The Sides of a Concertina




          This is what many concertinas look like after a century of use. The leather parts (thumb strap, baffle)
          are torn and/or deteriorated, the  metal parts are covered with a thick layer of dirt and oxidation, the
          wood work is full of nicks,  scratches, the lacquer finish is chipped etc.



          A close up of one of the sides. At first sight it just looks dirty.  If you look closer, you'll notice the
          oxidation on the keys, which has damaged the (black) felt bushing over the years. Worn bushing makes
          the action very noisy. Besides affecting the key movement through the felt bushing, the oxidation can
          also cause the key to get stuck.
          To solve this problem, the keys will have to be (machine) polished and the felt bushings replaced. The
          quality and thickness of the felt is very important.
          Note the deteriorated thumb strap. The inner metal frame is visible. This is not reparable, they (both sides
          of the instrument) will have to be replaced.


          After the bushing, little finger rest, etc. has been removed, the condition of the wood and finish
          becomes  visible.
          The players (long) nails have damaged the wood around the key holes and completely removed
          the finish.
          This side needs to be sanded down, repaired and re-stained before a new finish can be applied.
          The type of finish depends on the quality of the instrument. Top quality instruments, such as Aeolas,
          Edeophones and Amboyna ended concertinas we French polish, which is the classic finish for top
          instruments. Other instruments are lacquered.


          A close up of the woodwork. Years of  use have scratched the finish and wood to a point that 
          just re-finishing won't do anymore.
          The structure of the sides and veneers also need to be checked. Quite often the glues used have
          been affected by moisture and have deteriorated.


          This side is finished. The wood is lacquered, all metal parts; keys (48), little finger rest (2), end bolds
          (12), are polished, new bushing is installed (48) and reamed to the correct tolerance, and new thumb
          straps (2) and leather baffles (2) are fitted.
          Although concertinas are small instruments, there are a lot of different parts that need work. 
          This is the same instrument as the first pictures on top of this page.


          Another example of damaged ends. This is an Amboyna Edeophone with glass keys. Note the 'hole'
          next to the thumbstrap, caused by the thumbnail. The amboyna veneer has been completely 'scraped'


          The same instrument, finished. The 'hole' in the previous photo has been replaced with a new piece of amboyna.
          The sides are French polished, new bushing, thumb straps etc. 

          Click here to see the complete instrument.