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Retailer has a number of new German-made 20b Anglos for $299; would those be remainders from when Klingenthal went out of business, or is someone in Germany still building? Okay option for 20b buyers?


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37 minutes ago, Daniel Hersh said:

And the later small German-made concertinas used accordion reeds, though I believe long plate reeds continued to be use on at least some German-made bandonions.

 

Would you expect to see any notable internal difference between a German-made Scholer, or a "Scholer" that's just a standard China-made cheapie with a German label slapped on it?

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4 hours ago, TapTheForwardAssist said:

 

Would you expect to see any notable internal difference between a German-made Scholer, or a "Scholer" that's just a standard China-made cheapie with a German label slapped on it?

You're asking the wrong question.  A lot of the German-made Scholers were badly made and virtually unplayable.

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5 hours ago, Daniel Hersh said:

And the later small German-made concertinas used accordion reeds, though I believe long plate reeds continued to be use on at least some German-made bandonions.

 

I've had German concertinas of other manufacture, made in the 1980s, that had steel accordion reeds, but only seen brass reeds on long plates in Scholers. But who knows?

 

In Bandonions steel reeds on long plates are considered the ultimate best.

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5 hours ago, TapTheForwardAssist said:

Would you expect to see any notable internal difference between a German-made Scholer, or a "Scholer" that's just a standard China-made cheapie with a German label slapped on it?

 

Yes, like I've already said "traditional German construction [is] with the buttons glued to wooden levers" - they have a wooden mechanism, not a metal one.

 

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31 minutes ago, Daniel Hersh said:

You're asking the wrong question.  A lot of the German-made Scholers were badly made and virtually unplayable.

 

They weren't Rolls Royces, but they were played by lots of the old "greats" of Irish concertina playing Daniel. I've repaired ("Junior" Crehan's mother) "Baby" Crehan's Scholer, and Ella Mae O'Dwyer's one, whilst here's a photo of Packie Russell, playing a Scholer with his brother Gussie, in the 1960s:

 

1250623129_PackieRussellGermanconcertina.thumb.jpg.671414d78b2d1eb2bf98573af2e93c7b.jpg 

 

 

 

Edited by Stephen Chambers
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On 1/26/2021 at 10:12 AM, Stephen Chambers said:

 

Curiously enough (as it happens!) they bear the Trade Mark of the (Klingenthal, Saxony) German concertina and melodeon maker Otto Weidlich. Whilst, in its days, Saxony (and especially Klingenthal for musical instruments) was the equivalent of China today, when it came to manufacturing cheap goods...

 

Are you sure these weren't made under the old German Democratic Republic? (The old Weidlich firm was nationalised by the state in the late 1940s.)

 

 

 

That's very interesting! Who'd have thought that a free reed instrument company would branch off into nose flutes... There's an incredibly informative set of articles about the history of the swan brand nose flute here, if you wanted to have a look: http://nose-flute.blogspot.com/2012/07/about-swan-logo-part-i.html

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9 hours ago, Stephen Chambers said:

 

I've had German concertinas of other manufacture, made in the 1980s, that had steel accordion reeds, but only seen brass reeds on long plates in Scholers. But who knows?

 

In Bandonions steel reeds on long plates are considered the ultimate best.

 

Hi, Stephen -- see https://photos.app.goo.gl/1FQ6YtnFVYs7Lt5R8

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9 hours ago, Stephen Chambers said:

 

Yes, like I've already said "traditional German construction [is] with the buttons glued to wooden levers" - they have a wooden mechanism, not a metal one.

 

 

But some of the other late German concertinas used metal actions.  I have one that looks like the one discussed below that has a metal action.  I don't know offhand if BGK/Silvetta used metal or wooden actions, and I don't have one in hand to check on that.  My point, though, is that these new Liberty Bellows concertinas could have metal actions and still be German-made.

 

 that 

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9 hours ago, Stephen Chambers said:

They weren't Rolls Royces, but they were played by lots of the old "greats" of Irish concertina playing Daniel. I've repaired ("Junior" Crehan's mother) "Baby" Crehan's Scholer, and Ella Mae O'Dwyer's one, whilst here's a photo of Packie Russell, playing a Scholer with his brother Gussie, in the 1960s:.

 

 

Perhaps I spoke too hastily.  I have heard other players say that many Scholers were very bad, but the only one I've actually played is the one I own (mentioned here) which is not great but is playable, as is my Galotta and the Silvetta/Castiglione that I owned at one time.

 

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Okay, I decided to be bold and messaged Liberty the following through their site:


 

Quote

 

Hello, I'm a moderator on r/Concertina on Reddit and post on Concertina.net Forums.

 

I was looking for affordable 20-button Anglo concertinas to recommend to novices who've gotten curious about sea shanties due to the current fad, and saw you carry some German ones as low as $299 on your site.

 

I asked other concertina players online, and while they are also curious, there were some concerns about the build type and quality, before we enthusiastically recommend them to novices starting out.

 

I don't want to sound like some weirdo bugging you for technical details, but we're up to a thousand views or so for multiple online discussions of people wondering if the 20b options Liberty carries are decent enough quality that we'd recommend them to a beginner.

 

Would I be able to communicate briefly with one of your techs about what type of action, reeds, etc. the least-expensive German options use? Are they wooden action or metal? Reed and reedplate type? Trying to assess how the construction of these compares to older German instruments vice the current cheap ones made in China.

 

Let me know if you'd be available to briefly discuss and clarify, and then I can share that info (or even photos?) with the various free-reed forums online to satisfy the curiosity of a couple hundred people.

 

Thanks for your time!

 

 

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Heard back within an hour from the owner at Liberty, and he stated the emails are "on the record" and fine to share here.

 

Quote

Thanks for reaching out.  Yes we have some very nice German made (Scholer, Silvetta, Weltmeister makes out of Klingenthal) models for $299 at the moment 20 buttons GC and DG.  We received them when we bought the stock of Castiglione Accordions last year after they closed.  They are not currently in production anymore but the quality is much better than the new Chinese made ones (i.e. Hohner D40) etc.  They have nice large buttons, excellent reeds, bellows, build etc.  I find them equal or better to the Stagi equivalents.  The only issue we have found is that on some of them the buttons occasionally fall off due to old glue and need to be super glued back to place.  We check for loose ones but it's an easy fix if the glue comes off.  We are planning to make videos soon to showcase them.  I'll try to expedite this process and also add some internal pics to the listings.  We have been very busy these days with accordion sales and repairs but we are always happy to expand our concertina market.  I think these are a great alternative to the economy models found on Amazon etc. Kind regards, Mike Bulboff (Owner)

 

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2 hours ago, TapTheForwardAssist said:

Heard back within an hour from the owner at Liberty, and he stated the emails are "on the record" and fine to share here. 

 

Thanks for reaching out.  Yes we have some very nice German made (Scholer, Silvetta, Weltmeister makes out of Klingenthal) models for $299 at the moment 20 buttons GC and DG.  We received them when we bought the stock of Castiglione Accordions last year after they closed.  They are not currently in production anymore but the quality is much better than the new Chinese made ones (i.e. Hohner D40) etc.  They have nice large buttons, excellent reeds, bellows, build etc.  I find them equal or better to the Stagi equivalents.  The only issue we have found is that on some of them the buttons occasionally fall off due to old glue and need to be super glued back to place.  We check for loose ones but it's an easy fix if the glue comes off.  We are planning to make videos soon to showcase them.  I'll try to expedite this process and also add some internal pics to the listings.  We have been very busy these days with accordion sales and repairs but we are always happy to expand our concertina market.  I think these are a great alternative to the economy models found on Amazon etc. Kind regards, Mike Bulboff (Owner)

 

Well, that explains things.  Thanks!  I didn't realize that Castiglione had closed, since their web site is still up.  The owner John Castiglione apparently died in May.  I didn't know that Castiglione had stocked German concertinas other than Silvetta.  I'm sure they're better than a Hohner D40, which is or was a pretty bad instrument.

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