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  • upgrading Rodgers analog organ-Reverb unit?

    Hi all,
    We just had a nice visit from good friends---he was my first organ teacher when I was 7 and he was 18! He tried out my organ (new to us last summer--a Rodgers Scarborough 110 analog). He said it's a very good instrument, and in good shape (he himself has an Allen Quantum). He did suggest we look into adding a reverb to it. He pointed out that it would really add to the sound quality in our living room (as opposed to how it SHOULD sound, in a church with high walls, etc.)

    Suggestions for us as to how much this should cost? Also should we be wary of or looking for certain brands? We stopped by a place today where a guy has a load of old used organs and so forth, and he demonstrated for me a Lowrey organ with a reverb built in. I didn't like the sound, but I didn't think that Lowrey sounded very good anyway. My Rodgers is a nice church organ, and I think my friend is right, that this would really enhance it. Are they built into the organ, or do they sit alongside? And do they need more speakers (right now we have two that sit next to the organ). There is a good organ tech Rodgers recommends, and I'd probably go straight to him, but wanted to know what to look out for and what to expect.

    Thanks in advance for any advice!
    Jennifer

  • #2
    Do you have the Rodgers entertainment center on your organ? It already has reverb, and it would seem that you could use the recording outputs to run a small stereo amplifier and speakers for a reverb channel.

    DMV

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    • #3
      No, there's no entertainment center. I think maybe that was on the second edition of the Scarborough 110.
      Jennifer

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      • #4
        Hi Jennifer, do you know how many channels your Rodgers has ? I would figure two ( because of the speakers you mentioned ), but am not sure on that model. If it has two, I would look into using an Alessis Nanoverb between the pre-amp outputs and the main amp inputs. A Nanoverb is a stereo unit, so it does two independent channels just fine. The Nanoverb has lots of different reverb options and settings to play with, so you can make your living room sound like a cathedral if you wish.

        I've done a bunch of older analog organs with these units and they work real well. Usually you can pick them up used for 50 - 75 bucks.

        Doing it this way eliminates the need for extra speakers and amps. The extra speakers and amps way is fine if you have a large living room and space for that sort of setup. But, the Nanoverb is easy and compact. I have even installed the units in the cheekblocks of organs to make it easy to access and change settings.

        Regards, Larry
        Regards, Larry

        At Home : Yamaha Electones : EX-42 ( X 3 !!! ), E-5AR, FX-1 ( X 2 !! ), US-1, EL-25 ( Chopped ). Allen 601D, ADC 6000D. Lowrey CH32-1. At Churches I play for : Allen Q325 ( with Vista ), Allen L123 ( with Navigator ). Rodgers 755. 1919 Wangerin 2/7 pipe organ.

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        • #5
          Larry, I think I was told it has two channels. Thank you so much for the good information! I'm going to go hunting online and see what I can find...I need to have the pads under the keys replaced, so maybe I could get the technician to do both jobs at the same time.
          Jennifer

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          • #6
            Larry, does this look like the right thing? http://www.--------/itm/ALESIS-NANOV...item5d336858dd

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            • #7
              Jennifer, yes that is exactly the unit I mean. They come up on the bay all the time. However, that one you linked to does not come with the wall wart power supply. I would hold out ( won't take long ) for one that has that with it. No time to post photos right now ( almost cocktail / dinner time here ), but later tonight I can post photos of how I install them.

              Regards, Larry
              Regards, Larry

              At Home : Yamaha Electones : EX-42 ( X 3 !!! ), E-5AR, FX-1 ( X 2 !! ), US-1, EL-25 ( Chopped ). Allen 601D, ADC 6000D. Lowrey CH32-1. At Churches I play for : Allen Q325 ( with Vista ), Allen L123 ( with Navigator ). Rodgers 755. 1919 Wangerin 2/7 pipe organ.

              Comment


              • #8
                Thanks, Larry...I did see several others on ebay that had the power supply, etc., but don't want to purchase until I figure out if we can get it installed. So, do you think this is something **WE** could do? (Not being very technical about such things). My son is, but he's also kind of rambunctious and tends not to be as careful and deliberate as I might like him to be with my organ (he is a computer tech). I called the person Rodgers recommended today, to ask about replacing the rubber pads under the keyboards. He quoted me $700!!!!!! PLUS he won't come to the house and wants the organ transported across town to do the work. Yikes. I was quoted $200 by someone else last year but now I can't find him so I'm afraid he may have retired. He told me he wouldn't install a used reverb unit because he couldn't guarantee it (which I understand). So I was going to call around and see who local churches use for organ repair. I think I'll also call the person who sold me the organ. He does some minimal work on organs, but he lives 100 miles away and I don't think he's an expert but I think he knew the repair guy we used last year. Thanks again for your helpful comments...Jennifer

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                • #9
                  Hi again Jennifer, While I can't say for Sure Sure that a Nanoverb can be installed in your particular Rodgers, I certainly think it is possible. I've never done this to a Rodgers, but all analog organs follow the same principles as far as the audio outputs are concerned. What you need to do is take the back off of it and have a look about inside. Taking photos and posting them ( here or somewhere ) would help us out as far as advising you through the job from long distance. I do think it is possible for you to do this install, if you can follow directions and proceed carefully. If done the way I do them, it results in a install that does not require modifying the actual circuitry of the organ at all.

                  To install reverb of this sort, all you are basically doing is interrupting the channel outputs from the pre-amp before the main amplifier, and inserting the unit, and adding two new cables from the unit back to the main amp. How exactly the cables are laid out, and what sort of connectors they need to use, has to be determined by looking at the inside of your organ.

                  I'm not sure about the rubber pads you mention under the keyboards. Do you actually mean the felt strips ? That is another item you may be able to repair yourself. Either way, getting someone to come out to repair an organ is always expensive. But it is worth the cost in some instances. The member here by the name of J-bird will likely be able to give you more information about your keyboards. He is a tech who knows a lot about Rodgers organs, and is very helpful.

                  Here is a link to my photo album on here that shows how I installed the Nanoverb units in my Allen ADC6000. The 6000 is a 7 channel organ so I used three stereo units to do 6 of the 7 channels. I left the low bass one without reverb.

                  http://www.organforum.com/gallery/th...lbum=21&page=2

                  Here are a couple of photos of the Nanoverbs installed in an Allen TC-4 analog organ ( sold it after I got the 6000 ) , and they made a world of difference in the sound of that organ. That should be similar to your Rodgers. Again, the TC-4 is a 3 channel organ, so I used two Nanoverbs so I could have all three channels with reverb. Obviously one Nanoverb channel remained unused in that install.

                  Let me know if the link to the album here works or not. I think it should, but that is in the Legacy section of the gallery here.

                  We should be able to help you add reverb to your organ without professional assistance, but that will depend on you checking some things out and letting us know. Do you have a service manual for that organ ? If not, perhaps the member here Jan The Organ Grinder may still have one available. The manual probably is not required to add reverb, but one is always nice to have as part of an older organ.

                  Regards, Larry
                  Attached Files
                  Regards, Larry

                  At Home : Yamaha Electones : EX-42 ( X 3 !!! ), E-5AR, FX-1 ( X 2 !! ), US-1, EL-25 ( Chopped ). Allen 601D, ADC 6000D. Lowrey CH32-1. At Churches I play for : Allen Q325 ( with Vista ), Allen L123 ( with Navigator ). Rodgers 755. 1919 Wangerin 2/7 pipe organ.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Larry, we'll see if we can pull the organ out and get some photos of the insides. Could you tell by looking at photos if it's a two channel? I'm almost certain someone told me it is. Meanwhile, I copied your message above and will hang onto it. Thanks for everything...including the names of other members of the forum who might know about my organ.

                    Your links to your album came through just fine...you've got quite the setup!! I think, for my own purposes, I'd prefer not to actually install the reverb onto the organ case itself...either have it sit beside the organ on top of the amplifier, or put it under the lid somehow.

                    As for the pads under the organ keys, my particular model has rubber pads, rather than felt, and they wear out over time and have to be replaced. Not all the keys are clacking, but I figure they out to all be done at the same time. I only hear it when I'm playing very quietly, but it's a little annoying. I was told it's something I could do myself if I can get my hands on a set of them, and I certainly don't mind doing that if I can figure out how to get in there! Apparently there are several sizes, and the width is critical, so will have to make sure about that. Rodgers will know if they're available.

                    I paid a technician Rodgers recommended to come out last fall and tinker a bit...there were a couple of notes that were making funny noises and he just adjusted a few things and gave the organ a going-over. He told me he'd charge me $200 to re-do the keys, but then he never got back to me and then we had Thanksgiving and Christmas and various other busy times and I kind of forgot about it. We live very near the Rodgers factory and his shop is also nearby, so it didn't cost that much.

                    We just can't pay to move our organ across town and then add $700 for the keys plus another $3-$400 for the reverb, plus another $400 for the pedals if they need it onto that...and then pay to move it back...we don't have that kind of money. We only paid $500 for the organ (delivered) in the first place!! It sounds great as it is, but I think we could improve on it. We do have another guy nearby who could do it if need be, but I'm not sure of his skills and Rodgers never mentioned him when they gave me names. He has a warehouse full of organs of various sorts and conditions, and it's kind of a crazy maze over there. I don't know if he's a technician or just a tinkerer, if you know what I mean. I'm certainly not afraid to give it a try, and I know our son would enjoy helping...he's an excellent computer tech. I just would need to assist him to make sure he doesn't get carried away. :) He might come up with a whole new thing and have our house wired for sound by the time he's done if we don't curb his enthusiasm!

                    I'm going to try to track down Jan the Organ Grinder to see if he has the service manual for my organ. I've been checking online, as I know sometimes they're available...have heard Rodgers charges quite a bundle for them, but when I call them today to inquire about the rubber bumpers I'll ask about the manual.
                    Thanks again...will get back to you when we get some photos taken.
                    Jennifer

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                    • #11
                      *ought*, not *out*! :)

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