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Which of the current/recent makers produce mini/travel hybrid concertinas?


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I'm having trouble tracking down a model I wanted to recommend a friend take a look at, and just can't figure out what maker I'm thinking. Someone had on their site I want to say a 23-button Anglo that had just the absolutely key third-row notes for Irish sessions or whatnot, and made to be compact and durable. Anyone recall what maker I'm thinking of? I idly want to say they have a dragon as their trademark.

 

And that aside, who would be the current makers of hybrid/semi-affordable instruments who are making minis? I know some of the pricey folks with long waitlists make fancy minis, but I believe I've seen some pretty affordably-priced (meaning $900k-ish vice $3k-ish) hybrid minis.

 

Thanks for the little help jogging my memory and catching me up on current offerings on the scene!

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1 hour ago, John Wild said:

The dragon emblem gives a clue towards Marcus Music in Wales. They have a model named the traveller.

 

http://www.marcusmusic.co.uk/concertinas.html

Ah, that's the one I was initially thinking of! I somehow kept thinking Norman (who does build mini-Englishes so partially answers my other question.)

 

The Marcus Traveller is pretty cute though, 5" across (like a piccolo) but at full-size pitches, 21b with a standard 20b array but an added added C#/Eb so you can reach out into more keys.

 

There's not anyone making mini/compact Haydens or other Duets in hybrid though, no? I was thinking about those because another poster on this sub is hunting for a 35b Crane. I know Alex Holden built a compact Hayden, his "Brun" model with true concertina reeds, but unless Tedrow or someone got quirky, I don't think there are many hybrid compact Duets. Which is a little odd because the Wheatstone Duett was just that.

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I don't know if you would consider it a Mini duet, but the Concertina Connection Troubadour (Hayden) is  2lbs  5.5oz  6-1/4" across the flats. available from Concertina Connection and Button Box.and possibly others,

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5 hours ago, Jim2010 said:

I don't know if you would consider it a Mini duet, but the Concertina Connection Troubadour (Hayden) is  2lbs  5.5oz  6-1/4" across the flats. available from Concertina Connection and Button Box.and possibly others,

 

I would call 6 1/4" standard size. IMHO a mini would be more like 5 1/2" or under. Mini duets are rare.

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18 minutes ago, alex_holden said:

I would call 6 1/4" standard size. IMHO a mini would be more like 5 1/2" or under. Mini duets are rare.

I wonder if folks are thinking that the larger hybrid instruments are 'standard', and that 6 1/4" is

therefore 'miniature'? (I had my hands on one a while ago which was 7 1/4" ax the flats.)

 

I have a Marcus Traveller - nice and loud (for its size) - blow yer socks off two fields away...

 

There's a paper in the archives of the ICA (*) which regards 5-1/4" as 'semi-miniature' - by Randall

Merris. 'Miniature' are even smaller...

 

(*) Volume 9, 2012

Edited by lachenal74693
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3 hours ago, alex_holden said:

I defer to Randall.

Ooh! No! I didn't mean to imply that anyone was 'right' or 'wrong' in any way, or that anyone needed to 'defer'

to anyone else. I pointed it up because I thought that it's an interesting article - with some cracking pictures

of small concertinas in there - whether you call 'em miniature, semi-miniature, or w.h.y. Sorry if I gave that

impression in my post.

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10 hours ago, MatthewVanitas said:

There's not anyone making mini/compact Haydens or other Duets in hybrid though, no? I was thinking about those because another poster on this sub is hunting for a 35b Crane.

 

I'm interested in miniature and semi-miniature concertinas and I'm a Crane player, so this is a topic i've given some thought to in the past.

 

Miniatures really are novelty instruments. I've seen a 16 button Crane mini - six notes on the left and ten on the right. Sure, you could find a few tunes which would fit on it but it would never be a serious instrument.

 

When it comes to semi-miniature duets there is always going to be a compromise. If the instrument is to be 5 1/4" or less then you can't fit in enough buttons for a really useful instrument, so you've got something which is neither fish nor fowl nor good red meat.

 

To make an instrument "affordable" (a loose term!) probably means using accordion reeds, and these take more space than concertina reeds so that militates against small size.

 

Unless you want the novelty of a real miniature then I'd suggest the standard 6 1/4" size is the minimum to consider. Alex Holden made me a 44-button Crane in this size and I think that's about the limit. If someone wanted to make an affordable Crane with accordion reeds you could probably do it at 6 1/4" based on the 35 button layout - though I'd give the layout a couple of tweeks to make it more usable.

 

LJ

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I'm wondering if the spatial constraints for duets have more to do with button patterns than room for reeds.  my 6 1/4 JD has 50 buttons+air and although the left side is quite full. the right has room for 3 or 4 more notes.  The fan shaped pattern streatches to 6 and 7 buttons side to side with 4 rows.  I would think a Hayden would have similar charicteristics.  Extending the range of other systems involves crowding notes towards the heel of the palm doesn't it?

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53 minutes ago, wunks said:

I'm wondering if the spatial constraints for duets have more to do with button patterns than room for reeds.

 

I have an A P James mini-anglo which manages to fit a row of 5 buttons in a 3 5/8" box; and an Andrew Norman semi-mini which fits two rows of 5 button in a 4 15/16" box. So you could make a Crane at that size but at one note per button you wouldn't get a very useful instrument. In the end I think it's the number of reeds needed that drives the size. Certainly, constraining my @alex_holden Crane to 6 1/4" it was the reeds that limited the buttons to 44. On a Hayden system, which has fewer low (and hence large) reeds Alex has fitted 47 into the instrument he's currently building at the same size.

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2 hours ago, Little John said:

 

I have an A P James mini-anglo which manages to fit a row of 5 buttons in a 3 5/8" box; and an Andrew Norman semi-mini which fits two rows of 5 button in a 4 15/16" box. So you could make a Crane at that size but at one note per button you wouldn't get a very useful instrument. In the end I think it's the number of reeds needed that drives the size. Certainly, constraining my @alex_holden Crane to 6 1/4" it was the reeds that limited the buttons to 44. On a Hayden system, which has fewer low (and hence large) reeds Alex has fitted 47 into the instrument he's currently building at the same size.

 

The shape and position of the keyboard array does have some influence on where it is practical to place pad holes. It's no good having space for an extra chamber or two in the centre of the reed pan if you can't place a pad hole above it because the keys are in the way. The 44 and 45 button Cranes and the 47 button Hayden I've designed all have the same number of outer radial chambers; the difference is in how many extra inner chambers they have.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I recently made a 5” Anglo with 15 buttons with a single 3rd row C# that goes both ways.  My main interest in concertinas started with mini’s and semi-minis.  Not sure why I can’t upload photos.

 

Seth

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