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don't reed this if you want to avoid hand-made controversy

saundersbp

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I just put clear sellotape round the edges but masking tape etc would do. I didn't want it to be permanent. The material is very malleable and once bent retains the shape you have made.PXL_20210705_073926279.jpg
 

jozz

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thanks for sharing

I too - don't want it to be permanent - but this looks and sounds quite allright!

now see if I can source this stuff somewhere in NL
 

debra

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I just put clear sellotape round the edges but masking tape etc would do. I didn't want it to be permanent. The material is very malleable and once bent retains the shape you have made.PXL_20210705_073926279.jpg
Hmm... this material looks like it won't be letting any air through, meaning that most of the air/sound will go through a small open strip above the register switches and through the edges of the switches themselves.
When I was having trouble with brightness, especially uneven brightness I used a strip of (3 or 4mm thick) felt and that worked very well. For instance you need such a strip (where the grille has its bend) on a non-cassotto Giulietti PA to even out the sound of the black and white keys.
 

saundersbp

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Hmm... this material looks like it won't be letting any air through, meaning that most of the air/sound will go through a small open strip above the register switches and through the edges of the switches themselves.
When I was having trouble with brightness, especially uneven brightness I used a strip of (3 or 4mm thick) felt and that worked very well. For instance you need such a strip (where the grille has its bend) on a non-cassotto Giulietti PA to even out the sound of the black and white keys.
I've used thick felt in the past. This works much better - give it a try! :)
 

jozz

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I found it as "anti-rumble" material (freely translated).

The properties are interesting on an accordion grille:
  1. stops sound from getting through the material
  2. dampens vibrations of the surface it's been put on
  3. designed for wet environment, and doesn't make surface corrode faster than normal
I guess 2. doen not apply when you leave it floating without glueing the bitumen on the grille.
 

debra

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I found it as "anti-rumble" material (freely translated).

The properties are interesting on an accordion grille:
  1. stops sound from getting through the material
  2. dampens vibrations of the surface it's been put on
  3. designed for wet environment, and doesn't make surface corrode faster than normal
I guess 2. doen not apply when you leave it floating without glueing the bitumen on the grille.
Because of "1. stops sound from getting through the material" I wonder how it's then possible that it "mellows the sound without drastically cutting the volume". I wonder how much volume you lose when you actually measure it.
 

the boxman

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I like the idea of using this material because it is actually designed to absorb road noise and to stop panel flex noise. On paper it looks the perfect material for using to mellow the tone of your accordion, but I do agree with Debra the way it is taped to the grill must undoubtably significantly reduce airflow into the accordion which must be starving the reeds of air. Does this increase the force required to push and pull the bellows, assuming your accordion is nice and airtight to begin with.
Cutting a serious of slots in the material would allow for an increase in air flow and also increase the volume but would this prevent you from creating that mellow tone that you set out to achieve.
 

Walker

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Well a while ago, Guenadiy at Accordion Gallery told me hand made reeds may or may not have bluing on the edge of their bases, and in fact may even have machine rivets!

Sorry for interrupting! If I may make a small point, regarding the original statement, and then I will let you all continue. :)

I agree with Guenadiy. Whilst the 'blue edge theory' may be a strong 'rule of thumb', especially in the modern era, where there are few reed manufacturers left, and the technique for producing reeds has gradually become standardised, using nastrino etc. To believe the theory should be applied to every accordion ever made... millions of instruments going back to the 1800s - this makes little sense to me. Indeed, a little knowledge can be quite counterproductive. One must be careful with the notion of hand-made nowadays. Perhaps it is best not to take the phrase too literally. But it would be reasonable to believe there is more hand working than on a hand-finished reed. I think artisan made reeds would be slow to produce and costly nowadays. Anyone able to make truly artisan reeds would not necessary follow the convention of using a ribbon of steel with a blue edge. They might or might not.

When we talk about really special accordions from the Golden Age, I believe the master accordion builder was the boss - not the reed maker. Take Giovanni Gola, for example, he lived and breathed the accordion. He and his team would make their choices about how to build any given accordion - select and assemble the reeds that they chose at the time. What I am trying to say is that these men would have used the techniques that only they knew, and not every accordion was standardised. I suspect a lot of knowledge has been lost over the years. There is a reason why we cannot replicate the tone of the great Excelsior, Gola, Super VI etc...
 
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the boxman

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When I was having trouble with brightness, especially uneven brightness I used a strip of (3 or 4mm thick) felt and that worked very well. For instance you need such a strip (where the grille has its bend) on a non-cassotto Giulietti PA to even out the sound of the black and white keys.
Did you cover the full grille? Or is the amount of cover required to bull the brightness trial and error
 

debra

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Did you cover the full grille? Or is the amount of cover required to bull the brightness trial and error
I only put a strip on the far side (furthest from the keyboard) to compensate for the dampening effect the near side gets from a solid part of the grille and register switches. Works quite well to even out the sound, without muffling it in general. So the accordion still sounds the same for the most part but the row of reeds that sounds too bright is muffled just enough to improve the overall balance.
 

the boxman

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Thank you, that makes scene and allows enough air to be drawn in. I’ll give that a try I have foam type material about 4mm thick.
 

Scuromondo

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Thank you, that makes scene and allows enough air to be drawn in. I’ll give that a try I have foam type material about 4mm thick.
I think the recommendation was to use felt rather than foam. If you use foam you may want to make sure it is not the type of foam that will shed dust or disintegrate and be drawn into the accordion
 

lordzedd

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Not much to offer to this conversation other than that I believe most high-end concertina makers offering "traditional concertina reeds" are making their own reeds in small batches, as mass production of those only recently picked up by Harmonikas.
 

John M

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I think the recommendation was to use felt rather than foam. If you use foam you may want to make sure it is not the type of foam that will shed dust or disintegrate and be drawn into the accordion
You are right on!! Stay away from any foam.

Side Note: If anyone on this forum is familiar with Hammond Organs, you will know why to stay totally away from foam. From 1935->1963 Hammond used cotton to seal out dust from the manuals. The cotton was inside the manuals and was attached with small brass rivets. In 1963, they had the idea to use foam instead of cotton. It was a lot quicker to install with it's sticky back and didn't have to be riveted. It wasn't until about 20 years later that the organs started losing frequencies from the tonewheels. The cause was that the foam deteriorated and could turn into a sticky g-o-o that got onto the many many feet of very fine wire (24-26 AWG) inside the manuals that was used as manual tapering resistance to equalize the output of the organ for the wide range of frequencies (32 Hz to 6000 Hz). The foam got onto these fine wires and corroded the insulation, resulting in electrical shorting of the organ tones. Hammond techs refer to the foam as the "Black Death" of the organ. Once the foam got into the wiring, the manuals were destroyed. There was no way to repair them.

If you are ever in the market for a Hammond tonewheel organ, buy an earlier one without the foam. Hammond organs from the '30's are still in fine condition today. To determine if the organ has foam, remove the back panel of the organ, and look at the back of the manuals. If you just see holes (where the rivets used to go) on the back of the manuals, the organ has foam. If you see small brass rivets, the organ has cotton held on by the rivets.

John M.
 

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