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Allen 203-C Notes sounding when pedal stops engaged

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  • Allen 203-C Notes sounding when pedal stops engaged

    In the last week my church organ, an old Allen 200 series has begun sounding octave C pitches when any of the pedal stops are engaged. Any suggestions on what the cause might be or how to fix it would be appreciated!

  • #2


    • #3
      Phantom pedal notes can happen if the pedal board is physically misaligned. Make sure it is seated properly. You should reach a resistance stop if you pull straight back on it. The pedals can also become out of alignment if the organ is moved to a different surface, e.g. from tile to heavy carpet.

      Allen 965
      Zuma Group Midi Keyboard Encoder
      Zuma Group DM Midi Stop Controller
      Hauptwerk 4.2


      • #4
        I have had this problem a long time ago. I exercised the pedal several times and finally the reed switch opened.


        • #5
          I've had both problems Admin and Horseshoe describe. Both solutions offered above are correct solutions. In the case of a reed switch, I had to use a magnet passed over the switch frequently and very close to the reed switch to cause it to change state.

          My vote, though, is that the issue is in the physical locations of the pedals. When the pedal stops are selected, play through the rest of the pedals to find out exactly which one it is–probably the one furtherest to the left.

          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


          • #6
            You can test by removing the pedals temporarily. Just lift straight up at the point where the pedal board attaches to the console and pull back. It isn't wired to the console or connected in any way, just sitting in some little notches. Pull it a few inches away from the console and then see if the cipher is gone. If so, then you can be pretty sure the trouble is simply due to misalignment. Put the pedals back in place (lift slightly and push up to the console, then let them down on the notches, it's foolproof). If the cipher returns, try shifting the pedal board slightly from side to side, as it probably can move about a quarter inch in each direction. If that doesn't help, you may have to physically alter the relationship between the pedals and the console.

            One trick is to put something under the front "feet" of the console to raise it slightly. Some thin coasters or plywood shims might do the trick. Another method, which I have used several times, is to remove the pedals and then line the notches with a thin strip of self-adhesive felt before replacing the pedal board. This thin felt raises the pedals a tiny bit in relation to the pedal switches, which will probably counter the cipher. The notches tend to wear down a little over the decades (your organ may be close to 50 years old), and adding a thin layer of felt right there will compensate for the wear.
            *** 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!



            • #7
              This question continues to bring back memories of my early MOS2 instrument. After you have tried everything recommended, and if you still have the same problem, you may have a bad reed switch. You can find them on line, or you used to be able to, and changing the bad one out is not too difficult. Also, if the organ is sitting on carpet, as the carpet flattens out after the organ has been on it for some time, the carpet under the pedal board may not flatten at the same rate as the carpet under the organ. If this is the case, jbird's suggestions may well solve the problem.


              • #8
                I was following this topic and everything basically has been covered. The reedswitches are available. Just measure the size as Allen used different size reedswitches at different times. Also, if replacing the reedswitch, it is important to place the replacement close to the same position as to where the original one was. If it is placed too high or too low it will affect the response of the pedal.