The Edgley Concertina
What makes these concertinas some of the best?
1/ Solid construction. This is in the design and materials. I have recently seen and played the first instrument I ever made over 20 years ago. The concertina was in good shape, except it needed a bit of tuning.
2/ The Button Action. There is no concertina made, no matter how expensive which is faster or quieter than the Edgley Concertina. Unlike other concertinas, it will not develop bothersome clicks when played in a vigourous manner. With other makes, the rivets eventually wear creating some looseness. This wear causes the "clicking sound" that many players find irritating. I have even heard this on CD recordings of some of the greatest players. This will never happen on an Edgley concertina.
3/ Pad replacement. All concertinas will need the pads replaced eventually. They compress and get thinner from the pressure on them, over time. The problem is that you may not get replacement pads which are the same thickness as the originals. This is a problem! If the replacement pads are thinner than the originals, the buttons will stick up higher and may even pop out of the guide holes underneath the buttons. If the replacement pads are thicker than the original pads, the pads will not lift off the holes sufficiently, affecting the tone or volume. The fulcrums on Edgley Concertinas are threaded into the action board at 64 threads per inch. If the replacement pads are thicker than the originals, simply back off the fulcrum one or two turns. If the pads are thinner than the originals, screw the fulcrums down one or two turns. This is way better than bending the arms which could be disastrous!
4/ Fastening. You may have noticed that all Edgley concertinas have the endbolts (screws) in the corners instead of the middle of the flat edges. (the flats) This, also is for a very good reason. Over time, the pressure of the screws in the centre of the flats can cause leaks at the corners due to the pressure on the centre of the flats, causing leaks at the corners. New gasketing can help, but often not enough and the concertina will be more difficult to play as air leaks out at the corners. I have seen this many times when I used to do repairs on antique instruments This type of leak never happens with the end bolts at the corners.
5/ Grills. Instead of the grills being made of nickel silver, Edgley Concertina grills are made with polished stainless steel grills. All it takes as a piece of cloth to remove and fingerprints, if you can even notice them. Other makers use nickel silver which contains NO silver. This nickel silver material is easier to work with initially, but the acid from your fingertips causes a type of corrosion which at the very least causes the grills to turn grey. This cannot be just wiped off, and is very difficult to get it back to a shine.
6/ Reeds. We use the best reeds available. Yes, we could make our own, but the learning process would take years, and the customer would have to take an inferior sounding instrument until the craft was mastered. I have heard and played early concertinas made by well known and respected concertina makers of today. Either the tone, or response would not be considered the best as of today, Instead we purchase the best quality reeds from reed makers who have been making reeds for many decades. This is their only business and can focus on the most important thing.....tone and response.
7/ We make concertinas with concertina reeds and also those using accordion type reeds. Some maker of concertinas using accordion-style reeds just screw them down onto the reedpan. This affects the tone, and could contribute to a loss of air pressure getting to the reeds. Even worse, some makers just use melted wax to hold down the reeds. This could be a problem if the concertina is left in a hot car. It also makes them more difficult to work on the reeds for tuning or adjustment. the reeds must be cut out and the wax remelted to reinstall them. All our reeds are screwed down to the reedpan with leather gasketing for better tone air-tightness and easy removal and replacement.
7/ Experience. I have over 40 years of experience with concertinas. Twenty years repairing and over 20 additional years making. We at Edgley Concertinas always strive to make the best concertinas we can!