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  • Allen 301-c photos

    Today I acquired an Allen 301-c on Craigslist for a short drive, removal and $100. Thanks to everyone who contributed to the 'what's it worth' post. I've always wanted an Allen! All functions seem to work with the exception of the capture action. The pistons actuate the stops but I am unable to save a new position by holding the 'set' button and pressing a key. Any ideas? I'm sure it has something to do with the battery or the slight high-pitched noise (like a tube TV) coming from the stop-capture board area (I think that's this board---see photo attached). If I need to drag out the multimeter to give some more clues please let me know. Thanks everyone!


    Any comments or knowledge on anything you see out of the normal or different please feel free to post; I want to learn all I can about this organ. Some caps appear newer than OEM... but I really don't know because I wasn't around in the early 80s lol. Thanks again!!!

    ALL The photos (so far) are HERE.


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  • #2
    Congratulations on your acquisition. Really nice organ, one of the better ones from the MOS-1 era, with all the bells and whistles, including the analog celeste rank to supplement the digital tones.

    I see you have the SEQUENTIAL capture action, and yes, your capture board is much newer than the rest of the organ. Probably a factory-supplied replacement from not too many years ago.

    This type of capture actions has a key-lock, probably on the right side of the swell manual. This is a simple on/off switch, which must be ON before you can set any combinations. So check to make sure it is turned on. If you didn't get a key for it, you can open the organ up, clip the wires that go to the switch, and twist them together with a wire nut and the capture action will always be on.

    That old battery pack may be no good, or it could still be functional. Test it with a plain old voltmeter and see if it holds about 24 to 27 volts with the organ unplugged from the wall. (Testing it will the organ plugged in will not tell you anything, as the power supply produces a constant 27 volts when the cord is in the wall to keep the battery charged.)

    If the battery is bad, and won't come up to voltage even after the organ is left plugged in for a few days, you may want to replace it, or just cut the wires and do without a battery. The best way to handle it, with the battery clipped out of the circuit, is to just get a very heavy-duty UPS box from an office supply store and plug the organ into that instead of straight into the wall. That way, if the power goes out it will supply power to the organ for at least a while to keep you from having to reset your pistons every time the power flickers a little. Protects the organ from power surges too, probably more effectively than the surge protector that Allen supplied with these old organs.

    I'm sure there is a lot of good info on this forum about MOS-1 Allens. I know that I have personally written many, many long posts advising folks about the various maintenance and service issues of these organs. On the whole, they are extremely reliable. In fact, if I were a betting man, I'd bet that a whole lot of MOS-1 organs will still be playing when some of the latest models hit the heap. There isn't any of that no-lead solder or surface mount nonsense in these old organs, and the clock runs at a very respectable 4 mHz. As long as you clean it up, make sure all the connections are tight and free of corrosion, and keep the analog portion tuned, it ought to play for another hundred years.

    - - - Updated - - -

    A second thought..... after looking at your pics again, I see that the battery pack is a stand-alone battery, with the charging circuit on the little separate circuit board. That is good news. You could, if you wish, buy two of the "12 volt" rechargeable lead-acid batteries that are sold for use in computer UPS units and in emergency lighting systems. Wire the two batteries in series to make a "24 volt" battery. Lead acid batteries actually charge up to a somewhat higher than rated voltage, so this "24 volt" series unit will charge to almost exactly 27 volts. Clip the two wires that go to the present battery pack and attach to the new one you've made up. Be sure to observe polarity! If in doubt, check the red and black wires with a voltmeter WITH THE ORGAN POWERED UP, so you can be sure to attach the positive voltage to the positive terminal of the battery. Otherwise it may explode!
    John
    ----------
    *** Please post your questions about technical service or repair matters ON THE FORUM. Do not send your questions to me or another member by private message. Information shared is for the benefit of the entire organ community, but other folks will not be helped by information we exchange in private messages!

    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Birds...97551893588434

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by calvaryorganist View Post
      Any comments or knowledge on anything you see out of the normal or different please feel free to post; I want to learn all I can about this organ. Some caps appear newer than OEM... but I really don't know because I wasn't around in the early 80s lol. Thanks again!!!

      ALL The photos (so far) are HERE.
      Calvaryorganist,

      I'm not sure how knowledgeable my input will be, but I'll try. Things I've noticed are:
      • Some of the cards have been repaired (the wire jumpers from one area to another--some with capacitors wired in).
      • Any card or device with the number 151 on it appears to belong to the organ originally.
      • The stamps on various cards indicate the organ was made somewhere between 1976-1980:
        • organ11.jpg--Clock Card Reader Logic stamped that it was made in 1976.
        • organ14.jpg--S-100 Amplifier stamped that it was made in 1977.
        • organ02.jpg--Card Reader stamped that it was made in 1980.

      I already mentioned in one of your other threads about the originality of the cards.
      but I really don't know because I wasn't around in the early 80s lol.
      I am NOT amused!:embarrassed: Guess I'd better get used to it.:'(

      Hope this helps somewhat.

      Michael

      P.S. I see John got to you before I did, so...what John said!:-P
      Way too many organs to list, but I do have 5 Allens:
      • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony) / ADC-8000DKC
      • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
      • 11 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 7 Pianos

      Comment


      • #4
        <<Congratulations on your acquisition. Really nice organ, one of the better ones from the MOS-1 era, with all the bells and whistles, including the analog celeste rank to supplement the digital tones.>>

        I'll second what Jbird said- I play one every Sunday. Do I wish for something better- sure, but there's -0- budget for a new instrument, and even though it'll be 40 y.o. in a couple months, it's flawless- thanks to Allen's super build quality. Could last another 40- who knows?
        It may "grow on you"- I like our 301B a good deal better than a year ago when I first started to play it.
        Enjoy it- and keep us posted!
        Thanks, Bill Miller

        Comment


        • #5
          You might find these YouTube videos of interest. He has installed a Nanoverb reverb unit into the area under the card reader so the controls are readily accessible.

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L8yd23cOORo

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Et5hV2x5XHE

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vs9H2kT9jcM
          Larry is my name; Allen is an organ brand. Allen RMWTHEA.3 with RMI Electra-Piano; Allen 423-C+Gyro; Britson Opus OEM38; Steinway AR Duo-Art 7' grand piano, Mills Violano Virtuoso with MIDI; Hammond 9812H with roll player; Roland E-200; Mason&Hamlin AR Ampico grand piano, Allen ADC-5300-D with MIDI, Allen MADC-2110.

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