PipeChat Digest #8 - Wednesday, July 23, 1997 me pipe organ?? by Nelson and Tracy Denton <firstname.lastname@example.org> pe organ supporting frame by Nelson and Tracy Denton <email@example.com> me pipe organ?? by <SCoonrod@aol.com> PECHAT Procedures/ An Observation by <MFulk70776@aol.com> me pipe organ?? by <MFulk70776@aol.com> me pipe organ?? by <Ronnymn@aol.com> beautiful site-midiplayers and another site. by Stanley Lowkis <firstname.lastname@example.org> pe organ supporting frame by Wm. G. Chapman <email@example.com> me pipe organ?? by Wm. G. Chapman <firstname.lastname@example.org> me pipe organ?? by Stanley Lowkis <email@example.com> ation needed, Please by dmjd <firstname.lastname@example.org> me pipe organ?? by <SCoonrod@aol.com> formation needed, Please by Wm. G. Chapman <email@example.com> me pipe organ?? by bruce cornely <firstname.lastname@example.org> g TO Interest:? (Was Re: Home pipe organ??) by Shirley <email@example.com> formation needed, Please by bruce cornely <firstname.lastname@example.org> dding TO Interest:? (Was Re: Home pipe organ??) by bruce cornely <email@example.com> ul's UMC, Houston by Barry H. Bodie <firstname.lastname@example.org> . Paul's UMC, Houston by bruce cornely <email@example.com> pe organ supporting frame by <NFexec@aol.com> me pipe organ?? by <NFexec@aol.com> me pipe organ?? by <NFexec@aol.com> me pipe organ?? by Paul F. Stapel <firstname.lastname@example.org>
(back) Subject: Re: Home pipe organ?? From: Nelson and Tracy Denton <email@example.com> Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 07:50:26 Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii" At 12:33 PM 7/22/97 -0400, you wrote: >Kenneth O. Woods wrote: > >> > Think of what the effect would be if home pipe organs were made >> > affordable and sizeable >> , for a mass production approach. Yuk you say? There are >> > >> Yes, I can hear the *yuk*'s and *barf*'s, but I would prefer it to the >> home >> organ I currently have which is completely non-pipe in all aspects. It >> all >> comes down to "is there a market"? Perhaps the approach of digitally >> sampled >> electronics would be sufficiently for a home/practice organ. Any organ >> builders >> care to comment? > >I'm not a builder but I can't help but be reminded of an article >publishedby Audio Magazine in the 60's which described in some detail >the components >of unique pipe organ tonalities and approaches needed to simulate them >electronically. His experiments led him to the conclusion that the key >to the most realistic >simulation of pipe organ sound was in the number of descrete sound >sources. >(the ideal would be one amplifier and speaker for each pipe) The tonal >character >of the entire instrument would rely on the (unnatural) colorations of >the indvidual >speakers. Other than top-notch powered sub-woofers, the battery of >amplifiers >and speakers would be extremely modest. > Impractical? Of course. But if you want to create a pipe organ presence > > in the room you cannot funnel the best digital source material through >just a few > speakers. > Have anyone of you esteemed ladies and gentlemen ever encountered >such > an instrument? > > Stan Lowkis > Ipswich, Mass. > > Neil Shaw of Shaw organs in Burlington Ontario. Patented such a process back in the 70's. The Shaw organs he built were considered by many to be the finest sounding instruments in their day on the market. He placed hundreds of speakers in the bottom of long cardboard concrete forming tubes that were cut to length to resonate at the pitch of the note played. Sadly through no fault of his own the company could not survive the mass market "el cheapo" electronic's that followed. The Choralsello "Spelling unknown" was another early attempt to do the same sort of thing back at the turn of the century! As dad explained it to me from his seeing one as a little boy it worked like this. ( an article in Popular Mechanics from the 50's? in my possesion gives a detailed history of the instrument. unfotunately I have only two pages and not the whole article. It consisted of a series of long tubes with a drumlike diaphram mounted on one end. The drumskin was vibrated by a metal plate much like a loudspeaker and this was driven by some sort of oscilator circuit - Pre Electronic stuff!!! the effect was a mellow etherial sound I'm told. It was an expensive and unreliable mess and never caught on. The remains of such an instrument are still visable at St.Giles church in Hamilton Ontario. ( sadly just a few relays and bits and pieces - nothing of any notable interest.) I have a few of the bars that were mounted on the drum heads in my collection of "antique, historical, last of it's kind, very valuable, must be kept -do not through out cause it may be needed someday as a replacement part stuff at the shop. Along with 3- 100+ year old Spencer trackers a couple of theatre organs 10 old consoles 12 blowers dozens of old waterlogged chests and 100+ partial ranks of pipes. I guess there is nothing truly new under the sun. Nelson Denton R. A. Denton And Son Pipe Organ Builders 140 Mount Albion Road Hamilton Ontario L8K 5S8 905 561 1331 voice and fax e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com
(back) Subject: Re: Pipe organ supporting frame From: Nelson and Tracy Denton <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 08:07:35 Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii" At 05:28 PM 7/22/97 -0700, you wrote: >I am building a home organ on a limited budget. I have calculated the >cost of building JUST the frame out of 2x4 Clear White Oak. The price >is nearly $ 400.00 (106 lin. ft.) I don't want to use regular studs, >they look very unattractive even for an organ frame that is not going to >be seen. What other kinds of wood can be used for organ frames? >I have some ideas like: > >2x6 Poplar or clear pine >1x3 Rock maple > >So, what is a low cost attractive material for pipe organ frames? > >William C. Poplar and pine are the traditional materials for organ structural work. I would suggest that you look around more for cheaper suppliers of wood. Stay clear of the do it yourself hardware/lumber yards as they charge 3 to 4 time the going rate for even the poorest grades of wood, and never carry anything of any quality. Oak/Maple/Poplar in Canada runs about $3.00 a board foot for top quality wood in any size/length without extra cost for large pieces, from wood specialty dealers that's about $2.00+ or so a board foot for you U.S. folks. Your 106 lin, ft would be about $125.00 U. S. or so? If I'm not mistaken. $$$$$ Black Walnut $$$$$ sells for about $4.00 Canadian!!! from dealers! that's about $60.00 a foot from the local retail guys. Big difference Nelson Denton R. A. Denton And Son Pipe Organ Builders 140 Mount Albion Road Hamilton Ontario L8K 5S8 905 561 1331 voice and fax e-mail email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org
(back) Subject: Re: Home pipe organ?? From: SCoonrod@aol.com Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 08:26:33 -0400 (EDT) I am a serious church organist, and for years I have collected organ pipes and parts, and currently own an inventory large enough to build an 8 or 10 rank organ. The problem with building an organ from odd parts is the great ammount of time needed to clean, revoice, rewire, etc... all of the parts, and also the large space needed to install parts originally designed to go in a sizeable church organ chamber. It would be great if a company like Wicks would design and build a standard cabnit-type organ similar to some of their very small models from long ago, and let the individual buying this "affordable" organ supply and rack their own pipes. Flute, Principal, String, and maybe a 1/2 rank reed...The organ could come with a standard 16' electronic pedal bourdon (to be played by your stero speakers!) Could this be done for $20,000.00? RandyT
(back) Subject: Re: PIPECHAT Procedures/ An Observation From: MFulk70776@aol.com Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 14:24:55 -0400 (EDT) In a message dated 97-07-23 10:28:17 EDT, you write: << I also agree - The old way was much better for sorting out the good from the bad. >> There is always a price for continuing into the future. (absolutely not meant to be insolent or insulting........perhaps observing some irony, but respectfully)
(back) Subject: Re: Home pipe organ?? From: MFulk70776@aol.com Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 14:37:25 -0400 (EDT) In a message dated 97-07-23 12:30:44 EDT, you write: << I guess there is nothing truly new under the sun. Nelson Denton R. A. Denton And Son Pipe Organ Builders 140 Mount Albion Road Hamilton Ontario L8K 5S8 905 561 1331 voice and fax e-mail >> Boy!!! Would I like to visit you!!!
(back) Subject: Re: Home pipe organ?? From: Ronnymn@aol.com Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 14:39:45 -0400 (EDT) Randy, this is great thinking. Exactly the type of exploration we need. In addtion, it so strongly underlines the reason for my original note. Forgive me if I inadvertenly twist your meaning, but you almost "plead" maybe "beg" "could someone do this for $20,000.00 ?? -- $20,000.00 gadzooks!! If a couple of organ lovers with the right knowledge and education (e.g. a previous engineer poster) and the right Motivation got together and explored modern mfg. processes and modern materials- yes including the Plastics or whatever for pipes, I would bet my wife's life they could mass produce a beautiful, adequate sounding home instrument.(for far far less than 20k) I would invest in their start up stock. A slightly seperate thread, but-- so many organists are church organists, and so many churches have organs ( and some big and expensive ) that so many organists do not feel the "want" as much as a few other organists. No barbs intended, i just think its a practical fact. (please, please dont tell me to go to church)
(back) Subject: Re: A beautiful site-midiplayers and another site. From: email@example.com (Stanley Lowkis) Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 15:05:58 -0400 Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit Clarice Jane Snyder wrote: > I have the Yamaha plug-in installed but this site didn't play even > though > the little plug-in-console controler came up. Yamaha is the best > sounding > one for organ music but I've noticed that it doesn't play at all the > music > sites. I really can't stand to go to an organ music site with any > other > player installed. The easy listening stuff sounds better with this > one too. > Anybody have suggestion for this? > > Also see my Web page for an interesting midi organ link. > > >Date: Sat, 12 Jul 1997 20:22:32 -0400 > >From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Stanley Lowkis) > >X-Mailer: Mozilla 4.01 [en]C-MOENE (Win95; U) > >To: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org > >Subject: A beautiful site > > > >This is the most beautiful and moving site I have visited. pipechat > >consists of people > >who love pipe organs. Those with multimedia should be impressed with > the > >original > >music. The name of the site is ClydeSight2.0 > >http://www.ici.net/cust_pages/clyde236/ > >Does Clyde do weddings? Clarice, I'm sorry that the Yamaha plugin didn't work with clydesight 2. I tried downloading the Yamaha and had the same result. Within 'The Concert at Claws' there is a troubleshooting page. I am using Netscape 4.0 as my browser and have not experienced any difficulties at various midi sites. I hope that either this comment or one from someone more knowledgeable than I could help you enjoy the site. It worked fine with Apple Quicktime. My apologies for going so far afield but the site is worth it. Might even cause a damp eye or two .. Stan
(back) Subject: Re: Pipe organ supporting frame From: "Wm. G. Chapman" <email@example.com> Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 11:41:37 -0400 Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit Jim Saenger wrote: My previous reply did not mention steel . . . PELS would use a wood floor frame and make the chest bearers and frame from metal--right out of the hardware store so that all you had to do was cut to L and bolt it together. Looks "different" but we have never had a problem with any of them. Make sure there is adequate angle bracing to keep everything square. W.G. Chapman
(back) Subject: Re: Home pipe organ?? From: "Wm. G. Chapman" <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 12:02:43 -0400 Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit > I believe this ... began with the argument that pipe organs are more expensive than electronic organs Isn't this really a "good" organ costs more than the alternatives? > Why would pipe makers use (X) ... if they could economize ... When pipe makers economize they use aluminum and zinc. Or, they thin the walls, change the proportions to lower cost alloys, use a smaller scale and other similar practices that you as the purchaser are in no position to challenge and they can call artistic preference. > one could assemble a very nice "real" organ for a fraction of the cost of a new one. While used organs are available from the clearing house once the organ gets to a certain age or needs certain work it will cost as much as a new organ. The only savings may be sweat equity.
(back) Subject: Re: Home pipe organ?? From: email@example.com (Stanley Lowkis) Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 15:50:41 -0400 Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit Ronnymn@aol.com wrote: > I would bet my wife's life they could mass produce a > beautiful, adequate sounding home instrument.(for far far less than > 20k) The term 'mass produce' is the key word here. How many people in the 'mass'population not actively hating organ music would have the inclination or the space to install a pipe organ even if the price was: "CHRISTMAS SPECIAL 3/20 brand new INSTALLED $999.95!" What is so beautiful about pipe organs is each instrument's uniqueness. The quality of the instrument is dependent on the acoustics of the environment. A decent digital organ will cost in the thousands even with the benefits of mass production. Plus MAINTENANCE. A pipe organ without adequate maintenance will deteriorate quickly. Consider the initial purchase price merely a down payment. It's been a fun discussion!
(back) Subject: Information needed, Please From: dmjd <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: Thu, 24 Jul 1997 04:41:17 -0500 Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit Does anyone have the address and phone# for International Organ Leathers, Inc.? They used to be in South Bend IN. In lieu of that, the name and address and phone# of a source of supply would be greatly appreciated. Thanks Jim Donovan -- email: email@example.com Rainbow Ridge Farm
(back) Subject: Re: Home pipe organ?? From: SCoonrod@aol.com Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 18:36:12 -0400 (EDT) I totally agree that each organ, be it classical or theatre, gains much of its beauty (or ugliness, for that matter) from the fact that it is a unique and individual creation. It is probably true that the population in general wouldn't be interested in the organ in any shape, form, or fashion unless it would make them money. However, recently Alan Laufman sent me the specification of a small 1937 Wicks cabnit organ of 3 ranks which wouldn't take much more space than an upright piano. I think that an inventive company could come up with some kind of modern "kit" organ that they could make money on, and supply those of us who would greatly benifit from a small house organ with a modest instrument that would serve our needs. As far as maintenance is concerned, how many of us regularly climb into the chambers of the organs we play to tune an off note or perform some other type of maintenance? Well...maybe it is just a pipe dream, and I will continue driving to the church to practice...RandyT
(back) Subject: Re: Information needed, Please From: "Wm. G. Chapman" <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 16:04:59 -0400 Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit dmjd wrote: > > Does anyone have the address and phone# for International Organ > Leathers, Inc.? They used to be in South Bend IN. The Leather Supply House 412 W. Marion St. South Bend, IN 46601-1128 219.234.8990 or, Organ Supply Industries PO Box 8325 Erie PA 16505-0325 814.835.2244 There are others, depending on what you want and how far you want to go. Hope this helps. W.G. Chapman West Coast Pipe Organ Co. Alta Loma, CA
(back) Subject: Re: Home pipe organ?? From: email@example.com (bruce cornely) Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 19:16:26 -0400 Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; CHARSET=US-ASCII Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7BIT Ronnymn said: "so many organists are church organists and so many churches have organs...that so many organists don't feel the want as much as other organists..." I am a church organist, classically trained, and very partial to mechanical action pipe organs, and I could be very offended, but I'm not because you made a very good point and are most likely right. BTW, I learned at the OHS convention (Portland) last week that the Hinners company actually made a few mechanical action theatre organs (can you imagine second touch!!!). That would be interesting to me because I don't like electrical stuff in organs. Aaaaaaaanyway... most church organists don't make enough money to consider having a pipe organ (or any organ) at home, and the access advantage is probably a factor which keeps us from having the "want". I do understand that a TO by its nature demands unification and combination action etc so that you can do all of the necessary tricks of the trade. How do the TO people feel about the organs with pipes and electronics; I have never heard of a TO combination. Since getting on the pipechat line, my interest in TO/playing has been picqued. My grandmother played, so maybe there is some lonely TO gene waiting to burst forth in song. I'll keep you posted. Bruce Cornely o o o o o ______________ o o o o o o o o o ______________ o o o o o o o o o ______________ o o o o o ====================================
(back) Subject: Budding TO Interest:? (Was Re: Home pipe organ??) From: Shirley <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 19:24:03 Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii" At 19:16 07/23/97 -0400, you wrote: > Since getting on the pipechat line, my interest in >TO/playing has been picqued. My grandmother played, so maybe there is >some lonely TO gene waiting to burst forth in song. I'll keep you >posted. > > > Bruce Cornely Hee Hee Hee -- Bruce, you're from where? We need to find you the nearest ATOS chapter and working theatre pipe organ. :) :) :) If anybody can help you in that direction, these folks can!!!! --Shirley
(back) Subject: Re: Information needed, Please From: email@example.com (bruce cornely) Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 19:32:38 -0400 Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; CHARSET=US-ASCII Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7BIT Jim, Columbia Organ Leathers advertises in the Diapason, 800/423-7003 for catalog/price list. i have used Organ Supply Industries, Erie PA for years and have been satisfied; they are nice people and not only sell stuff but are great about giving advice in the "how to" areas. My catalog is at the church, but you can get their number from information. Good luck. If you are getting leather, my only advice is "don't forget the hot glue." Bruce Cornely o o o o o ______________ o o o o o o o o o ______________ o o o o o o o o o ______________ o o o o o ====================================
(back) Subject: Re: Budding TO Interest:? (Was Re: Home pipe organ??) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (bruce cornely) Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 19:40:15 -0400 Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; CHARSET=US-ASCII Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7BIT Thanks for the giggles, Shirley! At least they were for my "admission" and not my playing! I'm in Gainesville, Fl; I think the closest TO's are in Tampa/St. Pete. However, for those scavengers out there, Springfield United Methodist Church in Jacksonville FL is now closed and, I believe, the organ there was one of the Wurlitzers in the Florida Theatre studios, or possibly one in Five Points. There were actually four or five theatre organs (maybe more) in Jacksonville, but they have the "push over, smash and destroy" mentality there so they're all gone. The Florida Theatre was actually given an option to purchase the old Wurlitzer back for the auditorium, but didn't. Bruce Cornely o o o o o ______________ o o o o o o o o o ______________ o o o o o o o o o ______________ o o o o o ====================================
(back) Subject: St. Paul's UMC, Houston From: "Barry H. Bodie" <email@example.com> Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 19:38:05 -0500 Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1 Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit Peter's posting about the organ in this church reminded me that I had been there in May. The organ is a rather large Schantz, originally installed in the late 1970's or early 1980's. There are four manuals and pedal with seven divisions. If memory serves me correctly, the organist ( a substitute on the day I visited ) told me the Schantz had replaced an aging Kilgen, which had replaced an aging Pilcher in the 1930"s. The church is a very impressive neo-Gothic structure with very live acoustics. The organ is rather unfortunately placed in a very large chanber behind a 16" Principal facade. The organist told me the chamcer measures some forty feet deep. I suspect there's quite a bit of bottled of sound in there. The notable features of the organ include a positiv division and some very nice reeds on the Solo division. There is a Tuba on the solo division which, though apparently on high wind pressure, sounds much more like a chorus reed. A French Horn is also present on the Solo. The 32" pedal Bombarde is much more like a buzzy Faggott, though it does add considerable depth to the bass line in full organ. It is not particularly outstanding. Perhaps the most outstanding feature of the organ is the en chamade Trumpet. It fills the church with a very lively sound. It is voiced on approximately 15" wind pressure and was suspended by what looked to me all the world like monofilament fishing twine holding the wooden racks in place. I was able to play C.S. Lang's Tuba Tune as a test piece following Holy Communion. While the organ appears very carefully constructed and designed, I was disappointed with its sound. I suspect a good bit of my disappointment was due to the deep placement of many of the pipes within the concrete chamber. If the pipes could be brought closer to the front of the chamber, as in the new Casavant at Broadway Baptist Church in Fort Worth, I suspect the sound would be much more pleasing. I'm surprised that with an organ of such size, we had not heard more about it. Perhaps some other members of the list have opinions and more details than I am able to provide. Barry H. Bodie, M.D. Associate Professor of Surgery SIU School of Medicine Springfield, IL firstname.lastname@example.org
(back) Subject: Re: St. Paul's UMC, Houston From: email@example.com (bruce cornely) Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 21:06:09 -0400 Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; CHARSET=US-ASCII Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7BIT I heard the Schantz only once after it was put in, then I moved to Louisiana. The Kilgen, however, was really a trip. It was a magnificent sound of that era. However, the most interesing feature of that organ was that it played "out of both sides of its chamber", literally. The chamber opened to the chapel which was in the apse portion of the building. Of note is that this building is in a unique architectureal style which could be called "Gothic Baptist" with the exterior beautifully gothic english with transepts, apse, nave, tower, etc. However, when you enter the "sanctuary" you become baptist, with an auditorium albeit with pews, choir in the front and elevated with organ space above and behind (they did not opt for the baptistry). The organ space is where the chancel should be, and the apse is a small chapel. BUT, there wwas a three manual console in the chapel which played, I think, the choir, swell & solo, and some pedal (although it has been so long that my memory fails). Anyway, it was fun (for us at least) to go into the chapel when someone was playing in the sanctuary and play along with them, oooooh, maybe a step higher, or create mobile cyphers, and other various annoyances. It is amazing that I was never carried out of there in leg irons and chains (enjoy your time as a young student). Scuttlebutt has it that the organist, Bob Brewer at tt time, was responsible for some rather nice English alterations to the organ. He was in high school when I was there and played wonderfully at Chapelwood UMC. Hi Bob, wherever you are! Houston is a great place and had some wonderful organs, even way back then (70's). I was studying with Bill Barnard and singing in his wonderful choir at Christ Church Cathedral (72 rk AEolian-Skinner, Harrison) First Presby also had an AE-S Harrison. Things have changed much since I left. Well, enough of memory lane; I will be interest to hear what people closer to St. Pauls have to contribute. Bruce Cornely o o o o o ______________ o o o o o o o o o ______________ o o o o o o o o o ______________ o o o o o ====================================
(back) Subject: Re: Pipe organ supporting frame From: NFexec@aol.com Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 21:49:29 -0400 (EDT) poplar is excellent -
(back) Subject: Re: Home pipe organ?? From: NFexec@aol.com Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 22:29:29 -0400 (EDT) Your $20,000 price tag would pay for a very nice 2-manual used instrument either as a whole or as pieces assembled. You mention the trouble with the time, rebuilding, wiring, etc. Well, my friend, that is exactly why these things cost so much in the first place. If YOU do it (with some help from friends,etc) YOU save thousands of $$. There are plenty of sources for advice and help for this sort of work. You need patience, some skill (not that much believe it or not) and a modest wallet. The expensive parts are with the electronic relays, switching, etc - but even those can be purchased as used or as pieces parts new and you assemble. The tonal work and regulation is where you would need the most expert help - especially if you have a small room. The bottom notes can be VERY successfully created electronically - which eliminates much of the room needed.
(back) Subject: Re: Home pipe organ?? From: NFexec@aol.com Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 22:31:58 -0400 (EDT) maybe yes - maybe no --- sweat equity can be thousands of dollars in a relatively well kept used organ. They DO exist
(back) Subject: Re: Home pipe organ?? From: "Paul F. Stapel" <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 21:52:54 -0400 Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii" At 08:26 AM 7/23/97 -0400, Randy wrote: >. It would be great if a company like Wicks >would design and build a standard cabnit-type organ similar to some of their >very small models from long ago, and let the individual buying this >"affordable" organ supply and rack their own pipes. Flute, Principal, >String, and maybe a 1/2 rank reed... .. Randy and all (even Bruce who thinks little of WICKS apparently!!!) I have learned much from this chat line and I wish to pass along what little I know, especially if I can clear up some misconceptions of the WICKS company WICKS D O E S build such organs, from one rank trackers to 12 + ranks plus whatever digital you want... the new units are not as inexpensive as the older used models might be now, (IF you can find one-- most of them are still playing away after years and years of use -- without re-leathering,of course!!) (WICKS organs hardly ever break down hence the 'out-of-date' sounds from previous years tend to "date" WICKS unfairly.) -- The smaller units come nicely pre-voiced but , for little extra money, you can have any model personally voiced ,,, the live sound of these instruments, not to mention the recordings ., particularly the models with added Bob Walker digital copies, are most enjoyable... If you want to rack pipes, etc, money can be saved although the WICKS 10 year warranty would probably not apply unless an authorised installer puts the whole thing together... Most people who haven't visited WICKS or talked to their Sales Directors are unaware that WICKS is also a custom company, and not 'married' to any particular sound or style - the best voicers are used according to style requested and budget allowed. .. If you are within the upstate New York area, west of the Adirondacks, call me at 607 773 1495/ 722 3933 and I can certainly fill you in!!. Otherwise, call WICKS at 800-444 WICK or 618 654 2191. They are in Highland, Illinois, near St. Louis. Paul Stapel, proud Sales Director of WICKS in the up-state New York area