Jump to content

Original cases


Recommended Posts

Sorry if this was already discussed, by I wasn't able to find such topic on the forum.

 

Most of the advices here recomend storing concertina with sides perpendicular to the ground, with the argumentation about the reeds being potentially deformed by gravity if stored on the one side. However, antique cases I've seen (including the one I've received with my concertina) are designed to store concertina on one side. Right now I'm placing it on the side, so the concertina will be in the "correct" position, but it's not particularly convenient, as the lock is broken and therefore the box has to be somehow blocked (I use side of a piano…) to not open on itself in this position.

 

So, if the correct way is laying concertina with sides perpendicular to the ground, why old boxes were designed otherwise?

 

How important really is keeping concertina in the "correct" way? If I start keeping it vertically what exactly am I risking – a bit faster detuning, or permanent damage to the reeds? What is the timescale we are talking about – bad things will happen after months, years, decades?

 

I like the idea of using original container, but I'd rather use it as it was designed – vertically. However, if it's that bad, then I guess I should buy modern concertina case – my current solution described above is definitely not long-term…

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

The issue is not distortion of the reeds, it is the effect of gravity on the leather flap valves. If you want consistent performance and some degree of longevity from the valves then the instrument must be stored with the bellows axis horizontal. This will ensure that the reedpans ae vertical and hence the valves are not likely to be curled by gravity. The hexagonal cases were progressively superseded by square cases that kept the bellows compressed and the concertina axis horizontal. 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Some cases were of the "clamshell" type, allowing the instrument to sit or rest on its side (same orientation as when being played). I have one of those clamshell cases made of wood for my old G. Jones anglo, with a heavy-duty leather handle.

I'd guess until someone does a scholarly overview of the history of cases, we can't know for sure how common certain case types were. I suspect that a good many cases were made after an instrument's purchase --made by the owner, by a local leatherworker or perhaps by a saddlemaker one result being that the designs  came from the imagination of the maker, who may never have seen any other case before.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think every English made concertina would have come with a semi-decent case.  The vertical cases I associate with Lachenal and Jeffries.  It is a pain to need to store such lovely boxes on their side but it is not hard to make a good case for that to be the best way.  Yes, intended.  maybe fix the lock? 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Allright, so I guess I'll just buy some modern case. The original one is in rough shape either way. And yes, that's Lachenal indeed @Chris Ghent! I'm new to concertinas, and the only vintage boxes I've seen were like this – hexagonal and upwards, so I mistakenly assumed it was some sort of a standard. Thanks for the answers

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There has been plenty of discussion over the years about cases, e.g., re-purposing camera cases or waterproof equipment cases for concertina use. Add a little custom-cut padding and 'Bob's your uncle.' A search of the archive on the word "cases" yielded 1,975 results.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As others have said elsewhere...

 

Pulling an instrument out of a vertical hexagonal case puts undue strain on the bellows and the thumbstrap/handstrap. And they are really awkward if trying to turn them over so the concertina can slip (not fall!) out the bottom.

 

An additional caution with the original wooden hexagonal boxes is the slot to accommodate the thumbstrap/handstrap adjustment screws. If you mistakenly mis-align things when inserting the concertina, it might never come out.

 

Gary

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...