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How Secure In The Case Should The Concertina Be?


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Hi all,

 

I have a hard case for my concertina, and wrap the instrument inside it in foam (sponge) rubber, so it won't rattle around.

 

While I want to make sure the concertina is protected I sometimes wonder if it packed in too tight, and if so will this damage the concertina over time?

 

Cheers,

Morgana

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I have a hard case for my concertina, and wrap the instrument inside it in foam (sponge) rubber, so it won't rattle around.

 

While I want to make sure the concertina is protected I sometimes wonder if it packed in too tight, and if so will this damage the concertina over time?

Morgana,

 

I guess the answer has to be, "it depends on just how tightly it is packed", but the ideal for any musical instrument case is that it should be made to fit the instrument so snugly that it cannot move inside it, that way it is the case that absorbs any shocks, not the instrument being thrown around inside. So you should use just enough packing to prevent the instument from rattling around if you shake the case, and no more.

 

But better still would be to get blocks put into the case, to hold the instrument snugly, and they should keep the bellows compressed too, or they tend to spring open.

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Foam Rubber is not a good idea Morgan the concertina will rub off little bits of the foam which will block the reeds.I find bubble wrap a better product to use but allow the concertina to breath.I half wrap mine to ensure I do not get a condensation build up.

Al

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Thanks guys, mucly appreciated. :D

 

The concertina is very snug and doesn't move at all, but I have noticed little tiny flecks of foam on the Concertina, so I will pull out the old sewing machine and sew a cover for the foam.

 

Cheers,

Morgana

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Taking up Steve's points and adding a little: bellows should be compressed, the box should hold the instrument horizontally, not on its end. The buttons should not be under any pressure, sideways or pressing them in. Finally the concertina should not be able to move around within the box in any direction.

 

If I have an instrument in the 'workshop' without a box, or in a sloppy box, I put a couple of rubber bands on to it, to compress the bellows, as long as they do not foul buttons. I also ensure all concertinas in hexagonal boxes are laid over.

 

Dave

 

PS many of these issues go for the soft gig-bags as I have muttered about before!

 

Dave

Edited by d.elliott
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My concetina is always stored horizontially, with the bellow compressed; the case I have for it (see pic below) is a little too big, which is why I added the foam rubber. Until I get a chance to cover the foam rbber, I've now wrapped the Concertina is a large towel :)

 

Cheers

Morgana

 

(Edited for spelling)

Edited by Morgana
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Hi Dave,

 

What do you mean, if hexagonal boxes - they are laid over?

 

Yes, yes my concertina is in a box with the bellows compressed, stored horizontally. And I don't have a hexagonal box.

 

I just was curious what the laid over meant. Probably something about resting on certain edges.

 

Mutter away, Dave. Suggestions always helpful.

 

Helen

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It looks like you have a Stagi case. Those will be a tad large for other concertinas.

 

I used to keep my 1st box in a Stagi case, also with foam baffles. I eventually got an insulated lunch cooler as a soft case, which made it less obvious to thieves anyway.

 

My current concertina came with a delapidated but snug case that is constantly falling apart at the ends, and I think the hinges are about to split too. I keep it together with occasional repairs, and I've noticed that people think it's some kind of trendy lunchbox. They're always telling me "that's a cool box you have there," without ever wondering what could be inside it.

 

Caj

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When I bought my Edeophone it didn't fit the case I had made for my first concertina because it's a different shape. The original box was so dilapidated that I stored it and struggled with a kit bag for about 6 months but it didn't provide enough protection and may have been one of the causes of a pad-board failure. I had a go at making a new leather box but wasn't happy with the result at the end of a couple of months of swearing and re-making. Subsequently, I've found the best case is an Antler brand camera bag which is a barrel-like shape and cost the princely sum of £13.99 (one-fifth of the cost of my handmade box). Camera bags are really well-padded (all that expensive glass and plastic) and come with all sorts of internal velcro dividers. These can be used to pack out the bag so that your 'tina fits snugly in, holding the bellows tight but without depressing the buttons, and my case, the bowing levers.

 

It works well and will hang on my shoulder or be carried by the strap. It's now done trips to Budapest and Marseilles without incident except that at Marseilles the security were clearing expecting to see a camera and caused a very big fuss when presented with an x-ray of concertina .....

 

If anybody wants a hand-made case for a standard Lachenal though, please get in touch!

 

Regards, Jill

 

PS I don't know why bellows have to be stored compressed and horizontal but my guess would be that it preserves them for longer because the materials are less stressed by extension, they're not susceptible to abrasive dirt falling into them and there isn't an unequal amount of weight being placed on one end of the concertina. I also suspect leaving your concertina horizontal prevents the valves from falling and remaining open and thus deteriorating. Dave and Stephen will really know why though .........

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Hi Dave,

 

What do you mean, if hexagonal boxes - they are laid over?

Helen,

 

I'm sure that what Dave means is that, in a standard hexagonal wooden box the instrument is resting on one end, so that half the valve leathers are hanging down (over time they will tend to stay that way, and no longer work properly), so it is much better to "lay the case over" on its side, so that the concertina is sitting horizontally.

 

 

I am interested to know why the bellows need to be compressed.For what reason is this necessary? I can understand this requirement doring manufacture but why after?

Al,

 

If the bellows are not compressed in the case, the natural tendancy is for the springiness in the leather to open them out to some degree. They will work more freely if they are normally kept compressed.

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If the bellows are not compressed in the case, the natural tendancy is for the springiness in the leather to open them out to some degree. They will work more freely if they are normally kept compressed.

I'm still not entirely clear on why this is so.

 

Given two concertinas of similar make; the first is stored with the bellows compressed. The other is stored in a neutral position, such that the bellows are neither deliberately extended nor deliberately compressed.

 

In what ways are the bellows benefited by the first method of storage, or compromised by the second?

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I can understand the reason for the concertina to be horizontal in the box.If you ever take a concertina apart you will see the build up of fluff,hairs etc between the bellow folds if the concertina is vertical these deposits can be dislodged and jam up the reeds.Also the ends of the concertina should never be upward as any airborn dust or drink etc can drop down onto the concertina , whilst you are not playing and cause problems.

The bellows being jammed into the box so tight that the leather on the edges and corners are under maximum strain is something I cannot understand ,except when the concertina is first made.Unless leather reverts over a period of time back to its pre stretched position, a nearly closed bellows seems the more obvious, but I bow to those who can prove otherwise.

Al

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So, if I'm storing my Jackie in the gig bag provided, and standing it on one end, that's pretty much as wrong as it can get....what can I expect as a result? Should I at least store it on a side? If so, does which side make any difference?

 

I guess I never considered any of this before....

 

Greg

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Just to add my 2 cents:

One of my concertinas just fits very tight in a hard case without any soft material inside. While unloading my car the case (with the concerina inside) fel out of the car on the ground. The result was that one of the reed shoes (normally fitted with two screws) was no longer in place, but somewhere inside the bellows.

 

post-37-1113823484_thumb.jpg

 

In fact the impact on the outside of the case was directly transfered to the concertina and the reed shoe. The force (red arrow) was so high that the screws could not hold the reedshoe in place.

I am convinced that a damping layer between the tina and the hard case would have absorbed a big part of the shock and could have prevented this.

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One of the reasons I like my hard case is that I can lock it. (I don't mind wrapping the concertina up in something to stop it moving around).

 

I'm hoping to buy a restored Lachanel whilst I'm in England, so I'll have to get a second case for that one too. I'll probably invest in another Stagi case for the reason above. If anyone else knows of any other lockable cases please tell. :D

 

Cheers,

Morgana

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