Wild Air

Archive for the ‘Organ Design and Technical Stuff’ category

The Biography of a Pipe Organ

November 19th, 2015

A NEW BOOK! Read the biography of an organ, and with it, the biography of a city. The Estey pipe organ in Marion’s Memorial Coliseum was one for Estey’s storied “luminous” consoles.  That in itself should make this book worth reading.  But more than that, the organ was a symbol of all that was good, […]

  Organ pipes are durable.  In fact, well-made organ pipes, properly cared-for, can last nearly forever.  They become a portal to the past, as we hear sounds that were crafted decades or even centuries ago. Part of a major organ project, such as the one at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Shelbyville, is repairing and […]

Together, new pipes and old will form a new chorus of sounds for St. Joseph’s Church.

Note: There comes a time in almost every organ project when the customer is wondering when they will see their organ again. Rebuilding an organ such as St. Joseph’s 1912 M.P. Moller organ is labor intensive and time-consuming. Besides all the big construction, each individual pipe from the old organ has to be assessed, cleaned, […]

When we last checked in on the pipe craftsmen in the Czech Republic, they had poured sheets of hot liquid metal onto a long table to cast the material for the new organ pipes for the Shelbyville organ. Then, we had to wait. Even in our busy, hi-tech world, some things take patience. If we […]

  What’s so special about a pipe organ? Well… THE PIPES! The new organ at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Shelbyville, IN, will include pipes made by the skilled hands of master craftsmen over a century ago, and undergoing restoration by skilled hands in our shop, and in the shop of our master reed maker, […]

So, if you’ve been following along, we’ve come up with the perfect recipe for the delicious soup that will be the Shelbyville organ. Let’s see… In a 4 quart pot, combine 3 quarts of hearty broth, 2 quarts of tomato sauce, 2 1/2 pounds of beef, 4 large potatoes, 2 large onions, 3 celery stalks, […]

  Today, I want to share some random thoughts about a process that isn’t at all random – designing, or in the case of the Shelbyville organ, re-designing the sound of a pipe organ. It continues to amaze me how many people, even including some otherwise competent musicians, don’t understand the basics of this most […]

 As I write this on July 14, work is progressing in the shop on the pipes we removed from the organ in early June. Just getting them cleaned up is a long process that will take a few more weeks.  As well, like a small business must do, we are also progressing on other projects. […]

  Imagine. You have been standing in the same spot for over 100 years. Your spot is high in one end of a great building. When you took up your position, the building was still fairly fresh and new. A century older now, nearly every corner of that building has been repeatedly cleaned, painted, and […]

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