Re: [Harp-L] Help with Chromatic repair

I tried to reply to your private email yesterday, Brad, but it kept getting bounced by something calledÂ that seems to think Yahoo is a bad IP address and has been playing havic with my email replies. Anyway, here's what I wrote:

What I know about rebuilding cracked wooden chromatic combs is all second-hand from descriptions by others.

Some repairers get some glue in the crack as a stabilizer before disassembly.

Both the harmonicas you mention are nailed together. One bit of advice that comes up often is to leave one reedplate nailed to the comb so that the comb won't warp. Doing this would probably allow you to get glue where it needs to go.ÂWooden chromatic combs are almost always made of two pieces of wood glued together, and the join between the two parts is often where they come apart. Most descriptions of repair involve only glue - no wood shavings or other additions. One potential problem with adding wood is that it may reduce clearance and cause problems with either the reed or the valve hitting the shaving.

I recently took apart an old 270 to harvest the reedplates and when I did the dried-out comb came apart into four different bits. When I looked at the bottom cover I realized that this was a pre-1937 harmonica - no wonder. So exercise great care in prying off a reedplate.

Rivet clearance isn't usually a problem with attaching valves.ÂThe nail-end of the river doesn't usually stick that far out of the reedplate. And Âmany valves come with a raised dimple intended to clear the rivet, which usually works fine.Â

However, if you want to punch your valves, you can get a tool that is meant for punching eyelet holes in leather. It has a rotating wheel with different sizes of punch.Â

I use the smallest size to punch rivet holes in valves.Â

Hohner sells valves, but I think so does Seydel. People also make valves out of various materials - acetate, ultrasuede, teflon baking sheets.Â

Hope this helps at least a little.

Winslow Yerxa
Author, Harmonica For Dummies, ISBN 978-0-470-33729-5
ÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂ Harmonica Basics For Dummies, ASIN B005KIYPFS
ÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂ Blues Harmonica For Dummies, ISBN 978-1-1182-5269-7
Resident Harmonica Expert,
Instructor, Jazzschool for Music Study and Performance

 From: harp <harp@xxxxxxxxx>
To: "harp-l@xxxxxxxxxx" <harp-l@xxxxxxxxxx> 
Sent: Thursday, January 16, 2014 1:21 PM
Subject: [Harp-L] Help with Chromatic repair

Dear Harp-L,

I have always played the diatonic harp, but have been curious about the chromatic. I recently purchased a couple of older Hohner Chromonicas â one is a 10-hole, and the other is a âsuperâ 12 hole. Both have wood combs, and both are in need of maintenance. I regularly work on my diatonics, but I have never had a chromatic before, so I am jumping right into the deep end of the swimming pool and am going to do some work on these to see if I can make them fully functional. But I need some help/parts.

I have already cleaned them up some, and I have opened up the gap on some reeds that were choking and have âironed outâ a reed that had been bent. 100% better already, but I still have a long way to go. Here are the issues where I could use some advice:

- Both harps have broken combs. The Super has a vertical crack on the 10-hole that is between 1/16â and 1/8â wide. This means that both the upper and lower reeds of hole 10 play regardless of where the slide is positioned. The 10-hole Chromonica also has a vertical crack in the comb, but it is not at all as bad, and it does not seem to leak enough air between the upper and lower chambers to affect how it plays. Does anyone have any recommendations on repairing the comb? I can think of several ways to go about it, but I thought I would ask the group first.
- Of course, the windsavers are shot. Should I just buy the windsavers from Hohner (currently out of stock â anyone have some they would like to sell?)
-Â Any suggestions on how to punch rivet holes in the windsavers short of buying the $350 Hohner tool kit?
-Â Does anyone have some of the slide buffers (the little pieces of plastic tubing that cover the mouthpiece screws)?

Thank you very much,

This archive was generated by a fusion of Pipermail 0.09 (Mailman edition) and MHonArc 2.6.8.