - you would have to file the solder then after having applied it to the tip in order to adjust the pitch.

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