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WendyG

Is this a Lachenal or a copy?

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Hi I have just acquired a 20b concertina in the hope of "doing it up". It looks very similar to the lower end Lachenals, but the label (where the Lachenal label would be) states "T. Bennet & Bennet, manufacturers, St. George's Mansion, 81 Theobalds Rd., London, so is it a copy. I had a look inside and the only number I can find is L or R 458 stamped into the bellow ends and the reverse sides of the action boards. If this isn't a copy I assume it was made very early on. I am hoping that I have attached a photo, but am not too sure how to do it :rolleyes:

 

Wendy

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It doesn't look too like a Lachenal to me Wendy although they commonly had retailers labels fitted, the fretwork looks a bit coarse. Are there any words stamped into the woodwork of the hand rest like 'English Make' or 'Trade Mark' with a reed design?

Edited by tallship

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A photo of the action would be helpful too.

 

It doesn't look too like a Lachenal to me Wendy although they commonly had retailers labels fitted, the fretwork looks a bit coarse. Are there any words stamped into the woodwork of the hand rest like 'English Make' or 'Trade Mark' with a reed design?

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A photo of the action would be helpful too.

 

It doesn't look too like a Lachenal to me Wendy although they commonly had retailers labels fitted, the fretwork looks a bit coarse. Are there any words stamped into the woodwork of the hand rest like 'English Make' or 'Trade Mark' with a reed design?

 

 

I have taken some photos (apologies for quality they were taken with my mobile phone). I am not too fussed about the make as this will be my first project and I didn't pay much for it.

 

Wendy

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I have one just like that (but now in many small pieces) #195141.....brass shoes w/ steel reeds...but I didn't get handrests w/ it!

 

Sure look like Lachenal parts though....

 

Jack

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Well the innards are consistent with Lachenal and from that angle the fretwork looks far more like it. Does it have the give away stampings on the right hand side hand rest?

 

It doesn't look too bad at all, have fun with your project. :)

 

Pete.

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Well the innards are consistent with Lachenal and from that angle the fretwork looks far more like it. Does it have the give away stampings on the right hand side hand rest?

 

It doesn't look too bad at all, have fun with your project. :)

 

Pete.

 

No stamp on the handrests.

 

Wendy

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Looks like a Nickolds with those half pillars.

 

Sorry for being dim but what is a "Nickolds"?

 

Wendy

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Looks like a Nickolds with those half pillars.

 

Sorry for being dim but what is a "Nickolds"?

 

Wendy

 

Have done a search and have now found out what a "Nickolds" is.

 

Wendy

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Nickolds used a pivot post that looks like a capital "G" when viewed head on. The steel action arms are consistant with the few Nickolds I've seen.

Nickolds used a clamp on the reed shoes that has an incisement on either side.

 

Another possibility is the mystery builder that Stephen Chambers and Chris Algar call "Tidders". His concertinas, certainly the 20b anglos, seem to be patterned after the Lachenal mahogany and rosewood models. Often the bellows of Tidder concertinas are done in sheepskin which tends to scuff. The gussetts are unusually ample and prominent. If memory serves he used an ink stamp to number his instruments.

 

Greg

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Nickolds used a pivot post that looks like a capital "G" when viewed head on. The steel action arms are consistant with the few Nickolds I've seen.

Nickolds used a clamp on the reed shoes that has an incisement on either side.

 

Another possibility is the mystery builder that Stephen Chambers and Chris Algar call "Tidders". His concertinas, certainly the 20b anglos, seem to be patterned after the Lachenal mahogany and rosewood models. Often the bellows of Tidder concertinas are done in sheepskin which tends to scuff. The gussetts are unusually ample and prominent. If memory serves he used an ink stamp to number his instruments.

 

Greg

 

Hi Greg, attached is a blurry photo of the pivot post. The clamp on the reed shoes does have cut-outs on either side, so it is looking like a Nickolds, the number stamped into the bellows and reverse sides of the action boards (458) does have ink present though.

 

Wendy

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Wendy,

The action is consistent with the 26b C/G Nickold's anglo that I have. The reed tongues in mine are broad, wider than a typical Lachenal's and more like the broad steel reeds made by Jones.

 

I couldn't tell for sure from your picture but the reeds "seemed" broad.

 

Someone with the experience of Stephen Chambers could give the final confirmation but my money is on Nickolds.

 

Greg

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Wendy,

The action is consistent with the 26b C/G Nickold's anglo that I have. The reed tongues in mine are broad, wider than a typical Lachenal's and more like the broad steel reeds made by Jones.

 

I couldn't tell for sure from your picture but the reeds "seemed" broad.

 

Someone with the experience of Stephen Chambers could give the final confirmation but my money is on Nickolds.

 

Greg

 

Hi Greg

I have attached a larger photo. I am finding it very interesting finding out about the concertina, for instance, the number stamped inside is 458, so probably made early on; the concertina was stored in a box on its end and probably wasn't used a lot - the baffles on one end show the fretwork pattern where it has faded, action in this exposed end also is slightly more tarnished than the other. All in all the condition is much better than I expected when I bought it.

 

Wendy

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Wendy,

Your reeds appear to be broad and I can see evidence of the notches in the clamps. Along with the distinctive pivot posts everything points towards Nickolds.

 

The fretwork is strikingly like the pattern we have come to associate with the mahogany end Lachenals. If memory serves Crabb and Nickolds left Wheatstone fairly early to form their own concern. I'm sure the designs and ideas they helped execute left with them and were expressed for awhile until their work became separate and distinctive.

 

My 26b Nickolds ends are quite distinctive. I've attached a photo.

 

Greg

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The fretwork ends are very nice, when I have learned how to play the concertina, I am hoping to progress to something with a bit more class.

 

Wendy

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Wendy

You will find there is a lot of good music in a 20b. The vintage ones in good shape are easier to play and sound better than the Rochelles imho.

(Yes, yes, everyone wants a 30b for lots of valid reasons. I'm just saying a good 20b can make good music and be fun to play.)

 

Personally, when it comes time to divest, a nice Jeffries or Carroll along with a sweet rosewood 20b Jones would cover a lot of bases for me.

 

Enjoy the journey!

 

Greg

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