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Concertina left out in the rain

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I did a very stupid thing and set my Morse Ceilli down on my outdoor deck table last night, then got distracted by a family matter, forgot it was there, and went to bed.  Then it rained.  I'm guessing we got 1/4" - 1/2" of rain--not just a light sprinkle.


I have the ends off and have pat the instrument dry with paper towels.  Both action boards are partially soaked, as are some of the pads.  As far as I can tell, no water got through to the reeds side.  The bellows absorbed a lot of water and expanded to about half of full extension and want to stay there.  Fortunately I'm not seeing any seams coming apart.


Can you offer me any advice on what I should do next?  I'm guessing I should dry it out slowly, rather than use a hair dryer or any sort of heat.   What about a table fan?

I'm guessing the pads may no longer seal well once they're dry.  I'm also concerned about the bellows leather and cardstock being affected long term.   

Should I compress the bellows now while they're still moist?  I'm a little worried about mold forming, but maybe that would take a day or two and can be prevented if I extend and air them out several times during the drying process, keeping them mostly compressed?   On the other hand, I'm nervous about manipulating the bellows at all for fear the glue joints might give way.


I don't mind a bit if you preface any replies with, "What an idiot!" before sharing any advice on corrective steps.

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In the meanwhile open up the bellows and let it just dry out slowly. No heat. The bellows are usually constructed with flour and water paste so do not clamp it shut. I had a whole pint of beer tipped into my concertina at Sidmouth one year and that stuck the reeds and everything together. Yours was just water so do not panic. I also know one that was saved from the bottom of the Manchester Ship Canal and that was still playing after the owner dived down for it.


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When it is dry the bellows will need to be firmly clamped shut for some time to regain a steady state  in which they are closed. Doug Creighton of the now closed Button Box (find his details in the recent For Sale ads) will have a clamp specifically designed to perform this act and I would suggest you send it back to him to get this done and anything else untoward as a result if your sousing. 

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