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Author Topic: How do you fix a rattling reed?  (Read 647 times)

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Cam Button

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How do you fix a rattling reed?
« on: June 11, 2018, 06:26:18 AM »

Hi Melnet,
I'm working on a 113 in D, and three of the reeds rattle. I suspected that the reed tongue was contacting the plate, but after removing them I found no evidence of contact.

I cleaned, inspected, and replaced the valves, but I don't know what else to try.

I do not have a tuning table, so I can't test the reeds prior to installation. I may have to make one up somehow.

i would appreciate your wisdom.

oh and the chord sounds F# instead of D.

Cam
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Rob2Hook

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Re: How do you fix a rattling reed?
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2018, 09:44:45 AM »

I'm sure the fettlers will be along shortly to advise, but just to let you know your plea hasn't fallen on deaf ears...

OK, so it may not be what you mean by "rattling", but on an old box where the wax has dried and embrittled, there is movement of the reed frame as it is no longer actually glued in place by the wax, just moulded into position by it.  The best description I can give is that the note will be less powerful than it should and accompanied by a sound much like a disturbed bees nest!  If this is the case, it is time to re-wax the reeds - with new, fresh wax as some of the components of the old stuff has gone and it won't adhere for long.

As for the chord, if the D of the chord is not sounding you will be left with F# and A which are also the 1st and 3rd of the F# triad.  Does the chord sound right if played along with the D bass?

Sorry if all the above is already obvious to you, just the first things I would check... and a HA113 is quite an old box,

Rob.
« Last Edit: June 11, 2018, 03:20:50 PM by Rob2Hook »
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Theo

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Re: How do you fix a rattling reed?
« Reply #2 on: June 11, 2018, 09:48:58 AM »

Rob has identified a likely cause of the noise.   I assumed that after you took the reeds out you used fresh wax to fix them in place.   If you didn't then run some fresh melted wax round the edges of the rattling reeds and see if the noise goes away.
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diatonix

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Re: How do you fix a rattling reed?
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2018, 12:05:29 PM »

From the way you describe the problem it's pretty obvious that all the reed blocks should be re-waxed (preferably by a skilled accordion technician who knows what he is doing).
« Last Edit: June 11, 2018, 12:33:01 PM by diatonix »
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Eshed

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Re: How do you fix a rattling reed?
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2018, 12:07:17 PM »

Taking the opportunity to ask, sorry if I'm hijacking the thread, I'll happily make a new one if necessary.

I also had a rattling of a slightly different form.
If I play a specific bass button (push G on a GC) and its corresponding chord at the same time with a high pressure, there's a strong BRRRRR sound. I've investigated this by blocking reeds and managed to narrow it down to the tonic reed in the G chord and the lower reed on the bass, which conveniently enough, are positioned exactly "across the road" from each other on their blocks (I can provide a picture later).
Since I've covered some of the bass end to limit the flow, no more high pressure and hence no more rattling. It could be nice, though, to find/solve the underlying problem.
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Steve_freereeder

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Re: How do you fix a rattling reed?
« Reply #5 on: June 11, 2018, 01:41:14 PM »

Taking the opportunity to ask, sorry if I'm hijacking the thread, I'll happily make a new one if necessary.

I also had a rattling of a slightly different form.
If I play a specific bass button (push G on a GC) and its corresponding chord at the same time with a high pressure, there's a strong BRRRRR sound. I've investigated this by blocking reeds and managed to narrow it down to the tonic reed in the G chord and the lower reed on the bass, which conveniently enough, are positioned exactly "across the road" from each other on their blocks (I can provide a picture later).
Since I've covered some of the bass end to limit the flow, no more high pressure and hence no more rattling. It could be nice, though, to find/solve the underlying problem.
The 'brrrr' sound could be the low bass reed tongue contacting the underneath valve and possibly even the internal floor of the reed chamber. The big bass reed tongues (especially if they are weighted at the tip) have a large swing amplitude, typically emerging beyond the reed plate slot. If you have restricted the air flow, it could be that the swing amplitude is now not enough to contact the valve/chamber floor. However, restricting the air flow risks having a deleterious effect on the reed pitch.

Another possible cause of the 'brrrr' can sometimes be due to the companion valve on the reed plate (in this case the valve visible on the outer surface) vibrating in resonance with the adjacent reed tongue. This can occur (a) if the valve is slightly curled in the middle - leads to air leakage and vibration, or (b) if the spring on the valve is too weak to keep the valve flat against the reed plate. The remedy in (a) is to replace the valve and in (b) to change the spring and/or valve (if it has integral vinyl spring leaves) for one which has a stronger spring.
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tirpous

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Re: How do you fix a rattling reed?
« Reply #6 on: June 11, 2018, 02:52:27 PM »

On the other hand, if the 'brrr' occurs only when both bass and chord reed are activated simultaneously, could it be a case of the 2 reeds you identified simply touching each other when played loud?
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Cam Button

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Re: How do you fix a rattling reed?
« Reply #7 on: June 11, 2018, 03:23:04 PM »

Thank you awesome Mel folk.
 I have not reinstalled the reeds, but I do have reed wax and a spoon so I'll give it a go. I may need to get creative to wax in between the blocks.
Thank you Rob. You are not stating the obvious to me, as I am new to melodeons and music theory.
I can't afford a fettler right now , but that might be a good thing.
Thanks again.
Cam
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GPS

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Re: How do you fix a rattling reed?
« Reply #8 on: June 11, 2018, 05:07:01 PM »

From the way you describe the problem it's pretty obvious that all the reed blocks should be re-waxed (preferably by a skilled accordion technician who knows what he is doing).

Does it have to be a "he"?   >:E
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Cam Button

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Re: How do you fix a rattling reed?
« Reply #9 on: June 15, 2018, 06:42:55 AM »

So, rattles are fixed, half of the clogged reed sounds, E / A sounding on the chord. i will open it up, and try again.
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