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Bass button stuck fix?

Yffisch

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My favorite accordion has got a little bit into trouble...or it was. My C bass button got stuck sometimes when I pressed it a little bit too hard. That is not very nice during a performance.
I opened it up but it was a little bit too much that I had to remove to get to the C button. It's quite an expensive accordion so I did not really want to touch that much.
Though, i finally decided to squeeze in juuust a tiiiny bit of bicycle oil in the C button (from the outside through the small gaps). And then I pressed the button hundreds of times and all the adjacent buttons. Then suddenly it worked and it never gets stuck again no matter how hard I press.

The question is - is this a dangerous solution for the accordion in the long term? Or is it legit? It works very fine now though, but I got a little bit worried after that.
 

debra

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In most cases when a bass button gets stuck it is because it is slightly bent. Make sure the button goes through the hole completely straight. However, this happens mostly with buttons on the outer row (bent by either the hand or wrong handling in case or bag), and less frequently with buttons in other rows.
 

Sebastian Bravo

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Oil is the easiest way to get it working again, but in long term, it is the worst solution.

As Accordion Revival page says, Oil will get dusty with the time, because of the big air flow of the accordion, particles in the air will get on the oil, and can get the problem back. Diego Juica, a friend who repairs pianos, told me the same thing, oil attracts dust.

So, the best solution is, to get the button out of the bass mechanism, and then, polish the contact zones. Also, using soft sandpaper on the wood part where the button causes friction, to remove any greasy particle.

But, as you did the easy way, i`m sure in some months the problem will be back. So, when that happens, you know what to do.

I hope the problem doesn`t get back, but i told you the best solution to get rid of it forever.

debra post_id=52427 time=1510611898 user_id=605 said:
In most cases when a bass button gets stuck it is because it is slightly bent.

That happens too, so when you get the button out, check if it is straight or bent. If bent, try to straighten it.
 
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If your bass buttons are bushed with material they may be clogged with sweat/finger skin. This will cause a button to stick. The bushing can be replaced as a solution. Otherwise piston might have a little kink causing sticking. Strongly advise against putting oil anywhere near you accordion and especially anywhere the bass machine.
 

Geoff de Limousin

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I was at a dance a year or so ago when one of the musicians on stage at the time ( an accordionist) called for someone to go out to his car and bring a small package that he needed straight away. This tuned out to be Talcum powder which he then liberally sprinkled over the bass keys because some of them were sticking . This action must have cured the problem as he continued playing for a further hour.
 

debra

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Geoff de Limousin post_id=52557 time=1511179676 user_id=1371 said:
I was at a dance a year or so ago when one of the musicians on stage at the time ( an accordionist) called for someone to go out to his car and bring a small package that he needed straight away. This tuned out to be Talcum powder which he then liberally sprinkled over the bass keys because some of them were sticking . This action must have cured the problem as he continued playing for a further hour.

This may be a fix for the stuck bass buttons, probably very temporary, but it is very bad as air with talcum powder gets sucked into the chamber with the reeds.
Talcum powder was often used to cure the Klebemorino problem (a series of Morino N accordions with the wrong glue for the felt on the pallets that penetrated through and caused the pallets to stick to the accordion body after even just hours of not playing). In the end it caused more harm because the powder got everywhere.
 

jozz

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I also have seen it done before. I wouldn't dare to do it myself, but I guess powder is the lesser of all the evils regarding quick fixes.

I think the metal parts of the bass machinery collect most of it. At least that is by far the gunkiest part whenever I look inside an old accordion. The rest gets sucked into the reed chambers.

Happy vaccuuming :tup:
 

Yffisch

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Oh my, I kind of regret my quick solution. Though I just put a little tiny bit of oil, only on the C button and it still works very well.
I will have to see after a couple of months how it acts. If it gets stuck again, I will for sure open it up and try to fix it properly. Quite advanced mechanism though, but I guess it's worth it in the long term. I wouldn't care if it was one of the buttons far up or down the edges, but the C button is kind of important ;)
Thank you for your advice! I will not use oil in the future, but it will be interesting to see how long this lasts. When/if it gets stuck again, i can probably just remove the greasy parts with a small towel or something and bend it just a little bit back, or maybe polish is everything needed because of old skin particles down there etc...
 
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Geronimo

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Squeezing oil from the outside into the button hole will get it to a lot of places.

When I bought my current accordion, most bass registrations were unusable since some previous user considered oil a good idea. A first mechanic spent 8 hours with his apprentice on it, and still it stuck. He refused further work, saying he could not quote me any price for success. I found a retired accordion mechanic elsewhere who agreed to work on the accordion for a fixed price although I gave fair warning (I did actually give him more in the end). He disassembled and cleaned the bass mechanism three times before it worked well enough, and we are talking about a large (free+standard bass) mechanism with lots of parts.

Now it does depend on the kind of oil. The worst kind will not just attract dust but also solidifies over time, creating sort of a sticky resin film over the parts.

Even good oil is bad news for any bearings since it creates drag over the whole contact area. That makes the mechanism react sluggishly. Some people recommend graphite or teflon instead. But as a rule, the mechanisms have no parts sliding across each other with significant pressure, so lubrication does not have much of a point.
 

Yffisch

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I just want to give you an update on this one. I tried the bicycle oil on my button. I used that "straw" that you can put on your oil can to reach smaller places. I put just a tiny bit of oil on the side of the button 13th of november when this thread was created. And it has worked smoothly ever since then with no problems, no dust, no sticky buttons or slow buttons or anything. Just perfect. So at least it has survived 6 months without problems and I've played quite a lot on it.
I'll come back to this thread after 6 months again with a status update! :)
 

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