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My Swan Concertina Just Arrived....


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....And I have a question. When I press the air button to draw in more air, when I have it out the full length and let go of the button, it slowly moves back. It’s not noticeable at first, and it doesn’t affect the sound of any notes. It also happens when I close the bellows fully, it starts to slightly open. I’m just wondering if this is normal for a new concertina, or should I be worried about it? Again, it doesn’t affect my playing at all, and all of the buttons seem to be working fine, it’s just a really slow movement. Since this is my first concertina, I’m not really sure what’s normal or not. Is it because the bellows are just a bit stiff, and are moving back the the ‘resting’ position, or is it an air leak somewhere?

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You're welcome. No concertina is 100% airtight, yours sounds pretty decent given how you describe the movement. A popular airtightness test is to hold the instrument vertically by one end, with no buttons pressed, and let the other end fall. The rate it falls as the bellows open gives an indication airtightness, though this does depend on other factors too. Don't force the air in or out without a button pressed though as this can stress the seals.

 

Keeping the instrument stored with the bellows reasonably tightly compressed is also important, so the slight opening you describe does not cause them to lose their shape and full range over time.

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1 hour ago, Pistachio Dreamer said:

You're welcome. No concertina is 100% airtight, yours sounds pretty decent given how you describe the movement. A popular airtightness test is to hold the instrument vertically by one end, with no buttons pressed, and let the other end fall. The rate it falls as the bellows open gives an indication airtightness, though this does depend on other factors too. Don't force the air in or out without a button pressed though as this can stress the seals.

 

Keeping the instrument stored with the bellows reasonably tightly compressed is also important, so the slight opening you describe does not cause them to lose their shape and full range over time.


Thanks for all the info! I tried that air tightness test, and it fell at a really slow rate, so I’d say it’s pretty tight. I have a case for it which keeps the bellows squeezed together tightly, so I shouldn’t have a problem with storing it! :)

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