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  1. Real bell or digital carillon? My parish is dealing with an old electronic carillon that has passed its prime. It played 'sacred melodies' at different times of the day for approx. 4 min each time since some date before 1979! The system – basically cd recordings (originally tapes) of bells played over roof speakers is considered to old to repair. Estimates for a digital unit to replace the system comes in at five figures. Lots of perks like peals, and funeral tolls as well as memory for some 500 melodies, midi keyboard etc. etc. I have just discovered a source for used church bells (all sizes, all materials) and I think I need to give my parish the option of a real bell. We are not a big church and a real carillon or peal of real bells is totally out of reach. It would simply be silly to consider. We have no tower but have a spot for what some call a ‘mission bell’. My idea right now is that a brass church bell with a pleasant tone would have a lot of integrity and last for generations. It could be tolled very slow for funerals and rung with vigour at the end of a wedding. Tips, suggestions, your best advice? Is a real bell worth it? Quick figures show a real bell would cost less but there will be no melodies or peals! WM
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