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Worcester Cathedral - Action


sotto
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Some members will remember that I was a fairly vocal critic of the decision to scrap the old Worcester organ, well that's water under the bridge now. The new quire organ sounds fabulous, I'm a particular fan of the solo Cor Anglais.

 

I played for weekend services when my own choir sang a couple of years ago and enjoyed it thoroughly, although I found the Gt-Ped (+) toe piston hard to locate which caused me some problems. More recently I played for a visiting choir last Saturday and again found the Gt-Ped toe piston hard to locate, in fact I gave up on it, but I really felt disconnected between the keyboards and the pipes in a way that I don't think I've ever felt with any other action. I'm no tracker action purist, far from, nor am I the sort of organist that sits there hitting the same key repeatedly to test the repitition.

 

I wonder if anyone else has felt this, or is it just me?

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There is a picture of the console on our website here:

 

http://www.tickell-organs.co.uk/specinfo/opus65.htm

 

The Gt-P is just to the right of the swell pedals.

 

As for the key action, perhaps you don't like the toggle-touch mechanism, as others have praised the speed and repetition of the action. It would be interesting to know if there is any consensus on whether players like toggle-touch or not on electric action instruments.

 

Good wishes,

 

Kenneth Tickell

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The Gt-P is just to the right of the swell pedals.

 

 

I know where it is, of course, and how to switch it to operate as a + stepper piston, but as a very occasional visiting organist my foot just doesn't quite find it to be where I expect, I'm sure I'd soon get used to it with more familiarity.

 

I'd like to stress again that my question above is in the context of my overall appreciation of the instrument which I regard as very fine indeed and a great success.

 

 

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There is a picture of the console on our website here:

 

http://www.tickell-organs.co.uk/specinfo/opus65.htm

 

.... It would be interesting to know if there is any consensus on whether players like toggle-touch or not on electric action instruments.

 

 

 

Kenneth Tickell

 

Speaking personally, I do not - neither do I like it on draw-stop solenoids (although I understand that units without toggle-touch are considerably more expensive).

 

I have not played the new organ - only the former instrument. However, from the appearance of the pedal sweep on the photograph, the G.O. to Pedal reversible piston is where I should expect to find it.

 

For the record, my preference is also for dark-coloured jamb panels, which give a greater contrast when reading the stop-heads, particularly under certain lighting conditions. They do not need to be ebonised - my 'own' church instrument has jamb panels of rosewood (as are also the key-cheeks and key-slips). They look elegant and I find the contrast which they provide to be more practical.

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- neither do I like it on draw-stop solenoids -

 

("it" in the above quote being toggle action).

 

Following on from his earlier post (for which many thanks), Kenneth Tickell or one of his colleagues in the craft is far better placed than I to comment on this remark, though I have sometimes found drawstop units which do not have a toggle action can 'bounce' if the pistons are prodded too quickly. This can result in the knob ending up in an intermediate position in which the stop can be either on or off, depending whether the switch contact had operated or not, or even ending up where it originally came from!

 

I used to find this happened from time to time on c. 1930s Willis III consoles for instance, and it can also occur on one which I built myself many years ago using older type Kimber Allen solenoids which did not have a toggle action. I used these because, like pcnd, I quite like non-toggled ones. Of course, nowadays the solenoids will usually be driven using electronic circuitry which always delivers a current impulse of the same duration regardless of how long or short the initial switch closure at the piston might be.

 

So the 'bounce' problem I've just outlined probably doesn't matter much nowadays.

 

CEP

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