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Playing Outside - things to consider when choosing your box?

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Ben_H

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Morning All,

My box, when I get it, will be spending a lot of time outdoors in the Great British Weather. As I see it this brings challenges for protecting your instrument and some additional considerations when buying it. How do people manage this?

Do you keep a cheap and cheerful instrument for such occasions?

Do you find that small boxes have enough oomph to be heard outside?

Is it a question of quality? I've had it suggested to me that I need to be buying a quality box (£750 was the price quoted) to ensure I can be heard outside over the "herd of elephants", also known as as dancing Morris side.

What do you do about rain? I've see my mates dance often enough to know I won't be able to avoid it, hopefully someone will stand over me with a brolly.

I'm quite happy to spend on quality if that is what is required (though it would require saving up for it), but I'm not sure that playing such a instrument in the rain is a good idea!

Cheers

Ben
 
S

smdc66

Guest
simple question but good question and something that concers me too although i may only officially do this once yearly at a local festival other than playing for fun at family/friends so more of a concern for regular outdoor players


i would like to know how this is managed (IF it can be) too

when i asked my friend how we would manage if it rained he said 'we wont be playing'

we even carried them in our cases whilst moving distance as we was worried when it was just windy (and dusty)

if i had to play in the rain,personally, i would like to have an old battered one for this purpose :geek:
 

Anyanka

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Playing for the Morris in the rain is a good old British pastime! It's precisely why I bought my little accordions (first a 32-bass Weltmeister, then the 48-bass Hohner Student); there is no way I would expose the Pigini to the elements, or plonk it down in the pub after the dancing. I still don't want the little one to get damp, though, so I have a very fetching yellow cycle cape (Rampant Rooster colours are red, yellow and green) which fits over the 'cordie and me. Sometimes I find a friendly brolly-holder, but one can't rely on that.

After playing in very wet weather, it is advisable (says The Husband) to air the bellows thoroughly, i.e. push some dry indoor air through them and then leave the accordion out of its box in a warm dry room, with bellows extended.
 
B

Ben_H

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So do the smaller, cheaper boxes have the volume for the outdoor gigs or is it musical themed mime art? Does a good Weltmeister or Hohner have more oomph than a similar sized chinese version or is it more improved tone and slightly better mechanics?

More to the point, what do people consider cheap in terms of something you'd be happy to play in the rain? I seem to remember reading a thread on another forum where some people got very "particular" about cheap instruments and seemed to think anything under £500 classed as cheap.

Small Welties and Hohners, where available seem to be going for a premium at the moment, even on Fleabay, though even the smaller chinese models are attracting higher prices. I know I've only been looking for a couple of weeks but they seem to be a lot higher than I've been led to believe by a few commentators.
 
S

smdc66

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Anyanka said:
After playing in very wet weather, it is advisable (says The Husband) to air the bellows thoroughly, i.e. push some dry indoor air through them and then leave the accordion out of its box in a warm dry room, with bellows extended.

this makes sense but i was led to believe that accordions and extremes of weather basically don't go and the latter is v. harmful so i wouldnt want to do it UNLESS well caped in any rampant rooster colour

maybe if i played in some sort of morris band this would be part of the course but it doesnt sit comfortable with me

i think the consensus may be that you wouldnt take your main box out but if you are purchasing your main box then that brings a dilemma :?

i would be happy to spend sub £200 for an all weather box and make some allowance for weather damage costs :)

good hunting
 

donn

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Our weather here is often compared to yours (by the way, it's possible to edit one's profile to show one's general location.) Summer is relatively dry, but certainly spring is not. But rarely does it pour buckets, and if it does, the dancers won't go out in it anyway. The Morris gang here - mostly overpaid engineers as I used to be - have expensive Castagnaris and such, and no backups that I'm aware of. They'll look for cover if it's raining, but a few minutes of the kind of light rain we often have to deal with here isn't going to drown an accordion, might not really harm it at all.

You don't want the reeds to start rusting, so it's a good thing that rain == cold here. In the southern US, for example I imagine there's an incentive to use air conditioning in your car, and then pull that cold accordion out into hot steamy air where it's going to sweat rivers of condensation. I suppose in theory that might be one reason, among others, not to warm your accordion up too fast when you come in, because you want the inside (the reeds) to be warmer than the outside and not the other way around.
 

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