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Author Topic: Box shopping  (Read 648 times)

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Mark Leue

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Box shopping
« on: November 22, 2019, 04:54:29 PM »

I'm excited to have sold a couple of Boxes I owned (a wheezy old pre pokerwork that I inherited and fixed up, and my Baffetti Carnival III that was never quite right for me) and so like a sailor on shore leave, I'm off to The Button Box to look for the two row D/G of my dreams.( I'm in the US)

I can finally play well  enough (I started last March) and have been through enough different sounding and feeling Melodeons to start to have an idea of what I like, but its still a little daunting to sort through so many choices. I play a bit for a border side, so loud and reliable is high in my priorities, but I'm also interested in other kinds of dance music including English and French. Im not in a hurry as I still am playing a Hohner Merlin I got out of a junk bin and fixed up, plus a converted Lilliput and a G/C pokerwork Ive almost got working right.

I'm leaning to a single voice box, I'd try and find a Baffetti Oakwood Binci or similar but sadly the Button Box only imports Castignari and Serenellini.
What models in Castignari or Serenellini are most similar to the Baffetti Binci?  Most important is lightweight, very responsive and even. Might consider a model with a helper row as well as long as the weight doesn't get too much. Stops on the bass are good but lack of them is not a deal breaker. Trying to rest the urge for more bass notes, but may succumb.

« Last Edit: November 22, 2019, 05:13:26 PM by Mark Leue »
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David Colpitts

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Re: Box shopping
« Reply #1 on: November 22, 2019, 06:21:02 PM »

Sounds great, Mark.  You are in for fun in your quest, and of course, thereafter.  Your preference for single voice makes me wonder if you have considered a two-voice and a totally simple and reversible “tape job” to silence one of the reeds per note?  I did this while messing with older boxes and new reed installations, and I really liked the way they sounded.  Read elsewhere on this site for cautions, like “don’t make the tape too sticky or you’ll pull the old wood grain apart.”  Not as loud as a Lilly (which ButtonBox does sell) nor as expensive as an Anglo concertina.  Fun anywhere you look!

Regards,

David
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Gena Crisman

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Re: Box shopping
« Reply #2 on: November 22, 2019, 06:24:10 PM »

I would suggest that Castagnari's range of compact melodeons were probably the closest feeling instruments to the Dinos? Eg Tommy, Lilly etc. They have smaller buttons though, and usually no stops for thirds. Their regular instruments (including all of their 2.5 rows) feel rather gigantic (and in some cases heavy) by comparison - I do not get the appeal of them really.

Every Serenellini I've played, I think feels wonderful, however they've all sounded very different from the relatively bright, clean sounding (and fairly aggressive) Dinos.

I must ask though, if you didn't get on with the carnival 3, the other Baffettis surely aren't all that different?
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pete /acorn

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Re: Box shopping
« Reply #3 on: November 22, 2019, 06:39:21 PM »

Hi Mark
If you would like to check my web site,to the USA knock off the 20 percent vat,if you let me have your zip code I can get a price for delivery.
As an example I sent one on Tuesday,it arrived today.
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Specialist retailers of Castagnari Melodeons and accordions.  www.acorninstruments.co.uk

Theo

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Re: Box shopping
« Reply #4 on: November 22, 2019, 07:24:40 PM »

I suggest approaching your visit to The Button Box with an open mind.  Play as many boxes as you can that are in the size/spec that you think you want, and try one or two that aren't as well.
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Theo Gibb - Gateshead UK

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Mark Leue

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Re: Box shopping
« Reply #5 on: November 22, 2019, 10:16:01 PM »

Ah poop.  I always say single voice when I mean two voice... Because It only has the one voice with tremolo!!

I also kept calling my baffetti III a two voice. 

I had some minor complaints about the MM voice on the Baffetti Carnival, particular problems on the tonal differences between the rows, but there was a more subtle problem with it, I just couldn't play it well, and I'm not sure why. I suck on that particular box more often and to a larger degree .

Spent three hours playing at the Button Box today. So far I like the small TWO voice Castagnari Brincu playability and feel wise. But I like the hand finished reeds on a Benny he had there.  Playing with the idea of ordering something like the Brincu but with the hand finished reeds and a low G set up. I definitely like the smaller key layout and not sure if it's my imagination, but smaller boxes _seem_ to sound brighter, which I crave.

As weird as this sounds, I'm not entirely happy with the very rich sound of the basses on the Castagnaris. I want my basses to sound more percussive and punchy.  that may be an "under the ear" problem though.  It may sound different a few feet away.   
« Last Edit: November 23, 2019, 12:21:00 AM by Mark Leue »
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Rees

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Re: Box shopping
« Reply #6 on: November 23, 2019, 10:07:15 AM »

I have the Brincu in stock with hand-made reeds and low G scale. I call this model the Castagnari Clovis.
My website www.melodeons.com
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Rees Wesson (accordion builder and mechanic)
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Larry Powers

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Re: Box shopping
« Reply #7 on: November 23, 2019, 01:19:58 PM »

As weird as this sounds, I'm not entirely happy with the very rich sound of the basses on the Castagnaris. I want my basses to sound more percussive and punchy.  that may be an "under the ear" problem though.  It may sound different a few feet away.

When buying any instrument I always have someone else play it for me so I can hear what it sounds like from out front.  There is definitely a difference between how it sounds to you and to an audience.  While it should not sound bad to you it is more important that is sound great to the people who have to listen to you.

Have fun at the Button Box.  If is a great shop and few of us in the US can say we have a local shop.
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pete /acorn

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Re: Box shopping
« Reply #8 on: November 23, 2019, 06:32:52 PM »

I have the Brincu in stock with hand-made reeds and low G scale. I call this model the Castagnari Clovis.
My website www.melodeons.com
Don't you mean hand made type reeds
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Specialist retailers of Castagnari Melodeons and accordions.  www.acorninstruments.co.uk

playandteach

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Re: Box shopping
« Reply #9 on: November 23, 2019, 08:19:55 PM »


When buying any instrument I always have someone else play it for me so I can hear what it sounds like from out front.  There is definitely a difference between how it sounds to you and to an audience.  While it should not sound bad to you it is more important that is sound great to the people who have to listen to you.

This is of course, true. But for me the only thing that matters is that it sounds good to me when I'm playing it - as I don't play to others. I'd rather lose projection for warmth close up.
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Rees

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Re: Box shopping
« Reply #10 on: November 24, 2019, 09:22:18 AM »

I have the Brincu in stock with hand-made reeds and low G scale. I call this model the Castagnari Clovis.
My website www.melodeons.com
Don't you mean hand made type reeds

Sorry. Yes, tipo a mano - hand made type reeds.
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Rees Wesson (accordion builder and mechanic)
Gungrog, Welshpool, Wales, UK
www.melodeons.com

Steve C.

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Re: Box shopping
« Reply #11 on: November 24, 2019, 12:59:45 PM »

Mark, PM me when (if) you want to unload the Merlin.
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