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Author Topic: Baldoni air loss?  (Read 482 times)

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boxcall

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Baldoni air loss?
« on: March 17, 2017, 04:39:08 PM »

So when playing some tunes I get to far out with bellows mostly G tunes, not a problem on my other boxes. So I check for leaking around the box, I didn't detect any. Next cracked it open ( funny I haven't yet ) check over wax good, blocks where tight and gasket looked good, valves not so good as many are curled. So my guess is this could be a big loss? It's LLMM so big reeds and it does improve when I shift to MM. leather valves of course some with bolsters so question assuming I need to change them do I use plastic or keep to the more original leather.
I could put picture up if needed.

Advice please
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Dazbo

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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2017, 04:54:54 PM »

Are you comparing this four voice box like for like?  It could be just the four reeds using up the air (especially with two low reeds) - as you say, it is better with just the two middle reeds in use.

To see what leakage is like I'd open the bellows out then, without pressing any buttons, gently squeeze the bellows.  If there is little resistance then you have a leak (and you might hear where the leak is too) and if there is then probably the low reeds are air hungry.  this could be normal or may need the reeds resetting. 
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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #2 on: March 17, 2017, 05:04:39 PM »

Curled valves are always going to be inefficient so it is worth replacing them. It is always surprising what a difference it makes.

Two banks of L reeds going in LLMM setting are going to need a lot of air anyway. But if the problem occurs mostly on the pull ("when playing some tunes I get too far out with bellows mostly G tunes") it's the inside reed tongues which are vibrating and the inside valves which may be letting air through, if curled too. You may be able to see the state of the inside valves by removing the reed blocks and looking through the reed chamber openings.  If they are curled, then it is definitely time to have all the reed plates off and replace the valves.

You may as well clean off the old wax at the same time and re-wax with fresh.

Leather or vinyl?
On those big reeds I would say definitely use leather; it's quieter and won't 'rasp' so much on bellows direction changes. You can get big leather valves with integrated vinyl springs which are more convenient to use than steel springs and dots. Castagnari fit them as standard these days.

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george garside

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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #3 on: March 17, 2017, 05:16:01 PM »

another way to judge the magnitude of air leakage is to hold the box with the bellows facing the floor, undo the bellows straps and see how quikly the bellows open/descend

years ago I remember an American customer in Mally's shop  testingevery new Erica in stock that way to find the one with the least leakage.  My old double ray   takes over 60 seconds and my immaculate hohner 4 stop set up by Mike Rowbotham takes about 95 sec with all 4 stops open.

george
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boxcall

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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #4 on: March 17, 2017, 05:30:08 PM »

Thanks Steve
I took the blocks out of bass side and look at the inside valves which curl a bit , so I assume that the treble end has also as the ones on out side certainly have. I'll take another look sometime.

So changing the valves would I expect to notice a difference in bellows hang time? ( holding treble end up and without pushing buttons seeing how fast bass side drops. Or would this be other causes?
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playandteach

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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #5 on: March 17, 2017, 05:43:16 PM »

Can I also ask - on my older Castagnari Sander - which leaks a bit, if I push bellows in firmly notes sound without buttons being pressed - is this also a valve issue, or just reasonable air pressure overcoming spring tension?
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boxcall

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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #6 on: March 17, 2017, 05:46:12 PM »

Are you comparing this four voice box like for like?  It could be just the four reeds using up the air (especially with two low reeds) - as you say, it is better with just the two middle reeds in use.

To see what leakage is like I'd open the bellows out then, without pressing any buttons, gently squeeze the bellows.  If there is little resistance then you have a leak (and you might hear where the leak is too) and if there is then probably the low reeds are air hungry.  this could be normal or may need the reeds resetting. 

 thanks Dazbo and George

I did get some resistance doing that on the push and pull.

I did the drop test also maybe 30secs. But my other boxes didn't do much better although they open fast at first then slow down to a stop and didn't fully extend.
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tirpous

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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #7 on: March 17, 2017, 06:19:31 PM »

I have a similar box (Baldoni LLMM).  The air hole is fairly small and I feel this makes bellows control on this model more difficult than it could be.

Mine is leaky too.  It tested out at about 30 seconds with (heavy) treble end down, about 60 with bass down.

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pgroff

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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #8 on: March 17, 2017, 06:20:46 PM »

Hi boxcall,

Unless you're pressing buttons when doing that "drop test" I don't think you'll be seeing any effect from curled valves.

The effect of curled valves (or cracked wax, or leaks around the reedblocks if there's warpage) should only show up when you have depressed some buttons to open the pallets.

Those causes will result in increased air use when actually playing.

If your problem shows up in playing, but (as you say) is more noticeable in one direction of the bellows, it could relate to how you are operating the air button and basses (if you use those) to balance the air supply.

But curled valves (and any other leaks or inefficiencies) together with 4 voices LLMM will exaggerate the effects of any problem in your air-management techniques. It's definitely a technical challenge to manage one of these air-hungry accordions even if everything about the set-up is perfect.

PG
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boxcall

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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #9 on: March 17, 2017, 06:54:30 PM »

Hi Paul,
That's what I thought about the drop test and valves.
I do use the bass a little and it could be the technical ability of player.
Mrs mcleod's reel on my other boxes no problem but with the baldoni it's a bugger.
I suppose valve replacement is due then.

I saw Jack 2 week ago, I was doing a job for Him. He's doing good, I hoping to see Him again soon to play some tunes.

I hope that you and all have a Happy St. Patrick's Day!!
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pgroff

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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #10 on: March 17, 2017, 09:32:17 PM »

Hi boxcall,

Thanks and the same to you!

Hi to Jack!

Not casting aspersions - but I often notice that players find it easier to manage the basses and air valve in one bellows direction than in the other direction. This basic issue becomes more of a problem when you have a multi-voice, air-hungry box, especially if there are internal leaks such as curled valves. 

So the fact that you notice the air consumption more when playing in one direction might be relevant data.

If you were losing air more on the push, it could be weak springs on the pallets.

Running out of bellows on the draw (especially with G tunes as you mentioned, when playing this box that is based on a D row) might indicate that you aren't using the air-valve enough in conjunction with your (possibly fewer or less emphasized) notes played on the press.

Still sounds very likely that you would find the box easier to manage if the valves were all redone, but you might possibly still find that you run out of bellows when playing a lot of draw notes, if you haven't worked a lot on air management  - including planning and operating the air key just at the right times, and keeping any bass / chord notes short.

PG

« Last Edit: March 17, 2017, 09:35:00 PM by pgroff »
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boxcall

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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #11 on: March 17, 2017, 10:14:20 PM »

Thanks Paul
Good advice!
Might just be that last line in your post that needs work along with valves.
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Steve_freereeder

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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #12 on: March 18, 2017, 12:14:48 AM »

Thanks Steve
I took the blocks out of bass side and look at the inside valves which curl a bit , so I assume that the treble end has also as the ones on out side certainly have. I'll take another look sometime.

So changing the valves would I expect to notice a difference in bellows hang time? ( holding treble end up and without pushing buttons seeing how fast bass side drops. Or would this be other causes?

I agree with Paul Groff's assessment.

The bellows hang/drop test is not really a good method - (a) it will only tell you about possible leaks in the bellows gasket or pallets, not about the valves and (b) under the negative bellows pressure (i.e.on the pull direction) any leaks tend to be self-sealing or diminished anyway. A better test is to compress the bellows gently with no buttons pressed and see if a draught can be felt when the instrument is held up to a damp cheek. There may be an audible hiss too. If the pallet arm springs are weak, the compression test may cause the pallet to be lifted slightly which will result in a leakage and possibly some reeds starting to sound faintly.

But the bellows drop or compression test will not tell you anything about valve leakage. If the valves are curled, the result will be inefficient air use while playing. The valves should be replaced.

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Steve_freereeder

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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #13 on: March 18, 2017, 12:25:38 AM »

Can I also ask - on my older Castagnari Sander - which leaks a bit, if I push bellows in firmly notes sound without buttons being pressed - is this also a valve issue, or just reasonable air pressure overcoming spring tension?

This sounds more likely to be weak springs, not a valve issue.

It depends what you mean by 'push the bellows in firmly'.  It should normally take a great deal of compression to lift a pallet against the spring tension; far more than would normally be encountered during ordinary playing. If you are getting notes sounding under what would be considered ordinary fortissimo bellows pressure, then that would point to a leaking pallet seal, most likely caused by weak springs but could also be misaligned pallets or poor condition pallet facing.

Do all the notes sound on your compression test or just one or two? If the latter, that would seem to indicate a fault (as above) on those particular pallets.
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playandteach

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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #14 on: March 18, 2017, 12:54:32 AM »

Thanks Steve, just a couple of bass chords. I'll have a close look.
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Psuggmog Volbenz

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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #15 on: March 18, 2017, 08:48:44 AM »

Air control:
I come to the melodeon from the mindset of fifty plus year french horn player. There is some aspect of breath control which I have transferred to the melodeon. On some tunes where I might initially run out out air on the first few run throughs, I find places in the tune where I can take a "breath".  This envolves a short, rapid bellows direction change with the air valve open, before proceeding in the initial direction which was leading to air starvation. The breath has to happen at rhythmically opportune times in the meter of the song. The one unavoidable consequence of this activity, is a slight air noise as the air is being "gulped".
Valve test:
There is a certain tune I play which has a section of arpegios which results in 12 push notes in sequence. Doing this and playing bass, uses a lot of air on a four voice box. I place this tune when checking "tightness" of the accordion being assessed. On a box in good fettle, starting with the bellows extended, I can play the sequence without running out of air on a single push. I do a similar test on the pull motion.
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george garside

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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #16 on: March 18, 2017, 09:53:23 AM »

you don't mention the tuning of your box but it may be possible to play some of the notes on the other row as pull notes.  The other possibility is to go easy on the bass by rhythmic   tapping  or   leaving the bass off here and there rather than holding chords or bass notes  ??

george
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boxcall

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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #17 on: March 18, 2017, 09:22:10 PM »

D / C#  LLMM  four bass buttons
I think I might just need to pay closer attention to my air and bass use as you say, with this box when playing on the pull and using the basses plus the curled valves could be my problem.
I liked that I could use the G bass on this box when playing in G , but may need to tone it down.
This problem does not happen on my Hohner 1040 in C when using basses playing in F? Same tunes .
Apples and oranges really as they are different machines.
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george garside

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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #18 on: March 18, 2017, 10:00:02 PM »

is it C#D or D C#?  .if its C#D  G will be the same as F on a BC with plenty of reversals available.  I haave never come across a DC# myself so am not sure about reversals etc

george
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boxcall

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Re: Baldoni air loss?
« Reply #19 on: March 18, 2017, 10:08:20 PM »

D/C#  no reversals in G and A
F# and C# are the only ones I think
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