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Concertina help please

HouseCat 11 Jul 07 - 11:15 AM
curmudgeon 11 Jul 07 - 11:26 AM
manitas_at_work 11 Jul 07 - 11:26 AM
GUEST,Sue Allan 11 Jul 07 - 11:26 AM
HouseCat 11 Jul 07 - 11:35 AM
Bernard 11 Jul 07 - 12:16 PM
The Sandman 11 Jul 07 - 12:22 PM
treewind 11 Jul 07 - 12:24 PM
HouseCat 11 Jul 07 - 01:07 PM
Artful Codger 11 Jul 07 - 04:37 PM
Gurney 11 Jul 07 - 05:06 PM
Tootler 11 Jul 07 - 05:42 PM
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Subject: Concertina help please
From: HouseCat
Date: 11 Jul 07 - 11:15 AM

I've been messing about a bit with a used concertina I got really cheap, but the problem I'm having is that my hands are very small and I have arthritis in both of them, so I've lost alot of strength in them. I'm having trouble supporting the concertina, even though I've taken up the straps as much as I can. I really like playing it too :~(! Anybody got any tips?
HC


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Subject: RE: Concertina help please
From: curmudgeon
Date: 11 Jul 07 - 11:26 AM

Hi House Cat - Go to   Concertina.Net and look for the Ergonomics Threads in the Forum. And while you're there check out the other sections. Good luck - Tom Hall


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Subject: RE: Concertina help please
From: manitas_at_work
Date: 11 Jul 07 - 11:26 AM

You could try a neck strap to take some of the weight off your hands.


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Subject: RE: Concertina help please
From: GUEST,Sue Allan
Date: 11 Jul 07 - 11:26 AM

Is it an English concertina or an Anglo? The straps being different, with English having thumb strap and little finger rest and Anglos usually have strap across hand. My English (which does require strong thumb joints!)did originally have a very fine neck strap attached to two rings on the top of the instrument. I guess that could be rigged up for any concertina, but would not allow for much movement - you would still need to support with your thumbs. It's possible though when sitting down to support one side of concertina on you knee. That might be your best bet.


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Subject: RE: Concertina help please
From: HouseCat
Date: 11 Jul 07 - 11:35 AM

It's an Anglo. I did think of trying a neck strap. I'm fortunate to have a concertina builder in my town, and I thought I might take it to Bob and see if he can rig something up for me. Thanks for the link, Tom. I'm liking it much more than I thought I would and if I can figure out the troubles I'm having I may invest in a nicer one, and maybe take some lessons.


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Subject: RE: Concertina help please
From: Bernard
Date: 11 Jul 07 - 12:16 PM

Maybe the instrument is just plain hard work - a Crabb will cost you a fair bit, but will be relatively easy to play. Wish I had one! PM Noreen and she'll tell you about hers.

Sitting down with one end on your knee may help, too.


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Subject: RE: Concertina help please
From: The Sandman
Date: 11 Jul 07 - 12:22 PM

if you have arthritis,you may find certain supplements like Glucosamine Sulphate,cod liver oil,cider vinegar,and also looking carefully at your diet useful.
the neck strap,is a good idea. Pauline de Snoo has a video on you tube,talking extensively about neckstraps.
if you google youtube Pauline De Snoo concertina.


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Subject: RE: Concertina help please
From: treewind
Date: 11 Jul 07 - 12:24 PM

"Sitting down with one end on your knee may help, too."

Certainly does. Some people can play an Anglo holding it up in the air front of them, but not me. John Kirkpatrick manages OK, even playing the most amazing stuff - I don't know how he does it.

If it is a really cheap concertina, a good one will be easier to play. See if you can get to try out a Jeffries, Crabb, Wheatstone or Dipper box in good working order. Or even a good Lachenal.

Anahata


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Subject: RE: Concertina help please
From: HouseCat
Date: 11 Jul 07 - 01:07 PM

Thanks Captain B, that video is very helpful! I really think the neckstrap is something I'd benefit from. Resting it on my knee is helping too. I have rheumatoid arthritis which, in spite of taking a boatload of medications and supplements, is a source of much frustration. Grrrrr. But at least I can still play guitar and do most things I need to.
I think some of the trouble IS that the action is pretty stiff and it was never a good instrument in the first place. It's an old Hohner. Very soon I shall have to make a trip down the road to Bob Tedrow's place and see what he's got around that I could afford. :~0


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Subject: RE: Concertina help please
From: Artful Codger
Date: 11 Jul 07 - 04:37 PM

It may also help to change draw directions more frequently, so that the box stays in a less bendy state. With my cheap Italian jobber, the bellows extend to Slinky proportions; playing it unsupported is more difficult than with a box having shorter, stiffer bellows.


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Subject: RE: Concertina help please
From: Gurney
Date: 11 Jul 07 - 05:06 PM

My English is easiest for me when I rest it on the knee of my less-dextrous hand. I'm righthanded, so I play with the left reedpan on my left knee.

The comments about the quality of the instrument are perceptive. I once handled a top-of-the-line Lachenal, and was surprised how much easier it was to play than my 'cooking' Lachenal.
I offered a ridiculously large amount to the owner, but he wouldn't part, sensible fellow.


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Subject: RE: Concertina help please
From: Tootler
Date: 11 Jul 07 - 05:42 PM

I started out with a Hohner anglo. When I got trouble with buttons sticking, I decided to get a better one and eventually decided on a Morse. Of the ones I tried the Morse was the lightest and also plays very easily. I tried playing the Hohner again recently and until then I hadn't realised how stiff it was. The mid price, accordion reeded anglos are certainly well worth considering. They have good tone, play well and are well made. They may not sound quite the real thing, but they are much cheaper than the top name ones, such as those listed by Anahata, and, almost as important as price, you don't have to wait years for one. I went into a shop and walked out with a brand new instrument which I am well pleased with. Most people who hear it comment very favourably on the tone.


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