Concertinas are made and played at a factory in Islington.
Various shots of a man before a piece of machinery where a small piece of metal is being cut; commentator tells us this precision ground piece of metal is destined to become numerous reeds. Another man at a machine is seen carving slots for the reeds fit into in a sound board as we are told these are the first stages in the production of concertinas.
M/S and C/Us of a ginger-haired young man at a machine carving fret patterns which vary according to whether the instrument is treble, tenor or baritone. C/Us of a woman sticking leather on the folds of the bellows. We hear from the commentator that the concertina is the only musical instrument ever invented by an Englishman (Sir Charles Wheatstone). Then each reed is tuned individually, and filed to reach perfect pitch. A woman sits at a worktable putting a mechanism into the end of the concertina (whatever is on the other side of those little buttons!). The ends and fret covers are attached.
C/U of a man picking up a symphonium; he puts it to his mouth and blows into it, pressing the little buttons on the end to play a snatch of a sailor's hornpipe. From a collection on a table he then picks up the first concertina ever made, with ivory keys, mother of pearl pallets and silver reeds. Picking up another concertina, he plays a jaunty sea shanty (or is it a sailor's hornpipe? Is there a difference? Answers on a postcard, please).
Note: On file is a news cutting from The Sunday Times about this factory, C Wheatstone and Co., plus some pages from a leaflet about 'The Wheatstone Concertina' and the processes shown here.
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