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Retirement project. Never even held one before let alone try to repair one. A 20 key Klingenthal Concertina made in the Republic of Germany. Bought it from a guy who had never used it so it was stored in a garage. Consequently the left hand side internals have all come adrift. The wooden construction not a problem it is the reeds. See picture. It probably wouldnt have been a problen if they were just all vertical but five are horizontal and I havent a scooby do what they are. In a word HELP! I pressume the wood to wood is wood glue and wood to reed is wax but what wax, is it bees wax?

IMG_7905.JPG

Edited by Brian
Left a bit off.
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Brian - looking at your photos, the reeds are accordion-type reeds and the thin plastic valves on many of them are bent, curled or missing. Charlie Marshall (cgmmusical) can also supply replacement valves and the adhesive. You should really clean off all the old wax (it goes brittle and cracked with age), then replace all the valves with new (they are very cheap) before you re-wax the reeds back onto the reed blocks. You will then need to retune the reeds, which is a big topic in itself. I'm not sure if there are threads on re-waxing and retuning accordion-type reeds on this forum, but there is plenty of help and advice over at melodeon.net. (we are a friendly bunch!)

 

PS - Reed wax is not pure beeswax - that would be too soft. It is a mix of beeswax and resin. An old Italian accordion maker once said that reed wax was "50% beeswax, 50% resin and 10% olive oil. That's 110% so it's got to be good!"

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thank you guys for the useful information. Just awaiting for the valves to turn up from CGM then I will be making a start. 

List: wood, wood glue, wax resin, valves, valve glue. Maybe refurbish bellows once I have everything else ready. 

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Having just done a Presswood re-furb ( as a rank amateur ) and having previously used an encaustic tool with extruded reed wax, I can recommend a hybrid of the CGM paintbrush method with a very economical wax melter from Ebay if a camping stove isn't to hand.  The wax pot maintained (via a built in  thermostat ) a 'pre-smoke' heat for optimum flow with no nasty fuming.          

 

 

 

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Hot-Warmer-Handle-Pot-500ml-Wax-Waxing-Heater-Hair-Removal-Depilatory-Paraffin/372636944435?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649

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  • 2 years later...

Just a few words about (re-)waxing reeds.

I agree with Theo. Wax shouldn't be melted over fire. It can be melted in wax melting pots. You can find them in art supply stores (for batik work). Traditionally the wax is applied with a wax-knife or wax-spoon. Be prepared for some dripping in just the wrong moments the first time (and then a few more times). It's a bit tricky to find out how to get a nice steady flow of just the right amount of wax. But at the same time its not rocket science to get a result that might not look pretty but will do the job.

And one more thing. If you end up with wax drips in places you don't want to(you most likely will), wait till it cooled down and solidified again. Then scrape it off. When you drip on any valves or reeds. Wait as well, then clean it with some White spirit. That way you don't destroy the valves or reeds.

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WD40 is also very good for removing Reed wax.

 

On applying wax, I originally used a small paint brush, but if the wax got too hot it would "fry" the brush and frizzle all the bristles!

 

And I can confirm that heating wax over an open flame can set it on fire (Don't ask me how I know this).

Edited by Clive Thorne
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  • 1 month later...
On 1/7/2020 at 6:07 PM, Brian said:

Retirement project. Never even held one before let alone try to repair one. A 20 key Klingenthal Concertina made in the Republic of Germany. Bought it from a guy who had never used it so it was stored in a garage. Consequently the left hand side internals have all come adrift. The wooden construction not a problem it is the reeds. See picture. It probably wouldnt have been a problen if they were just all vertical but five are horizontal and I havent a scooby do what they are. In a word HELP! I pressume the wood to wood is wood glue and wood to reed is wax but what wax, is it bees wax?

IMG_7905.JPG

 

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IMG_0231.jpeg

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Well the wooden skeleton is reassembled but my next problem is where do the reeds go? Bottom row two notes per button and top row is three notes per button. Are they an octave apart or do the form a chord?

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I feel I must congratulate you on sticking with your restoration project [of that concertina] it is just the same type of Anglo instrument, and very much like, the first concertina I  used; a 20 key instrument., in same way made in GDR [Kligenthal] back in 1988!

I know they came in different keys; some in D and A, others in G, and C and so on.. I used to have a note guide for my own [but that was years ago now]..  

I have already show photo of my once 20 key instrument here on concertina.net before; but here it is to show you once again [concertina no longer existent!] The box I made separately later on.

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On 4/1/2022 at 11:36 AM, Brian said:

Are they an octave apart or do the form a chord?

Hi Brian- They are in octaves, not chords.  Have you seen this video?

 

 

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