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  • Allen TC-1 organ

    My wife and I left a large church some months ago due to the switch from organ to a praise band, a subject discussed quite often and most eloquently addressed by our very capable Mr. Birdsong from Arkansas. Thank you John for your input into the various subjects, now we are needing your help and the rest of the group on our "problem",
    The church we left had a 3m pipe organ in the sanctuary and a 3m Johannus in the chapel. It was the sanctuary that went guitar rogue and we quickly tired of it.
    We found a small 150 seat church on the other end of town that is very traditional in all their musical offerings, very enjoyable and worshipful except for the organ, which is an old Allen TC-1.
    This Allen sounds bad but upon checking it out we find that it uses only one speaker box where the midrange has the foam surround all broken up.
    Is there a process to voice this thing and if so, how can we accomplish this ?
    The pedalboard too looks weird, princess perhaps ?
    What is the maximum quantity of speakers/channels we can use ?

    We much appreciate everybodies input here, the church has no funds to replace it and the best we can hope for is to somehow make this thing sound better until we can afford a replacement.
    Thank you all.

  • #2
    Good for you for leaving a church that is ignoring what must be a decent pipe organ !

    The Allen likely does have a "compact" ( Allen's term ) pedalboard. We generally refer to them as Princess here though. Some people get along OK with them; others hate them. The sharps are really short, compared to an AGO dimension board. The notes are closer together as well, and people with bigger feet find them difficult to play.

    In the "Repairing Electronic Organs" subforum here there is a good write-up by Jbird about re-foaming Allen midranges. If yours has that particular driver in it, it is better to do the re-foam job than to replace it.

    I don't recall offhand how many channels a TC-1 has, So I have no advice on that at the moment.
    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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    • #3
      There are two channels possible, one for the diapason generator and one for the flute.

      Although I don't have big feet, my toes tend to accidentally hit the swell shoe when playing on the compact pedalboards.

      Comment


      • #4
        Good for you on the church change. We need to vote with our feet (and our wallets) sometimes.

        The TC-1 (and variations) came in both size cabinets. As nearly as I can tell, if it's 62 inches wide and has a roll-top, that's the AGO version. If it's 52 1/2-inches wide, that's the compact version. A TC-1 can have a Celeste generator, and chiff, stopped flutes, and percussions as options. Standard was a model 100 gyro with one 50-watt T-50 amp with dual inputs. A service bulletin said techs should keep one of these for a spare. Another gyro was optional.

        To find out exactly what model it is, you can lift the top -- it hinges toward the rear, and the music rack/light goes with it. (It needs about 12-inches if it's pushed to a wall or divider.) Look for the data plate on the back wall.

        Also, can you get a picture of the back of that speaker? I had to replace some of the drivers (horns and tweeters) in my TC-4's speakers and I thought that the modern replacements were quite reasonably priced. I'm also curious about re-foaming a bigger speaker and how it's done.

        I'm guessing that a 150-seat auditorium would have more speakers at some time.
        -- I'm Lamar -- Allen TC-4 Classic -- 1899 Kimball, Rodgers W5000C, Conn 643, Hammond M3, L-102 - "Let no man belong to another who can belong to himself." (Alterius non sit qui suus esse potest​ -) ​Paracelsus

        Comment


        • #5
          I am so sorry to hear that you had to go through this trauma at the hands of a church. Many people whom I will charitably say must be "well-meaning" think that every church needs to "modernize" or else it will die, so some that I know of who happen to be in positions of authority in their denominations, seem to be going from church to church upsetting the apple cart by feeding the fear that the church is "shrinking" and therefore needs to "change with the times" -- i.e. "bring in a praise band and toss the organ."

          Around here I've seen a half dozen fairly large and prominent churches push aside a good organ and set up a band on the advice of one of these "experts." And predictably there is a sizable exodus of long-time members. There may or may not be some new faces to fill the pews left vacant by this exodus, and even if there is, how long will the newcomers stay around? Until the church down the street gets and even "cooler" band? It's truly heartbreaking and so unnecessary. And completely wrongheaded. If a church is genuinely shrinking and consistently failing to attract new members to replace those who are dying, there may be a problem. But I have never seen any evidence that the problem is the organ or the choir or the singing of authentic hymns.

          As to the organ situation, one side effect of the current worship war is that pretty good organs are to be found for free these days if you keep your eyes and ears open. It may not be long before a church within an easy drive offers a good organ not more than 20 years old (or even newer) free for the taking. Not just everything that gets offered is worth bringing in. Certain models from certain builders have built-in fatal problems such as failing keyboards for which there are no replacements available. But really good Allen and Rodgers organs built from the 70's to the present are usually a worthy investment, with few exceptions. You can always post about what you find here before going to the trouble of moving in something that will prove unfixable.

          Adding a second T-50 amp to that TC-1 and a second HC speaker cabinet might make a considerable improvement in tone, but it won't fully update it to what you may be expecting, coming from a church with a fine pipe organ. But you can take small steps and keep looking around.

          You may know the LONG story I've told somewhere about the string of organs I brought in to play on in a former church, starting out with an ancient Wurlitzer spinet, and culminating 10 organs and 17 years later in a fine Allen Renaissaince, and most of these organs didn't cost us anything! You never know what might be just around the corner!
          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


          • #6
            Originally posted by mrdc2000 View Post
            My wife and I left a large church some months ago due to the switch from organ to a praise band, a subject discussed quite often and most eloquently addressed by our very capable Mr. Birdsong from Arkansas. Thank you John for your input into the various subjects, now we are needing your help and the rest of the group on our "problem",
            The church we left had a 3m pipe organ in the sanctuary and a 3m Johannus in the chapel. It was the sanctuary that went guitar rogue and we quickly tired of it.
            We found a small 150 seat church on the other end of town that is very traditional in all their musical offerings, very enjoyable and worshipful except for the organ, which is an old Allen TC-1.
            This Allen sounds bad but upon checking it out we find that it uses only one speaker box where the midrange has the foam surround all broken up.
            Is there a process to voice this thing and if so, how can we accomplish this ?
            The pedalboard too looks weird, princess perhaps ?
            What is the maximum quantity of speakers/channels we can use ?

            We much appreciate everybodies input here, the church has no funds to replace it and the best we can hope for is to somehow make this thing sound better until we can afford a replacement.
            Thank you all.
            If the day ever comes where my church does away with the organ and goes to all this "praise band" garbage,...that will be the day I say "Good bye!"
            Late 1980's Rodgers Essex 640

            Comment


            • #7
              Thanks John, I will take some pictures this coming weekend of the TC 1 and post them here after we figure out how to post pics.
              BTW - The 3m pipe organ too was in bad shape due to lack of tuning and other adjustments. As of now it will be kept but not played or maintained, meaning it will just gradually rot away.
              I am ok with that since we have found another church that worships the way the Bible teaches us to worship. We may not all agree with that statement but I am a believer in tradition, call me "old fashioned" and I'm ok with that too.

              Comment


              • #8
                <<If a church is genuinely shrinking and consistently failing to attract new members to replace those who are dying, there may be a problem. But I have never seen any evidence that the problem is the organ or the choir or the singing of authentic hymns.>>

                Just to add another perspective to John's always sage counsel, there are areas that are in decline and every church there will suffer membership losses. My neighborhood Episcopal church is holding their own, just, but not as large or wealthy as they were 50 or more years ago.
                When we looked at it impassively, with the help of the Diocese, three things were discovered:
                1. The well-known fact that some folks are "done with church" for various reasons.
                2. Population loss. My city (Phila. PA) had 2.1 million people 60 years ago. Last census there were 1.4 million... a loss of 1/3. Since no one wants to close their church, there are almost as many churches now as there were back then.
                3. Demographic shifts- our neighborhood was solidly WASP 50 years ago. Now there are *24* languages spoken within a 3 mile radius.
                Under these circumstances we're advised to be grateful to be doing as well as we are.

                Best to all, Bill Miller

                Comment


                • #9
                  How do we add pictures to a follow-up reply ?
                  We use an I-phone 6 where the picture files (jpg) are on.
                  Thanks for the help.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    First you need to get them a size that the forum will accept. iPhones have a really annoying habit of marking them sideways even when they're not, too. Have you synced the pictures to your PC? If it is a Windows PC, I suggest using the free application GIMP 2 (graphic image manipulation program). Open each image in GIMP (it will ask if you want to rotate the picture, so say "Yes," and then resize them to about 600 x 800 or smaller, and this should make them appropriately sized for the forum. Under the file menu, choose "Overwrite" to write the smaller, resized image back into the original file.

                    https://www.gimp.org/downloads/

                    On the forum, open a reply and click the "Insert Image" icon at the top of the reply window (it looks like a canvas with a tree). Then find each on your PC, and upload them one by one. A single posting, I think, works well with four images. Five I've been told is the max.

                    Couldn't wait for the weekend, eh?
                    -- I'm Lamar -- Allen TC-4 Classic -- 1899 Kimball, Rodgers W5000C, Conn 643, Hammond M3, L-102 - "Let no man belong to another who can belong to himself." (Alterius non sit qui suus esse potest​ -) ​Paracelsus

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I always use the "Go Advanced" button on the lower right corner of the "Quick Reply" box. In the Advanced area is a "Manage Attachments" button.

                      I'm not seeing a Canvas with a Tree icon while I am typing this post, so Lamar may have found a way to do it that I have never seen or used ?

                      - - - Updated - - -
                      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


                      • #12
                        We may have different themes or something. Here's what I see above where I'm typing now.

                        Click image for larger version

Name:	screen-shot.png
Views:	1
Size:	16.6 KB
ID:	606748

                        Third icon from the right. It might be a resize window with a tree...
                        -- I'm Lamar -- Allen TC-4 Classic -- 1899 Kimball, Rodgers W5000C, Conn 643, Hammond M3, L-102 - "Let no man belong to another who can belong to himself." (Alterius non sit qui suus esse potest​ -) ​Paracelsus

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Yup, you are likely right. I actually have never played around with the Themes on here. I just use the basic whatever the default one is.
                          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


                          • #14
                            I think I have the standard theme, too. I just let the holiday themes install and this is what it goes back to on this PC.

                            OP - do you need more help getting the pictures off your iPhone?
                            -- I'm Lamar -- Allen TC-4 Classic -- 1899 Kimball, Rodgers W5000C, Conn 643, Hammond M3, L-102 - "Let no man belong to another who can belong to himself." (Alterius non sit qui suus esse potest​ -) ​Paracelsus

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              We tried both my I-phone and an Android tablet and both operating systems are rejected by the Organ Forum when adding pictures to a thread, yet both the phone and tablet function fine when simply reading or replying to a thread. Thanks for all the help though, will have to use our laptop and just get along with that new Windows 10 system, the worst one they ever came up with.
                              However, all this TC-1 problem may be a mute point, a meeting has been scheduled at the church to discuss this organ and perhaps consider a replacement, after all, this TC is from 1958 and used much newer digitals are available for little money and often free, a decision may go in favor of that.
                              Whatever is decided, we will keep our friends and readers on this forum informed. Will still need help deciding which organ and then how to install it.
                              For now, let me install Organ Forum on the laptop and then get my feet wet ..... I feel a headache coming on already.

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