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Hi everyone,

 

I've found another organ that is going to be rebuilt in the near future and would like to hear your thoughts ... again.

 

It was originally a Brindley & Foster 1900 or something with 2man. pneumatic action, then rebuilt by Bert Hayman 1940s or 50s with electro-pneumatic action, then rebuilt again in 1971 by South Island Organ Company (SIOC) when new stops were added, still as a 2man.

The 1971 rebuild included as far as I know a Nazard 2 2/3' on the Great, a Bourdon 16' extended from the Gt Stop'd Diap 8', a Fifteenth 4' and Octavin 2' on the Pedal from the Great Principal 8'. Also the Swell Oboe 8' was transposed to a Contra Oboe 16' TC.

 

As far as I know the organist who is also going to rebuild it at SIOC wants another manual added to it.

 

The Specification is:

Great

Bourdon 16' A

Principal 8' B

Stopped Diapason 8' A

Dulciana 8'

Octave 4'

Harmonic Flute 4'

Nazard 2 2/3'

Fifteenth 2'

Mixture III (poss. 17-19-22)

Swell to Great

 

Swell

Violin Diapason 8'

Rohr Flute 8'

Salicional 8'

Voix Celeste 8' TC

Gemshorn 4'

Lieblich Flute 4'

Flautina 2'

Larigot 1 1/3'

Contra Oboe 16' TC (orig. Oboe 8')

Cornopean 8'

Tremulant

Super Octave

Unison Off

Sub Octave

 

Pedal

Resultant Bass 32' C/D

Principal 16' C

Sub Bass 16' D

Octave 8' C

Bass Flute 8' D

Fifteenth 4' B

Octavin 2' B

Great to Pedal

Swell to Pedal

 

Ped to Gt Pistons

Ped to Sw Pistons

 

4 Toe Pistons to Pedal

4 Toe Pistons to Swell

4 Thumb Pistons to Great

4 Thumb Pistons to Swell

Rev. Thumb & Toe to SW to GT & GT to PED

 

The church it is installed in is quite large, I would say it would accomodate about 100 people since it has a gallery upstairs.

The organ would be installed in the Apse and would have about 12'-15' depth, probably about 10' width and at least 23' height and the screen which is in place at the moment would be taken down to show the organ's facade. The console would preferably be attached to the case.

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Hi everyone,

 

I've found another organ that is going to be rebuilt in the near future and would like to hear your thoughts ... again.

 

Without seeing the church or the instrument - and without hearing it, I would suggest the following:

 

PEDAL ORGAN

 

Contra Bass 16 C

Sub Bass 16 D

Quint 10 2/3 D

Octave 8 C

Flute 8 D

Fifteenth 4 C

Great to Pedal

Swell to Pedal

Swell 4p to Pedal

 

COMBINATIONS

 

Pedal and Great Pistons Coupled

 

 

GREAT ORGAN

 

Bourdon 16 A

Open Diapason 8

Stopped Diapason 8 A

Gamba 8

Octave 4

Harmonic Flute 4

Twelfth 2 2/3

Fifteenth 2

Mixture (17-19-22) III

Swell 16p to Great

Swell to Great

Swell 4p to Great

 

SWELL ORGAN

 

Open Diapason 8

Rohr Flute 8

Salicional 8

Voix Celeste 8 (C13)

Gemshorn 4

Lieblich Flute 4

Flautina 2

Mixture (19-22) II

Hautboy 8

Cornopean 8

Tremulant

Sub Octave

Unison Off

Octave

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Without seeing the church or the instrument - and without hearing it, I would suggest the following:

 

PEDAL ORGAN

 

Contra Bass 16 C

Sub Bass 16 D

Quint 10 2/3 D

Octave 8 C

Flute 8 D

Fifteenth 4 C

Great to Pedal

Swell to Pedal

Swell 4p to Pedal

 

COMBINATIONS

 

Pedal and Great Pistons Coupled

GREAT ORGAN

 

Bourdon 16 A

Open Diapason 8

Stopped Diapason 8 A

Gamba 8

Octave 4

Harmonic Flute 4

Twelfth 2 2/3

Fifteenth 2

Mixture (17-19-22) III

Swell 16p to Great

Swell to Great

Swell 4p to Great

 

SWELL ORGAN

 

Open Diapason 8

Rohr Flute 8

Salicional 8

Voix Celeste 8 (C13)

Gemshorn 4

Lieblich Flute 4

Flautina 2

Mixture (19-22) II

Hautboy 8

Cornopean 8

Tremulant

Sub Octave

Unison Off

Octave[/font]

 

 

This seems like a good specification, but I think I would probably find a Gt Trumpet 8 and a Ped Trombone 16 ext. useful.

On the current specification, on Sw#4 the octave coupler comes on so we get the mixture (19-22) then, but would be better as a separate stop.

We also found that the Pedal & Swell Piston Coupler was useful in a recital we had recently with Andreas Meisner, as he is only used to organs with general pistons.

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This seems like a good specification, but I think I would probably find a Gt Trumpet 8 and a Ped Trombone 16 ext. useful.

 

Undoubtedly - but you made no mention of the availability of extra funds to purchase this extended rank - or for the chest and action. In addition, would the present blowing apparatus and wind supply be adequate for these additions?

 

On the current specification, on Sw#4 the octave coupler comes on so we get the mixture (19-22) then, but would be better as a separate stop.

 

Yes, it would! At present, all you will achieve is a mixture effect - which will be unsatisfactory as soon as more complex music is played on the instrument, simply because it is impossible for one pipe to do two jobs simultaneously. It will, of course, also be unusable for the top octave.

 

We also found that the Pedal & Swell Piston Coupler was useful in a recital we had recently with Andreas Meisner, as he is only used to organs with general pistons.

 

Mmmm - but does this not simply give the same pedal combinations as those which are set on the Pedal pistons - which presumably balance the settings on the corresponding G. O. pistons? Or, does it give a second set of Pedal combinations, to balance the Swell settings - in the same manner as a Harrison & Harrison Pedal to Swell Pistons?

 

For the record - how often is Herr Meisner likely to play the instrument?

 

If it proves necessary to replace the key or stop action (or both), it may prove expedient - and relatively inexpensive - to increase the number of departmental pistons to six and to add six general pistons.

 

The extra clavier department - what form would this take? Given the design of the rest of the instrument (and assuming that someone in the congregation is happy to die in the near future and leave a legacy to pay for it), a Choir Organ, of fairly standard design would seem sensible; perhaps along the lines of:

 

CHOIR ORGAN

 

Claribel Flute 8

Violoncello 8

Lieblich Gedeckt 8

Salicet 4 (Or Gemshorn 4†)

Suabe Flute 4

Flageolet 2

Clarinet 8

Tremulant

Trumpet (G.O.) 8*

Sub Octave

Swell to Choir

 

 

 

* Assuming that the legacy will also embrace this rank....

 

† This stop should have conical resonators, with a 1:3 ratio taper.

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Undoubtedly - but you made no mention of the availability of extra funds to purchase this extended rank - or for the chest and action. In addition, would the present blowing apparatus and wind supply be adequate for these additions?

 

Yes, sorry I should have mentioned that there would be extra funding for new ranks.

As for the wind supply, the current wind pressure is 3 1/2" and there is a double-rise reservoir, but another might be needed for the additions.

 

Mmmm - but does this not simply give the same pedal combinations as those which are set on the Pedal pistons - which presumably balance the settings on the corresponding G. O. pistons? Or, does it give a second set of Pedal combinations, to balance the Swell settings - in the same manner as a Harrison & Harrison Pedal to Swell Pistons?

 

With the SW & PED piston coupler, it does the same as the GT & PED piston coupler except if you push any piston they affect all departments which pretty much gives you General pistons - except for the fact that if you want to adjust them you have to do alot of soldering.

I assume that in the rebuild we will be including a Peterson ICS-4000 capture & transmission system as we have been with alot of other instruments we have rebuilt.

 

For the record - how often is Herr Meisner likely to play the instrument?

 

That was just one recital he was giving in Timaru. He has been travelling around NZ.

 

The extra clavier department - what form would this take? Given the design of the rest of the instrument (and assuming that someone in the congregation is happy to die in the near future and leave a legacy to pay for it), a Choir Organ, of fairly standard design would seem sensible; perhaps along the lines of:

 

CHOIR ORGAN

 

Claribel Flute 8

Violoncello 8

Lieblich Gedeckt 8

Salicet 4 (Or Gemshorn 4†)

Suabe Flute 4

Flageolet 2

Clarinet 8

Tremulant

Trumpet (G.O.) 8*

Sub Octave

Swell to Choir

* Assuming that the legacy will also embrace this rank....

 

† This stop should have conical resonators, with a 1:3 ratio taper.

 

Yes, this division would be a Choir organ. The old Great Dulciana 8' could be moved to the Choir and a new or 2nd hand (depending on how much funding is available) Gamba 8' could be installed on the Great. But it would probably be along the lines of what you have put.

 

JA

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Yes, this division would be a Choir organ. The old Great Dulciana 8' could be moved to the Choir and a new or 2nd hand (depending on how much funding is available) Gamba 8' could be installed on the Great. But it would probably be along the lines of what you have put.

 

JA

 

Possibly - but since there is a quiet (presumably) mild string in the Swell, something like a Violoncello might be more desirable. I intend this stop to be somwhere between a Geigen Diapason and a Viola da Gamba - without being too stringy. It should be an effective colourant.

 

I know that organ builders seem to like dulcianas (and so does Pierre) but I have to say that personally, I have always found them to be dull, bland and not particularly useful. This type of tone generally requires an undulating rank to be paired with it, in order that it actually has some tone colour.

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With the SW & PED piston coupler, it does the same as the GT & PED piston coupler except if you push any piston they affect all departments which pretty much gives you General pistons - except for the fact that if you want to adjust them you have to do alot of soldering.

 

JA

 

Except that any Pedal combinations which are set to balance the G.O. are unlikely to balance the Swell. In addition, I presume that the departmental pistons do not affect the couplers? There were examples of some H&H organs (and possibly instruments by other builders), which utilised piston setter-boards, with three-positional switches. These had provision for affecting the couplers to each division. The organ of Exeter Cathedral was one instrument which had this system. It was useful in that the third position (well, actually the middle position) was 'neutral'.

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Except that any Pedal combinations which are set to balance the G.O. are unlikely to balance the Swell. In addition, I presume that the departmental pistons do not affect the couplers? There were examples of some H&H organs (and possibly instruments by other builders), which utilised piston setter-boards, with three-positional switches. These had provision for affecting the couplers to each division. The organ of Exeter Cathedral was one instrument which had this system. It was useful in that the third position (well, actually the middle position) was 'neutral'.

 

Yes, you are right about this. The pistons don't affect any couplers except the Swell pistons work on the octaves etc. There are the usual reversible thumb & toe pistons though. I think it could be useful if the Swell pistons could have their own pedal settings, but this could probably be part of the new capture system.

I also agree with you about the Choir Dulciana. If I use it at all, it is nearly always with the Stop'd diapason, so I think what you intended would probably be the better choice.

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Undoubtedly - but you made no mention of the availability of extra funds to purchase this extended rank - or for the chest and action. In addition, would the present blowing apparatus and wind supply be adequate for these additions

 

Unlesss the winding is very short, doesn't a reed only use 1/3 amount of wind than a flue stop? I wouldn't have thought that a low pressure Gt. Trumpet and Ped. Trombone would have a drastic effect, and certainly not enough to need a new blower, surely?

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Unlesss the winding is very short, doesn't a reed only use 1/3 amount of wind than a flue stop? I wouldn't have thought that a low pressure Gt. Trumpet and Ped. Trombone would have a drastic effect, and certainly not enough to need a new blower, surely?

 

That could be true, although I've never done any study into that so I'm not exactly sure. The choir division would probably need its own reservoir.

 

JA

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Unlesss the winding is very short, doesn't a reed only use 1/3 amount of wind than a flue stop? I wouldn't have thought that a low pressure Gt. Trumpet and Ped. Trombone would have a drastic effect, and certainly not enough to need a new blower, surely?

 

I had not heard this either. I should have thought that it depends on several factors. The pressure on which the rank is voiced, the scale and the size of the foot-holes, for example.

 

If the reed is to be voiced on a pressure of around 65-75mm wind then the blower would probably be adequate, but (having been unpleasantly surprised on one instrument) it is as well to run some calculations before proceeding.

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Hi everyone,

 

I've found another organ that is going to be rebuilt in the near future and would like to hear your thoughts ... again.

 

It was originally a Brindley & Foster 1900 or something with 2man. pneumatic action, then rebuilt by Bert Hayman 1940s or 50s with electro-pneumatic action, then rebuilt again in 1971 by South Island Organ Company (SIOC) when new stops were added, still as a 2man.

The 1971 rebuild included as far as I know a Nazard 2 2/3' on the Great, a Bourdon 16' extended from the Gt Stop'd Diap 8', a Fifteenth 4' and Octavin 2' on the Pedal from the Great Principal 8'. Also the Swell Oboe 8' was transposed to a Contra Oboe 16' TC.

 

As far as I know the organist who is also going to rebuild it at SIOC wants another manual added to it.

 

The Specification is:

Great

Bourdon 16' A

Principal 8' B

Stopped Diapason 8' A

Dulciana 8'

Octave 4'

Harmonic Flute 4'

Nazard 2 2/3'

Fifteenth 2'

Mixture III (poss. 17-19-22)

Swell to Great

 

Swell

Violin Diapason 8'

Rohr Flute 8'

Salicional 8'

Voix Celeste 8' TC

Gemshorn 4'

Lieblich Flute 4'

Flautina 2'

Larigot 1 1/3'

Contra Oboe 16' TC (orig. Oboe 8')

Cornopean 8'

Tremulant

Super Octave

Unison Off

Sub Octave

 

Pedal

Resultant Bass 32' C/D

Principal 16' C

Sub Bass 16' D

Octave 8' C

Bass Flute 8' D

Fifteenth 4' B

Octavin 2' B

Great to Pedal

Swell to Pedal

 

Ped to Gt Pistons

Ped to Sw Pistons

 

4 Toe Pistons to Pedal

4 Toe Pistons to Swell

4 Thumb Pistons to Great

4 Thumb Pistons to Swell

Rev. Thumb & Toe to SW to GT & GT to PED

 

The church it is installed in is quite large, I would say it would accomodate about 100 people since it has a gallery upstairs.

The organ would be installed in the Apse and would have about 12'-15' depth, probably about 10' width and at least 23' height and the screen which is in place at the moment would be taken down to show the organ's facade. The console would preferably be attached to the case.

 

 

===================================

 

 

It appears, at face value, that the instrument has not changed too dratsically from the Brindley & Foster original, which means that the reeds will be quite thin in tone and the Swell will be less assertive than the Great.

 

From the information given, we do not know if the original chests are still there, or how the 8ft Great Principal and 16/8ft Bourdon extensions have been achieved. This is fairly critical, because it affects what is and what is not possible.

 

I could make certain guesses, knowing what B & F did, but a bit more information would help.

 

MM

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Unlesss the winding is very short, doesn't a reed only use 1/3 amount of wind than a flue stop? I wouldn't have thought that a low pressure Gt. Trumpet and Ped. Trombone would have a drastic effect, and certainly not enough to need a new blower, surely?

 

 

I certainly don't think so.

IMHO A good supply of wind is necessary for good prompt speech in reeds. Indeed, reed treble pipes take quite a bit more than that required by other 'normal' stops. They also take up more soundboard space in the treble. Cramped up reeds are not easy to keep in tune and reeds ought to be placed at the front of a soundboard i.e. over the pallets.

 

If you want to make a sweeping statement about wind consumption, open pipes generally take more than equivalent pitch stopped ones.

In your standard organ, quite often more wind is taken by the Open Wood and the pneumatic action than all the rest put together.

Swell shutter machines also take quite a bit of wind.

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===================================

It appears, at face value, that the instrument has not changed too dratsically from the Brindley & Foster original, which means that the reeds will be quite thin in tone and the Swell will be less assertive than the Great.

 

From the information given, we do not know if the original chests are still there, or how the 8ft Great Principal and 16/8ft Bourdon extensions have been achieved. This is fairly critical, because it affects what is and what is not possible.

 

I could make certain guesses, knowing what B & F did, but a bit more information would help.

 

MM

 

I think that most of the chests would be original, but with extra slides added in the rebuilds.

The Principal 8' and Bourdon 16/8' ranks are on a separate chest to the side of the Great soundboard, but I'll see if I can find some more info about this.

 

JA

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I think that most of the chests would be original, but with extra slides added in the rebuilds.

The Principal 8' and Bourdon 16/8' ranks are on a separate chest to the side of the Great soundboard, but I'll see if I can find some more info about this.

 

JA

 

 

============================

 

 

That is what I thought, and from that, I can almost second-guess the original specification.

 

More shortly!

 

MM

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I quite like the forensic approach to organ-research!

 

I suspect that the original specification of the Great Organ would have been something like as follows:-

 

Double Stop Diapason 16 (Possibly on a separate chest, and made available at 16ft and 8ft on the Pedals)

Large Open Diapason 8

Small Open Diapason 8

Hohl Flute 8

Dulciana 8

Principal 4

Grave Mixture 12.15 2 rks

 

However, it may well have been that the 12:15 Grave Mixture was not present, and the slide may have contained the 4ft Harmonic Flute instead, but if there wasn't a first Diapason (highly unlikely), the 12:15 Grave Mixture AND the 4ft Flute may have been included. I would suggest that, somewhere along the line, an 8ft Great flute has disappeared, and the current one is simply a switched extension from the 16ft, with perhaps a few pipes added at the top end. I say this, because in an organ of this size, a separte 2.2/3 and 2ft would have been a luxury, and almost certainly not in the original specification.I suspect that the Pedal 16ft Principal extension rank may well be the old Open 1 with a new bottom octave added. Of course, it may well be that the bottom octave is wood, which was the usual Brindley rank, and if so, then this would probably change to metal pipes at 8ft pitch and would therefore be a part of the original pedal organ.

 

The only other "clue" is the composition of the Mixture quoted as 17,19,22, which would NEVER have featured on a Brindley & Foster organ. They followed the German/Schulze model of purely quint mixtures, and I very much doubt that they ever used the tierce rank, and certainly not in a chorus mixture. The existence of a 3 rks Mxiture (rather than a 2 rks 12:15 Quartane or Grave Mixture) suggests the use of an old, quite spacious area, such as that required of a first diapason.

 

With the exception of the 1.1/3ft stop, the Swell appears to be completely original, other than the re-positioning of the Oboe pipes on the windchest. At guess, the original Swell contained a 2ft Harmonic Picollo , which could have become the 4ft on the Great with a few new pipes, or may have been a 12;15 Mixture. It is even possible that a 2ft Harmonic Picollo was re-positioned as a 1.1/3 pitch (is it a harmonic rank?), or a more normal 2ft Picollo (non harmonic) was cut down a bit.

 

All this is inspired guseework, but I'd wager £5 that I'm not far out, because of the way Brindley & Foster built organs.

 

They were very conservative (except in the use of quite complex pneumatic-actions), and became builders of more-or-less stock factory organs, using standard scales (Topfer?), and just plucking them form the pipe-makers list of standard bits and pieces. They also did it quite well, and resisted the worst excesses of late romanticism, at least until their later instruments, when stops like the Flute Majico started to make an appearance.

 

Before suggesting possible improvements, I think a few words about B & F's work is apt. The Swell, almost certainly, will be less loud than the Great by a fair margin, and with rather thin-sounding reeds. There's nothing wrong with this, but it does mean that extensive modifications to the Swell are going to yield very little musically, because there is absolutely no way that this is ever going to be a dominant French (or Willis) type of Swell.

 

The best feature of the current instrument should be the Great Diapasons, which will be quite bold and not voiced in a dull way at all, if they are true to form.

 

This is what I would want to do with the Great:-

 

Great

 

Principal8 (returned to main windchest)

Hohl Flute 8 (possibly 2nd hand B & F...lots around)

Octave 4

Harmonic Flute 4

Fifteenth 2

Mixture (15,19,22 possibly) 3 rks

Trumpet 8 (new, placed on extension chest currently used by 'B' Principal)

 

 

The Swell is not much of a problem, in that it is remains largely original for a B & F organ. Much depends on the character of the Flautina, which I would think is more of a diapason type of register. If it is a flute, I would add a 15th and get rid of the Larigot. If it is a true 15th in all but name, I would possibly just leave it as it is, but somehow get a 16ft octave to complete the Oboe. Without radically altering the whole Swell, and for the reasons already stated, the big Swell effect is never going to be obtained, short of installing all new reeds and an expensive new Mixture. Of course, if there is room to squeeze in a 19:22 Mixture, to replace the Larigot, that would be better. I wonder what was there before?

 

 

Swell

 

Violin Diapason 8'

Rohr Flute 8'

Salicional 8'

Voix Celeste 8' TC

Gemshorn 4'

Lieblich Flute 4'

Flautina 2'

Larigot 1 1/3'

Contra Oboe 16' TC (orig. Oboe 8')

Cornopean 8'

Tremulant

Super Octave

Unison Off

Sub Octave

 

The Pedal is possibly the weakest department in the current organ, and my greatest objection is the use of the 8ft Great Principal as an extended rank. This makes the Principal "off chest" for starters, but also, means that the Pedal notes are the same as the middle octaves of the Great 8ft Diapason when the 15th and Octavin, ( 4ft and 2ft) are being used.

 

In such a limited department, a reed is possibly a better alternative to this extended upperwork, and on this basis, the Great Trumpet (8ft), now placed on the old extension chest, could be extended down to 16ft with a new bass, and taken up to 8ft and 4ft on the Pedals. A better 4ft would probably ensue by extending the 8ft Octave further, assuming that is made of metal pipes, as I suggested, because in my experience, the 8ft metal octave first blends with the wood basses, and then becomes progressively more Diapason like as the notes go up.....a very nice feature of Brindley & Foster organs, and far better than those awful Octave Woods. Brindley's probably got this idea from Schulze at Doncaster, where there is one of the earliest

extension pedal organs.

 

The Pedal would then look like this:-

 

 

Pedal

Resultant Bass 32' C/D

Principal 16' C

Sub Bass 16' D

Octave 8' C

Bass Flute 8' D

Fifteenth 4' C

Octavin 2' C

Trombone 16 (Ext. from Gt 8ft)

Trumpet 8 (from Gt)

Clarion 4 (Ext from Gt 8ft)

 

 

Finally, a third manual, which could be small, (enclosed or unenclosed) and perfectly functional.

 

Knowing the sort of voicing used by Brindley & Foster, the following would make a perfect little foil to the Great, and would NOT be a baroque positive in any shape or form.

 

Choir

 

Stopped Diapason 8

Nason Flute 4

Principal 2

Recorder 2

Sext (12.17) 2 rks

 

It would stand alone, act as a second chorus successfully and provide the solo (English) cornet effect, as well as add to the whole by coupling. Can anyone live without a 2ft Flute?

 

Well, I like it anyway.

 

MM

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I quite like the forensic approach to organ-research!

 

I suspect that the original specification of the Great Organ would have been something like as follows:-

 

Double Stop Diapason 16 (Possibly on a separate chest, and made available at 16ft and 8ft on the Pedals)

Large Open Diapason 8

Small Open Diapason 8

Hohl Flute 8

Dulciana 8

Principal 4

Grave Mixture 12.15 2 rks

 

However, it may well have been that the 12:15 Grave Mixture was not present, and the slide may have contained the 4ft Harmonic Flute instead, but if there wasn't a first Diapason (highly unlikely), the 12:15 Grave Mixture AND the 4ft Flute may have been included. I would suggest that, somewhere along the line, an 8ft Great flute has disappeared, and the current one is simply a switched extension from the 16ft, with perhaps a few pipes added at the top end. I say this, because in an organ of this size, a separte 2.2/3 and 2ft would have been a luxury, and almost certainly not in the original specification.I suspect that the Pedal 16ft Principal extension rank may well be the old Open 1 with a new bottom octave added. Of course, it may well be that the bottom octave is wood, which was the usual Brindley rank, and if so, then this would probably change to metal pipes at 8ft pitch and would therefore be a part of the original pedal organ.

 

The only other "clue" is the composition of the Mixture quoted as 17,19,22, which would NEVER have featured on a Brindley & Foster organ. They followed the German/Schulze model of purely quint mixtures, and I very much doubt that they ever used the tierce rank, and certainly not in a chorus mixture. The existence of a 3 rks Mxiture (rather than a 2 rks 12:15 Quartane or Grave Mixture) suggests the use of an old, quite spacious area, such as that required of a first diapason.

 

With the exception of the 1.1/3ft stop, the Swell appears to be completely original, other than the re-positioning of the Oboe pipes on the windchest. At guess, the original Swell contained a 2ft Harmonic Picollo , which could have become the 4ft on the Great with a few new pipes, or may have been a 12;15 Mixture. It is even possible that a 2ft Harmonic Picollo was re-positioned as a 1.1/3 pitch (is it a harmonic rank?), or a more normal 2ft Picollo (non harmonic) was cut down a bit.

 

All this is inspired guseework, but I'd wager £5 that I'm not far out, because of the way Brindley & Foster built organs.

 

They were very conservative (except in the use of quite complex pneumatic-actions), and became builders of more-or-less stock factory organs, using standard scales (Topfer?), and just plucking them form the pipe-makers list of standard bits and pieces. They also did it quite well, and resisted the worst excesses of late romanticism, at least until their later instruments, when stops like the Flute Majico started to make an appearance.

 

Before suggesting possible improvements, I think a few words about B & F's work is apt. The Swell, almost certainly, will be less loud than the Great by a fair margin, and with rather thin-sounding reeds. There's nothing wrong with this, but it does mean that extensive modifications to the Swell are going to yield very little musically, because there is absolutely no way that this is ever going to be a dominant French (or Willis) type of Swell.

 

The best feature of the current instrument should be the Great Diapasons, which will be quite bold and not voiced in a dull way at all, if they are true to form.

 

This is what I would want to do with the Great:-

 

Great

 

Principal8 (returned to main windchest)

Hohl Flute 8 (possibly 2nd hand B & F...lots around)

Octave 4

Harmonic Flute 4

Fifteenth 2

Mixture (15,19,22 possibly) 3 rks

Trumpet 8 (new, placed on extension chest currently used by 'B' Principal)

The Swell is not much of a problem, in that it is remains largely original for a B & F organ. Much depends on the character of the Flautina, which I would think is more of a diapason type of register. If it is a flute, I would add a 15th and get rid of the Larigot. If it is a true 15th in all but name, I would possibly just leave it as it is, but somehow get a 16ft octave to complete the Oboe. Without radically altering the whole Swell, and for the reasons already stated, the big Swell effect is never going to be obtained, short of installing all new reeds and an expensive new Mixture. Of course, if there is room to squeeze in a 19:22 Mixture, to replace the Larigot, that would be better. I wonder what was there before?

Swell

 

Violin Diapason 8'

Rohr Flute 8'

Salicional 8'

Voix Celeste 8' TC

Gemshorn 4'

Lieblich Flute 4'

Flautina 2'

Larigot 1 1/3'

Contra Oboe 16' TC (orig. Oboe 8')

Cornopean 8'

Tremulant

Super Octave

Unison Off

Sub Octave

 

The Pedal is possibly the weakest department in the current organ, and my greatest objection is the use of the 8ft Great Principal as an extended rank. This makes the Principal "off chest" for starters, but also, means that the Pedal notes are the same as the middle octaves of the Great 8ft Diapason when the 15th and Octavin, ( 4ft and 2ft) are being used.

 

In such a limited department, a reed is possibly a better alternative to this extended upperwork, and on this basis, the Great Trumpet (8ft), now placed on the old extension chest, could be extended down to 16ft with a new bass, and taken up to 8ft and 4ft on the Pedals. A better 4ft would probably ensue by extending the 8ft Octave further, assuming that is made of metal pipes, as I suggested, because in my experience, the 8ft metal octave first blends with the wood basses, and then becomes progressively more Diapason like as the notes go up.....a very nice feature of Brindley & Foster organs, and far better than those awful Octave Woods. Brindley's probably got this idea from Schulze at Doncaster, where there is one of the earliest

extension pedal organs.

 

The Pedal would then look like this:-

Pedal

Resultant Bass 32' C/D

Principal 16' C

Sub Bass 16' D

Octave 8' C

Bass Flute 8' D

Fifteenth 4' C

Octavin 2' C

Trombone 16 (Ext. from Gt 8ft)

Trumpet 8 (from Gt)

Clarion 4 (Ext from Gt 8ft)

Finally, a third manual, which could be small, (enclosed or unenclosed) and perfectly functional.

 

Knowing the sort of voicing used by Brindley & Foster, the following would make a perfect little foil to the Great, and would NOT be a baroque positive in any shape or form.

 

Choir

 

Stopped Diapason 8

Nason Flute 4

Principal 2

Recorder 2

Sext (12.17) 2 rks

 

It would stand alone, act as a second chorus successfully and provide the solo (English) cornet effect, as well as add to the whole by coupling. Can anyone live without a 2ft Flute?

 

Well, I like it anyway.

 

MM

 

This is a good explanation.

I can provide some information about the old organ.

Firstly, my organ teacher (also the builder who is rebuilding the organ) told me when he showed me inside, that the 16-ft Bourdon was originally on the Swell.

And about the Harmonic Flute, I have a feeling it may have a stopped bass octave. Would this be B&F? Another NZ example in Auckland had a Tenor C Harmonic Flute, but this may have been done in the Norman & Beard rebuild.

As for the Pedal, I too would get rid of those Principal C extensions. I have a feeling the Open Wood may have been wood all through, but I would extend it down to 4-ft, and maybe the flute to 4-ft aswell as this can be handy. If there was originally a Large Open on the Great which is the Open Wood on the pedal, it could be possible to borrow this upwards to the Great with extra pipes. There is only one organ I have seen this done on but the Open Diap was all Metal.

I quite like the Choir design as well. I'll see if I can go into the organ and get some photos for you guys at the weekend.

 

JA

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Knowing the sort of voicing used by Brindley & Foster, the following would make a perfect little foil to the Great, and would NOT be a baroque positive in any shape or form.

 

Choir

 

Stopped Diapason 8

Nason Flute 4

Principal 2

Recorder 2

Sext (12.17) 2 rks

 

 

MM

 

MM, in such a small scheme the inclusion of two 2ft. stops is a waste. Personally, I prefer my scheme - but then, I would say that!

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Guest Barry Williams

Choir

 

Stopped Diapason 8

Nason Flute 4

Principal 2

Recorder 2

Sext (12.17) 2 rks

 

Is there any original Brindley & Foster with a Choir organ of this neo-baroque type of stop list? Perhaps this is not the point and the idea is to improve the original scheme.

 

Barry Williams

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Choir

 

Stopped Diapason 8

Nason Flute 4

Principal 2

Recorder 2

Sext (12.17) 2 rks

 

Is there any original Brindley & Foster with a Choir organ of this neo-baroque type of stop list? Perhaps this is not the point and the idea is to improve the original scheme.

 

Barry Williams

 

 

================================

 

 

 

This is actually quite amusing, because apart fom the 2 rks Sext, the answer is "almost" a yes.

 

Here is a genuine stop-list from a B & F organ choir organs:-

 

 

Stopped Diapason 8

Salicional 8

Nason Flute 4 (possibly a re-name)

Salicet 4

Flageolet 2

Clarinet 8

 

 

That doesn't look anything like the same does it?

 

However, a crawl among the pipes reveals that the Salicional and Salicet are marked "Open Diapason II" and "Octave 4," and the scaling is identical with those stops on the Great organ!

 

The "Sext" would, I think, never have been found on a B & F organ, but it would blend perfectly with the whole.

 

So we are just haggling about a 2ft Principal, which would "of course" be exactly the same scale as the Great Fifteenth and voiced accordingly.

 

I wasn't suggesting pure tin and open-foot voicing without nicking you know!

 

The important difference between most (if not all) B & F organs, is the terraced dynamic between Swell and Great, which follows the German romantic style. It relegates the Swell to a somehwat subvervient role as accompaniment division. By contrast, the Choir Organs can, and sometimes are (unless buried at the back of a chamber in a box), quite assertive.

 

You have to know Brindley & Foster organs well to understand the thinking behind the additional Choir stops, but voiced and scaled right to match the older pipework, it could work very well. I think I stated that it should NOT be in baroque-style, and as the church is not large by the sounds of things, there is no need for additional upperwork.

 

MM

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================================

This is actually quite amusing, because apart fom the 2 rks Sext, the answer is "almost" a yes.

 

Here is a genuine stop-list from a B & F organ choir organs:-

Stopped Diapason 8

Salicional 8

Nason Flute 4 (possibly a re-name)

Salicet 4

Flageolet 2

Clarinet 8

That doesn't look anything like the same does it?

 

 

MM

 

... And the fact that there is no 2p chorus rank (as you went on to write) - so, in fact 'yes' is a 'no', then.

 

Since, in the above scheme, you admit that the Nason Flute could have been re-named (if not revoiced), this scheme is actually rather less like the stop-list which you suggested - which did look a little neo-baroque.

 

Just for the record....

 

:lol:

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... And the fact that there is no 2p chorus rank (as you went on to write) - so, in fact 'yes' is a 'no', then.

 

Since, in the above scheme, you admit that the Nason Flute could have been re-named (if not revoiced), this scheme is actually rather less like the stop-list which you suggested - which did look a little neo-baroque.

 

Just for the record....

 

:lol:

 

 

==========================

 

 

Herein lies a story of expediency, because the B & F organ in question actually had an additional stop, which had replaced possibly a Dulciana or something; and it was a rather nasty, scratchy string which didn't serve much useful purpose at all.

 

The organ was divided Sw/Gt/ped on one side of the chance, with a seperate enclosed Choir organ on the other side.

 

There was a bit of an unfortunate incident to the wiring of the church and organ, with the result that the main part of the organ was rendered useless for a good two months, and this was quite a large church with quite big congregations.

 

In the words of Jimmy Saville, "As it 'appened".....I had in my possession two ranks of rather nice 2ft Fifteenths; one slightly smaller in scale to the other.

 

I think it took a couple of afternoons to remove the Viole pipes and the 2ft flute pipes, remove the swell shutters, and install my two ranks of pipes. Unfortunately, the smaller-scaled 15th wouldn't quite make a 1.1/3 rank due to the foot-holes and such, so I had to settle for a 17th; closing up the toes a bit so that it wasn't too loud.

 

Amazingly, with just 7 stops, the shutters removed and an octave coupler, that little ensemble accompanied everything for about 5 weeks, and managed to support a large congregation.

 

When the main organ became functional again, I'd grown to like the Choir Organ so much, we just left it as it was, but put the shutters back in place. It stayed like that for about 18 months, until I left. I can't tell you how good it sounded against the B & F Sw/Gt & Ped or in combination with it.

 

Before I left, I put everything back is it was, but I wish I could have left it the way I had modified it.

 

So I know that it would work very well in fact.

 

MM

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==========================

Herein lies a story of expediency, because the B & F organ in question actually had an additional stop, which had replaced possibly a Dulciana or something; and it was a rather nasty, scratchy string which didn't serve much useful purpose at all.

 

The organ was divided Sw/Gt/ped on one side of the chance, with a seperate enclosed Choir organ on the other side.

 

There was a bit of an unfortunate incident to the wiring of the church and organ, with the result that the main part of the organ was rendered useless for a good two months, and this was quite a large church with quite big congregations.

 

In the words of Jimmy Saville, "As it 'appened".....I had in my possession two ranks of rather nice 2ft Fifteenths; one slightly smaller in scale to the other.

 

I think it took a couple of afternoons to remove the Viole pipes and the 2ft flute pipes, remove the swell shutters, and install my two ranks of pipes. Unfortunately, the smaller-scaled 15th wouldn't quite make a 1.1/3 rank due to the foot-holes and such, so I had to settle for a 17th; closing up the toes a bit so that it wasn't too loud.

 

Amazingly, with just 7 stops, the shutters removed and an octave coupler, that little ensemble accompanied everything for about 5 weeks, and managed to support a large congregation.

 

When the main organ became functional again, I'd grown to like the Choir Organ so much, we just left it as it was, but put the shutters back in place. It stayed like that for about 18 months, until I left. I can't tell you how good it sounded against the B & F Sw/Gt & Ped or in combination with it.

 

Before I left, I put everything back is it was, but I wish I could have left it the way I had modified it.

 

So I know that it would work very well in fact.

 

MM

 

An interesting story, MM.

 

Actually, I did not say that it would not have worked on some level (nor did the other contributor) - simply that it did not look as if it had originally been constructed in its present form by Brindley & Foster.

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I would be interested to see these.

 

Unfortunately, I have not been able to go into the church this weekend and because I cannot go into the organ by myself, I have not been able to get any photos. Next time I have a organ lesson, I'll see what I can do, but that would probably be next weekend.

 

JA

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