Re: Subject: [Harp-L] Help with Chromatic repair

I have a belt sander that accumulates lots of really fine wood dust that I use mixed with (usually) regular wood glue. ÂIf I need a special color I can just sand a little off a sacrificial piece of wood, mix with epoxyÂand, viola! Âcustom filler.

Lockjaw Larry
Breathing dusty music daily

On Monday, January 20, 2014 12:44 PM, Joseph Leone <3n037@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

On Jan 20, 2014, at 7:56 AM, harp wrote:

> All,
> Thanks for all the pointers. As the one who kicked off this thread, I
> want to share a
> few things.
> -Â As a diatonic player, buying a beater chromatic off of eBay was a great
> way for me to get my feet wet without having to spend well North of $100
> just to see what all the excitement is about having a button on the side
> of your harmonica. 
> - As George pointed out, eBay is definitely a Åbuyer beware situation,
> and it has become much worse in recent years.
> -Â I repair my diatonics (thanks Harvey!), and am also a woodworker, so
> dealing with the cracked comb was not a big deal. Besides, The chromatic
> was cheap, so I consider it a throwaway. If I can fix it great. If not,
> then it becomes more parts in the drawer. But hey - IÂm a tinkerer. If
> you arenÂt, then as Rick said, a good harp tech is a wonderful thing. Not
> everyone enjoys fixing their own car either.
> -Â Just in case someone searches this thread in the future, I wanted talk
> for a moment about the repair I made. The comb had shrunk considerably
> horizontally - this is what caused it to crack vertically at the 10-hole.
> If I had taken the reed plates off and glued the comb together, the
> original nail holes would never have lined up with the holes in the reed
> plate. Instead, I used an old woodworkers trick. I mixed some
> carpenterÂs glue with sawdust. I needed a small tool to apply the glue to
> the crack without disassembling the comb, so I shaved down a toothpick
> with a sharp chisel - this made a perfect tiny spatula that I could use to
> press the glue into the crack from inside the comb holes without having to
> remove the reed plates. I filled the crack from one side until I saw glue
> coming out the other side of the comb (wide crack!). I let the glue dry
> for about 30 minutes and then trimmed off any excess glue with an x-acto
> knife.

This IS the way to do it. I have been working on a model boat for the last few weeks. Electric powered and radio controlled. I design my own boats. They are all plank on frame. I use the home made filler idea a lot. Recently put teak flooring in the house and saved half a bucket of sawdust. I then sift it in to 3 meshes. fine (through standard screen), ultra fine (through filter screen) and ultra ultra (through cheesecloth). Some is like talc. I mix it with epoxy and use it as putty. But have used regular furniture glue too. 


>Â I may find out with time that this was not the best way to fix
> this instrument, but for now, it plays 100% better and the crack is
> repaired.
> Lastly, whether it is Harp-L, MBH or Slidemeister, I have found the
> harmonica forums to be an invaluable resource. Not just for tips on
> repairs or for suggestions on how to play better, but also for the friends
> I have made who share my enjoyment of the instrument. Thanks to you all.
> Brad
> On 1/19/14, 12:33 PM, "Joseph Leone" <3n037@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
>> On Jan 19, 2014, at 1:17 AM, EGS1217@xxxxxxx wrote:
>>> Hi Rick:
>>> Forgive me if I misread your post. I'm unsure if you're disagreeing
>>> with my 
>>> mention of the diatonic-heavy composition of Harp-l vis-a-vis
>>> Slidemeister? This is simply fact.
>>Â Â I have been on both lists since 2000. So given the 13 years, I would
>> extrapolate it as follows:
>> 1... harp-l... about 87.3% discussion other than chromatic. BUT it's not
>> all diatonic either. There is a lot of talk about
>>Â Â  a... people
>>Â Â  b... gear
>>Â Â  c... tunes
>>Â Â  d... how things are achieved/played
>> 2... slidemeister...about 95.6 % chromatic.
>>Â Â  a... very few people mentioned
>>Â Â  b... very little gear
>>Â Â  c... LOTS of tunes (some with tabs)
>>Â Â  d... maintenance & repair
>> Me? personally? I wouldn't change EITHER list. They are just what the
>> doctor ordered and do their respective jobs perfectly. I love the people
>> on both lists, consider them brothers and sisters, and couldn't be
>> happier with those I have met or conversed with. I know there are slight
>> rifts and a few apprehensions between the two groups of members, but they
>> are just that...slight. The main thing is that we are all in this
>> together. 
>> smokey-joe 
>>> You're not alone though--MANY others play a chromatic while being
>>> predominantly a diatonic player and post on harp-l, but the dialogue
>>> is and has 
>>> been over the years naturally diatonic and blues-heavy. There's
>>> nothing 
>>> remotely wrong with this and that wasn't my implication. It's harp-l,
>>> after all. 
>>> I would contend that there has been a bit more chromatic talk over the
>>> past 
>>> couple of years than ever before--but I also remember the days when
>>> someone like Smokey or Winslow would attempt to discuss something
>>> chromatic with 
>>> almost no responses. Just how it works on a mostly diatonic forum.
>>> Harp-l 
>>> people are primarily interested in Blues, amps, gear, Blues, mics,
>>> gigs, 
>>> Blues, etc. ;) As times change and new people arrive, then topics can
>>> and do 
>>> evolve. 
>>> I would point out that many of the very same chromatic players who
>>> comprise 
>>> the knowledgeable sources here also post on Slidemeister. It's an
>>> invaluable site for chromatic players wanting to derive all the
>>> information they 
>>> need without wading through tons of diatonic discussion. I get this
>>> list in 
>>> digest me, it is 'tons'. ;)
>>> In fact many of the diatonic players here also belong to MBH (Adam
>>> Gussow's 
>>> free-wheeling forum), and there are more diatonic sites and blogs one
>>> can 
>>> possibly keep up with out there on facebook and the internet. Imho
>>> harp-l 
>>> is the best of them all. Obviously we do get posters here from the NHL
>>> in 
>>> Britain, people like you from Australia and everywhere else around the
>>> Globe, as does Slidemeister. My point was purely that this particular
>>> topic is 
>>> covered there in depth and from many different points of view, rather
>>> than 
>>> an occasional mention with only a handful of responses. Since
>>> Slidemeister 
>>> went to a different style of forum a couple of years ago the topics
>>> are 
>>> always still available to be picked up on even years later, something I
>>> appreciate in particular--although I simply haven't had much time
>>> lately to post 
>>> there.
>>> I certainly wasn't denigrating Harp-l and hope it didn't come across
>>> that 
>>> way. If it did, my sincere apologies. I wouldn't still be here posting
>>> after 9 years if I didn't more than appreciate this forum and feel
>>> strongly 
>>> about supporting it. Harp-l was my first introduction to the harmonica
>>> world--and the method by which I met and became good friends with so
>>> many good 
>>> people (Jason Ricci, Smokey, Winslow, Bobbie, Michelle, Tom Stryker,
>>> George, 
>>> etc.) whom I met and got to know personally and am still good friends
>>> with 
>>> today...then SPAH where I met people like Phil and Val and the Filisko
>>> crew 
>>> among so many amazing people who did all the behind-the-scenes work I
>>> couldn't possibly name them all, and it'll always mean something very
>>> special to 
>>> me. :) 
>>> Merely clarifying the situation if there was any doubt.
>>> As to repair-people, you're absolutely correct, Rick. We're blessed
>>> with 
>>> several and THEY are the same names one can find listed with addresses
>>> on 
>>> Slidemeister as well: Quel Surprise! I'd personally highly recommend
>>> George 
>>> Miklas (who beautifully retuned my Hammond 44 (Suzuki) Melodeon at GSHC
>>> - 
>>> when no one else had yet taken one apart); Mike Easton, whom I know to
>>> be a 
>>> brilliant innovator and repair guy--who's currently building a
>>> state-of-the-art workshop;Â Chris Reynolds whose combs are stunning and
>>> gorgeous; Joe Pic
>>> (Piccirilli(sp))Â who posts photos of his work on Slidemeister: his
>>> custom-made chromatics are to drool over; and so many more American
>>> and European 
>>> customizers. Tom Halchak makes the most beautiful diatonic combs and
>>> is 
>>> fabulous to deal with--unsure if he does chromatics. The Filisko crew
>>> too, of 
>>> course but I'm not sure if any of them are able to take on chromatics
>>> at the 
>>> moment: one would need to contact them (Jimmy Gordon and Richard
>>> Sleigh) 
>>> directly. The diatonics I got from Jimmy are superb. There are so many
>>> more 
>>> people I can't think of because it's late and I'm tired. Now that the
>>> gig 
>>> list is gone we should at least do a 'repair/customizer' list and
>>> publish it 
>>> periodically. Naturally, we tend to think of those in our own neck of
>>> the 
>>> woods--but I do think there might just be more British/European
>>> customizers/repair guys out there than Americans.
>>> Best, Elizabeth
>>> Re. Elizabeth's comments about the diatonic-heavy-chromatic-light
>>> nature of 
>>> harp-l:Â 
>>> Just for the record, as a long time lister on harp-l, I play chromatic
>>> (badly) as well as diatonic, and have had to fix the things over the
>>> years. 
>>> Occasionally (when I could afford it) I'd send them off for repair.
>>> Re-valving, tuning, occasionally replacing a reed were bearable. Trying
>>> to 
>>> fix a broken comb, then trying to re-attach the plates to the
>>> comb was difficult. I ended up drilling and tapping the plates and
>>> using 
>>> screws to hold it together.
>>> If you like doing this stuff, great.If you don't, then you have to pay
>>> someone.
>>> A good harp tech is a wonderful thing.
>>> RD

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