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drbones

Medina Concertina?

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Here it is. Any ideas on who, where, when or worth?

 

This concertina has many of the hallmark design qualities of a Lachenal or Wheatstone, English concertina. (6-screw assembly of the ends, button linkage and reed pan; rosewood end design and red buttons for the C notes) You would need to carefully disassemble the ends and look on the reed pan, to see if there's a factory stamp on it. (I have both a "Beare & Sons" and a "Crane & Sons" English. Both have the "Lachenal & Co." factory stamp on the reed pan.) Both companies allowed other retailers to buy lots (groups) of concertinas from their factories and re-label them. Both companies required the retailers to leave the original factory markings on the instruments. (For Englishes, the factory stamp on the reed pan. For Anglos & Duets, the registered trademark, stamped into the wood block, beneath the right-hand, hand-strap.) As a collector, I find it disconsorting that someone saw fit to mount Anglo hand-straps on an English concertina, though! Originally, the English has thumb-straps and "pinky rests", (present on this concertina) rather than these straps. I fear converting the straps back to the original will not cover the upper holes made to mount the hand-straps. (it appears they DID use the original "pinky rests" to mount the lower end of the straps) This would reduce the collector value of this instrument appreciably. This could be a VERY interesting project for a restorer! Cordially, KerryF

Edited by KerryFrank

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I fear converting the straps back to the original will not cover the upper holes made to mount the hand-straps. (it appears they DID use the original "pinky rests" to mount the lower end of the straps)

Not only the original pinky rests are used, but also the original metal parts of the thumb straps. And both in the original place, I'd say. So these straps might be a silly adaptation, it's totally reversible. :)

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After spending a bit more time studying the pics this morning I'm inclined to suggest this is probably a Lachenal. What I will say is that unless parts have been substituted it's not a Wheatstone.

 

Pete.

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It looks like the most basic fretwork, with bone buttons with dyed C's and the like, all very down market. Yet that is rosewood, isn't it? Is that an unusual combination?

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It looks like the most basic fretwork, with bone buttons with dyed C's and the like, all very down market. Yet that is rosewood, isn't it? Is that an unusual combination?

 

Not on early instruments, and I still have a strong suspicion the buttons are ivory, not bone. By coincidence I've had two very similar instruments in the workshop just this week, one of which definitely had ivory buttons.

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After spending a bit more time studying the pics this morning I'm inclined to suggest this is probably a Lachenal. What I will say is that unless parts have been substituted it's not a Wheatstone.

 

I'm no concertina expert but I was thinking Lachenal myself, the bellows paper and such could be a hint. Somewhere I remember a list of bellows papers and the company it'd have come from.

 

 

 

I've never head of Medina though. Is the serial number going to give any hints as to its age?

Edited by Dieppe

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After spending a bit more time studying the pics this morning I'm inclined to suggest this is probably a Lachenal. What I will say is that unless parts have been substituted it's not a Wheatstone.

 

I'm no concertina expert but I was thinking Lachenal myself, the bellows paper and such could be a hint. Somewhere I remember a list of bellows papers and the company it'd have come from.

 

 

 

I've never head of Medina though. Is the serial number going to give any hints as to its age?

Also, the thumb strap bracket has the lachenal screw pattern.

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As a restoration project, where could a fellow look to find new parts to make it a respectable instrument again?

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Good morning to all, and Greetings from Colorado, USA!

 

I wanted to introduce myself and to let you all know that I'm the person who bought this concertina (if you're curious).

 

So, I'm Dan and I repair accordions here in Colorado and have been doing so for eight years now. I bought most of my inventory of accordions of various types ( over 100 by now! Yikes!) from a popular internet auction site. I buy instruments, repar them as necessary, and then resell them here locally. I'm not really a big player in the business, but I am starting to gather a group of folks who love accordions. Most of my work is in repairs of existing instruments, but I do end up selling a half dozen or so instruments over a year. Again, not really a big player. To date, all of my work is by word of mouth.

 

I have had the privelidge of having a mentor in all this. Turns out that my wife grew up up the street from Gordon Piatanesi who made Colombo brand accordions after his father and grandfather for many years. Whenever my family goes back to San Fransisco to visit, I usually take an instrument or two and spend some time with Gordon. Again, I feel privelidged for his guidance. I've also been to Italy and Germany several times to buy parts.

 

Sorry for going on so much about me... on to my latest instrument. It IS a Wheatstone. I've already been in contact with David Leese as I've bought repair materials from him before. I had the chance to work on another English concertina several years back. Basically, most of the necessary repairs are leather-related. New valves, pallets, an as you mostly noted, proper straps. I am not in a hurry to repair this and wish to do it right. I would welcome any comments about this instrument and advice on how you personally would proceed.

 

I would guess that one question I might have on it right off the bat would be how old is it? By what I've garnered from this website over the last day or two, the serial number of 7037 that it bears may shed some light on this. That would make it a rather earlier instrument, right? Only thing is that it's really in good shape. I mean really good shape. Especially if it's that old (mid to late 1800's???). About the oldest other instrument I've got is a 1912 Dallape half-chromatic accordion, and it's not only in rather "degraded" shape, but it's rather primitive in it's workings. That's usually how (with the larger instruments) I can narrow down it's age. Everyone seems to think that their grandpa's accordion is from the 1800's, even though it's pretty clear that most instruments you find are certainly NOT that old. I mean even Hohner didn't actually start making accordions (Handharmonikas) until 1903. As I mentioned earlier, this is only the second "real" concertina that I've touched so I'm not sure how to judge it's age.

 

Well, I think I've gone on long enough for this post. Again, I apologize for going on so long, but I am impassioned about our instruments and wish to perfect my art of repair. Thanks in advance for your help and kind consideration.

 

Sincerely,

Dan.

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Looking in the Wheatstone ledgers, the number 7037 doesn't appear, though both 7036 and 7038 do appear, both in 1856. The concertina with serial number 7038 seems to have been sold twice on the same day, once for 6/6 and then for 4/4 then again in 1858 for 4 - -. I'd guess that might put the date for 7037 in 1856 as well, but it seems not to have been recorded.

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Welcome Dan!

 

... on to my latest instrument. It IS a Wheatstone.... I would guess that one question I might have on it right off the bat would be how old is it?

It's a little over 150 years old, probably made in 1856. You can check the ledgers yourself here.

 

By what I've garnered from this website over the last day or two, the serial number of 7037 that it bears may shed some light on this. That would make it a rather earlier instrument, right?

Earlyish anyway, but still main-stream stuff. We've had scores of concertinas earlier than that though our shop.

 

Only thing is that it's really in good shape. I mean really good shape. Especially if it's that old (mid to late 1800's???).

You've probably noticed by now that concertinas are quite differently designed and constructed from accordions, and with much finer and high quality materials and craftsmanship - which makes them last a lot longer. Concertinas are meant to last a long time. Of the ones from that era, we've encountered many in excellent condition and with the vast majority in repairable condition. All those were subsequently refurbished and are back in circulation.

 

About the oldest other instrument I've got is a 1912 Dallape half-chromatic accordion, and it's not only in rather "degraded" shape, but it's rather primitive in it's workings. That's usually how (with the larger instruments) I can narrow down it's age.

I also mostly consider accordion construction and design when dating older accordions... and most are pretty primitive. There seems to be a lot of old boxes around here (New England, USA) were it's easy to come across 1850-1900's accordions at flea markets and antique stores. Of course most of those are button accordions with a smattering of chromatics and flutinas. Very few piano accordions.

 

-- Rich --

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