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SteveP

How Many Wheatstone Cranes?

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I have just spent a quiet afternoon going through the Wheatstone ledgers playing Spot The Crane Duet, and wondered if anybody else has done this?

 

I counted 393, made between 1913 and 1973, but I am sure I will have missed some, and assuming I have interpreted the various model numbers and codes correctly.

 

In the earliest days, the word Crane appears somewhere. Around 1932 they start to use a model number beginning with a 7. Then, around 1944, the model numbers change to 1T through to 5T, as seen in the 1956 price list on Concertina.com

 

So, has anybody else come up with a wildly different total?

 

And speaking of Model 5T, the Baritone Crane, has anybody seen one?

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I make it 390 but have not counted ones with no date like #33041. Approx. 290 from 1910 to 1945 and 100 from 1946 onwards.

 

Sad, isn't it.

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So is the earliest one 26237? It's an Octagonal 61 button. Most of the very early ones look to be quite large.

 

How are you counting 28873 and 28874 on p.153-- do the ditto indications tell us that these were Cranes?

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So is the earliest one 26237? It's an Octagonal 61 button. Most of the very early ones look to be quite large.

 

How are you counting 28873 and 28874 on p.153-- do the ditto indications tell us that these were Cranes?

 

What about 26228?

 

If you mean 28823 and 28824 (p153) I have taken the 'do' to mean they are Cranes.

 

(Please note that I have only studied the ledgers and am not an expert on the instruments themselves.)

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I have just spent a quiet afternoon going through the Wheatstone ledgers playing Spot The Crane Duet, and wondered if anybody else has done this?

 

I counted 393, made between 1913 and 1973, but I am sure I will have missed some, and assuming I have interpreted the various model numbers and codes correctly.

 

 

Thanks for the information, I have never actaully thought how many Wheatstone Cranes were made, I suppose this means findign one and being able to afford to buy it will be difficult, witha total count less than 400.

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...and there could be a few more. I have just been told that No 35019 is a 65 key Baritone Crane, and shown in the ledger as "80". Now, who's going to go through it all again looking for 80s? :D

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Baritone????

Apparently, yes. I am hoping to find out a little more.

 

I spotted a handful of model 5Ts in the later ledgers, so baritones do exist, but those were 55 key.

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Baritone????

I wonder if that might be like the Edeophone Crane that I had a few years ago, which had a regular treble end but the bass side was an octave lower than normal? :unsure:

 

Mind you, I've had a piccolo Maccann, made for Jack Clevoner, that was simply an octave higher than usual.

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I have seen quite a number of "Cranes" over the years. However most of the Wheatstone and Lachenal Cranes that I have seen, in the original form that they were made, have not been bigger than 55 button instruments, (mostly 48 or 55 but a few with less buttons down to 35). Though I have seen a number of Wheatstone "Cranes" with more than 55 buttons but on closer inspection these turned out to be larger "Maccanns" that had been converted to Crane fingering. In several this was done simply by blanking out one collumn of buttons with metal or wood inserts. I do remember seeing one for sale 4 or 5 years back (a Wheatstone wood ended Aeola) the size of an 80 button Maccann (10.75") but with only about 65 buttons, this might account for the instrument described earlier. This is only my personal observation of instruments that I have personally inspected and I wouldn't claim to have seen everything.

 

All the larger real Cranes that I have seen, including some very fine instruments indeed, have been made by Crabbs. I believe that many of the Maccan to Crane conversions were done by Crabbs too. Crabbs made many Crane Duets (usually around 45 buttons) in batches of 6 to a dozen for the "Salvation Army"; these together with those made by Lachenal and one or two recent ones by Connor, should make the total count of Cranes much more than the "390"; though there is the story (probably an urban myth) that the French Salvation Army burnt over a 100 Cranes about 20 years ago!

 

Inventor.

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Crabbs made many Crane Duets (usually around 45 buttons) in batches of 6 to a dozen for the "Salvation Army"; these together with those made by Lachenal and one or two recent ones by Connor, should make the total count of Cranes much more than the "390"; though there is the story (probably an urban myth) that the French Salvation Army burnt over a 100 Cranes about 20 years ago!

The number made by Lachenal is a whole different can of worms, with no records to help. The serial numbers on Cranes were last seen heading towards 6000, but this range of numbers may have been shared with Macann duets for at least some of the time.

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