Suzuki A-25

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  • #3463
    AvatarAlan Brinton
    Participant

    This melodion, also issued as the Study 25, was marketed from 1968 to 1972, and then in a slightly modified version (with a green emblem over the mouthpiece) from 1972 to 1985. My model is a Study-25 from the earlier issue. Aesthetically speaking, this is, to me, an especially appealing melodica, in terms of its looks, feel, and sound. It has a single reed plate. The only attention it needed was a cleaning inside and out and a reed that was pushed below the reed plate and required taking most of the screws off the plate and bending it up as as to push the reed up, after which it was unusually difficult to get the reed gap wide enough so the key plays well. For some reason these reeds are unusually springy and hard to gap. Although Suzuki subsequently produced A-26 and A-27 models, A-25s seem to be easier to find. This is a very solid, and I expect durable instrument. You will see that this particular instrument has a surgical rubber tube, which is obviously not government issue. I have not had good luck with surgical tubing, but this one works very well, I think because the wall of the tube is thicker, so that it does not fold and clog up with moisture. Like all the early Suzukis, the A-25 has a metal tray. Well, without further ado, here are photos.

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    1-Sale Photo

    #3464
    AvatarAlan Brinton
    Participant

    Notice the unusualflat shape of the mouthpiece receptacle. This produces a tight seal, and this particular A-25 is about as airtight as you can get in a melodica.

    Rocker air release valve. Suzuki experimented with alternative mechanisms, but this eventually became the standard.

    Notice here the venting mechanism, which I had assumed was a recent Suzuki innovation.

    #3465
    AvatarAlan Brinton
    Participant

    The end pieces are made of heavy plastic and slide off easily once their tiny screw are removed. Then the core of the melodion slides out.

    The reeds were in good shape. I carefully cleaned them with a toothbrush, using a paste of baking soda and water, and then thoroughly rinsed with water. This instrument had no unpleasant odor. It seems to have been in use.

    All these early Suzukis were made in Japan, despite this label, and this is not the most elusive of all Suzuki melodions.

    #3590
    Avatarbarb
    Participant

    I just got a Suzuki A27 vintage in the mail – am trying to figure out how to upload photos and demos. My first impressions a very positive. More later…

    #3591
    AvatarAlan Brinton
    Participant

    High level of interest here!

    #3592
    Daren BanarsëDaren Banarsë
    Keymaster

    This is a very good looking Melodica Alan. I especially like the mouthpiece receptacle area!

    #3671
    AvatarAlan Brinton
    Participant

    More A-25 (Study-25 Models):

    The Suzuki A-25 (“Study-25”) shown and described above is the original model produced from 1968-1972. A very similar version of the A-25, differing mainly in its venting slots/holes and in having a round mouthpiece receptacle, was produced from 1972-1985. A new model A-25B was introduced in 1985. Variations tend to exist within each Suzuki model generation, as you can see in these photos, which compare the 1968-72 A-25 to two 1972-85 A-25s. (These are all “Study” versions, which were mass marketed for elementary education.)

    At the top is the original 1968-72 A-25. All three have what is essentially the same metal tray. The venting of the two versions of the 1972-85 model A-25 in the middle and at the bottom is, however, noticeably different. But the venting of those two is also not quite the same. On the other hand, the top and middle trays are smooth, while the tray at the bottom has a rough texture. These differences seem to me to suggest that the middle 1972-85 A-25 is probably older than the one on the bottom. The rough texture makes the instrument easier to hold, which suggests that it was intended to be an improvement.

    The embossing of the Middle C on the bottom melodion would appear to be further evidence that it is the later of these two. However, the smooth tray 1972-85 has a push button spit mechanism, while the other two share the lever mechanism. So some experimentation seems to have been going on midstream with these models, as seems to be characteristic in the development of Suzuki Melodions. So there’s a lot more to the story than is shown on the Suzuki model charts.

    The sound and keyboard action are the same for all three of these melodions, and the tuning is reasonably good.

    #3673
    AvatarAndre
    Participant

    This melodions look great! The embossing of the Middle C is a beautiful detail. Great collection Alan!

    #3675
    AvatarAlan Brinton
    Participant






    #5229
    AvatarAlan Brinton
    Participant

    I recently acquired another first generation A-25 (Study 25 version) because it has become my favorite small Suzuki and because it was available at a bargain price, fully equipped with tube and two mouthpieces. It is identical to the one featured here except for the tube and for being in even better condition, like new. And it came originally from the same U.S. distributor.

    I haven’t been tuning my vintage keyboard harmonicas, but I think I will now do so with this one, as I’m playing it quite often.

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