DIYAPASON-L Digest #386 - Friday, September 14, 2001
 
What can Vox Humana's be easily converted into?
  by "Paul Arndt" <parndt@worldnet.att.net>
Re: What can Vox Humana's be easily converted into?
  by <TheGluePot@aol.com>
RE: [Residence Organs]  What can Vox Humana's be easily converted	 into?
  by "Fr. Larry Covington" <larry.covington@St-Louis.org>
Re: [Residence Organs]  What can Vox Humana's be easily converted  into?
  by "Hugh Knapton" <knapton@superaje.com>
RE: What can Vox Humana's be easily converted into?
  by "Larry Chace" <rlc1@etnainstruments.com>
Re: [Residence Organs]  What can Vox Humana's be easily  converted into?
  by "Larry Chace" <rlc1@etnainstruments.com>
Re: [Residence Organs]  What can Vox Humana's be easily   converted into?
  by "Hugh Knapton" <knapton@superaje.com>
Parliament Hill (admittedly off topic)
  by "Hugh Knapton" <knapton@superaje.com>
Re: What can Vox Humana's be easily   converted into?
  by "Paul Arndt" <parndt@worldnet.att.net>
Re: [Residence Organs]  Re: What can Vox Humana's be easily    converted 
  by "Larry Chace" <RLC1@etnainstruments.com>
 

(back) Subject: What can Vox Humana's be easily converted into? From: "Paul Arndt" <parndt@worldnet.att.net> Date: Thu, 13 Sep 2001 22:32:32 -0700   This may seem like a silly question, but in going through the pipework I acquired, I have ended up with three ranks of Vox pipes. Only one really belongs to the organ I am working on (Wicks opus 591... an original Wicks Theatre Pipe Organ). The organ originally had a trumpet but it has long = ago disappeared. I was wondering what the other two Vox's could be converted = to and if it is economically feasible. It seems like I read that a Vox can be fairly easily be converted to a Clarinet. What else makes sense? If any!   Paul Arndt    
(back) Subject: Re: What can Vox Humana's be easily converted into? From: <TheGluePot@aol.com> Date: Fri, 14 Sep 2001 04:16:50 EDT   Hi again Paul:   Much of the voicing of a pipe is in the shape of the shallot embouchure. = A Vox is peculiar to a Vox but can be seen on some makers also as a = Saxophone with the proper resonator. Clarinets, Tubas, Musettes, Trumpets, etc. as with all color reeds derive much of their tone to the shape of the = shallot, the geometry of the the embouchure, and the tonal formant of the vowel = cavity or resonator. Pipe design is fairly well set so that making one rank into =   another is normally just not possible.   Best to you,   Al Sefl  
(back) Subject: RE: [Residence Organs] What can Vox Humana's be easily converted into? From: "Fr. Larry Covington" <larry.covington@St-Louis.org> Date: Fri, 14 Sep 2001 09:46:56 -0500   Paul,   Vox pipes make great fishing sinkers! Otto Hoffman, the Texas organ = builder who died recently would often convert vox humanas into regals of various descriptions. The problem with all of them was tuning. Those fractional lenghth resonators did little to help and so changes of temp, humidity etc cause havoc. Most examples of such that I know of have been scarpped. I don't recommend trying to make a vox into a clarinet especially if you = have no experience in pipe making. Pick the one you like the best and sell the others!   Have fun!   Larry   > -----Original Message----- > From: Paul Arndt [SMTP:parndt@worldnet.att.net] > Sent: Friday, September 14, 2001 12:33 AM > To: Residence Organ List > Subject: [Residence Organs] What can Vox Humana's be easily > converted into? > > This may seem like a silly question, but in going through the pipework I > acquired, I have ended up with three ranks of Vox pipes. Only one really > belongs to the organ I am working on (Wicks opus 591... an original = Wicks > Theatre Pipe Organ). The organ originally had a trumpet but it has long > ago > disappeared. I was wondering what the other two Vox's could be converted > to > and if it is economically feasible. It seems like I read that a Vox can = be > fairly easily be converted to a Clarinet. What else makes sense? If any! > > Paul Arndt > > > DIYAPASON-L: a Discussion list for owners and builders of their own > Residence Pipe Organs. > HOMEPAGE : http://www.diyapason.pipechat.org > List: mailto:DIYAPASON-L@pipechat.org > Administration: mailto:owner-DIYAPASON@pipechat.org  
(back) Subject: Re: [Residence Organs] What can Vox Humana's be easily converted into? From: "Hugh Knapton" <knapton@superaje.com> Date: Fri, 14 Sep 2001 11:10:57 -0400   Regarding Paul's message....(Vox Humanas)   I am somewhat hesitant to suggest this ... but it can work.   Vox Humana to Clarinet is "relatively" simple, but involves more than just extending the resonators.   IF ONE KNOWS WHAT THEY ARE DOING ... it is possible to remove the Vox Humana resonators, replace with Rohr Schalmei, small scaled Trompette, Oboe, etc. The shallots will need to be opened a considerable amount, and the tongues will need drastic new curves, possibly shaving, or replacement. Other treatments may also be necessary.   True value (of time) places the cost of this approach well up into the same price range as new pipes... but it can produce substantial savings for those that are able to do it themselves.   If you are experienced with reeds this can work out well, but it is a lot of work. Failures in this type of project are best melted down for the keels of sailboats.   Hugh        
(back) Subject: RE: What can Vox Humana's be easily converted into? From: "Larry Chace" <rlc1@etnainstruments.com> Date: Fri, 14 Sep 2001 11:14:14 -0400   Having once (about 40 years ago) used an old Vox as the one and only pedal =   stop in my residence organ (Great: 4 ranks on slider chest and Positive: 1 =   rank on a home-made electropneumatic chest), I can appreciate Larry Covington's warning about the probable results of experiments in that direction. (I had removed the caps and let the things blast away from a chest located at the end of the pedalboard, right inside the console).   It is possible, though, to experiment in a simple way, perhaps along the lines of making a Vox Clarinetus. You can try making cylindrical paper resonators that fit right around the existing Vox resonators but are longer. (You'd need a Vox with canister tops, which you would remove). Such a thing is sort of a very long tuning slide (!) and can be made rather simply by wrapping multiple layers of paper around the resonator. (This is in imitation of the Wick book describing home-made paper pipes.)   It is easy to try and it is easy to abandon, after which you can offer the =   VOX to anyone else who wants one.   Remember, too, that not all Vox Humanas stops sound alike. You might well =   find one that you can use. I have two in storage, a Midmer-Losh and a Hinners. The Midmer-Losh rank looks remarkably like some of the ones = shown in the very fine picture book recently published by the Atlantic City Convention Hall Organ Society. The Hinners one reminds me of the late = Dave Junchen's comments to the effect that Hinners Vox Humanas are "buttery", almost like other makers' Saxophone ranks. In deed, the "Major Vox = Humana" in the very large Sanfilippo residence organ is from a Hinners theatre organ (Pekin Theatre, Pekin, Illinois); it is the "big one" among the 9 = Vox Humana ranks in that very large theatre organ.   Larry Chace    
(back) Subject: Re: [Residence Organs] What can Vox Humana's be easily converted into? From: "Larry Chace" <rlc1@etnainstruments.com> Date: Fri, 14 Sep 2001 11:38:42 -0400   I of course do not dispute Hugh Knapton's comments about Vox conversions. The simple experiments I mentioned might be of some educational value, but certainly no one should depend upon having success!   At the same time, I might imagine that the typically "closed" shallots of = a Vox, and its typically thin tongues (pressure-dependent!), might work better in a conversion that was meant for use in a small residence as opposed to a conversion for use in a large building.   Some have suggested that one of the most important ingredients in making a =   successful Vox Humana is *distance*; the greater the distance from the pipes to the listener the better the effect. (At an extreme, of course, that suggests that the best Vox Humana is the one that is not being used!)   On the recent Ron Rhode CD of the 4/34-ish theatre organ at the Shanklin Conference Center, there is an example of a "nun's chorus" effect, in = which the Vox (or both of them?) and other soft stuff *really* does sound like a =   group of women singing at a distance. I asked Allen Miller how that worked; he said he voiced the Main chamber Vox much softer than is usual = in a theatre organ. (He probably did other things as well.)   "Try it; you might like it!"   Larry Chace    
(back) Subject: Re: [Residence Organs] What can Vox Humana's be easily converted into? From: "Hugh Knapton" <knapton@superaje.com> Date: Fri, 14 Sep 2001 12:16:33 -0400   One of Larry's comments reminded me....   Whatever one does with a reed, it is ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL (if it needs to be stable) that there be a natural relationship between the length of the tongue and the resonator. This is particularly important in extreme climates.   Fractional length reeds (vox humana, and even clarinet) naturally decrease the stability by virtue of the "short" resonators. It takes a very skilled hand to allow for this, and severe conditions will ruin the best work of the finest voicer.   Where climate dictates, Trumpets (or Tubas) are often built with "harmonic trebles", often doubling, trebling, or quadrupling the resonator length.   The Vox Humana relies upon the short resonators to achieve its effect. Lengthening them will never achieve the same thing.   Hugh  
(back) Subject: Parliament Hill (admittedly off topic) From: "Hugh Knapton" <knapton@superaje.com> Date: Fri, 14 Sep 2001 13:35:13 -0400   Hi List   It has been hard to keep my mind away from the tragedy in NYC (I have tried). Just moments ago, I saw television coverage of " A National Day of Remembrance" from Parliament Hill in Ottawa.   I have never seen so many people there ... no matter what the occasion.   I sincerely hope that "all good people" will unite, and that (regardless of religious belief or doctrine) all sensible people will agree "to disagree", and respect the thoughts of others.... there is absolutely no sane reason for what we have recently witnessed. Without being totally knowledgeable of the many beliefs, I believe that the vast majority of people that are associated with the suspected ethnic factions do not endorse these recent developments.   Please!... if we must retaliate, let us go after the people ... but not the races of the people, that engineered this horrific example of warfare. The loss is horrendous, but still pales in comparison to "Hiroshima".   Sorry, I just had to say it.   Hugh  
(back) Subject: Re: What can Vox Humana's be easily converted into? From: "Paul Arndt" <parndt@worldnet.att.net> Date: Fri, 14 Sep 2001 17:16:15 -0700   Thanks all for the information. While I have worked on several theatre = pipe organs in the past, I am not that familiar with reed voicing and, thus, should probably avoid making any changes to the other Vox's especially = since the pressure will probably have to be changed. I am assuming the other two Voxs are on 5" or so wind. I am guessing the Wicks is on 8" to 10" wind pressure. I might compare the shallots of the two other Voxs to see if = they are different which I am assuming they are. One has the traditional Vox = caps with the hole for regulating and is a very bright silver color (must be a higher tin content). The other has one-half of the top unsoldered and is bent up to regulate the resonator. The Wicks has a double cap... the traditional cap with regulating hole with a larger outer cap soldered. = Three very distinct styles and other than the Wicks, I have no idea of the manufacturer of the other two.   Once again, the list comes through.   Paul Arndt    
(back) Subject: Re: [Residence Organs] Re: What can Vox Humana's be easily converted into? From: "Larry Chace" <RLC1@etnainstruments.com> Date: Fri, 14 Sep 2001 22:36:26 -0400   Paul mentioned a Vox Humana with "a very bright silver color (must be a >higher tin content)". It is *possible* that these pipes are made of Hoyt >metal, which is basically lead with a very thin layer of tin, the two >being rolled together to form a single sheet. The material *looks* like >tin (because the surface *is* tin), but is is basically lead, as may be >evident from its weight.   Now, Hoyt metal isn't necessarily bad, but it does suffer from structural problems (being not as stiff as spotted metal), and so one should take precautions in racking the pipes.   Larry Chace