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Need a concertina historian.

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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?


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.          





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