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  • Allen Sheridan 15

    This is my first post.

    I took lessons from 5 to 18 and played till steady till around 30. Had a Hammond Concord with a 710 Leslie. The organ was being repaired more than played and I stopped playing.

    Now in my mind fifties I need to play again. Got a cheap keyboard to test the waters and it was coming back quick. So I took a lesson last week and he was surprised how well I was doing after that long not playing.

    Found an Allen Sheridan 15 looking for a new home. Haven't looked at it yet, but can not find any information on the model. Any information or where I could read on it would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks
    Bryan

  • #2
    There may be a thread or two on this forum somewhere about the Sheraton 15 or its transistor equivalent the T-15. Like any Allen organ of any age, it is likely to be in repairable condition, or perhaps even ready to play, as Allen organs have always been built to last and to be fairly trouble-free.

    The "15" series organs are a step above the "12" series organs in that they have the single rank flute generator PLUS a piggy-back voicing circuit that provides true 8' reed and string tones on the upper manual. Like the "12" series and the popular T-12, which was produced until the early 70's, the "15" model is a unit flute organ, and all the voices on the lower manual are simply various mixes of different flute pitches. While this is not the same as the more authentic and richly harmonic voices of the larger analogs, it's not that bad. In fact, as a starter organ, especially if free, it would be quite nice. There are a lot of nice sounds created with these flute blends (which by the way work somewhat like the drawbars of a Hammond organ).

    The upper manual of the "12" model is just more flute synthesis, but on the "15" you get those special voices created with true analog clippers and filters added to the flute generators. These voices are thus more authentic and powerful than the plain synthetic voices. You should find them quite useful as both solo voices and as alternate voices to play against the lower manual's pure flute tones.

    Best I recall, the Sheraton has two standard 61-note keyboards and 25 pedals. The cabinet style is sort of a faux Hammond B-3 style, with the long slender legs supporting the body. A separate tone cabinet contains a "gyro" (motor-driven rotating speaker system) to produce a rich tremolo.

    If you bring it home and find that it has some issues, someone here can probably guide you to do some troubleshooting and maybe fix it yourself. Good luck! Glad you're back to playing.
    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

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    • #3
      Thanks for the reply. After spelling Sheraton correctly, was spelling it the way it was sent to me, I found a few references, but not a lot. If it is working and parts are available, I should be able to keep it running. The hammond served me well from new, but it is wore out and the parts needed are not to be had. I hope the Sheraton 15 is good enough to get me going again and the price is right. Take more in gas to go get it than what they want for the organ.

      Is there anything I should look/listen for that could be a problem when I go see it? I knew hammonds, but nothing about Allens.

      Thanks

      Comment


      • #4
        Nothing in particular that would be a red flag. They can have various problems due to age, but nothing I know of that would be a deal-breaker. There could be dead notes (due to a bad tube or other generator component) or stuttering keys (due to dirty contact switches). It may be quite badly out of tune, as the oscillators do need an occasional touch-up (and many owners have probably never done that in 50 or 60 years).

        If it doesn't look abused and if it looks at least decently clean inside, doesn't appear to have been modified or messed up by some tinkerer, then it is probably worth getting.

        Of course there are often other Allen organs quite a bit newer than that available for free or nearly free. So if you don't feel right about it, or if the distance is too great, or if they are asking too much for it, just pass. Almost every week someone on the forum spots a good Allen analog or even an early digital that can be picked up somewhere around the country for next to nothing. Once you determine to find yourself one, you just have to keep your eyes and ears open.
        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

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        • #5
          He is asking $100.00. It would be an 8 hour round trip plus time spent checking it out.

          Yes, I would like something newer, with 32 pedals and probably a theater style case. Not fond of the boxy look, but if the price is right that is fine too. So far, the cheapest Allen I have found on the internet, within a state or two, has been four thousand. But they all have said regular serviced till taken out of service for newer organs.

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          • #6
            Four hours each way doesn't sound too bad, if you're physically up to it. And $100 is a fair price. A mere token of course compared to what it may have cost someone 50 or 60 years ago, but reasonable given the age of it and the uncertain condition.

            If Allens like you really want seem to be showing up at $4K and up, then maybe you should start with this one while still keeping an eye out for something newer. If it's theater organ style and sound you want, Allen made several interesting theater models during the MOS era (71 to 83) and they seem to pop up now and then around here for not much money. I picked up a free one last year, quite decent, a MOS-2 model from about 82. 32 pedals but they are "princess" style, otherwise fully AGO sized console. But it had been in storage for several years, and was found to have a defective MOS board and capture board, so it would cost me close to $2000 to bring it up to playing order. Right now it's just sitting there. I got another one, a little older MOS-1 model, in perfect working order and with full AGO pedals, for a few hundred dollars about four years ago. It sat in the shop for a couple of years before someone came along wanting it and bought it for about $1500, as I recall.
            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

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