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Could a Wurlitzer 630TA be appropriate in a small church?

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  • Could a Wurlitzer 630TA be appropriate in a small church?

    I'm the new organist for a small church (a largeish room in a block of flats converted into a church type of small) and they have been using a small old yamaha keyboard that just doesn't sound good. I want to source them something that will work better without it costing them a lot of money, I've found a Wurlitzer 630TA but being a theatre organ I'm just unsure if it will turn out to be appropriate, as all of the demos I can find of the organ online are playing in a theatre organ sound with the sounds that are appropriate for that. Could anybody who has one please let me know their opinion? I am unable to try out the organ until after I've driven all the way to collect it! Thankyou :)

  • #2
    I've seen them in small churches and they are decent enough. Surely better than a keyboard, as they do at least have separate keyboards and some pedals. There are tabs to turn on and turn off the "symphonic" effect, which is a type of rich shimmering tremulant. With this effect turned off, the sound is smooth and steady as you'd want to hear in a classical organ. Not sure how high the stop pitches go, probably not as high as you'd get with a real classical organ, but with a bit of creativity a player should be able to get some interesting and beautiful sounds out of it.
    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


    • Marley Watson
      Marley Watson commented
      Editing a comment
      Thanks a lot for the advice! We ended up getting it and it sounds great. I still need to work out how to operate it fully to get the best sound out of it, but it's definitely more appropriate than the keyboard was. You don't happen to have any pointers as to where I can learn more about actually using the organ do you? Just understanding exactly what all the different switches do and stuff, I read that there's apparently a manual in the gallery but I'm struggling to find it! :)

    • jbird604
      jbird604 commented
      Editing a comment
      Glad you're enjoying the little organ. The only source for parts and manuals on that line of Wurlitzers was Morelock Organ in Mississippi, but they have now closed up. But you should be able to figure it all out with some exploration. The stops are straightforward, affecting each individual manual. Also each manual has "symphonic" something or other as well as regular tremolo or vibrato tabs, which will create a very obvious change in the tone quality. I have a similar Wurlitzer in the shop right now, so I'll take a look at it next time I'm down there and see if there is anything in particular I should mention about the operation.

    • you795a
      you795a commented
      Editing a comment
      Morelock Organ Parts And Service in Mississippi that has the Wurlitzer parts is still in business. I was just in contact with them regarding my Wurlitzer 950 organ.

  • #3
    The spectratone in celeste speed should give you a very good church tone. And if you're interested, look for Lorin Whitney records to see how theatrical tones can be very pretty in church music.

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    • #4
      I would prefer that organ over a keyboard for church use too. One thing I have resorted to when I have to play a spinet like that without the higher pitched flue stops is this : If it has a manual 16', put that on along with all the rest of the pitches, and then play both hands up one octave. It is sorta an inconvenient body position when playing the pedals and the upper keyboard, but it does brighten the sound up.

      That Orbit synth manual has some nice solo voices in it, if I recall correctly. I think it also has an octave transposer, so you can play with the voices to see where they sound nicest. I don't know on the 630 if it also has a Orbit to Upper coupler, but I'm pretty sure the console models did.

      It's been a Long time since I played one like that, so some of my recollections may be not applicable to that model. One of my first organ playing jobs was when I was in high school, playing at the Wurlitzer store in the mall, and those were current models back then.
      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


      • #5
        I started out playing an old Wurlitzer model 4300 spinet in a small country church in 1993. It was a bit limited, but of course that's considered actually something of a "classic" old Wurlitzer nowadays. It had a fairly broad set of footages on the upper manual, all the way from 16' up to 2', though the 2' was just a very mild flute tone. So, like you, Larry, I loaded it up with 16' stops and played both hands on the upper, an octave up. Leaned my body severely to the right to reach the notes, while stretching my legs severely to the left to reach the pedals!

        Loved that old organ so much that I had dreams of physically remodeling it so I could move the upper keyboard an octave to the left, re-labeling the 16' stops as 8', the 8' as 4', 4' as 2', and so on. I was going to really make a silk purse out of that sow's ear. Even thought about jacking it off the floor and fitting a full-size pedalboard underneath it.

        Of course that would've been a TON of work, had it actually attempted it. Fortunately, a lovely Connsonata organ fell into my hands before I got around to doing surgery on the old Wurlitzer, and it had all the wonderful bright tones and upperwork (on the upper manual only of course) that I wanted at the time. (And the rest is history -- over a period of some 17 years at that church, the Connsonata gave way to a big Conn 720, then a Baldwin C601, then a Rodgers 660, Rodgers 890, Allen ADC-4000, and finally an Allen Renaissance!)

        Maybe if you start out with that Wurlitzer 630 you'll soon come across something bigger and better, and retrace my upgrade path. It was surely a lot of fun and quite the learning experience!
        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
          Morelock Organ Parts And Service in Mississippi that carries the Wurlitzter parts is still in business. I was just in contact with them regarding my Wurlitzer 90 organ. They are located in Rienzi, Mississippi. They have all the Wurlitzer parts. Very nice to work with as well.

          Comment


          • jbird604
            jbird604 commented
            Editing a comment
            Thanks for the update on Morelock. I suppose I was confusing them with the folks in Indiana who were supporting Conn, Thomas, and Kimball, who have recently closed up shop, or so I'm told. So, if the Morelock Co is still answering the phone and shipping parts, that makes an older Wurlitzer a good choice for a starter organ.

            My apologies to Janice and Mark (If you guys are still manning the office at Morelock). They were always very kind and helpful to me back when I used to service a lot of Wurlitzer (before I started specializing in Allen and Rodgers).

          • you795a
            you795a commented
            Editing a comment
            You're welcome. Janice and Mark are still manning the office. I spoke with Janice this afternoon when ordering my parts. Yes, they are VERY helpful. According to Janice, that is the situation with the other Morelock you mention in Indiana closing. She told me others thought the same thing. They say they have all the parts for the Wurlitzer organs.

        • #7
          Marley, Message me and I will try an answer your questions. I had a 630TA for over 30 years so I know quite a bit about them. Chris

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          • #8
            Yes my church has one too ! It sounds nice in my opinion. This is off topic but how much is the value of one ? Thanks in advance .

            Comment


            • andyg
              andyg commented
              Editing a comment
              You should really ask this in the "How much is it worth?" section, or perhaps search that section to see if the question has been asked and answered already.

              But the answer is 'almost zero'. That's the state of the market. Bigger, better and newer organs are out there for very little money and there are few takers for oldies, however nice sounding they are.

          • #9
            I heard how similar sounds sound amazing. Of course you need to get used to playing it, but with good hearing and experience on the keys, it will not be difficult :)

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            • #10
              Ok I will I'm new to this Thanks !

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