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Thinking about synthetic leather valves ......

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landro

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........... with plastic backing on my Excelsior model 00. I`m looking for comments from anyone who might have some working experience using these?
Surprisingly, the leather valves currently on it are all straight , flat , and pliable , both the inside and outers , but the wax is old, dark, and brittle. I have noticed 2 bass reeds loosened and need rewaxing so I decided it`s time to do a total re-wax job on it. The accordion is mint cosmetically so it will be worth my labor and expense. The last one I did took me 52 hours . Waxing and valving is simple enough but the cleaning and block prep is especially time consuming. Actually the whole process requires a lot of time. I can see why few accordionists ever have their accordion redone.
 

JIM D.

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Replacing reed valves with leather or plastic have both pros and cons depending on the owners preference, type of music preformed, and the degree of humidity the accordion is preformed in.
My preference is always leather, but I will replace with either for a customer. I perform 70% american style and 30% ethnic and the warmth sound that a leather valve produces suits me fine.
Newer models of German, Italian, and Russian accordions come with plastic valves on the treble side but only for cost cutting reasons. Leather treble valves are now an extra cost option on all new accordions.
You might read here --
http://www.accordionrevival.com/ACCORDION_REPAIR1.php#Reed_valves_-_plastic,_or_leather ?
 

debra

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JIM D. said:
...
My preference is always leather, but I will replace with either for a customer. ...
Newer models of German, Italian, and Russian accordions come with plastic valves on the treble side but only for cost cutting reasons. Leather treble valves are now an extra cost option on all new accordions.
...
My new (Russian) AKKO came with leather valves (on all reeds with valves, not a single plastic one anywhere). It was not an option. It is all they do.
It really depends on the brand. I bought one of the last Hohner Morino Artiste XS accordions some years ago and it had all leather valves.
Italians have been using plastic valves for decades (except on the largest bass reeds). So it varies.
I have the impression that plastic valves stay stable for longer than leather valves that may start staying open after maybe 10 to 20 years. Plastic does not do that.
 

landro

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Thanks to Jim D and Paul D for their comments. Much appreciated too.
I`ve also read a few rather interesting side notes in written articles from others on the reed valve subject , seemingly mostly opinions that lean toward leather being the overall preference for valves , but never any adverse words for the plastic ventilli either. Often just pros and cons. And this leaves me feeling nothing was conclusive or definitive . I have read that improvements have been made in the synthetic materials used . My past leather valve purchases have not always been entirely satisfactory with regards to not always receiving what I felt was consistant or good quality leather . Maybe my fault choosing the wrong supplier (s).
No disrespect to anyone`s opinions or conclusions but I suppose I`ll end up doing some experimenting with these synthetic valves myself , even if it ends up being a hard learned lesson.
 
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