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  • Ping Orgrinder about Wurlitzer Reed Organs!



    I'm hoping I can get ahold of Orgrinder (and anyone else who owns a Wurlitzer reed organ) to give me a basic explanation of how they work. I saw some pictures on NYCFarmboy's website of Nate's 4602 and saw a big electric motor, and I'm wondering "What does it do?".</p>

    Other than Hammonds, I wasn't aware of another organ which used a rotary tone generator. Could someone explain how these guys work for me? Other than the 4602, are there any other reed models that are recommended? Nate's page mentions some restoration, did you have to do a lot?</p>

    I like to know something about different organs and how they work, so any light you could shed on this would be very much appreciated!</p>

    Thanks,</p>

    Jon</p>

  • #2
    Re: Ping Orgrinder about Wurlitzer Reed Organs!

    <DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV>Ok, well, it's a little complicated. The motor turns a blower which supplies air to a rank of 85 brass reeds. The reeds do make acoustic noise, however, that's not what we're after.</DIV><DIV>First, you need to understand that any analog sound (a human voice, or a pipe organ, etc.) can be turned into an electrical signal. Also, you need to understand how a capacitor works. </DIV><DIV>Basically, the reeds function as capacitors. As they vibrate up and down, they store and release their charge at a tuned frequency -the frequency of the reed. So, with that in mind, you can now get an electrical signal and then modify it. Even though it is a reed organ, everything possible is done so you do not hear the reeds themselves. Its the frequency they vibrate -not the sound they produce- that you want. </DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV>I just explained a real dumbed down version of what you can find here:</DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV>http://theatreorgans.com/hammond/ken...zerESEricb.htm</DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV>Hope that gave a little insight on how they work. </DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV>

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Ping Orgrinder about Wurlitzer Reed Organs!



      Jan</P>
      <P mce_keep="true"></P>


      Look up on good old Google Search, Ken Griffin - organist, and it will take you to a web site where you can read a detailed article by Eric C. Larson. There is some great reading as well as illustrations. Also, under my former title on here, james, I have written several articles about these fabulous organ. They were not as popular back when as Hammond seemed to be the desired sound with John Q. Public when it came to electronic or really electric organs as the Hammond and Wurlitzer reed models were mechanical.</P>
      <P mce_keep="true"></P>


      James</P>
      Baldwin Church Organ Model 48C
      Baldwin Spinet 58R
      Lowrey Spinet SCL
      Wurlitzer 4100A
      Crown Pump Organ by Geo. P. Bent, Chicago, Illinois


      Organs I hope to obtain in the future:

      Conn Tube Minuet or Caprice even a transistor Caprice with the color coded tabs
      Gulbransen H3 or G3, or V.
      Wurlitzer 44, 4410, 4420, ES Reed Models, 4300, 4500, Transistor Models

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Ping Orgrinder about Wurlitzer Reed Organs!

        <DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV>Hi James, </DIV><DIV>It's been a while since we last spoke. Any more luck with that 4602 you were tracking down? For a while, I've seen one or two on eBay, as well as some 4800's. </DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV>Jon, </DIV><DIV>As far as restoration, it was simple but time-consuming. I replaced all the capacitors (Over two hundred, my last count); fixed a few key and pedal contacts; rewired some brittle components; and rebuilt the two power-filter assemblies. </DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV>Still to do- </DIV><DIV>Replace all 200 or so moulded-paper capacitors on the percussion unit; Refinish the organs' woodwork; build a custom external amplification system. </DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV>So, its a long and arduous task. Not to mention, that the organ likes to play with me. One day it will work fine, the next day some of the solenoids won't engage. </DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV>Take care, </DIV><DIV>Nathan</DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV><DIV><BR class="khtml-block-placeholder"></DIV>

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Ping Orgrinder about Wurlitzer Reed Organs!



          Nathan,</P>
          <P mce_keep="true"></P>


          No, I have not had any more contact with the man who has the Wurlitzer 4602. After a promised delivery twice, it seems that coveted Wurlitzer has been on the back burner too long. I don't know as shipping is the main reason I have not kept up the search. Yes, I am disappointed to say the least. I would enjoy having this organ, but the man might have given up on me. He said my name was as good as written on it. I, too, have seen a few on ebay, but none there are the "one" I have been tracking, so I might still be in the running for it, I just don't know.</P>


          I am sure I still have your pics, etc. somewhere in my private email as I remember seeing them a few months ago. How is your Wurlitzer doing? I like the sound of these without vibrato or tremulant as I think it says on the tabs. Wurlitzer did a beautiful job with their cabinet styles even in their tube and early transistor models.</P>


          It is great to hear from you again via the organ forum. I don't know now where I would place that 4602 if I could acquire it since I filled up my living room with furniture, my Crown Pump Organ, and my Baldwin 48C. The Baldwin is fairly nice, but just not a Wurlitzer. I most likely would be in a mess if I had one of the Wurlitzers and it failed to work as I don't know of anyone in my area who could work on them now. My last repairman's health has failed him, so he is just not into working too much any more.</P>


          I guess I missed the boat big time on not getting the small spinette organ a few years back in OKC, OK. It might have cured that "organ fever." This was the model 44 Spinette which was Wurlitzer's first home spinet organ.</P>


          I finally managed to get rid of the Conn 650 organ, and I was so glad to do so big time. I literally traded out with a man in western Oklahoma for the Baldwin 48C a little over two years ago.</P>
          Baldwin Church Organ Model 48C
          Baldwin Spinet 58R
          Lowrey Spinet SCL
          Wurlitzer 4100A
          Crown Pump Organ by Geo. P. Bent, Chicago, Illinois


          Organs I hope to obtain in the future:

          Conn Tube Minuet or Caprice even a transistor Caprice with the color coded tabs
          Gulbransen H3 or G3, or V.
          Wurlitzer 44, 4410, 4420, ES Reed Models, 4300, 4500, Transistor Models

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Ping Orgrinder about Wurlitzer Reed Organs!



            Hey Nate,</P>


            Thanks for the basic explanation. Is it possible to connect an externalSpectra-Tone cab to the ES Reed organs, or are did that come in later? Did Wurlitzer use any other external cabs with those organs?</P>


            Tenor Trumpet,</P>


            What did you not like about the Conn 650? I thought Conn organs were supposed to be pretty nice for theater use, and am curious why you were glad to get rid of it? I'm not familiar with that model.</P>


            Thanks,</P>


            Jon</P>

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Ping Orgrinder about Wurlitzer Reed Organs!



              Jon,</P>


              I just didn't like the sound of the Conn. This organ had 3 full manuals, many pistons, and was a theater horse-show shaped console.It was impressive to look at, but to me it was far from the intended purpose of a theater organ. Gulbransen did a much better job all the way around regarding theater organs.However, on the lowestoctaveon all three manuals, it broke back to repeat the previousoctave.Therefore,to me , the organ was essentially a 49 note organ on all three manuals. It had a full 32 note pedalboard which to my understanding was AGO specifications. You can often find them listed on ebay.</P>


              I have several articles posted on this site under the handle, james, and hopefully you can find these since I mentioned reasons why I personally did not care for the Conn. This big organ was unified and duplexed within an inch of its life. In my discussions mentioned, I have explained why I did not like the Conn organs.</P>


              James</P>
              Baldwin Church Organ Model 48C
              Baldwin Spinet 58R
              Lowrey Spinet SCL
              Wurlitzer 4100A
              Crown Pump Organ by Geo. P. Bent, Chicago, Illinois


              Organs I hope to obtain in the future:

              Conn Tube Minuet or Caprice even a transistor Caprice with the color coded tabs
              Gulbransen H3 or G3, or V.
              Wurlitzer 44, 4410, 4420, ES Reed Models, 4300, 4500, Transistor Models

              Comment

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