PipeChat Digest #1549 - Sunday, August 6, 2000
 
Fw: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ?
  by "VEAGUE" <dutchorgan@svs.net>
Fw: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ?
  by "VEAGUE" <dutchorgan@svs.net>
Fw: Concert Announcement and rebuttals....
  by "VEAGUE" <dutchorgan@svs.net>
Re: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ?
  by "Ray Thursby" <raythursby@earthlink.net>
old electronic organs
  by <quilisma@socal.rr.com>
Fw: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ?
  by "VEAGUE" <dutchorgan@svs.net>
Re: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ?
  by "Ray Thursby" <raythursby@earthlink.net>
Re: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ?
  by "Bob Scarborough" <desertbob@rglobal.net>
Re: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ?
  by "Bob Scarborough" <desertbob@rglobal.net>
Trivia(l) pursuits...
  by "Ray Thursby" <raythursby@earthlink.net>
Re: Fw: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ?
  by "Bob Scarborough" <desertbob@rglobal.net>
Re: Fw: Concert Announcement and rebuttals....
  by "Bob Scarborough" <desertbob@rglobal.net>
Re: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ?
  by "Bob Scarborough" <desertbob@rglobal.net>
Re: old electronic organs
  by "Bob Scarborough" <desertbob@rglobal.net>
Re: Trivia(l) pursuits...
  by "Bob Scarborough" <desertbob@rglobal.net>
Re: Trivia(l) pursuits...
  by "Ray Thursby" <raythursby@earthlink.net>
Re: Trivia(l) pursuits...
  by "VEAGUE" <dutchorgan@svs.net>
 


(back) Subject: Fw: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ? From: "VEAGUE" <dutchorgan@svs.net> Date: Sun, 6 Aug 2000 20:01:57 -0500   There was also an instrument made in the 40s 50s or 60s that had a = recorded tape for each note. We took one in on trade in Florida once in the 70s. = One could hold notes down till the key-tape ran out, then you had to release = it and play it again.   Someone else (early-on) made a monstrosity called the Chelso- something-or-other (ChelsoCeleste?) that had different sized tone wheels (not unlike Herr Hammond). The wheels were bigger and more in quantity. = The tone wheels and amps took up a whole room in themselves (not unlike the older Allens).   Rick     ----- Original Message ----- From: <quilisma@socal.rr.com> To: PipeChat <pipechat@pipechat.org> Sent: Sunday, August 06, 2000 7:45 PM Subject: Re: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ?     > Ah, the "Rangertone", wasn't it? But I only know it from books ... I've never seen > one. > > Welte as in the pipe-organ builder? > > DesertBob is probably correct in a practical sense ... Hammond was probably the first > commercially-successful pipeless electro-mechanical organ to enter the mass market > ... wasn't the Everett Orgatron slightly later? And TECHNICALLY it was a reed organ. > > Cheers, > > Bud > > Bob Elms wrote: > > > Desert Bob is not correct here. My reference gives the following information: > > > > The first electric organ was developed by a Russian physicist in the = USA in early > > 1920s. It used spinning disks and photo-electric cells and had two manuals but no > > pedals. He named the instrunment "The Photonie". He usd two banks of stops, one > > to produce the fundamental tone and insert harmonics, and the other = to allow > > chords to be played by depression a single note after the fashion of = the piano > > accordeon. This instrument was followed by the "Phototone" built by Edwin Welte, > > a German in the USA, who used transparent disks with the desired wave form > > printed on the disk. > > A third man, Major Ranger built an electronic organ in the early 30s, again in > > the USA using a system of tuning forks set in vibration electrically. > > Laurens Hammond followed in 1935, but he was far from the first. > > Bob E. > > > > > must remember the times...the mid 1930's, when electronic = instruments were > > > completely unheard of , > > > > "Pipe Up and Be Heard!" > > PipeChat: A discussion List for pipe/digital organs & related topics > > HOMEPAGE : http://www.pipechat.org > > List: mailto:pipechat@pipechat.org > > Administration: mailto:admin@pipechat.org > > Subscribe/Unsubscribe: mailto:requests@pipechat.org > > > "Pipe Up and Be Heard!" > PipeChat: A discussion List for pipe/digital organs & related topics > HOMEPAGE : http://www.pipechat.org > List: mailto:pipechat@pipechat.org > Administration: mailto:admin@pipechat.org > Subscribe/Unsubscribe: mailto:requests@pipechat.org >      
(back) Subject: Fw: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ? From: "VEAGUE" <dutchorgan@svs.net> Date: Sun, 6 Aug 2000 20:03:56 -0500   The Everet was an amplified reed instrument which WurliTzer bought-out and cheapened it from there. I be wrong?   Rick     ----- Original Message ----- From: Bob Elms <elmsr@albanyis.com.au> To: PipeChat <pipechat@pipechat.org> Sent: Sunday, August 06, 2000 7:42 PM Subject: Re: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ?     > Granted, but that is not what he said. He said completely unheard of. I thought the > Everett was of about the same time as the Hammond. From what I can remember it was a > completely unwieldy instrument having dozens of radio valves in it with the consequent > heat problem but maybe I am wrong there. > Bob . > > quilisma@socal.rr.com wrote: > > > Ah, the "Rangertone", wasn't it? But I only know it from books ... = I've never seen > > one. > > > > Welte as in the pipe-organ builder? > > > > DesertBob is probably correct in a practical sense ... Hammond was probably the first > > commercially-successful pipeless electro-mechanical organ to enter the mass market > > ... wasn't the Everett Orgatron slightly later? And TECHNICALLY it was = a reed organ. > > > > Cheers, > > > > Bud > > > > Bob Elms wrote: > > > > > Desert Bob is not correct here. My reference gives the following information: > > > > > > The first electric organ was developed by a Russian physicist in the USA in early > > > 1920s. It used spinning disks and photo-electric cells and had two manuals but no > > > pedals. He named the instrunment "The Photonie". He usd two banks of stops, one > > > to produce the fundamental tone and insert harmonics, and the other to allow > > > chords to be played by depression a single note after the fashion of the piano > > > accordeon. This instrument was followed by the "Phototone" built by Edwin Welte, > > > a German in the USA, who used transparent disks with the desired = wave form > > > printed on the disk. > > > A third man, Major Ranger built an electronic organ in the early = 30s, again in > > > the USA using a system of tuning forks set in vibration = electrically. > > > Laurens Hammond followed in 1935, but he was far from the first. > > > Bob E. > > > > > > > must remember the times...the mid 1930's, when electronic instruments were > > > > completely unheard of , > > > > > > "Pipe Up and Be Heard!" > > > PipeChat: A discussion List for pipe/digital organs & related = topics > > > HOMEPAGE : http://www.pipechat.org > > > List: mailto:pipechat@pipechat.org > > > Administration: mailto:admin@pipechat.org > > > Subscribe/Unsubscribe: mailto:requests@pipechat.org > > > > "Pipe Up and Be Heard!" > > PipeChat: A discussion List for pipe/digital organs & related topics > > HOMEPAGE : http://www.pipechat.org > > List: mailto:pipechat@pipechat.org > > Administration: mailto:admin@pipechat.org > > Subscribe/Unsubscribe: mailto:requests@pipechat.org > > -- > ----------------------------------------------------- > Click here for Free Video!! > http://www.gohip.com/freevideo/ > > > > "Pipe Up and Be Heard!" > PipeChat: A discussion List for pipe/digital organs & related topics > HOMEPAGE : http://www.pipechat.org > List: mailto:pipechat@pipechat.org > Administration: mailto:admin@pipechat.org > Subscribe/Unsubscribe: mailto:requests@pipechat.org >      
(back) Subject: Fw: Concert Announcement and rebuttals.... From: "VEAGUE" <dutchorgan@svs.net> Date: Sun, 6 Aug 2000 20:08:30 -0500   And to think I took basic training in 1971 at Fort Jackson! We had C-3s there then in walnut or brown mahogany consoles.     ----- Original Message ----- From: Storandt, Peter <pstorandt@okcu.edu> To: 'PipeChat' <pipechat@pipechat.org> Sent: Sunday, August 06, 2000 2:45 PM Subject: RE: Concert Announcement and rebuttals....     > Jesse's from NC. But SC has the distinction of being the country's most > anti-gay state according to a lengthy analysis last year reported in the New > York Times. > > -----Original Message----- > From: Bob Scarborough [mailto:desertbob@rglobal.net] > Sent: Sunday, August 06, 2000 7:47 AM > To: PipeChat > Subject: Re: Concert Announcement and rebuttals.... > > > At 12:28 PM 8/6/2000 -0700, you wrote: > >Ah! Why does it seem so many South Carolina organists leave the = state?!?! > >:-) :-) (I'm originally from Greenville...)<snip> > > Jesse Helms and company, aided and abetted by rabid conservatism, and = the > Southern Baptists, perhaps? > > DeserTBoB > > "Pipe Up and Be Heard!" > PipeChat: A discussion List for pipe/digital organs & related topics > HOMEPAGE : http://www.pipechat.org > List: mailto:pipechat@pipechat.org > Administration: mailto:admin@pipechat.org > Subscribe/Unsubscribe: mailto:requests@pipechat.org > > "Pipe Up and Be Heard!" > PipeChat: A discussion List for pipe/digital organs & related topics > HOMEPAGE : http://www.pipechat.org > List: mailto:pipechat@pipechat.org > Administration: mailto:admin@pipechat.org > Subscribe/Unsubscribe: mailto:requests@pipechat.org >      
(back) Subject: Re: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ? From: "Ray Thursby" <raythursby@earthlink.net> Date: Sun, 6 Aug 2000 18:04:27 -0700   I think Rick Veague is talking about the "Choralcello" (or was it "Choracello"?). I seem to remember reading a description of that = instrument (whatever it was) that fits his comment.   Also, who can forget the Optigan and its interchangeable sound discs? Even if you'd really like to forget it.... I must admit I wouldn't mind having one of those (they seem to have vanished from the Goodwill stores, alas), = if only because it was the dumbest instrument I've ever heard or played...    
(back) Subject: old electronic organs From: <quilisma@socal.rr.com> Date: Sun, 06 Aug 2000 18:16:02 -0700   What was that Radar-Range thing that Baldwin made for awhile? Cincinnati Symphony has one (replacing the four-manual Hook/Austin, but that's a rant for another day) and it's TRULY dreadful ... requires a tech onsite to make it play every time they use it ... of course, Baldwin being in Cincinnati (or was), they DONATED it. Wave-Form? Short Wave? Permanent Wave? Something like that ...   Cheers,   Bud    
(back) Subject: Fw: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ? From: "VEAGUE" <dutchorgan@svs.net> Date: Sun, 6 Aug 2000 20:48:43 -0500   The Optigan had a disc that - yes folks -you too could sound just like Lawrence Welk!   Those dreadful things our competitor sold - and we took lots of them in on trade!   Rick     ----- Original Message ----- From: Ray Thursby <raythursby@earthlink.net> To: PipeChat <pipechat@pipechat.org> Sent: Sunday, August 06, 2000 8:04 PM Subject: Re: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ?     > I think Rick Veague is talking about the "Choralcello" (or was it > "Choracello"?). I seem to remember reading a description of that instrument > (whatever it was) that fits his comment. > > Also, who can forget the Optigan and its interchangeable sound discs? = Even > if you'd really like to forget it.... I must admit I wouldn't mind = having > one of those (they seem to have vanished from the Goodwill stores, = alas), if > only because it was the dumbest instrument I've ever heard or played... > > > "Pipe Up and Be Heard!" > PipeChat: A discussion List for pipe/digital organs & related topics > HOMEPAGE : http://www.pipechat.org > List: mailto:pipechat@pipechat.org > Administration: mailto:admin@pipechat.org > Subscribe/Unsubscribe: mailto:requests@pipechat.org >      
(back) Subject: Re: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ? From: "Ray Thursby" <raythursby@earthlink.net> Date: Sun, 6 Aug 2000 18:48:06 -0700   Rick --   Tell me you have a warehouse full of Optigan trade-ins...I wanna have one!   Nobody ever told me I had good musical taste....   Ray    
(back) Subject: Re: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ? From: "Bob Scarborough" <desertbob@rglobal.net> Date: Sun, 06 Aug 2000 18:57:08   At 08:28 AM 8/7/2000 +0800, you wrote: >Desert Bob is not correct here.<snip>   Well, since you're going to be picayune, allow me to correct YOU!   >The first electric organ was developed by a Russian physicist in the USA in early >1920s. It used spinning disks and photo-electric cells and had two manuals but no >pedals. He named the instrunment "The Photonie".<snip>   ....and it was never heard from again, as it was never commercially developed. Besides, I had alluded to the Cahill Telharmonium of 1897, which predated the "Patooie" by at least twenty years, and was the basis for the Hammond design. The Photonie was also known for having a tone that no one would care to listen to for very long!   >This instrument was followed by the "Phototone" built by Edwin Welte, >a German in the USA, who used transparent disks with the desired wave form >printed on the disk.<snip>   Wrong! Welte's Phototone didn't come about until 1936 a year after the Hammond Model A had been in the marketplace, and was first exhibited at the festival of the Olympic Games in Berlin that year. This original prototype was destroyed during World War II, and no copies were ever built, although the drawings were saved. The Welte photodisk organ would also have been very expensive to build. Interestingly, the principle showed up in the US again in the 1960s as the budget-priced "Optigan", which used user-installed plastic disks. It was also used by Baldwin for a short time, who simply dusted off Welte's design (much as Hammond did to Cahill's), but the same problems that plagued Welte...expensive, heavy and delicate construction for some...also doomed the photodisk Baldwins.   >A third man, Major Ranger built an electronic organ in the early 30s, again in >the USA using a system of tuning forks set in vibration electrically.   Another failure that never made it to market, nor past the prototype stage.   When I said that electronic poseurs had "never been heard before", I was indeed correct. The "Photonie" and the "Phototone" were never manufactured; indeed both never made it past the prototype stage. Hammond, on the other hand, was the first to mass market an electric instrument that claimed to "sound like an organ". This was because Hammond was a mix of both engineer and shrewed businessman, and knew the value of hyperbole and flagrant advertising claims, as well as the principles of mass production to provide economies of scale to get his organs into homes and churches.   By the end of 1935, more people had heard the Model A and its tone cabinets than had heard all other electric musical instruments ever created. In short, Hammond was a commercial success, whereas the others were failures in the US. England, however, is another story entirely, where electrostatic organs in full-scale pipe organ consoles made by Comptons predated the arrival of Hammond's tonewheel organ by a few years, and were indeed more tonally satisfactory. However, cost of the Compton Melotone vis =E1 vis the Hammond made the tonewheel organ much cheaper, even after freight and customs charges of parts, and Hammond flourished in England as well. Hammond Organs were assembled in London of American parts and English consoles (of very fine quality, I'm told) by Boosey and Hawkes.   Of particular interest here is a little-known fully electronic organ, developed in England in 1930, called the Coupleux and Givelet Organ. This was supposedly developed in the late '20s under British patents, and was actually built and brought to market. The assumption of many electromusicologists is that the Coupleux and Givelet was merely bulldozed by Comptons, who, having a nice stack of cash from a successful theatre organ business, were able to develop their Melotone quickly and market it more successfully. There is no trace of the Coupleux and Givelet after the introduction of the electrostatic organ by Comptons in the early '30s.   Back in the USA, Hammond was unchallenged until a fellow who worked in M.P. M=F6ller's pipe shop in Hagerstown, Maryland came up with what was later known as the Everett Orgatron. The Orgatron, brought to market by Everett Piano Co. in 1938, was tonally far better than the Hammond. It used the electrostatic principle similar what Comptons had used, only this time using actual wind-blown reeds on 5" wind, keyed with conventional pipe organ consoles, which contained minature blowers, regulators, chests and pallets! The Orgatron was expensive, but was nevertheless a commercial success that peeved Laurens Hammond. I played a ten rank Orgatron (a huge beast of half a ton!), and can attest to its tonal success when compared to the Hammond. Unfortunately, the Orgatron design was sold to Wurlitzers during the war years, who immediately set about cheaping and design, making it free-running by 1954, and abandoning it entirely by the late '50s.   DeserTBoB  
(back) Subject: Re: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ? From: "Bob Scarborough" <desertbob@rglobal.net> Date: Sun, 06 Aug 2000 19:02:18   At 08:42 AM 8/7/2000 +0800, you wrote: >He said completely unheard of.<snip>   Unheard, as in by using one's ears. Surely, reader READ about such developments, but never HEARD one. Sorry for the semantics faux pas.   >I thought the >Everett was of about the same time as the Hammond.<snip>   Wrong...1938.   >From what I can remember it was a >completely unwieldy instrument having dozens of radio valves in it with the consequent >heat problem but maybe I am wrong there.<snip>   You are describing the Compton Melotone to a tee. The Orgatron was also QUITE unwieldy (half a ton for ten ranks), and was known to collapse many floors of houses. It also did contain more "valves" in it than did the two-tube Hammond, especially in the ten rank configuration, but these numbers paled when compared to many e-orgs of the '50s, many of which contained hundreds of tubes. Indeed, a large Allen of the time was known to heat the choir loft quite nicely in winter!   DeserTBoB  
(back) Subject: Trivia(l) pursuits... From: "Ray Thursby" <raythursby@earthlink.net> Date: Sun, 6 Aug 2000 19:08:46 -0700   Since you're such a fount of information (and I thought my noggin was crammed with useless stuff! I bow to a real master...) O Desert-MaN, what about the first efforts by Wurlitzer (in the late 1930s, I think) to do an electronic instrument? This predated their Everett-based design. I know nothing about it (aside from once having seen a reference to it) but I'm sure you do!   Likewise, didn't Gulbransen have a primitive electronic based on an = outside design around the same time?   Think I'll stick to my Hammond in the electronic department, at least = until I accumulate enough parts to build my five-manual Optigan....   Ray    
(back) Subject: Re: Fw: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ? From: "Bob Scarborough" <desertbob@rglobal.net> Date: Sun, 06 Aug 2000 19:18:05   At 08:01 PM 8/6/2000 -0500, you wrote: >There was also an instrument made in the 40s 50s or 60s that had a = recorded >tape for each note. We took one in on trade in Florida once in the = 70s.<snip>   I remember those...'50s technology, as magnetic tape did not exist in the '40s, but I can't remember the name of them. Didn't last long, either! The name "Mellotron" sticks in my far-distant memory on this one, and I seem to recall they were manufactured for awhile in the 1960s. Analog synth freaks will remember this one!   >Someone else (early-on) made a monstrosity called the Chelso- >something-or-other (ChelsoCeleste?) that had different sized tone wheels >(not unlike Herr Hammond). The wheels were bigger and more in quantity. = The >tone wheels and amps took up a whole room in themselves (not unlike the >older Allens).<snip>   You MAY be alluding to the Mastersonic Organ by Messrs. Goodell and Swedien, who were employed by the Minnesota Electronics Corp. It was indeed a tonewheel organ similar to Hammond, but used different sized "pitchwheels" (mostly to eliminate the "Ham-burger Temperament" problem that Hammond had, and denied) and did not use the "harmonic sythesis" like Cahill's Telharmonium and Hammond's organ. Instead, the Mastersonic used different shaped pole pieces to influence different harmonic development = in the resulting waveform, a process that yielded reportedly far better results, since true harmonics were heard, rather than "tempered" ones, as in the case of the Hammond. Each "pitchwheel" resembled a paddlewheel = more than a clock gear, as did Hammond's. These were very expensive instruments, and very few actually made it to market. Still, it showed that there were better electromagetic techniques than what Cahill and Hammond used.   DeserTBoB    
(back) Subject: Re: Fw: Concert Announcement and rebuttals.... From: "Bob Scarborough" <desertbob@rglobal.net> Date: Sun, 06 Aug 2000 19:33:21   At 08:08 PM 8/6/2000 -0500, you wrote: >And to think I took basic training in 1971 at Fort Jackson! We had C-3s >there then in walnut or brown mahogany consoles.<snip>   They MIGHT have been a MIL-spec version, the C-2G or C-3G, coupled with an equally MIL-spec ER-40G tone cabinet. "G" models were Government-ordered Hammonds that included carrying handles (spiffy for setting up for a recital in a rice paddy!) and an on-board monitor amp driven by two 6V6s into a 12" speaker. During WW II, Hammond produced a Model CG for the Government, essentially a Model C with similar accoutrements, minus the later monitor speaker. C-2Gs and C-3Gs were found in almost every = military chapel built during the '40s and '50s. I played a C2-G/ER-40G at the Arnold Heights Chapel at March AFB, a Korean War-era cinder block affair, and the old main chapel also had a similar pairing. The new chapel, built in the mid-60s and rather devoid of typical military base architecture, = got a rather nice three manual/drawknob Allen TC-series, then a pretty fancy e-org by any description. The base commander's wife, you see, was an organist herself, and personally held auditions for all applicants. March was probably one of the few military installations outside of West Point and the Air Farce Academy to have a regular organ recital series, also!   DeserTBoB  
(back) Subject: Re: Hammond and the FTC, was organs ? Piano ? From: "Bob Scarborough" <desertbob@rglobal.net> Date: Sun, 06 Aug 2000 19:36:04   At 06:04 PM 8/6/2000 -0700, you wrote: >I think Rick Veague is talking about the "Choralcello" (or was it >"Choracello"?). I seem to remember reading a description of that = instrument >(whatever it was) that fits his comment.<snip>   May well be a remarketing of the aforementioned Minnesota Magnasonic.   >Also, who can forget the Optigan and its interchangeable sound discs? = Even >if you'd really like to forget it.... I must admit I wouldn't mind having >one of those<snip>   Ah, you are not alone! There's an Optigan website, complete with Optigan users group! Simply search on Optigan and you'll find it!   DeserTBoB  
(back) Subject: Re: old electronic organs From: "Bob Scarborough" <desertbob@rglobal.net> Date: Sun, 06 Aug 2000 19:41:28   At 06:16 PM 8/6/2000 -0700, you wrote: >Wave-Form? Short Wave? Permanent >Wave? Something like that ...<snip>   Baldwin Light Wave...didn't last long at all, and was beset with all the problems that Welte encountered on his original prototype in 1936. I've heard about this installation, and I believe it to be one of the only LightWave Baldwins ever installed in any venue of any consequence. Although the waveforms were there, the problem of initial and final partials remained, and was handled in the traditional Baldwin fashion, using elastomeric contacts (similar to the "rubber baby buggy bumpers" on your Ham/Snooze 825) to at least try to modulate the tone somewhat.   DeserTBoB  
(back) Subject: Re: Trivia(l) pursuits... From: "Bob Scarborough" <desertbob@rglobal.net> Date: Sun, 06 Aug 2000 20:09:58   At 07:08 PM 8/6/2000 -0700, you wrote: >what >about the first efforts by Wurlitzer (in the late 1930s, I think) to do an >electronic instrument? This predated their Everett-based design. I know >nothing about it (aside from once having seen a reference to it) but I'm >sure you do!<snip>   Ah, therein lies a tale! Wurlitzer, who had ceased pipe organ production due to the advent of talkies and the Depression, was looking forward to sharing some of Laurens Hammond's "pie", and hungered for a marketable, cost-effective design. The search originated internally, and was directed at notes and doodles of none other than Robert Hope-Jones, who had foretold of "pipeless organs" as early as 1896 during his Birkenhead days in "Merrie Olde". However, the search was fruitless, as Hope-Jones, being absorbed as he was in matters of pipe organs, never set about a concrete design. Meanwhile, Thaddeus Cahill already was working on just such a design, patented in the US in 1897, which was the basis for Hammond's later design. Wurlitzers, not having anyone able to deal with electricity beyond the standard DC organ actions, then went looking elsewhere, and found the Orgatron, which the fellow from M=F6ller had already developed. Everett Piano had already struck a deal for the Orgatron, but Wurlitzer lusted after its design and success. With production shut down by the War Production Board during World War II, and needing an infusion of cash, Wurlitzers was successful in obtaining the Orgatron patents from Everett in 1943, and hoped to compete head-on with Hammond in the postwar market. However, there was a problem for them, as another fellow in Allentown, PA had been fooling around with tube-driven oscillators controlled by a pipe organ console, and others were also dabbling in the newly-improved field of electronics, which had benefitted greatly from government investment on research and development in the early war years. That fellow, of course, was Jerry Markowitz, who named his organ after his home town. Baldwin Piano also had been doing research and, along with Allen, had full console models available as early as 1946. Wurlitzers was undaunted, and introducted its Model 20, basically a cheapened Orgatron, that same year.   Wurlitzers kept cheapening the Orgatron design, hoping to make it cost effective, culminating its big reed consoles with the Model 50 in 1947. Other "home" console models with the now-standard "flat 25" pedalboard kept on into the '50s, and some "schpinette" designs were still being produced as late as 1961, but the emphasis on Orgatron technology was pretty much over by the Model 50. Wurlitzer by then had amassed its own electronics design and engineering group, who began turning out the awful tube (and later transistor) divider organs that placed Wurlitzers right near the bottom of the e-org market, along with Thomas.   >Likewise, didn't Gulbransen have a primitive electronic based on an outside >design around the same time?<snip>   Gulbransen didn't hit the e-org market until around 1950, with its single-manual "Columbia" models, which were of little consequence. It wasn't until Gulbransen procured the design services of Dick Peterson, who designed the Rialto "K", that Gulbransen became a big player. It was also Peterson's friendship with Don Leslie that helped design the "K", along with its companion 100GK speaker system. Peterson, as one of his last organbuilding jobs, designed a custom analog instrument for Leslie's home in Altadena, CA, based on a gutted Rodgers "Trio" console, and also containing three ranks of pipes. Leslie still has the organ, but reportedly doesn't play much at all anymore at age 91 (or so).   DeserTBoB    
(back) Subject: Re: Trivia(l) pursuits... From: "Ray Thursby" <raythursby@earthlink.net> Date: Sun, 6 Aug 2000 20:23:40 -0700   BoB, you were so right about the Optigan website! I checked it out and = found (among other things) that it has had more than 21,000 visitors since its establishment in 1999. Shared lunacy!   Too bad the evil little things were never developed to their full = potential (multiple manuals, pedals, tracker action, etc...you'd have something = worse than Baldwin spinets to carp about!   By the way -- the embryonic Wurlitzer I was thinking of was a prototype developed by one Professor Trautwein in Germany, and was supposedly to = have been called the "Trautonium" if it had ever reached production...which it didn't....   Ray    
(back) Subject: Re: Trivia(l) pursuits... From: "VEAGUE" <dutchorgan@svs.net> Date: Sun, 6 Aug 2000 22:53:01 -0500   Speaking of the War Department, WurliTzers' North Tonowanda plant retooled and produced air plane dials and guages for the Air Force during WWII.   Rick