Bina Kirtan Premium Mini

The Bina Kirtan Premium Mini is a smaller version of the Kirtan Premium model which is particularly suitable for travelling. The simple construction makes it inexpensive and sturdy, high-quality double reeds provide a full, warm sound and for its small size it has an amazingly good sustain. A good choice for beginners as well as for ambitious kirtan singers.

EU: 549 € (incl. bag)
incl. 19% VAT, plus 6.90 € shipping within Germany / 6.90 € within Europe
Non-EU: 461.34 € (incl. bag)
plus 6.90 € shipping within Europe / overseas on request

With the Kirtan Premium Mini, the outer bellows are firmly attached and do not have to be opened and secured with hooks. This makes the entire folding mechanism considerably less sensitive and easier to operate. When folded, the entire instrument is protected in an integrated sturdy wooden box.

Features

- 34 simple stick keys
- range of two three-quarters octaves from C to A
- two reeds per note in middle and low register
- Range low register C2 - A4, middle register C3 - A5
- five stops for separate or joint playing of middle and low register
- two drone stops for continuous tones C, G
- side-opening bellows with multiple convolution
- removable cover with sliding opening (Jali)
- high-gloss shellac polish
- Folding mechanism for lowering into the built-in box case
- including padded carrying bag
- Cabinet and case made of solid pine wood

Pine wood is the first choice for harmoniums around Delhi and in North Western India. It is much softer than teak wood, which is more common in Mumbai and Calcutta. Therefore pinewood harmoniums often get little dents or scratches during manufacturing, storage or transit to Europe. Such marks are a natural property of the wood and can not be seen as flaws or defects.

Manufacturer / Supplier

BINA was founded by Gian Singh in Delhi in 1935 and is one of the most renowned harmonium makers worldwide nowadays. The son of Gian Singh, Avtar Singh, and his two sons J.P.Singh and Daljit Singh are running the business today. Bina has a big workshop in Old Delhi and is running several retail stores under their name. Bina is able to make high quality instruments, but is also committed to large scale production of simple instruments. India Instruments has occasionally co-operated with Bina since 2010 and imports Bina harmoniums since 2017.

Tuning

In India, our harmoniums are tuned in equal temperament to Western standard pitch with a = 440 hertz. However, due to lower average air temperatures, they usually sound slightly higher at a = 441 to 442 hertz in Europe. The difference is so small, that even trained ears do not necessarily notice it. Nevertheless the difference may create problems in studio productions or when playing together with instruments with a tuning that can not easily be adjusted. Therefore we offer individual manual tuning to a = 440 hertz (or any other reference pitch close to that) with a surcharge on request. We can also also supply custom-made harmoniums with considerably different tunings (e.g. a = 432 hertz or just intonation). Please contact us if you're interested in that.

Size

Measure (folded): height 20 cm, width 51 cm, depth 37 cm, 

Measure (unfolded): height 30 cm, width 51 cm, depth 37 cm, 

weight: 9 kg

Each instrument is individually hand-crafted and might differ from our description.

Instruction Manual

HARMONIUM KIRTAN PREMIUM MINI

1. Preparation for playing
- Open the two snap locks on the side with the carrying handle.
- Open the lid, detach it from the two rear hinges and set it aside.

Entriegelungsbeschläge mit Entriegelungshebel
- At the top on both sides, grasp simultaneously into the metal unlocking fittings (above the unlocking handles) and then pull out the entire instrument body upwards on both sides until the lateral latches on the upper edges of the lower box pop out and engage. Now the instrument should be stable.
- Turn the left metal bow at the back of the bellows outwards so that the bellows opens slightly and you can move it on this side with your left hand (if you want to play the bellows with your right hand, open the right bellows bow).
- Pull out one or more stop slides (the larger front slide buttons 1, 3, 5, 7 and 9) to the end and open the airway for the low or medium register or both together.
- Pump some air with one or two bellows movements into the inner bellows.
- Now you can play on the keys!

The whole procedure can be seen in the first 30 seconds of this video.


2. Special funktions
- On the right side of the keyboard is a metal handle that you can move forwards or backwards. If it points back to the bellows, the octave coupling is activated and for each key you press, the octave above it is also automatically triggered. When the handle points towards you, the octave coupling is out of order and only the notes on the keys you press will sound. When playing with octave coupling activated, the sound becomes more brilliant, brighter, sharper and more sustaining and more air is consumed, so you need to be more active with the bellows.
- The 4 smaller stops at the front between the register stops (2, 4, 6 and 8) are the drone stops. If you have opened a drone stop AND a stop for opening the low register AND you supply air with the bellows, then a single continuous tone (drone) sounds regardless of whether you press any keys. Each drone activates a different drone. You can also combine the drone tones. Drones can be used to accompany music in which the fundamental remains the same or very few chords are used in which the drone is always present.
- You can change the volume and sharpness of the sound by sliding the holes between the keys and the bellows of the cover (Jali) or by removing the cover completely.

3. General tips for playing
- Open the bellows with a quick movement and close them with a slow, steady movement if you want a smooth sound without noticeable volume fluctuations.
- The volume of the tones depends on the air pressure in the inner bellows in the lower box of the harmonium. At high air pressure the tones sound loud and at low air pressure they sound quiet.
- The air pressure in the inner bellows drops the faster the more tones sound simultaneously. Therefore, when playing with octave coupling or chords, you have to pump air more often with the bellows than when playing a simple melody.
- Harmoniums have no keyboard dynamics. Stronger or weaker striking of a key has no influence on the timbre or volume of the tone. You can therefore always press the keys with minimal force.
- You can set rhythmic accents by making a short, jerky closing movement with the bellows, or by not letting a note fade out fully, but by briefly touching its key and then releasing it again.

4. After playing
- Lock the bellows with the metal bracket.
- Let remaining air out of the inner bellows by pressing a few buttons with the bellows closed until no more sound is heard.
- Cover the harmonium with a cloth to protect it from dust if you want to leave it unfolded.
- Push in all the pull buttons when you want to fold the harmonium.
- Put your hands into the metal unlocking fittings on both sides at the same time and pull the unlocking handles upwards on both sides at the same time. This pulls the side latches inwards and you can slide the entire instrument body back into the lower case evenly.
- Replace the lid in the hinges, close it and secure it with the two snap locks.


5. Storage, Transport & Maintenance
- Harmoniums consist mainly of wood (case, air chambers, keys), metal ( reeds, springs) and leather (gaskets). All these materials react to changes in temperature and humidity. Therefore, keep your harmonium at a constant temperature and average humidity.
- Protect your harmonium from strong climatic fluctuations and shocks during transport with good packaging. Never leave your harmonium in a parked car during summer or winter and always carry it carefully by yourself.
- It is best to have your harmonium serviced in a specialist workshop if reeds have gone out of tune over time, keys or slides jam, annoying background noises occur or air is lost.

 
Harmonium Kirtan Premium Mini Anleitung im PDF-Format