Don’t Marry Her!

OK, some people have asked for it! No I don’t mean Joy,  my wife, she is really supportive, and even claims that she can recognise some of the tunes I try to play, so here is my first video which I have dared to share! Apologies for the fumbled notes and if you listen really…

A Major Keyboard Project

My latest and scariest job so far on my instrument was to resolve the problem of the Sticky Keys. Back in November I freed off two of the keys with a little tapping and twisting of the spindle, however I couldn’t slide it out. The problem has periodically returned and eventually I decided that spindle…

Another Road Trip for Pietro

Remember the missing D reed and the out-of-tune A reed? Well both of those were remedied yesterday at Jolly Roger Accordions near Andover in Hampshire. Roger Thomas is a very affable chap who not only agreed to do the repair while I waited, but allowed me to watch the whole process which was very interesting….

Bring on the Bling

After repairing the leaks and replacing the corners I had a more playable instrument but with a scruffy looking set of bellows. I considered painting the remaining rusty corners with model enamel but then hit on the idea of nail varnish, quick drying and and easy to apply. So it was a trip to Superdrug…

Open The Box

The bellows pins now being freed off I plucked up courage to separate the bellows from the rest of the instrument to see what it was like inside. Well, see for yourself… Doesn’t look too bad? Nice and clean, isn’t it. The leather ‘valves’ are a bit curled which isn’t helpful in making a good…

First Aid

After  John and Jaye at Vintage Strings and Accordions had pointed out the problems with the bellows, I thought that I had better try to find the source of the leakage. I achieved this by putting my cheek next to the bellows as I gently squeezed them shut and the area it was leaking from…

Pietro takes a trip to Gloucestershire

A day out yesterday combined several purposes: We needed to deliver our granddaughter’s birthday present to Gloucester. We wanted to go to the cinema to see ‘A Street Cat Named Bob’ (Excellent!) To visit Vintage Strings and Accordions in Cheltenham  Vintage Strings and Accordions is run by John and Jaye Vickers who are lovely people…

Repairing the Corners

Disclaimer! Let me start by saying I do NOT recommend that you use these techniques on a valuable instrument, leave it to the professionals.

Strap yourself in

After I had had a few attempts at playing the accordion it gave notice that it wasn’t used to this sort of treatment by a novice and promptly one of the adjustment straps broke.

Sticky Keys

Two of the keys had a tendency to stick down and research on the internet suggested that the spindle on which they pivot would need removing in order to release to offending keys. The illustration on the ‘net showed a cover plate would need to be removed to gain access, the problem was I didn’t…

Sourcing the Parts

The next job to tackle was the rusty bellows corners, and the internet came up trumps with CGM Musical Services who supplied me with a dozen corners which arrived all the way  from Scotland amazingly quickly. They would need need a little modification to match the shape of the originals.  

First Fix

After a short time of playing however one of the treble notes continued to sound after I had let go of the key. I tentatively removed the four tiny screws securing the grill and found that one of the pallets (felt covered wooden pads) had fallen off. It seemed that this was not for the…