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Pricing grandad's button box

CupOfTea 10 Aug 15 - 08:04 PM
EBarnacle 10 Aug 15 - 09:33 PM
PHJim 10 Aug 15 - 10:39 PM
PHJim 10 Aug 15 - 10:41 PM
michaelr 11 Aug 15 - 02:10 AM
GUEST,Reynard 11 Aug 15 - 07:19 AM
GUEST,Peter Laban 11 Aug 15 - 07:49 AM
CupOfTea 11 Aug 15 - 04:04 PM
GUEST,banksie 12 Aug 15 - 07:52 AM
Dave the Gnome 13 Aug 15 - 06:49 AM
CupOfTea 13 Aug 15 - 12:58 PM
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Subject: Pricing grandad's button box
From: CupOfTea
Date: 10 Aug 15 - 08:04 PM

Not mine, mind you, but this belongs to a friend whose family was in the Toronto Canada region, and it's been tucked away carefully for decades without being played. She wants to know what it's worth, and is considering selling it.

I've only had a brief look at it, and didn't count the buttons. It's a Hoener, wood construction with what looks like faux wood grain painting, mother of pearl looking buttons, and possibly some decorative paper on the bellows. She didn't want to open the bellows for fear that it might damage it. The leather straps are in worn condition and look fragile.

Extensive googling hasn't produced any images of something similar. I've yet to find out if the Accordion museum here in Cleveland is still open - it was a hobby in someone's basement, but this is a polka piano-accordion town, or ultra-fancy Slovenian jobbies that run over $2,000.

I don't know enough of the fine points to know if it should be called a melodeon or not, but that's more the shape it seems to have. I've been asked to find out what I can, as I'm the only squeezebox player she knows (anglo concertina) but the only suggestion I can give her is to send a picture to the Button Box and see what they say. I'll have another gander at it and see if it sounds playable. I know they're not likely to give an appraisal without seeing it first hand.

Does anyone know any source of information where I might be able to steer her online to get a reasonable guess as to it's value? I think I've looked at every picture of one for sale on ebay in the last decade, and not come close.

Joanne in Cleveland (Where folks polkaed long before they rocked)


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Subject: RE: Pricing grandad's button box
From: EBarnacle
Date: 10 Aug 15 - 09:33 PM

Actually, I would say to send the instrument to the Button Box so that they can give it a full evaluation, including what may be required to make it playable vs. what it would be worth as is or restored. Contact them first so you and they have an idea of what to expect. They may even tell you up front not to bother.


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Subject: RE: Pricing grandad's button box
From: PHJim
Date: 10 Aug 15 - 10:39 PM

If she's in Toronto, Musical Instruments Of Canada is the go to place for free reed instruments. It's on Eglinton West.


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Subject: RE: Pricing grandad's button box
From: PHJim
Date: 10 Aug 15 - 10:41 PM

Musical Instruments Of Canada


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Subject: RE: Pricing grandad's button box
From: michaelr
Date: 11 Aug 15 - 02:10 AM

A picture is worth etc, etc. Please take one, and put it somewhere the experts you need can see it.


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Subject: RE: Pricing grandad's button box
From: GUEST,Reynard
Date: 11 Aug 15 - 07:19 AM

You could try posting on
Melodeon.net

People can be reluctant to give valuations- it's hard without examining an instrument- but will definitely help you confirm the model. A picture will help enormously.

If you can find any relevant ones, you could look at completed sales on eBay to get a general view of what these instruments sell for.

As a general guide, vintage Hohners can be quite desirable, but these were always mass produced instruments, so there is usually little rarity value like you get with some old concertinas. Its value will vary greatly depending on how much work is needed to make it playable.


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Subject: RE: Pricing grandad's button box
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 11 Aug 15 - 07:49 AM

Is it anything like this one ?


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Subject: RE: Pricing grandad's button box
From: CupOfTea
Date: 11 Aug 15 - 04:04 PM

The button box came from Canada, but it's around the corner from me in Cleveland right now. I'll try to get a picture & better look at it.

It is about the same sort as what Peter shows, but more elegant, and in much better shape. The wood is not beat up at all, and the buttons are just buttons, not levers, I think the grill was inset, possibly metal, and the 4 hasps that are like trunk closures on Peter's illustration are much less sturdier looking on this one - more like flat hooks, screwed down.

I've gotten so curious that I might lust after this for myself, were I not committed to concertina, and desirous of something finer than my Stagi.

Thanks for your comments

Joanne, squeezing away in Cleveland


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Subject: RE: Pricing grandad's button box
From: GUEST,banksie
Date: 12 Aug 15 - 07:52 AM

Sounds like a Hohner Pokerwork, so I doubt it will be worth too much as a collector's item. They are pretty tough, however, so probably plays OK. The main question is whether it is made in Germany or not. Like all mass produced items, they ended up being made (or at least assembled) in cheaper labour countries. But that didn't start till the late 80s, I think, so probably OK on that front as well. The key or keys (if 2-row) it plays in can also affect the level of interest. D/G are common for Morris and barn dance/ceilidh band use, while C/F is usually better for singing, and could therefore attract more interest if the tone is good.


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Subject: RE: Pricing grandad's button box
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 13 Aug 15 - 06:49 AM

If it is an Anglo concertina that you are committed to then it is worth noting that you play a melodeon in a very similar way. The two could well compliment each other and satisfy your lust :-)


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Subject: RE: Pricing grandad's button box
From: CupOfTea
Date: 13 Aug 15 - 12:58 PM

Thanks everso Dave - what I want is a really NICE anglo, which I can't afford, not to adopt another instrument that likely needs work! I'm still waiting to see if she'll let me take some photos and mess around with it to see if I can figure out what keys it's in.

J


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