I have an antique "accordean"from Sole Importers (the accordian also has the carved inscription, B & J., N.Y.). It is not in great shape, but I would like to know if anyone has an idea of what its value might be. I think the model name (I don't think he was THE OWNER!) is "Franz Schubert." If it was his personal accordian, and it was inscribed with his name, I assume it is worth a lot. But, either way, instruments from Sole Importers are pretty expensive on Ebay.
Can someone please give me an idea of the monetary worth of this instrument or a solid company to use for an appraisal?
.... These "Weltmekstere" can put Hohner's "Ariette" and Gabbanelli's Cajun "King" accordions to shame ...
The Weltmeisters are slightly "better" built than an Ariette as for construction and air tightness, i had a D for a while, but the reeds they used then (Chinese?) were not so good, and they have two standing reedblocks influencing sound. I know one souped up Cajun King which is definitely "better" sounding, louder and more like the real LA ones, but has a more bulky feel than this Weltmeister or again the real LA handmade thing. Weltmeisters were also sold under the name Harmona in Europe.
I borrowed an quite old H114 C a while back in 2007, was my first experience with one rows, and still think that it was the best sounding of any one row i heard, maybe not for some top class LA handmade accordions. Fatter and thicker sounding, loud too, but sluggish to play compared with a Weltmeister-Harmona, and quite less efficient with air. A Weltmeister is a good choice for a beginner, if you don't pay too much for it, i saw some overpriced USA advertised.
Be aware that not all the LA accordion makers are of the same quality; saw & done repairs on some not so well made ones; and if you look for a reasonably priced factory made and useful instrument with a good "Cajun Accordion" sound i'd favor a souped up Cajun King or H114 from Marc Savoy's shop.
Weltmeisters were also sold under the name Harmona .... and there are more european brands like Beltuna:
Yes, you do have the right to your own opinion about accordions. But Me, Personally, I prefer "Weltmeisters" because they sound more like "Monarch" and "Sterling" accordions and are made more for the Traditionalist like myself. Gabbanelli's Cajun "King" has a different tuning than you would expect from one made by Marc Savoy, Randy Falcon, or Junior Martin. No one can beat them. They all makes very good accordion as you may know. But as far as imports, I would go with the "Weltmeisters" Gabbanelli's Cajun "King" accordion is made more for Zydeco style players and not Traditional Cajun Music. They just don't have that sound. I've been playing accordion now for nearly 27 years and I've played a lot of them. The good, the bad, the ugly... I've played them all. The closest thing I've ever heard to Marc's, Randy's, or Junior's accordions are the German-Made "Weltmeister" accordions. They have the more Authentic Cajun sound and furthermore "Weltmeister" is the same company who made "Monarch" and "Sterling" accordions before World War II. So there you go. Hohner and Gabbaneilli are no match for Weltmeister. To Me, Hohner is more for the beginner while Weltmeister is more for the advanced Traditional player and Gappanelli is more for Zydeco style players. Yes, when it comes to Traditional Cajun Music, those "Weltmeisters" can put Hohner's "Ariette" and Gabbanelli's Cajun "King to shame!!