Heating Up The Wax

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Replacing a few reed plates in a sweet, little accordion this afternoon. This kind of job is always rife with pleasant odors. Accordions generally have a fine aroma of their own, add to that the smell wafting up from my wax hotpot and the nose begins to feast.

Well, after working a bit on this little gem, I’ve found that there is a deeper issue: the reed block is cracked. I noticed that prior repairs had been done using glue to seat the reed plate. This is likely the cause of the cracked block.

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Next, I’ll prepare to remove all the reeds by marking the plates with a code to assist in reassembly. Then I’ll pull all the plates, clean the old wax, and asses the situation.

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There is damage to the reed chambers which must be repaired.

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After taking care of that structural repair I made sure any cracks remaining were sealed with wax; an air tight situation is necessary. I then replaced the reed plates, rewaxed the whole assembly and put the instrument back together for a test. Three keys sounded like the reeds were dirty on the exhale. An easy cleaning fixed that problem.

Back together again, and working like a charm.

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Repairing a Gibson Mastertone

I’ve had this old, damaged, tenor neck hanging around the shop for almost ten years. Recently, a fellow came in with a matching pot and asked if I’d take on the job to join up the two.

The heel of the neck had been subject to a strange alteration at some point in it’s life. Today, I repair the damage and set it back to it’s original configuration.

Here’s the patch gluing in.

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