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John Pike Mander

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About John Pike Mander

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    John Pike Mander
  1. St Mary’s, Stoke Newington

    I remember this organ being installed, but I am afraid I don't know anything about it and we haven't maintained it for many years now. I rather doubt the prepared-for stops ever got installed, but I can't be certain. John
  2. Swell Boxes

    No swell box is ever anything near airtight, not remotely. A nice tight swell box merely refers to being acoustically tight, not air-tight! John
  3. Leather eyelets

    Replacing these is a little more complicated than it might appear. A thin strip of leather is pulled through the eye, the width of the leather being appropriate to making the bushing. When the leather is almost pulled through, the other side is cut off. This is then squeezed with a special pair of pliers, which has two round flat surfaces and a pin and it is then generally given a coat of shellac varnish. As you will gather, it is alittle difficult to explain, less so actually to do. John
  4. Reports Page Added to the Website

    Forum members may be interested in a discussion on our Facebook which has sprung up around the Doncaster organ, but spread wider to include some interesting posts on the Schulze organ at the Marienkirche in Lübeck, sadly lost in the war. You can access this thread here: https://www.facebook.com/john.p.mander/posts/10155707993728319
  5. Report on the Doncaster Schulze

    Forum members may be interested in a discussion on our Facebook which has sprung up around the Doncaster organ, but spread wider to include some interesting posts on the Schulze organ at the Marienkirche in Lübeck, sadly lost in the war. You can access this thread here: https://www.facebook.com/john.p.mander/posts/10155707993728319
  6. Report on the Doncaster Schulze

    I am pleased to announce that the Vicar and PCC at Doncaster Parish Church has agreed to allow us to publish a report we did on the organ in 1997. It was compiled by Geoff McMahon, our then head designer. It can be found here together with three other reports: https://mander-organs.com/reports/
  7. Caleb Simper

    I have been asked to post the following by Roland Wateridge on this topic: Dear Mr Mander I have no means of communicating with Martin Cooke and Vox Angelica, but to save them further fruitless searches for this work in albums or other collections, my researches indicate that it was one of hundreds by Simper which were published separately and individually. It was available from Amazon UK, but their website indicates "Currently unavailable. We don't know when or if this item will be back in stock." But, helpfully, they give clues which might track it down elsewhere. The publisher is given as Weekes & Co (1888) and there is a reference (which I am afraid means nothing to me) "ASIN: B0000D39UL". I wonder if you would kindly pass this on. Yours sincerely Rowland Wateridge
  8. Restoration Reports

    There seems to have been some interest in the restoration reports, so I thought you may like to be directed to the wonderful list of restoration reports on the Goetze and Gwynn website here: http://www.goetzegwynn.co.uk/reports/
  9. Restoration Reports

    For those who may be interested, the reports on the restoration of the organs at St George's Southall and Sacred Heart Wimbledon have been added to the relevant web pages on the organs in the Mander website. John
  10. Organs of London

    This coming Saturday, Bompas and Parr, the firm which commissioned the highly unusual Whisky Organ, is putting on an event at our works, called Organs of London. There are still a few tickets available, if anybody is interested in coming along. Details can be found here: http://bompasandparr.com/projects/view/organs-of-london/ It promises to be very wacky, but the food will be excellent too. John
  11. Tuning mixtures

    I don't think there are many tuners who don't silence the ranks not being tuned, but I have heard of some. As Classic Car Man said, it is easier in the bass and more difficult in the treble. If a mixture is not too badly out of tune, I will do as much as I can without stopping off other ranks, but it is important that at some point in the process you have all ranks going and what you can't (or certainly shouldn't) do is only tune the ranks individually. Doubled ranks do make for problems occasionally and even where ranks are not doubled in the mixture itself, one does get instances where ranks such as the 2ft will fight between the mixture and the Fifteenth, for example. What is also important and something I do without fail, is to tune mixtures together with the rest of the chorus going as well. That does make tuning the mixture more difficult, but it ensures that the mixture is in tune as it is used, and not simply on its own.
  12. Fulham Court

    The organ is not easy to photograph because of the size of the gallery, but with a bit of luck, you may be able to see two pictures here: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/15468865/Culham%20copy.JPG https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/15468865/Culham%20Chapel%20Organ%20copy.jpg John
  13. Fulham Court

    The organ is indeed a product of Mander Organs. The specification is: Open Diapason 8 Stopped Diapason 8 Principal 4 Chimney Flute 4 Twelfth 2 2/3 Fifteenth 2 Tierce 1 3/5 Trumpet 8 Pedal Bourdon 16 All the manual stops with exception of the Open Diapason and Principal are divided at middle C. This is so that much repertoire can be played, which otherwise could not be played, not least, the early English. The consultant for the project was William McVicvker, who was very helpful in suggesting elements of the organ to increase its versatility. He suggested that the manual stops be split and be extended downwards to include GG and AA, the C# key being split so that both AA and C# could be played, mostly, but not exclusively, that of the early English repertoire. He also suggested that a thunder or drum pedal, cymbalstern and a nightingale be included, not simply for fun, but so that music of the Iberian and German repertoires could be played. The drum pedal plays the lowest 6 notes of the Bourdon 16, adding them from the bottom note progressively. The Nightingale is based on an Italian example, we copied from an Italian organ we partially restored for the Royal Academy of Music. The Cymbalstern is worked by wind and we believe this is the only such Cymbalstern worked by wind ever to have been made in England. The bells were provided by the Whitechapel Bell Foundry, being untuned clock bells. The tour de force was the Bear, which is not worked by clockwork, but pneumatically. This came about because William mentioned the Ox at Oxenhausen and the client's representative asked if we could provide a bear, because the client's name is Urs, the Swiss-German for bear. My response was that we probably could, although at the time I had no idea how! It is pushed forwards and returned by a piston. In either extreme position (in or out) a wooden Regal with a long thin tongue makes a vaguely bear like sound and you can see a video of this here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iusa0miwHb0. The acoustic in the chapel is very favourable. This enables the organ to sound rather larger than it really is. The case was designed by the architect, Craig Hamilton. It was a challenging and interesting project, to say the least. John
  14. "Handel's" Temperament

    Hi Colin, I agree completely that the rather vague instructions are open to interpretation in different ways. However, I would incline to think that the reference to the fifths being tuned slightly flat would refer to the ten intervals which are mentioned rather than all twelve, but I would not claim I am right and you are wrong, it is merely an opinion. The clincher for me is the statement that the thirds should be as out of tune as the fifths, which is sort of what he was saying. That implies a tuning somewhere around a 1/5th or 1/6th comma meantone, where the thirds and fifths do indeed beat at approximately the same speed, which they wouldn't if ALL the fifths were only slightly narrow (flat), one or two would have to be wide to achieve that. I also agree that the instructions do not necessarily describe meantone. In some instances he does refer to some of the fifths "nearer perfect than the last" or in step "4th Chord" to tune the third 5th "let its bearing be the same as in the last third in the last chord". And in the 5th chord, he asks for the third to be very fine. All this tells me that it is certainly not pure 1/5th or 1/6th comma meantone he is describing, but, exactly as you suggest, something more subtle and probably an irregular tuning, almost certainly in fact. As an aside, I think the final comment is interesting, where he says "Tune all the rest in Octaves". No checking in 4ths and 5ths, nor in 3rds (which a good tuner does normally). But above all it is the statement that the thirds should beat about the same as the fifths, which he seems to be suggesting, makes me think that it is some way off ET and to be sure, that cannot be achieved without one or two fifths being wide (sharp). At least, I can't see that it would be possible. I am sure that the tuning as interpreted by you makes for a good multi-purpose one. I am also certain that tuners didn't work to fixed schemes, but consciously made variations and tweaks they though appropriate. I have done this many times myself, in fact. For all that, in case you were wondering, I find your thoughts interesting.
  15. "Handel's" Temperament

    Hi Colin, This is very interesting. Descriptions (with some notable exceptions) were very often vague and sometimes just wrong, such as a description of a Clementi tuning I have somewhere. I could be completely wrong, but there are two things which do strike me, unless I am missing something stupidly. Firstly, although the description seems to cover most fifth intervals, it does not describe (I believe) what would be the wolf fifth. Is this coincidence? In other words, is this left out because it is a wolf. Secondly, I think the general comment that "all thirds should be tuned sharp more or less as all fifths should be tuned flat". This would not mean being de-tuned by the same amount in absolute terms, but in perception, I suggest beating about the same rate. I wonder therefore if this is a typically sloppy description of a tuning method, which is essentially something like 1/6th comma meantone, which is a tuning we are pretty sure was in general use around Handel's time (we have restored two organs which gave a strong indication they had been tuned to 1/6th comma). We all know that the Great Packington organ's tuning was lost when my father was asked to bring the organ up to pitch for E Power Biggs recording there (something my father much regretted later, but it was at a time when little thought was given to such things) but I discovered a multitude of pencil marks on the wooden stoppers, which somebody probably put there when the organ was moved from the house to the chapel to help what might have been an inexperienced tuner to get the tuning right. When the stoppers were set to those pencil marks, there was just enough correlation to work out what the tuning might have been and 1/6th comma was almost certainly what it had been (one can never be certain in such things). Woolaton Hall also indicated 1/6th comma, when we blew out all the pipes, and put them in the organ BEFORE they were restored or touched in any way. I do wonder if it is a not very good description of 1/6th comma meantone. John