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Author Topic: Reducing wear on bellows tape  (Read 1167 times)

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Julian S

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Reducing wear on bellows tape
« on: June 20, 2018, 04:40:43 PM »

Whether it's a fault of my playing style, or how I position the box, I seem to always wear away the tape on the first three or four edges at the bottom of the bellows, on the rear close to treble end. I probably need a repair pretty soon, as the metal corners are increasingly exposed. Any hints on repairs and ways of preventing this problem would be much appreciated ! Both my Saltarelle and Dino Super 3 are affected, hasn't been a problem on the Dony - as yet...

Thanks in anticipation...

J
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Theo

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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2018, 04:57:51 PM »

I don't have much to suggest for avoiding wear, apart from removing buckles or other hard things in your clothing.

Repairs are straightforward.  Get the proper material, and replace whole strips.  Don't use gaffa tape, insulating tape or anything similar, even as a temporary repair.  It ends up as a stick mess that will earn you the disrespect of any repairer who subsequently works on the instrument.
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Theo Gibb - Gateshead UK

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Anahata

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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #2 on: June 20, 2018, 04:58:51 PM »

Charlie Marshall has Bellow Protectors in a range of sizes, which might help on the prevention part of your question.
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Tone Dumb Greg

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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #3 on: June 20, 2018, 05:04:32 PM »

I have had the same problem on a couple of instruments. The Chinese Hohner is repaired with bellows tape patched over the wear. Not the prettiest of repairs but effective, and the patches show no sign of wear after a few years. I believe the Chinese Hohners is a bit notorious for thin/weak bellows tape. There is a bit of wear on the Saltarelle, but nothing like as bad and it doesn't seem to be getting any worse.
I imagine the solution has to be retaping the inside edges with matching tape.

How do you get the old tape off? Or could you leave it on (this seems rather naff)?

I think the problem may be exacerbated by playing sitting down.
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Greg Smith
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John MacKenzie (Cugiok)

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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #4 on: June 20, 2018, 05:27:28 PM »

Well if as I suspect you are like me a single strap player, then you will get this problem. Two thoughts occur, one angle the top top of the box away from you to reduce the area in contact with clothing, and two, lengthen the shoulder strap till the bottom of the treble end is resting on your left thigh, assuming you are right handed, and this leaves all of the bellows airborne ;)

Sir John
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Tamba

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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #5 on: June 20, 2018, 05:40:48 PM »

Play naked! :||: :|bl
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Julian S

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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #6 on: June 20, 2018, 05:43:18 PM »

Sounds like I'd best learn to repair the tape properly for starters, buy a bellows protector - and lengthen the strap as an immediate measure ! Otherwise the problem will be much worse by Monday - given there'll be a bit of playing this weekend at Halsway... :||: :|glug ;D

J

Ps playing naked could cause other problems I reckon !
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Tamba

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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #7 on: June 20, 2018, 05:54:03 PM »

 :o
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Tone Dumb Greg

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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #8 on: June 21, 2018, 12:56:59 AM »

Play naked! :||: :|bl

That could lead to the need to repair skin tissue.

These are Charlie Marshall's bellows protectors. How are they supposed to be implemented?

http://www.cgmmusical.co.uk/CGM_Musical_Services/Bellow_Protectors.html

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Greg Smith
Is not the space between Heaven and Earth like a bellows?
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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #9 on: June 21, 2018, 07:22:39 AM »

Press studs. As it says on CGM's page: 'stud fixing'.
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richard.fleming

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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #10 on: June 21, 2018, 07:39:46 AM »

Play Irish style - the right hand part of the body of the box wedged against the outside of the left thigh and the bellows in mid air. No wear at all and a very stable position once you've got the hang of it.
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GPS

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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #11 on: June 21, 2018, 08:27:26 AM »

Play Irish style - the right hand part of the body of the box wedged against the outside of the left thigh and the bellows in mid air. No wear at all and a very stable position once you've got the hang of it.

Bit awkward if you're standing up, though......
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Among others, Saltarelle Pastourelle II D/G; Hohner 4-stop 1-rows in C & G; assorted Hohners; 3-voice German (?) G/C of uncertain parentage; lovely little Hlavacek 1-row Heligonka; B♭/E♭ Koch. Newly acquired G/C Hohner Viktoria. Also Fender Jazz bass, Telecaster, Stratocaster, Epiphone Sheraton, Charvel-Jackson 00-style acoustic guitar and other stuff..........

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Tone Dumb Greg

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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #12 on: June 21, 2018, 09:31:43 AM »

Press studs. As it says on CGM's page: 'stud fixing'.

Nope. Still don't get it. Anyone use one?
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Greg Smith
Is not the space between Heaven and Earth like a bellows?
It is empty, but lacks nothing.
The more it moves, the more comes out of it.
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Theo

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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #13 on: June 21, 2018, 09:38:09 AM »

Press studs. As it says on CGM's page: 'stud fixing'.

Nope. Still don't get it. Anyone use one?

The pad comes with press studs.  You use screws to fasten the base of the stud to the back of the treble side of your instrument, then you fix the pad to the press studs.  The press studs mean your tuner can remove the pad easily while working on the instrument, and when it gets worn it's easy to replace.
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Theo Gibb - Gateshead UK

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Tone Dumb Greg

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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #14 on: June 21, 2018, 10:51:45 AM »

Press studs. As it says on CGM's page: 'stud fixing'.

Nope. Still don't get it. Anyone use one?

The pad comes with press studs.  You use screws to fasten the base of the stud to the back of the treble side of your instrument, then you fix the pad to the press studs.  The press studs mean your tuner can remove the pad easily while working on the instrument, and when it gets worn it's easy to replace.

Thanks Theo. I thought it would be something like that but, don't the bellows jut rub on the pad instead of you?
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Greg Smith
Is not the space between Heaven and Earth like a bellows?
It is empty, but lacks nothing.
The more it moves, the more comes out of it.
Lao Tzu

Theo

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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #15 on: June 21, 2018, 10:58:39 AM »

Yes, but the pad is soft and has a smooth nylon covering designed to wear less that the average clothing.
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Theo Gibb - Gateshead UK

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Steve Coombes

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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #16 on: June 21, 2018, 11:01:07 AM »


Another thought for the mix. As a two strap player I found that I needed to shorten my straps as the main cause of wear was coming from my belt buckle and the belt was part of the Morris kit so that had to stay. The effect was less rock and roll but did give me a more stable setup.


Does the bellows protector make the melodeon fell different/strange to play?
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Julian S

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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #17 on: June 21, 2018, 11:15:58 AM »

I think I will try a bellows protector, and maybe experiment with self adhesive velcro to attach it. Will report in due course.
Self adhesive bellows tape - now why not ? Could also do with handy patches for short term repairs !

J
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Tone Dumb Greg

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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #18 on: June 21, 2018, 11:26:33 AM »

I think I will try a bellows protector, and maybe experiment with self adhesive velcro to attach it. Will report in due course.
Self adhesive bellows tape - now why not ? Could also do with handy patches for short term repairs !

J

The Lester way has been recommended.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UwQ1ZCbmNq8

Still worried about wrecking the bellows removing old tape, though. Can't remember seeing anything about it anywhere.

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Greg Smith
Is not the space between Heaven and Earth like a bellows?
It is empty, but lacks nothing.
The more it moves, the more comes out of it.
Lao Tzu

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Re: Reducing wear on bellows tape
« Reply #19 on: June 21, 2018, 11:44:04 AM »

Bellows tape removal/renewal has been covered a number of times; someone will be able to link to an appropriate discussion, I'm sure.  Simply put, you moisten the tape, give the glue a minute or so to soften and then work it away from the bellows VERY CAREFULLY AND SLOWLY with a blade of your choice; I use a scalpel, but others may have different ideas. You'll need to keep the tape moist as you work along the length - I use a watercolour brush and warm water, but again others will have other methods. It takes a lot of patience - it's not the world's most exciting job, but essential if you're going to fit new tape.

Graham
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Among others, Saltarelle Pastourelle II D/G; Hohner 4-stop 1-rows in C & G; assorted Hohners; 3-voice German (?) G/C of uncertain parentage; lovely little Hlavacek 1-row Heligonka; B♭/E♭ Koch. Newly acquired G/C Hohner Viktoria. Also Fender Jazz bass, Telecaster, Stratocaster, Epiphone Sheraton, Charvel-Jackson 00-style acoustic guitar and other stuff..........

Squeezing in the Cyprus sunshine
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