I finally got a Tiger! (and I have questions)
#1
Question 
I lucked into an absolute bargain on a Tiger accordion this week and just had to give in to Accordion Acquisition Syndrome and buy it!

[Image: 2019-05-25-12.01.16-1024x768.jpg]

I posted about it on my blog if you want to see some more pictures, and I played a bit of it on Instagram if you want to hear it.

Anyway, the instrument brings a few mysteries with it. Perhaps some of the fine folks of this forum may have answers?
  • The plastic left-hand palm rest has some damage on it. The sort of melty/bubbly/scarring consistent with heat or flame, right under the hand strap. Is this common on Tigers? Is it some weird thing that just happens to them when played for years by sweaty-palmed musicians? Or did a previous owner do it on purpose, maybe? (To get a less-slippery surface? Is that a thing?)
  • The badge on it is not the usual "Titano" or "Pancordion" but rather "United". That's a new one to me! Anyone know anything about United and why they would've been selling re-branded Tigers? Were they a manufacturer or maybe a store or school?
  • The whole instrument is sharp by a noticeable amount. I know that some older accordions were tuned to A > 440 on purpose, but I'm surprised that an accordion specifically designed to play in a rock combo would be. Is it just age that's thrown off the tuning, or did they really come tuned like that?
Thanks,

 - Jeff
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#2
that looks very nice

so what was the idea behind havng the keyboard like that?
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#3
Beauty, Jeff. Be happy I didn’t find it before you! Here’s mine:

   

My wife found it at Smythe’s in Oakland. It was new/old stock, never sold until she bought it and gave it to me. I’ve put a few dents in it, but that marred finish you point out hasn’t happened.
Yeah, mine is also tuned to 444. That may be part of why it didn’t catch on, but I still love it.
I actually played it with a few bands, but they never mentioned the tuning. I don’t have perfect pitch, but discovered how sharp it is when I tried to record it with piano.
Congratulations! The quint tuning is so cool.
A few questions for you:
Did it have the zebra stripe case?
Does it have a Bellows pad? Mine doesn’t, and I’m trying to find one to fit.
Bugari “Blue 72”, Tiger Combo ‘Cordeon, Iorio Concert Accorgan G Series (electronics removed)
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#4
They sound surprisingly good, and that was an awesome find! I've seen them before a couple of times in real life, but never heard one and the way one looks when playing it... it looks awkward, but after seeing it being played, looks quite comfortable. Too bad they weren't more popular than they were. Smile

Great find Jeff!
___________________________________________________________

My musical memoires blog/website: http://www.AccordionMemories.com
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#5
(28-05-2019, 08:48 AM)jozz Wrote: that looks very nice

so what was the idea behind having the keyboard like that?

According to interviews with one of the designers, and the ad copy at the time, the keyboard was supposed to "show off the accordionist's flying fingers".

That might've been part of it. But really though, I suspect they did the angled keyboard simply because it looked cool. Cool 

And the flipped-colors? My guess is they took a look at the Vox Continental electric organ (which would've been very popular in rock combos at that time and was all over the radio in the mid-'60s) and thought "oooh... let's do that!"

(28-05-2019, 11:11 AM)Eddy Yates Wrote: Congratulations! The quint tuning is so cool.
A few questions for you:
Did it have the zebra stripe case?
Does it have a Bellows pad? Mine doesn’t, and I’m trying to find one to fit.

Nice "Sand" colored Tiger, Eddy! That particular color seems like it was really susceptible to fading (judging by photos I've seen on eBay), so you're lucky to get one that's been pampered.

Nice to know mine isn't the only one tuned sharp.

Alas, it came with a regular case (probably one from another, older accordion, judging by the rust on the clasps).

No back pad either. Yeah, it could probably could use one. Maybe one designed for a 96 or 72-bass would work?
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#6
    Found this in Wisconsin for $3000! Yikes!

Another question: does anyone know what that little metal hood- like thing is above the strap bracket?
Bugari “Blue 72”, Tiger Combo ‘Cordeon, Iorio Concert Accorgan G Series (electronics removed)
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#7
(28-05-2019, 08:25 PM)Eddy Yates Wrote: Found this in Wisconsin for $3000! Yikes!

Another question: does anyone know what that little metal hood- like thing is above the strap bracket?

Eddy, that's the cover for the rod that holds all the right hand keys in place.  Smile
___________________________________________________________

My musical memoires blog/website: http://www.AccordionMemories.com
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#8
I would love to have those flipped colors on my white Unisella
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#9
    jozz: “I would love to have those flipped colors on my white Unisella.”

That leads to another ignorant question: Some makers still offer the flipped colors on their keyboards.
Like this Ottavienelli. Are there just a few companies who make keys for all the accordions? Or do accordion makers specify their particular key sizes? Okay....there are a few questions there.
One reason I’m asking, other than for Jozz, is that my Bugari has some chipped and cracked keys, and I wonder if it’s possible to replace them.

(29-05-2019, 12:03 AM)JerryPH Wrote:
(28-05-2019, 08:25 PM)Eddy Yates Wrote: Found this in Wisconsin for $3000! Yikes!

Another question: does anyone know what that little metal hood- like thing is above the strap bracket?

Eddy, that's the cover for the rod that holds all the right hand keys in place.  Smile
Thanks, JerryPH!
Bugari “Blue 72”, Tiger Combo ‘Cordeon, Iorio Concert Accorgan G Series (electronics removed)
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#10
(28-05-2019, 08:25 PM)Eddy Yates Wrote: $3000!

[Image: spittake.jpg]
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#11
My Tiger is also "United" rather than "Titano."  It's royal blue, red bellows, the more compact 36/72.   It's just good ole' mid-century re-badging, same accordion.  That wasn't the only Tiger re-badge, I believe.  

I do have 2 Titanos, the Titano Titan LM in a really compact 30/50, one in black, one in white pearl.  I adore them.  Like bandoneons.  The 50-bass is fab, a 10X5 configuration that gives you your diminished chords with 2 more tonic rows than a 48, so you get the Ab row and the B row.
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#12
I'd never heard that about the sharp tuning. That would be another barrier for a lot of uses now. The accordion world just never quite had the chance/inclination to figure out what would work with rock/pop bands. I always think of Leo Fender and his squads of young players taking his guitars and amps out every weekend to play surf music, and then coming back to tell him what they liked/didn't. The electric instruments were developing like crazy with that. 

Maybe accordions were growing like that in the 1920s-1950s? Lots of innovation then. But when amplification came along, the industry never quite figured out a winning response.
Bruce Triggs
Accordion Noir Radio
Vancouver, BC, Canada

author of:

Accordion Revolution: a People's History of the Accordion in North America from the Industrial Revolution to Rock and Roll (2019)
AccordionRevolution.com
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#13
This actually makes total sense to me. I just spent some time on a traditionally angled CBA this weekend and was struck by how tiring it was to have to hold my elbow so far out in order to maintain a proper wrist angle. This looks brilliant.
It’s one of the reasons I’m about to take delivery of a Geuns Hybrid.
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#14
I've always liked the flipped colors - both on treble and bass. My Cordovox had white bass buttons on a black background and I liked that so much I had it done on my custom Excelsior.

I've always been intrigued by this Petosa - all black keys on the treble side:

https://www.petosa.com/portfolio-items/p...1100-jazz/

But I wonder if it would make playing difficult? I tend to play almost exclusively without looking at the treble hand now and with 40 years of muscle memory I don't think it would make much of a difference.
Current Accordions:

2003 Excelsior 960 Custom Magnante 5/5 - Hand Made Reeds
Excelsior 930 Van Damme Jazz Accordion - Hand Made Reeds
Roland FR-8X Digital Accordion - No Reeds
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#15
(28-05-2019, 11:11 AM)Eddy Yates Wrote: Beauty, Jeff. Be happy I didn’t find it before you! Here’s mine:



My wife found it at Smythe’s in Oakland. It was new/old stock, never sold until she bought it and gave it to me. I’ve put a few dents in it, but that marred finish you point out hasn’t happened.
Yeah, mine is also tuned to 444. That may be part of why it didn’t catch on, but I still love it.
I actually played it with a few bands, but they never mentioned the tuning. I don’t have perfect pitch, but discovered how sharp it is when I tried to record it with piano.
Congratulations! The quint tuning is so cool.
A few questions for you:
Did it have the zebra stripe case?
Does it have a Bellows pad? Mine doesn’t, and I’m trying to find one to fit.

A regular soft back pad should fit fine. That was one of the instruments I got from Menni-Ketti music. Man that was a long time ago.

(29-05-2019, 02:26 PM)Eddy Yates Wrote: jozz: “I would love to have those flipped colors on my white Unisella.”

That leads to another ignorant question: Some makers still offer the flipped colors on their keyboards.
Like this Ottavienelli. Are there just a few companies who make keys for all the accordions? Or do accordion makers specify their particular key sizes? Okay....there are a few questions there.
One reason I’m asking, other than for Jozz, is that my Bugari has some chipped and cracked keys, and I wonder if it’s possible to replace them.

(29-05-2019, 12:03 AM)JerryPH Wrote:
(28-05-2019, 08:25 PM)Eddy Yates Wrote: Found this in Wisconsin for $3000! Yikes!

Another question: does anyone know what that little metal hood- like thing is above the strap bracket?

Eddy, that's the cover for the rod that holds all the right hand keys in place.  Smile
Thanks, JerryPH!

I can still get Weltmeisters made with different colored keys. Years ago I had a all black accordion made with the white keys made with a dark smoke swirled black/grey and all the black keys and bass buttons done in red sparkle with the bellows folds done in red with black bellows tape.
Smythe's Accordion Center, since 1997
Oakland ,California
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#16
Kimric said: “That was one of the instruments I got from Menni-Ketti music. Man that was a long time ago.”
Yessir, it was. I didn’t have time to get it over to you for a tuneup when I was in The Town last month. I still love playing this beast. Found a guy in Billings, MT, 4 hours away, who still works on accordions and will see how that goes. From all accounts, he’s the only accordion technician in a 4 state area.
Bugari “Blue 72”, Tiger Combo ‘Cordeon, Iorio Concert Accorgan G Series (electronics removed)
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#17
(06-06-2019, 05:58 PM)Eddy Yates Wrote: Kimric said: “That was one of the instruments I got from Menni-Ketti music. Man that was a long time ago.”
Yessir, it was. I didn’t have time to get it over to you for a tuneup when I was in The Town last month. I still love playing this beast. Found a guy in Billings, MT, 4 hours away, who still works on accordions and will see how that goes. From all accounts, he’s the only accordion technician in a 4 state area.

The quint reeds are interesting since they are a perfect 5th, so tuning them like regular reeds will yield poor results.

The trick was to set my tuner to what the reed was a 5th of and look for the harmonic shadow that would show up on the tuner and tune to that.
Smythe's Accordion Center, since 1997
Oakland ,California
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#18
(07-06-2019, 07:17 AM)kimric Wrote:
(06-06-2019, 05:58 PM)Eddy Yates Wrote: Kimric said: “That was one of the instruments I got from Menni-Ketti music. Man that was a long time ago.”
Yessir, it was. I didn’t have time to get it over to you for a tuneup when I was in The Town last month. I still love playing this beast. Found a guy in Billings, MT, 4 hours away, who still works on accordions and will see how that goes. From all accounts, he’s the only accordion technician in a 4 state area.

The quint reeds are interesting since they are a perfect 5th, so tuning them like regular reeds will yield poor results.

The trick was to set my tuner to what the reed was a 5th of and look for the harmonic shadow that would show up on the tuner and tune to that.

Thanks, Kimric. I’ll pass that on to John Schaft in Billings since there are a couple of wild reeds in my Tiger.
Bugari “Blue 72”, Tiger Combo ‘Cordeon, Iorio Concert Accorgan G Series (electronics removed)
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#19
Heads-Up, Hepcatz! There's a swell red Tiger newly landed on Reverb. Get it while it's hot, it won't be there a week from now---I have no connection, just become dizzy when I see a snazzy Tiger available. I'm looking for a red 36/72 in top condition, or this one would be gone right now:

https://reverb.com/item/23594006-titano-...-funky-red
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#20
(07-06-2019, 11:14 PM)OuijaBoard Wrote: Heads-Up, Hepcatz!  There's a swell red Tiger newly landed on Reverb.  Get it while it's hot, it won't be there a week from now---I have no connection, just become dizzy when I see a snazzy Tiger available.  I'm looking for a red 36/72 in top condition, or this one would be gone right now:

https://reverb.com/item/23594006-titano-...-funky-red
Kind of a suspicious listing because the photos show a different instrument than the video. Also, the video is from Liberty Bellows and the listing is from another seller. Price is also too high.
Bugari “Blue 72”, Tiger Combo ‘Cordeon, Iorio Concert Accorgan G Series (electronics removed)
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