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Cheap English Concertinas On Ebay


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There're are three different 30 buttons ECs for sale on ebay right now. One is made in China, another looks like a Stagi (Gremlin) and comes with a hardcase, and the last is the 'Jackie.'


My main interest in these is to have a concertina to travel with when my band goes on tour. I don't play concertina during the actual gigs, but would like to have something to squeeze on the rest of the time without having to risk something happening to my Wheatstone.


With that in mind I have a few questions:


Is the quality decent on these cheapos?


Are they leaky?


Should I just go for the Jackie?


Thanks for any input you can provide!


Aldon :)

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I have zero expertise on this but I'm gonna post a reply while we wait for the real people to answer your questions.


I have a gremlin anglo that I got so I would have a C# while I was waiting to get my real concertina. It is a 30 button. I have been very satisfied with it as a stand in knock about I've got my C# instrument.


I lucked out and got a playable instrument. I don't do ebay.


Hope this helps a bit.



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I have some extremely limited information that you might possibly find useful.


The provisos: I've never played either an English or held a high quality concertina of any description.


All of the items I discuss emanate from China.


The data: ebay item 3706001064 is offered by JLDyer. I bought an 30-button Anglo of comparable price from him. To my concertina-untrained ears and fingers, the action and tone were fine. There was a slight defect which led him to offer it at a huge discount. I was able to fix this within minutes. Unfortunately, over time several left hand tones began to buzz on the draw. Opening it up to see if the reeds were snagging on the frame, I found the layout very unusual, from what I've seen elsewhere. There were three elevated blocks, corresponding to the rows, in which the reeds were set. One group of reeds in each block is accessible; the other group cannot be manipulated without taking apart the wooden block, which is impractical. So, I can't fix my problem. I have no idea what the English layout looks like, of course. I get the impression that Mr. Dyer is a quite reputable fellow and a good ebayer. I don't know if he opens up his concertinas; I doubt it.


ebay item 3706902052 is offered by a Mr. Liang of Spring, TX, about 35 mi north of Houston. These have been the source of some amusement in this forum, as some are listed as Angola concertinas. I was up there on work-related business Saturday before last and drove by the address listed. As I suspected, it was a home, not a storefront. I had hoped to inspect his concertinas, but no one was home. This business is called Microscope City. If you click on the items in his feedback folder, they run the gamut from microscopes to just about anything which I presume he imports at a discount and sells mostly on the Internet. His feedback is good. Next time I'm in the area, perhaps I will call ahead and examine his concertinas, if he's willing. I am currenly wary of them.


The Jackie concertina is also from China, but my impression is certainly that the Connection is involved in quality control and their guarantees and service are becoming well regarded. You might remember, if you've been lurking long, that they contacted a previous buyer of theirs who mentioned in this forum a bit of trouble he was having and offered to help, even though he had not contacted them directly. Remarkable. If I had my choice between the buying the occasional second-hand Jackie on ebay for slightly less, and buying directly from the Connection, I'd certainly pay a bit more for the service.


This info is certainly incomplete and of dubious value, but maybe you'll find it useful. Good luck. I'm glad I started cheap and am looking forward to upgrading knowing a lot more about concertinas than I did initially.

Edited by Stephen Mills
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Thanks for the replies and advice. :D


I've decided to go with the Jackie! Mr. Wakker was very helpful in answering my questions via email. He mentioned that he himself uses a Jackie when he does courses and workshops. If it's good enough for him to use that way I'm sure I'll be very happy with it as my 'surrogate Wheatstone' when I'm on the road!


I guess the Casey Burns flute I was thinking about will have to wait.....(no regrets!)


Thanks again,

Aldon :)

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