For Sale: Hohner Erika B/C for trad. irish music

A beautiful Hohner Erika box fitted with brand new Hohner reeds, new feltpads and gaze on grill and bass. Tuned to a medium dry +8ct on A. The bellows show some wear, but are in good working condition. No air leeks, no serious damage.

The box was made for trad. music:

Tell me know, a nice waltz on the freshly tuned Erika B/C box.

Very happy with the outcome of the box. It plays light and sounds nice.

Comes with a one year accordion-doc workshop warranty and shoulder straps. A suitable small Hohner hard case or gigbag can be added for an additional cost of 50 EUR / 30 EUR.

Price: Sold.

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The hohner Liliput: war veteran or hiking buddy?

The star of this blog post is small, very small, tiny one might say… -at least for a full 2.5-row/2-voice button box. This is what we are talking about:

The Hohner Liliput went into production during the Nazi-era as early as 1935 and was produced until 1940, it’s sibling the Preciosa was even produced until 1943. It’s commonly believed that these accordions were made for soldiers:

Accordions accompanied German soldiers and officers to the front. To this end, Hohner designed instruments that were small and lightweight for soldiers to stow easily in a rucksack. Today, the Preciosa and Liliput are much sought after accordions.

http://gumshoearcana.blogspot.com/2009/09/honking-basses-silent-witness-to.html

While that surely reads spectacular, it should be kept in mind that the war started in September 1939. So quite a bit after the initial production in 1935. I personally believe that – though these accordions were surely taken to war by some soldiers – they were initially made for hiking…

A much more reconciliatory story about Liliputs can be found on the Blog Mellisa’s Melodeons:

I recently played my little Hohner Liliput to my mother who is 83. She immediately recognized the instrument and came up with an interesting story.
Just after the war in the late 40’s she went on a walking holiday in the Swiss and Italian Alps guided by a former member of the French Resistance. Apparently whenever they met German hikers in chalets and inns, the German’s produced little accordions out of their rucksacks just like the Liliput and played and sang. Given that at that time in history Germans were not the most popular people in Europe, these little accordions did a lot to break down ill will and establish friendship between people who only a year or two before had been killing each other. 
Now that’s a nice thing to know about melodeons.

http://melissasmelodeons.blogspot.com/2017/02/the-hohner-liliput-that-is-on-way.html

Either way, isn’t it exciting to think about what these little boxes might have seen and where they might have been?

I have been looking for Liliputs for some time now and am happy to have found a couple that I am going to carefully restore and convert to modern day keys and tunings.

If you are interested in the fate of my Liliputs, or even want to buy a restored one, you can subscribe to my newsletter and be the first to know when it hits the shelf…

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Why are the buttons on my accordion making so much noise…?

If your accordion makes a lot of clickedy-clack sounds when you play it, you might want to consider having the felt pads exchanged.

Often the pads on mid-range accordions are only covered by a thin leather strap. This is not enough to dampen the sounds of the closing pads.

Comparison of a proper felt pad, against a mere leather strap

Exchanging all the felt pads will make your accordion play quiet. Since the height of the pads is different this requires a re-adjustment of the button mechanics to correct the button height and make sure everything is airtight.

A Hohner Erika fitted with new felt pads will play as quiet as any modern box!

I can change the felt on any accordion, also on yours.

Price: 75 EUR (work & material for a 2-row box, request price for more rows…)

Contact me if you have questions regarding accordion felt pads exchanged.

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Tip: De Harmonicahoek – worth a look for every button accordion player

Eduard Bekker’s fantastic site gathers all sorts of background information on melodeon music and culture (mostly C/F, G/C, A/D and the likes but he also links to this site :-) for example):

  • Events: Gatherings, concerts, workshops, etc…
  • Background information
  • Sheet music and teachers
  • A listing of accordions currently for sale on the dutch craigslist
  • Many, many more

Have a look for yourself: www.harmonicahoek.nl/

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Hohner Pokerwork in A/D

I am selling a german made Hohner Pokerwork in the Tuning A/D. The instrument has been improved with new feltpads (silent keyboard action, even in fast tunes) and a fresh tuning with less tremolo that suits the mellow sound of the box very well. New shoulder strap holders were added and the grill lining renewed on both treble and bass side.

Here’s what it sounds like solo.
Here’s what it sounds like when playing some reels

The instrument is in excellent playing condition and looks as shiny as new though it is a second hand instrument.

One or two shoulder straps are included and a suitable small Hohner hard case or gigbag can be added for an additional cost of 50 EUR / 30 EUR.

Price: Sold.

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DIY Box repairs

I started a series of small accordion repair instructions. Simple things that are easy and good to know for every accordion player.

For those of you who took the effort to visit this page: Thanks, here’s some exclusive blooper content from the video for you

The pair of pliers that I use – that are light and can be operated with one hand – are available from Amazon via this (affiliate) link:

If you want to know more about accordion repairs or have a suggestion for a specific topic for the next video, just let me know.

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For Sale: Restored C/F Weltmeister

A nice pre-1990 Weltmeister Box tuned in C/F. I have come across a couple of Weltmeister Accordions already and this one is in surprisingly good condition. Accordion making has a long tradition in the area of Klingenthal as can be read in this little overview. This box was made in the days of the nationally owned enterprise, VEB Klingenthaler Harmonikawerke most likely pre-1990 as indicated by the sticker of origin (DDR – socialist eastern Germany).

The accordion is in mint condition, fully restored and tuned. The tuning is C/F with additional semi-tones (F#/G# , D#/C#) placed at the bottom of the keyboard. It plays light and makes an ideal first instrument for a beginner or travel accordion.

Sold

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Jigs: Julia Clifford’s Jig and Paddy Taylor’s

A lovely couple of Jigs played on my super loud 4-voice Dino Baffetti B/C. I got the box from a piano accordion maker who wasn’t really aware what he held in his hands. Plays lovely and very loud. Ideal box for a noisy Paddy’s Day session!

The first tune is a standard by now, the second not so much. I heard it played in one of the many box-related facebook videos that pass my screen everyday and in the comments, it said that these two are always played together. I can’t remember the third tune in that set and find it hard to find a suitable third tune. If you have a suggestion: Just let me know :-)

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Reels: Miss McGuiness/McGoldrick’s


This week it’s reels again. Miss McGuiness is a tune I have played for a long time after I heard Frankie Gavin play it with De Dannan. I never considered it to be a particularly nice box tune until I heard Daithi Gormley play it on some Youtube video I can’t find anymore. What makes it really fun for me now is that the second part starts with the dominant chord, so in this case D and not G. This gives a nice little lift to it as it comes as a surprise to the listener. It also serves as a mean little test for the person playing backing will they be able to pick that up or just keep playing against that chord change?

The second tune, McGoldrick’s has been a firm favourite since I heard it played as the finale of a four-reels set on the first Beginish CD. What a nice set of reels that is. It’s dangerously close to the Humours of Tulla though and it took me long to keep this two apart. It still happens that I slip into McGoldrick’s when I want to play Humours of Tulla in a set but it get’s less.

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