Heating Up The Wax

Heating Up The Wax


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.


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.


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


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.


Repairing a Gibson Mastertone

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.