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What is the diameter of your buttons (CBA)?

NickC

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It's not something that is listed in the online specs, so I wanted to see if anyone could share the button diameter on their CBAs. What do you prefer and why? I've played instruments from 15mm to 16.5mm. It's interesting how much difference a mm or two can make. I generally like smaller instruments but bigger buttons. I know that these two cannot coexist on the same instrument with the same amount of buttons, so I'm going to take the plunge and go smaller (15mm). Has anyone switched and gone back? Any other things to consider? Thanks for any input.
 
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losthobos

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I have heard said... Though cannot verify... That italian machines have larger buttons as they play with the thumb and french machines have smaller buttons as the thumb is more likely to rest on the side as a fulcrum...
I've played both systems and prefer the smaller french layout.... And still use my thumb a lot.... 😉
 

debra

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Italian non-convertor accordions tend to have large buttons (16,5mm) in order to make the keyboard look large enough and also to have a usable spacing to distribute the notes over 2 rows of pallets. Using smaller buttons would result in a smallish keyboard and arms for low and high notes having to stretch sideways to use all the space used by the reed blocks.
Italian convertor accordions tend to have small buttons (15mm) in order to fit the larger number of notes and to get the right spacing for distributing the notes over 3 rows of pallets.
There are exceptions: My Hohner Artiste X S has 2 rows of pallets, but the reed blocks are filled with very tightly spaced extra narrow reed plates in order to fit 56 notes (28 reed plates on each side of each block).
So the size of the buttons has nothing to do with using the thumb or not, but everything with obtaining the right spacing, which mostly depends on whether the accordion uses 2 or 3 rows of pallets.
 

NickC

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Thanks for the replies. Yes, my non-converter Bugari has 16.5mm buttons, which feels very comfortable to me. I would imagine that it isn't just the size of the buttons, but also the space in between that contributes to the feel. So, would it be a fair assumption that most classical players play on instruments with 15mm button? (Based on the assumption that they would be playing converter or free bass instruments).

Terry, it's good to hear that you are still able to play with a strong thumb. I use my thumb a lot too. That was one of my concerns.
 

debra

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Thanks for the replies. Yes, my non-converter Bugari has 16.5mm buttons, which feels very comfortable to me. I would imagine that it isn't just the size of the buttons, but also the space in between that contributes to the feel. So, would it be a fair assumption that most classical players play on instruments with 15mm button? (Based on the assumption that they would be playing converter or free bass instruments).

Terry, it's good to hear that you are still able to play with a strong thumb. I use my thumb a lot too. That was one of my concerns.
It is indeed a fair assumption that most classical players use small buttons, but that's not a question of comfort or spacing but of fitting 106 buttons (for 64 notes) in more or less the same space as the keyboard for a non-convertor accordion with "only" 46 notes.
I have no problem with the small and the large buttons. But when switching between them it takes a bit of time to adjust to the difference.
I do have one accordion with small buttons but spaced a bit further apart, because this is a convertor accordion but with only 46 notes. A normal keyboard for 46 notes would be a bit large for the compact instrument (and older Bugari 508/ARS/C, not the newer one with large buttons and a larger box). So that is in fact yet another size (spacing-wise) to get used to...
 

Pipemajor

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I have 2 CBAs. A Paolo Soprani LMM and a Maugein MM and both have 13mm buttons:unsure:.
That must explain why my playing is so pathetic. It's not me at all(y)
 

Corinto

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On my 1930 decade HOHNERs (Pirol, Lucia and Cornelia) the treble buttons are 11 mm diameter and the spacing from center to center is 16,3 mm. On my Weltmeister (± 12 years old) the treble buttons are 15 mm diameter and the spacing from center to center is 19 mm. When switching between them it takes some time to adjust. Also as the Weltmeister is quite heavier I actually play it less and always shorter sessions, and yes my playing is similar to Pipemajor and losthobos :confused: ...
 

debra

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I have 2 CBAs. A Paolo Soprani LMM and a Maugein MM and both have 13mm buttons:unsure:.
That must explain why my playing is so pathetic. It's not me at all(y)
Very likely despite these smaller buttons the spacing will be the same as on accordions with 15mm buttons.
But that spacing is quite a bit smaller than on the accordions with 16,5mm buttons. The larger spacing makes an accordion easier to play. Most professionals have accordions with the smaller buttons and tighter spacing, but a notable exception is Richard Galliano who plays a Victoria with the larger buttons (and a smaller range of notes than other convertor accordions).
 

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