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Mark Stayton

For Sale: Jeffries 31b C/g Anglo

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With the recent acquisition of Carroll #008, the time has come to bid farewell to my Jeffries 31 button C/G anglo concertina.

 

This instrument has metal ends, 4mm diameter metal buttons, and the original 6-fold gold-tooled bellows. It is stamped “C. Jeffries Maker” between the buttons on the right end, as well as on the right and left sides. The fretwork and stampings indicate that this instrument was probably made during the 102 Praed St. era, between 1872 and 1893. It has the standard Jeffries button layout, with a C/C drone button on the left thumb, and is tuned A440. The instrument was professionally serviced in November 2003. Case included. $6250 US, plus insured shipping.

 

Email or PM for pictures and inquiries.

 

post-44-1127352570_thumb.jpgpost-44-1127352542_thumb.jpg

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I wanted to post something having just bought Mark Stayton's Jeffries through the above ad. The concertina arrived today and I've since driven all the neighbours nuts.

 

First, thanks to Mark, who didn't know me from Adam. We got on great, he was extremely easy to communicate with, sending me plenty of helpful photos and soundclips and background on the tina. He was patient whilst my bank yawned and went into slow mode. Actually, the concertina travelled faster than the electronic money!

 

Also, respect for Wally Carroll who, apparently, did some maintenance work on the jeffries a few years back; the work was excellent and the concertina is a credit to him as well as the man himself, C Jeffries.

 

Finally, thanks to C.net for providing the forum through which I was able to get such a lovely instrument - I've had numerous jeffries before, but none better than this. It's a cracking instrument, probably from 1885/90 era. I suspect it was once bone-buttoned;it has a typical batch number (20) inside and C Jeffries Maker stamped in the sidewood as well as the right hand fretted end.

 

I'm not sure how to do smileys, but I'm simply covered in them. I've been without a really good box for a long time and it's so fantastic to be able to play properly again. Thanks Mark.

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I just wanted to add my thanks to Michael for purchasing this instrument before the temptation overpowered me to do the same. If memory serves me correctly, I had the delightful opportunity to play that Jeffries at the 2004 Noel Hill class in Kentucky and it is a nice one.

 

Out of curiosity, how did you arrive at the conclusion that it was once a bone-buttoned model?

 

Ross Schlabach

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Hi Ross ... Glad I removed temptation... I always help out if I can!!!

 

As for bone/metal buttons ... Initially, I was going simply by the size of the holes in the metal end. In most of the metal-buttoned jeffries I've seen/had, the holes are pretty tight to the side of the button, with little of the bushing showing; pretty accurately cut. With this jeffries, there is a fairly generous hole that would suit more closely the slimmer bone buttons that were common on earlier jeffries (not the fat chubby monsters!) You can see this on the photo, the bushing showing clearly. Having played and examined the concertina (almost constantly for 2 days now!) my suspicion is strengthened. The buttons just don't 'feel' like the other jeffries metal buttons; also they are quite proud and stick up a fair way. But althogh I've seen quite a few jeffries, there are many people with loads more expertise and I'm more than happy to be proved wrong on this. The important thing from a musical point of view is the quality of the concertina - it really is a beauty. Incidentally, the concertina also has" C.J. 12 " stamped into the metal just under the handstrap, which I've not seen before.

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Incidentally, the concertina also has" C.J. 12 " stamped into the metal just under the handstrap, which I've not seen before.

Mike,

 

The full stamping, which runs beneath the handrest, is "C.J. 12.ALDERSHOT.ROAD.KILBURN.N.W.6". There's a thread about the stamping here. The photo links on the thread no longer work, but here's a pic of the stamping.

 

Edited to add photo

post-44-1128731977_thumb.jpg

Edited by Mark Stayton

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Dear Mark,

 

Ah - hah! ... So that's what the CJ12 was about! There's me thinking this was one of a row of 'specials' that Charlie hoarded lovingly in a back room!

 

What are your thoughts on whether these are the original buttons? And how about the possibility that the buttons were replaced during a return visit to Jeffries during the Aldershot Rd period, hence the second stamp?

 

It's clearly an early instrument. If it went back to the company for work, it wasn't the bellows that were replaced - they're vintage 1880s/90s. Of course, the concertina might have been tuned, but would they have re-stamped for a simple tuning or valving? Replacing buttons, however, would have involved more substantial work to the action and the fretted ends, and the wood where the bushing is would have to be replaced. Also, the hand-rails would have been removed - and that's where the stamping is!

 

Hmm, Sherlock - what do you reckon? ... Dr. Watson

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What are your thoughts on whether these are the original buttons? And how about the possibility that the buttons were replaced during a return visit to Jeffries during the Aldershot Rd period, hence the second stamp?

 

Mike,

 

When I got the instrument, the buttons were quite wobbly in their holes, as the old (and I suspect original) bushing felt was completely compressed. One of the first things I did was to re-felt the bushing boards with piano key bushing felt; that's the red ring you now see around the buttons. Made a huge difference in making the action quieter and improving my own accuracy at hitting those sometimes infernally narrow pin buttons.

 

Of course, it's possible that the bone buttons were replaced at Aldershot Rd, and the old original button bushings were added at that time. But why? Were the narrow bone buttons somehow less durable than the wider ones? I've no experience with the narrower buttons, as the only Jeffries I've seen with bone buttons all had those "fat chubby monsters".

 

What *I* want to know is, what are those brown stains on the bellows papers and how did they get there? Perhaps an incident with a wayward bit of draught in a dark pub during a session? Maybe that's why the bellows have lasted so long - they've been seasoned! :D

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Brown bellows papers, plus deep staining from exposure to air swilling with pure Guiness and essence of woodbines - gotta be. Guess we'll bore people if we go on about the 'Stayton Jeffries'- I'll be in touch again direct in a few weeks when I've got some recordings, Mark - cheers for now.

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What *I* want to know is, what are those brown stains on the bellows papers and how did they get there? Perhaps an incident with a wayward bit of draught in a dark pub during a session? Maybe that's why the bellows have lasted so long - they've been seasoned! biggrin.gif

 

I'd say more likely that it is tiding from a water stain, caused either from iron

in the water or acid in the paper.

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I have a 28-button Jeffries that I believe originally had bone buttons. The air button is still bone. I believe this is because the air button has no backing plate to install bushing. The metal buttons are Wheatstone type with the wooden core.

 

I'm pretty sure I've seen a picture of one belonging to Chris Timson that also has the bone air button.

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I'm pretty sure I've seen a picture of one belonging to Chris Timson that also has the bone air button.

That would be Kilroy, my 45 button G/D which has recently moved on to a new guardian (in the shape of our Jim). The drone button is also bone while the rest are metal.

 

Chris

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Hi Paul,

 

I had the pleasure of examining your 28 button jeffries as it passed through Alistair's hands (we live next door to each other - is this fair on the neighbours?) and yes, I'm sure that it was previously bone-buttoned, again going from the fret-hole size. It's a really snappy and punchy beast for a G/D and I'm not surprised you're delighted. Can there be any other type of instrument that actually makes people physically drool when they see a good 'un! Have you had a look at the reeds? Was it originally G/D or Ab/Eb?

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Hi Mike,

 

I haven't had the time to look at that yet. I'm not sure I want to know but I'll taske a look soon. It does sound beautiful though.

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