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favourite concertina maker

The Sandman 16 Nov 09 - 01:49 PM
MGM·Lion 16 Nov 09 - 01:56 PM
MGM·Lion 16 Nov 09 - 02:15 PM
Steve Gardham 16 Nov 09 - 02:36 PM
Gurney 16 Nov 09 - 03:08 PM
GUEST,OldNicKilby 17 Nov 09 - 04:59 AM
Brian Peters 17 Nov 09 - 05:06 AM
Guran 17 Nov 09 - 05:43 AM
The Sandman 17 Nov 09 - 06:22 AM
Bernard 17 Nov 09 - 06:38 AM
Guran 17 Nov 09 - 07:53 AM
Mr Happy 17 Nov 09 - 07:58 AM
Guran 17 Nov 09 - 09:11 AM
GUEST,chris 17 Nov 09 - 09:13 AM
Bernard 17 Nov 09 - 09:36 AM
Guran 17 Nov 09 - 09:59 AM
Bryn Pugh 17 Nov 09 - 10:15 AM
Howard Jones 17 Nov 09 - 10:27 AM
The Sandman 17 Nov 09 - 11:06 AM
Alan Day 17 Nov 09 - 12:15 PM
Steve Gardham 17 Nov 09 - 02:33 PM
Guran 17 Nov 09 - 02:53 PM
The Sandman 17 Nov 09 - 03:15 PM
Steve Gardham 17 Nov 09 - 05:47 PM
Bernard 17 Nov 09 - 05:58 PM
Tootler 17 Nov 09 - 06:19 PM
MGM·Lion 17 Nov 09 - 11:48 PM
Guran 18 Nov 09 - 01:39 AM
GUEST 18 Nov 09 - 03:29 AM
Guran 18 Nov 09 - 03:34 AM
Alan Day 18 Nov 09 - 04:07 AM
Bryn Pugh 18 Nov 09 - 04:38 AM
The Sandman 18 Nov 09 - 04:54 AM
Brian Peters 18 Nov 09 - 04:55 AM
MGM·Lion 18 Nov 09 - 06:07 AM
Guran 18 Nov 09 - 07:32 AM
Black belt caterpillar wrestler 18 Nov 09 - 08:08 AM
Alan Day 18 Nov 09 - 08:44 AM
The Sandman 18 Nov 09 - 09:34 AM
Guran 18 Nov 09 - 10:29 AM
Alan Day 18 Nov 09 - 11:51 AM
Guran 18 Nov 09 - 02:37 PM
Brian Peters 18 Nov 09 - 02:50 PM
GUEST,guest.guest 18 Nov 09 - 02:54 PM
Old Grizzly 18 Nov 09 - 05:08 PM
The Sandman 18 Nov 09 - 05:42 PM
The Sandman 18 Nov 09 - 05:58 PM
Guran 19 Nov 09 - 03:46 AM
Guran 19 Nov 09 - 03:59 AM
Brian Peters 19 Nov 09 - 04:07 AM
GUEST,Ralphie 19 Nov 09 - 05:39 AM
Bernard 19 Nov 09 - 06:01 AM
Old Grizzly 19 Nov 09 - 07:32 AM
GUEST,OldNicKilby 19 Nov 09 - 07:36 AM
Valmai Goodyear 19 Nov 09 - 07:42 AM
Guran 19 Nov 09 - 08:27 AM
Guran 19 Nov 09 - 08:34 AM
Bernard 19 Nov 09 - 09:20 AM
Bryn Pugh 19 Nov 09 - 10:13 AM
Bernard 19 Nov 09 - 10:37 AM
Bernard 19 Nov 09 - 10:39 AM
GUEST,Ralphie 19 Nov 09 - 12:17 PM
GUEST,Ralphie 19 Nov 09 - 12:36 PM
Guran 19 Nov 09 - 01:02 PM
Joe Offer 19 Nov 09 - 01:38 PM
GUEST,Mars friend 20 Nov 09 - 03:23 PM
Ross Campbell 20 Nov 09 - 08:03 PM
The Sandman 21 Nov 09 - 10:16 AM
English Jon 22 Nov 09 - 09:05 AM
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Subject: favourite concertina maker
From: The Sandman
Date: 16 Nov 09 - 01:49 PM

mine is C Wheatstone.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 16 Nov 09 - 01:56 PM

English or Anglo? & for instrumentals or dancing or song·accompts? I love my Lachenal Anglos [1905 & 1912 in origin, I am told by those who know such things from their #s &c], whose wooden ends soften the tone. I had a Crabb metal-ended, but its tone was too strident for singing to & I sold it.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 16 Nov 09 - 02:15 PM

I had an arrangement with Peter Bellamy btw whereby he would borrow my D/A one [his being C/G] for extended periods to make a record: so it can be heard on his last few cassettes like Songs & Rummy Conjuring Tricks &c.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 16 Nov 09 - 02:36 PM

I know a lot of Anglo players prefer Jeffries but I prefer my Wheatstone. I also like my Lachenal bass and mini though.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Gurney
Date: 16 Nov 09 - 03:08 PM

The best concertina I ever handled was a baritone Lachenal, far better to play than my own Lachenal.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: GUEST,OldNicKilby
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 04:59 AM

Without a doubt for me it is Hamish Bayne and his Holmwood concertinas.
However I would also love one of Dean Onyons S Wave Midis ,very different and they are very accurate ,for some reason you seem to be able to play faster and better, but for the purist they have no reeds.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Brian Peters
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 05:06 AM

Very happy with my 100-year-old Crabb. I've never had my hands on an instrument I like better, with the possible exception of a Dipper. Morses aren't at all bad for a mid-price instrument.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Guran
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 05:43 AM

Soldier Schweik,
You recently said this:
..."music is music,sport is sport,you are hardly comparing like with like...while sport may have a clear winner,music is different,it is not about winning,it is about communicating emotions,something which cannot be judged in the same way as sport".

RE: Are you/we not involved in competitive attitudes after all here?
I don't mind, but frankly - the opinion about a particular instrument on individual basis is depending on so many circumstantial factors that any comparison on such ground becomes rather meaningless.
If you compare very specific quality objects one at a time it may be rational to discuss the findings however.
Furthermore having a kind of vote on the "favourite maker" I find somewhat dubious concerning promotion attitudes


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: The Sandman
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 06:22 AM

no one suggested a vote.
I gave an opinion,and I asked people for others.
no, it is not a competition, and, no there isnt a prize, but, if there was, Guran,I would give it to you,and it would be a piece of Sellotape.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Bernard
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 06:38 AM

;o)


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Guran
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 07:53 AM

Schweik,
Not so well directed I'm afraid...I am not a maker!...and if there were a prize...please tell me *exactly* what you mean by "a piece of Sellotape" since neither my poor english nor my incomplete dictionary provides some understanding...

Concerning "favourite maker" my opinion still is this: IF someone expresses an opinion about any present/living maker that is to be regarded as sales promotion and the value of any positive statement being judged in the light of advertisement for that particular maker who's reputation may not benefit from promotion 'under cover' and who may not even be delighted for getting that kind of support.Some businessmen have different views on these matters and may appreciate any kind of shameless public praise...


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Mr Happy
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 07:58 AM

Sellotape: in Australia, they call it Durex!


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Guran
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 09:11 AM

MrHappy,
Not a bit wiser I'm afraid. Can you be more specific? What is it used for?


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: GUEST,chris
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 09:13 AM

Has to be Joseph Scates

Joseph Scates Concertinas


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Bernard
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 09:36 AM

In the UK, Sellotape is a brand of adhesive tape and Durex is a brand of condom...


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Guran
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 09:59 AM

Thank you Bernard, can you then on behalf of the handyman Schweik please provide a valid interpretation of the soldier's reply on the subject...particularly regarding my possible merits for this reward..?


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Bryn Pugh
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 10:15 AM

In 1972 or 1973 (can't remember which - it's an age thing, I know) I bought a 30 key Jeffries Anglo for £15.00, and a couple of years later sold it for £15.00.

I believe such instruments can fetch between 3 and 4 grand these days.

Heigh ho.

My favourite maker - and I am well aware of the fact that this is primarily a subjective issue, as Guran thinks, above - is therefore Jeffries. The Jeffries key system for the Anglo is the system I became used to.

I bought a Stagi 30 key last year for about £165.00, and it isn't bad. It does, however, follow the Lachenal key system, and is a bit of a bugger to get used to. Still - nil desperandum.

When I win the Lottery I'm going to treat myself to either a Crabb, a Jeffries or a Wheatstone. Did Wheatstone make Anglos ?

My first 'tina was a 20 key Lachenal which I picked up for a fiver.

Funny old world, ain't it ?


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Howard Jones
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 10:27 AM

It's an impossible question. Individual instruments can vary enormously, depending not only who originally made them but how they've been used and maintained since. I've seen good and bad examples from all the main makers. So far as vintage instruments are concerned, a maker's name may be an indication of quality but is not a guarantee

Anyway, according to Geoff Crabb the vintage makers were often subcontracting work to each other, so there's no guarantee that all the parts were made by the maker whose name is on the instrument. In particular, Crabbs supplied Jeffries with a lot of parts and even whole instruments.

When it comes to modern makers, is it fair to compare makers of high-end instruments with those making mid-range hybrids?


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: The Sandman
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 11:06 AM

life isnt fair.
but if someone prefers a Morse to anything else,thats an opinion,some may prefer the sound of accordion reeds.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Alan Day
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 12:15 PM

Wheatstone made lovely Anglo's "Linota's" some of the best Anglo's I have played have been Linota's. I actually own three Jeffries and they are fast and I do not wish to own anything else.Perhaps a base Anglo if I win the lottery.
I would like to try all the currently made Anglo's and compare them.
I have played lovely Crabb, Dipper, Wheatstone, Lachenal,Jeffries of course and as has been suggested they all vary from wonderful to,hard work, or too slow.
I suppose someone would enjoy playing their Chinese model if they had never played anything better.
Al


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 02:33 PM

Do we really need to make an issue out of someone wanting to know who our favourites are? Lighten up!


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Guran
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 02:53 PM

Steve, I agree! What do you say about whipping some of my old hobbyhorses into action( apart from handles :-)...just for a start...
like:

- What IS a Concertina/Konzertina (if we try to describe it?)
We seem to spend/waste an awful lot of energy debating something that nobody so far has found a sucessful definition for...so how can we really know what we are up to?

- What does the *name* Concertina mean and where does it come from?

- Is it really true that Charles Wheatstone "invented and patented" "the "Concertina" ?? ( as is said in lots of encyclopedias)

I can open up one thread at a time to find out if someone likes to join the race, without competition, and with no prizes...


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: The Sandman
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 03:15 PM

Guran, I have avery good friend who is a Taxidermist.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 05:47 PM

How about. A member of the accordeon family that usually has the same system of keys on both ends? I can only think of one German box that goes against this.

Small (self-contained) concert.

Wheatstone. Yes, unless you can come up with an earlier ref than 1829.

Dick, stop baiting!


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Bernard
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 05:58 PM

Why should he? He's a master at it!

(Sorry Dick, couldn't resist that one!!)


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Tootler
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 06:19 PM

I am very happy with my Morse Anglo. I can't really compare it with other anglos apart from the Hohner which I started out with and it is definitely very much better than that. Not to knock the Hohner it did its job and got me started.

A number of people have commented favourably on the tone of the Morse including a friend who has a Wheatsone so it seems it is a pretty good instrument even if it does have accordion reeds.

I suspect the difference in price between the mid priced hybrids and the high end instruments lies mainly in the reeds. Accordion reeds are mass produced so good quality reeds are available at a reasonable price. New concertina reeds are largely hand made so come out much more expensive.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 17 Nov 09 - 11:48 PM

I think many of us started out with a mass-produced Hohner & learned a bit on it — moved easily:   but got dissatisfied with its rather 'buzzy' accordionish tone & looked around for something more characteristically concertina-toned — you all know what I mean. I repeat I am glad I happened on the wooden-ended Lachenal for my own [mainly for accompaniment] purposes — even if some of you won't believe that I like to play melody in the left hand! & I am not even left-handed btw...


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Guran
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 01:39 AM

Like I mentioned before I find it difficult to find some object of this particular discussion except everybody's natural interest to market affections for their own boxes or sales promotion for today's producers.
To tease you a little bit...We may all may love our boxes but what about musicians around - are they as impressed by their qualities?


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: GUEST
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 03:29 AM

It took me a long time to amass my little collection of boxes.. I started with Lachenal English - I've always thought that good Lachenals are among the sweetest sounding instruments around. But now I have Jeffries anglos and Wheatstone English, and I'll stick with them.

And Guran, yes, I have great affection for my own boxes. These days I won't promote any of today's producers more than somewhat, but I do tout good service and repair people. And Dick, not in this discussion, because it totally depends on where you live.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Guran
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 03:34 AM

Adding just one remark related to the title of the thread and as I said I will by principle not comment on makers of today.

My favourite *maker* among the oldies was George Jones - not firstly based on the rather few instruments of his I have had but for the ambitions of the firm while in his hands - as it has been told by Frank Butler ( and some others too). Now, Frank B. may have been slightly biased by family kinship - I can't know - but the instruments I have had after all do support some of the saying, having a mellow and more delicate tone rather than been produced with obvious stress on 'power first and tone second', which is characteristic for many Anglos for instance which today are regarded as "top class" musically while they initially firstly were meant for outdoor screaming only, to be heard among other Morris noises.

Frank Butler said that George Jones was particularly interested in development of the tone. The firm made harmoniums firstly and one ambition was to simulate "organ sound" with the concertinas too.One feature being the use of an extra voluminous compartment underneath the endplate ( between endplate and action board) , another a special type of reeds, and also making special models like the "clarionet" to imitate clarinet tone but I have never come across any Jones "clarionet" - only some made by Wheatstones.They DO not sound like ordinary concertinas at all! - in my view a certain advantage...


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Alan Day
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 04:07 AM

Guran - "Are they as impressed with their qualities"?

I quote the statement about Richard Blagrove one of the most famous early players
"A superb engineer ,with poor tooling"
Al


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Bryn Pugh
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 04:38 AM

Dear Alan,

If that one about Chinese concertinas was aimed at me - I have played better. Please see my earlier posts as to a 20 button Lachenal, and a 30 button Jeffries.

As things stand today, I couldn't (and can't) afford beter than the Stagi which I have at present. It isn't bad - I use it to play for the Morris.

Yes, I wish I still had the Lachenal, and more so the Jeffries, but if wishes were horses, beggars would ride. I wish I hadn't chopped away the small bodied Harmony Sovereign guitar . . .

Regards, B


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: The Sandman
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 04:54 AM

most of the Jones I have come across,have been rather slow,possibly because they have had broad reeds,Neither did I notice that they had a particularly special tone,but thats only talking from my own experience.
Tootler,I think morse are good vakue they have a good action,are easy to play,and do the business.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Brian Peters
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 04:55 AM

I was lucky enough to start out with a wooden-ended Lachenal, and only traded it in because it had just 26-buttons.

MtheGM, we are not at all sceptical of your ability to play left hand melody, just confounded by our own incompetence.

I don't want to come over like the salesman for Morse, but to my mind there's a bit of snobbery in the 'accordion reeds' debate. There is a difference in sound, but it's not as gross as is sometimes made out. If you've got £4000 to spare you'll want the best reeds you can buy but, if you haven't, the mid-range boxes like Morses play like the clappers and don't sound at all bad.

Oh, and Dick, better give that taxidermist a call...


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 06:07 AM

Thanks, Brian — nobody has ever used the concept of competence in connection with my inept [or anyhow not·all·that·ept] Anglo-playing before. It's just that the melody comes naturally to my left hand rather than my right - I have no idea why. I see it is a bit like playing the air on the piano on the bass keys, but that's just the way my fingers fall. I don't play all that much melody anyhow, mainly accompany harmonically — but inter-verse riffs & breaks &c just happen to trip easier off my LH than my RH fingers.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Guran
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 07:32 AM

Schweik:"most of the Jones I have come across,have been rather slow,possibly because they have had broad reeds,Neither did I notice that they had a particularly special tone,but thats only talking from my own experience".

RE:May be so, and maybe that also is a backside from the aim achieving a softer tone, I don't know, but my comment was meant firstly to express appreciation of the mere ambition to develop or improve the *tone* rather than the power of the instrument.
My impression is that the 'Wheatstone-style concertina' ( I mean all models emanating from the Wheatstones in England originally, contrary to the 'Uhlig-style concertina' emanating from Uhlig in Germany) is appreciated primarily in *England* or earlier "The Commonwhealth" and that this may not be primarily for its *tone* but for its cultural settlement.In Germany where there are both single-reeded and double-reeded ( or more) Konzertinas the later are a lot more appreciated and in the whole World accordions come about almost exclusively as 2,3 or 4-reeded. Does this say something about the general esteem for
different squeezebox *tone* character? I beleive so, not least since I find the typical single-reeded concertina-tone *dry* compared to *wet* sound by Musette accordions, Melodeons, and partly Bandoneons.

It definitely is not as easy to play sweetly or to 'brake the heart' of a listener by playing concertina as it is with piano, violin, guitar,trumpet,harp or other more harmonious instruments.I gave that up for good myself after a couple of years with concertinas while it might work with an accordion or harmonium - reeds all the same.

So - if a contemporary concertina maker would qualify at all for being one of my favourites it would likely be someone daring to produce one with 2-3 reed sets, either 2, with one an octave lower like Bandoneon, or 3 with an additional reed set duplicating the higher, but in "wet" tuning.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Black belt caterpillar wrestler
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 08:08 AM

I'm refering to Anglos here.
I don't see Norman concertinas mentioned yet. I tried one out at a festival earlier this year and found that it played much better than I expected, particularly for the asking price. if I were looking to buy at the moment I would be chasing more info on these.
Lachenals can be variable in quality, the best of the top models rivaling the best Wheatstones.
Wheatstones have a couple of periods when they were not consistent in quality.
I don't seem to get on with Jeffries concertinas, they don't sound right when I sing with them!
I used to have a Jones for a while and I agree with Dick that the response was slow.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Alan Day
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 08:44 AM

Hallo B
My remark regarding the Chinese Concertina wasn't aimed at you, or anybody in particular.
Al


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: The Sandman
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 09:34 AM

Jones:they dont like it up em.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Guran
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 10:29 AM

Like I said - lots of highly subjective opinions mostly based on one (or two) instruments from a certain (modern) maker compared with what can be enormously different initial quality products from old makers, and furthermore those instruments having been objects for various degrees of historic maltreatment,repitching and retuning by more or less dubious owners and craftsmen...what do you expect??...and what do you get out of it?? One special detail - are you aware that many of the old instruments that today are classified just by "Name so and so" initially may have covered price differences of 10 times !! Just have a look at Wheatstone pricelists from later part of 19th century.
What quality differences would you expect today between some product that costs £500 new and one that costs £5000? The market values today concerning old products however may have a span of 2 times for those initally differing by the said 10 times!


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Alan Day
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 11:51 AM

I will clarify my earlier posting. I started off with a G/D Hohner 20 large white button Anglo. I purchased it to see if I liked playing the instrument £10 and for nearly two years it was exactly what I wanted. It played in tune with the other instruments . It was perfect for Morris Music playing ,after being thrown into the deep end when no musician turned up to play for the dancers, I had to play solo. Brian Blanchard was then a member of Broadwood and he had a Jeffries and after playing his a couple of times that was my ultimate aim. My second concertina was a thirty button Jones in nice condition, but a bit out of tune. On approaching Crabb Concertinas to get an estimate of its tuning I was offered the Jeffries in part exchange (plus £125 )and that is how I acquired my CG.
So for a time The Hohner was my favourite instrument based completely on cost and my learning curve (which still continues).
Al


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Guran
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 02:37 PM

I insist that it is 100% meaningless comparing characteristics or qualities between individual instruments by individual judgement at a distance and when dealing with various ages of technical devices.
What apple is your favourite? What bike? What car? So what - why? We certainly have lots of individual opinions about instruments of 'ours' and 'others' but where can that bring us? It is well known among musicians using whatever instruments that for often completely unexplainable reasons even massproduced instruments from the same "batch" of production may come out with differently perceived "sound" or "response" - not to speak of "soul" - then one really gets lost...
It seems to be forgotten many times that concertinas like any other squeezeboxes are mechanical gadgets, subjects to wear and tear and ageing and continual need for reconditioning and *change* over time.
Or do they *mature* and get better with time as fiddlers may believe their fiddles do...


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Brian Peters
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 02:50 PM

"I insist that it is 100% meaningless comparing characteristics or qualities between individual instruments"

Nonsense. It's useful advice to people who are buying for the first time, or wishing to upgrade, to have opinions from experienced players who have tried various instruments. If the thread is so pointless, why waste your time posting to it?


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: GUEST,guest.guest
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 02:54 PM

Wheatstones for maccann duets.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Old Grizzly
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 05:08 PM

What the hell does it matter who made a concertina.

No such thing as a favourite. I have several very good boxes and they are all very different characters. I play all of them regularly according to my mood and the type of music I wish to play at the time.

Don't go blindly for some famed makers name.
If you are buying a box, try as many as you can, shut your eyes, open your ears and let it speak to you. If it plays and feels right for you, then it is right.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: The Sandman
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 05:42 PM

Guran,if you dont like the thread,do not post.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: The Sandman
Date: 18 Nov 09 - 05:58 PM

ok,so metal ended concertinas sound different from wooden ended,
brass reeded concertinas sound different from steel reeded,
different mutes can alter the tone of the concertina.
but also different quality steel,can give a different sound to the reeds.[please correct me if I am misinformed].
different action[hook lever or rivet]can affect action response , plus lightness of springs , but also the skill/knowledge of the concertina maker/repairer in getting the concertina to respond in a certain way,is vitally important.
however [imo]certain things are very difficult to improve,for example Jones that have broad reeds,are going to require more air,to push the reed to make it sound,
ok, these broad reeds last for a long time, but they are not going to be very useful when the player wants to play quick reels.[or is it some other fault that makes broad reeded Jones slow]


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Guran
Date: 19 Nov 09 - 03:46 AM

Schweik:"Guran,if you dont like the thread,do not post".
RE:I guess you didn't start a thread for it to be "liked" but to initiate some exchange of views on a subject.The title however may invite to sales promotion 'in disguise' as I said before and this risks making comments questionable ( if positive) as being possible advertisement for a particular maker - or in reverse (if negative) as mistreatment of business etiquette.I know this may seem unavoidable in the 'free world of internet' but it may still be worth considering.
It is different when speaking of makers out of business but my objection there was that we all have so little 'reference material' that individual opinions may risk distributing rumour more than fact.

Schweik:"but also different quality steel,can give a different sound to the reeds.[please correct me if I am misinformed]".
RE:According to reports I have got there has been very little difference in delivered "reed steel qualities" at least for a 100years but certainly some differences occur.That is for *steel*. There have been brass and some iron alloys been used for reed making causing more difference in reed physics.There *has* however been quite a lot of marketing gimmicks related to "reed steel" from several makers in history - all of them claiming having "the hardest steel". The most important factor causing practical differences in "reed qualities" IS the processing.

Schweik:"different action[hook lever or rivet]can affect action response "
RE: Depends what you mean by "response".There is no reason to believe that there is any significant difference regarding sound "response" related to the type of action, conditionally that the whole mechanism is in good shape of course.Wear or damage of the parts will act differently though depending on the construction.

Schweik:" plus lightness of springs"
RE:Worth to consider. Some players seem to believe that lighter springs may make 'fingering' faster and that may be true of course for the *fingering* itself but on the contrary regarding sound "response".

Schweik:" but also the skill/knowledge of the concertina maker/repairer in getting the concertina to respond in a certain way,is vitally important".
RE:Agree, it IS the quality of reeds, the setting of the reeds and the adequate functioning of valves that do most.

Schweik:"however [imo]certain things are very difficult to improve,for example Jones that have broad reeds,are going to require more air,to push the reed to make it sound"
RE:Hardly correct.The width of the reed has no effect on onset time and 'air resistance' ought to be unimportant too.The width itself has no importance for pitch either so my guess is that the choice of broader measures was related to some choosen processing feature meant to contribute to "softer tone" - IF that is a true effect related to the Jones reeds...It may seem so, but I don't say I am sure about it.

Schweik:"ok, these broad reeds last for a long time, but they are not going to be very useful when the player wants to play quick reels.[or is it some other fault that makes broad reeded Jones slow]"
RE:I wonder If that saying "last a long time" has any factual bearing.It was also advertised that they stayed better in tune.It would be interesting to know if that had any substance. I also wonder about the relevance of the saying that they are generally slow(er) but I suspect that might be true. IF it IS true we have to consider some other things. a)Just as you remark Dick, it is when *wanting to play fast* this is a negative factor.IF *wanting to play soft with a nice tone* the onset speed ( or max power) may be completely irrelevant. b)This possible slowness is expected to be perceived when playing Anglos at high speed for instance and to my knowledge the most common or known Jones Anglos, like comparable Lachenals, did not belong to the "top of the line" models generally speaking? Good comparable knowledge and experience from Jones Englishes on the other hand (and belonging to the "top of the line") I believe is rare.A risk for not so well founded rumours again...


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Guran
Date: 19 Nov 09 - 03:59 AM

Brian Peters: (misquoting Guran:"I insist that it is 100% meaningless comparing characteristics or qualities between individual instruments")
BP:"Nonsense".

RE:Anything can become "nonsense" when being (intentionally?) misread.
I did also say:
"... by individual judgement at a distance and when dealing with various ages of technical devices".

IF "individual instruments" might be compared in a meaningful way at all it better be *specific instruments* and judged at the same time at the same place by several investigators and according to some plan for judgement settled beforehand.Otherwise not particularly valuable.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Brian Peters
Date: 19 Nov 09 - 04:07 AM

So it is "100% meaningless" (a phrase in itself nonsensical) to say that "a Dipper is a superior instrument to a Stagi", unless several investigators have compared a specific Dipper with a specific Stagi?

Not wasting any more time with this idiocy. Shame to see a light-hearted and potentially useful thread ruined.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: GUEST,Ralphie
Date: 19 Nov 09 - 05:39 AM

I'm with Brian on this one.
In the golden age of tina making. The craftsmen and women who made the reeds, reed pans, bellows, etc went to whichever company would employ them. Simple economics really. So, comparisons just don't work. I play a Wheatstone, because it's what I've got.
Have I any idea who actually built the various parts? Nope. But the people who made the component parts could well have been applying their skills to Lachenal, Jeffries or whoever the following week.
A craftsman is just that. If the money was available they would take the best offer. (Why wouldn't they?)

Obviously nowadays the likes of Colin Dipper and Steve Dickinson (Wheatstone) are making "bespoke" instruments as a cottage industry, to the requirements of their clients.

So Like Brian. I'm out of this convoluted thread that essentially has little point to it.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Bernard
Date: 19 Nov 09 - 06:01 AM

Hope you're happy, now, Guran?


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Old Grizzly
Date: 19 Nov 09 - 07:32 AM

Perhaps Goran would like to remind us why he was IP banned from concertina.net ??

No point banging your head against a brick wall ...I'm out............


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: GUEST,OldNicKilby
Date: 19 Nov 09 - 07:36 AM

Perhaps it might be useful to take a lead from C.Net and bar this person from Mudcat for such awful diatribes.
I thought that this was a really interesting thread until it was tied into knots


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Valmai Goodyear
Date: 19 Nov 09 - 07:42 AM

Goran was also excluded from the International Concertina Association email list for quite some time; I don't know whether he's been re-admitted.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Guran
Date: 19 Nov 09 - 08:27 AM

Brian Peters:"So it is "100% meaningless" (a phrase in itself nonsensical) to say that "a Dipper is a superior instrument to a Stagi", unless several investigators have compared a specific Dipper with a specific Stagi?"

RE: In principle yes, apart from the selfevident expectation that a product that costs 10times as much as another is assumed having some quality superiority too - but as is well known from *other* fields this is not always true. Again a matter of *what* is compared and evaluated and the complex issue "value for money" may be added.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Guran
Date: 19 Nov 09 - 08:34 AM

Ralphie:"In the golden age of tina making. The craftsmen and women who made the reeds, reed pans, bellows, etc went to whichever company would employ them. Simple economics really. So, comparisons just don't work. I play a Wheatstone, because it's what I've got.
Have I any idea who actually built the various parts? Nope. But the people who made the component parts could well have been applying their skills to Lachenal, Jeffries or whoever the following week".

RE:Some of the manufacture work likely was done at home by workers. I have only seen that tuning jobs were regularly 'home based'. But is there any historic documentation concerning such weekly turnover among craftsmen that you describe?


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Bernard
Date: 19 Nov 09 - 09:20 AM

Flagellating a deceased equine quadruped...


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Bryn Pugh
Date: 19 Nov 09 - 10:13 AM

Farting against thunder.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Bernard
Date: 19 Nov 09 - 10:37 AM

Some people find the action on my wooden ended Lachenal 30 key Anglo (circa 1890) a little too stiff for their liking, but I've been playing it for around forty years and am used to it.

I tried a Crabb once (belonging to 'Catter Noreen - I was repairing it for her), and found that the action was very light indeed. However, I think that for Morris outdoors it may be just a little too light, as I tend to put my fingers on keys I'm about to play... so I prefer one that fights back a little!


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Bernard
Date: 19 Nov 09 - 10:39 AM

As a friend of mine used to say... 'Please read this and make sure you are completely faux pas with it'!


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: GUEST,Ralphie
Date: 19 Nov 09 - 12:17 PM

To Guran....
Who cares? Not me. I play 2 lovely Wheatstone MaCanns. I don't actually care who made the various bits that make them up. They sound perfectly fine to me.
And, NO. I'm not the slightest bit interested in moving the straps around.
Why does the word Pedant spring to mind at this point?
And to answer your pointless question. Tommy Williams worked for anyone who would pay him.
As did many others. So, Kindly define a Wheatstone, Lachenal, etc, and name all the craftsmen involved in their manufacture...Go on...


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: GUEST,Ralphie
Date: 19 Nov 09 - 12:36 PM

Have just re read through this whole sorry thread.
Apparently this "Guran" bloke is known for trolling. Why did I get sucked into this B*****cks.
Hangs head in shame, and shuffles off left field....
(I promise never to rise to Troll bait again.......until the next time obviously!)


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Guran
Date: 19 Nov 09 - 01:02 PM

Ralphie: "To Guran....And to answer your pointless question. Tommy Williams worked for anyone who would pay him.As did many others".

RE:Did Tommy Williams say that to you personally? According to Neil Wayne's interview with him he never worked for anyone else than Lachenals as long as being an employee.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Joe Offer
Date: 19 Nov 09 - 01:38 PM

Gee, who'da thunk a concertina thread would turn into a brawl? We generally have a policy of not banning people, although we do ban combat. That means you have to learn non-combative ways of dealing with such people. If nobody had responded combatively to this person you deem a troll, we wouldn't have combat in this thread. We don't allow personal attacks against anyone, even though they may be unwashed and unholy and troll-like. So,

Cut it out!!!

Get back to talking about concertinas and drop the personal attacks - and stop calling people trolls, willya?.
-Joe Offer, forum moderator-


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: GUEST,Mars friend
Date: 20 Nov 09 - 03:23 PM

Ralphie, Guran is not troll. Strong opinions. Tenacious like bulldog. But sincere. Never troll.

Soldier Schweik pats self on back with name. Provokes. I observate, not attack, will not say more.

"Favourite concertina maker"? I have met personally only seven, email with others, all very nice people, all favourite.

Maker of favourite concertinas? Different question, but what most are answering. Or even favourite make and model of concertina? To me still not one only. In my hands happy with many, but some not so happy. Not-happy ones mostly good names, but poor condition.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: Ross Campbell
Date: 20 Nov 09 - 08:03 PM

"Favourite concertina maker" - I'm not sure if I've met seven, I can think of Steve Dickinson, Colin & Rosie Dipper, and Marcus in the UK, and another three in Australia - all, as Mars friend says, very nice people, who have put a lot of time and effort into learning about the instrument and acquiring skills that would formerly have been performed by several specialist crafts-people. Apart from re-tunes and repairs, and the occasional kit of spares,I haven't been able to patronise any of them, so I guess none of them would qualify as "favourite concertina makers" - but "favourite people" - very much so.

"Maker of favourite concertinas" - difficult question.

Even thirty-five and some years ago when I first started looking for an instrument to play, and you didn't need a second mortgage to get going (and I didn't even have a first mortgage anyway!) it was more or less chance that put a playable instrument into your hands. Haunting Portobello Road eventually turned up a Bb/F Jefferies anglo (I think I must have figured out from borrowing/trying friends' instruments that I didn't get along with the English system. Anything more exotic just wasn't around). As I wasn't even considering the possibility of playing with anybody else at that point, the key wasn't a problem, at least it worked for song accompaniment. It is still an uncomfortable instrument to play (a sharp corner rests unavoidably under the heel of my hand), but sounds and plays really sweet after fine-tuning and re-fettling by Marcus about ten years ago. All the three UK experts who have seen it reckon it was made by Jones.

By the time I felt the need for more range, Keith Higham had offered me a Crabb C/G anglo which soon became my main instrument for both tunes and song accompaniment.

A couple of years after that some friends put me in touch with a Salvation Army Lachenal in G/D. Despite being a lot stiffer sprung than the other instruments, and heavier because of the longer reeds, it is the same physical size as the higher-pitched boxes, and has become the first instrument I reach for, with a rich, mellow tone that works well with voice, and still fast enough for most sessions without producing nerve, muscle and joint pains (as long as I don't try to play three hours at a stretch!)

Instruments that might have become favourites - I came across a modern (Dickinson) Wheatstone anglo in C/G that was very light and responsive, lovely tone - however it was in competition with one of Roger Bucknall's citterns that year (he won) and I never saw one again. Many years before that I found an anglo in A/E (can't remember the make) that was the equal of the Dickinson Wheatstone for playability and sweetness of tone. Regretted letting it pass ever since, never saw another like it - if anybody's got an A/E going spare, let me know! (There are still a few keys where the fingering doesn't come easily on the other instruments).

Ross


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: The Sandman
Date: 21 Nov 09 - 10:16 AM

I can only speak from my own experience,the only Jones that Ihave seen that was not slow did not have broad reeds,perhaps a coincidence or perhaps not.


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Subject: RE: favourite concertina maker
From: English Jon
Date: 22 Nov 09 - 09:05 AM

If it helps, I once got to play a Dipper 10 sided Tenor English 48, that was the best instrument (not just best concertina, best INSTRUMENT) I have ever played. Apparently there are two of these in the world.

Cheers,
Jon


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