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Whiny Noise When Turning on the Organ

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  • Whiny Noise When Turning on the Organ

    Hello,

    So before you all tell me to call the organ maintenance man, I will tell you that 1) I've been trying to get ahold of him for a week now and 2) he has tried fixing this problem twice... and failed.

    So, when I turn the organ on, a high-pitched, "whiny" noise is heard for nearly 15 minutes. I understand that it is a leak of some sort. Any ideas on how I can find/fix this? Thanks!

    Philip Powell
    “I play the notes as they are written (well, I try), but it is God who makes the music.” - Johann Sebastian Bach
    Organs I Play:
    - Home: VPO Compiled from Allen 2110 parts
    - Church: M.P. Moller 1951 (Relocated 2015) 3 manual, 56 stop, 38 ranks (Opus 8152)

  • #2
    Are you sure it's a leak and not something with the blower itself?

    Comment


    • Philip Powell
      Philip Powell commented
      Editing a comment
      The organ dude said it was probably a leak; he didn't find anything wrong with the blower. The blower itself was brand new in 2015 (if that means anything).

  • #3
    :embarrassed:That's me making that sound!O:-)

    Philip, can you either describe the sound or record it and post a recording of the whiney sound? That will help a lot.

    Michael
    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

    Comment


    • Philip Powell
      Philip Powell commented
      Editing a comment
      It sounds like an old police car siren. Like from the Andy Griffeth show. The organ dude said it was the swell reservoir.

  • #4
    Originally posted by Philip Powell View Post
    So, when I turn the organ on, a high-pitched, "whiny" noise is heard for nearly 15 minutes.
    Does the whine change or go away after 15 minutes?

    Comment


    • Philip Powell
      Philip Powell commented
      Editing a comment
      When I first started playing it in 2018, it went away after a second. Then, this last fall it was about 5 minutes. Last month it was taking 15 minutes. This week it's been taking about 45 minutes. My brother (a cathedral organist) suggests that the hole/leak is getting larger or that the joint is being further separated with each power-on of the instrument.
      Last edited by Philip Powell; 02-27-2021, 10:33 AM. Reason: Grammatical Error

  • #5
    Could it be a small hole in the reservoir or a wind line that is in the perfect place to make a whistle?

    Comment


    • Philip Powell
      Philip Powell commented
      Editing a comment
      BINGO! It's a wind line.

  • #6
    Does it sound something like this https://freesound.org/people/CGEffex/sounds/121902/ ? Just maybe in a lower pitch? Or, "whiny" like when you blow a blade of grass stretched between your thumbs? How old is the instrument and does it still have the original leather?

    Comment


    • Philip Powell
      Philip Powell commented
      Editing a comment
      Not quite like that. It's much higher pitched. More like the blade of grass. The instrument is from 1951 but was redone (at least partially) in 2015.

  • #7
    So I have a few developments:

    1) The noise is coming from a joint between two wooden wind lines so not directly from the reservoir.
    2) The noise goes away if I pull one part of the wind line inwards and up towards the other one (they are at a 90 degree angle).

    (Something to note: This is a large organ out in an extremely small space. The wind lines are stuck in a corner surrounded by chests and pipes)
    So it seems that when the organ is powered on, that first gush of air through those wind lines, shifts the joint, allowing air to creep out and make the noise. I have confirmed this theory by climbing through the crawl space behind the organ chamber, drilling a hole through the wall beside the wind line, and observing sawdust being blown about directly near the joint. HOWEVER, the "leak" appears to be on the underside of the wind line joint so I will have to remove part of the ceiling from the room below the chamber to patch the hole with cocking or something suitable.

    Apparently, the wind lines are new (2015) so they shouldn't be acting up. I say apparently because the organ builder threw away almost all of the notes and blueprints for the organ. The organ builder was something special, to say the least. I also want to note that the parish plans to fix this, not an organ company as we have basically had it with the amount of incompetence.
    “I play the notes as they are written (well, I try), but it is God who makes the music.” - Johann Sebastian Bach
    Organs I Play:
    - Home: VPO Compiled from Allen 2110 parts
    - Church: M.P. Moller 1951 (Relocated 2015) 3 manual, 56 stop, 38 ranks (Opus 8152)

    Comment


    • #8
      So likely a bad gasket or joint not screwed tightly. Yes, it shouldn't be acting up.

      Comment


      • Philip Powell
        Philip Powell commented
        Editing a comment
        Okay, I can think of what that would be. I think I saw it.

      • sandstone42
        sandstone42 commented
        Editing a comment
        I'm sort of surprised that when the wind lines were redone that the builder just didn't substitute PVC.

      • Philip Powell
        Philip Powell commented
        Editing a comment
        Well, they did that with parts of the wind line. I don't know why, but they wanted part of it to be wooden.

    • #9
      I am not trying to be cheap, but could it be fixed with wood putty, aluminum duct tape or glue? Or maybe with a glued on strip of leather?

      Comment


      • Philip Powell
        Philip Powell commented
        Editing a comment
        I don't see why not. I've been told Flexi-Tape would do the trick.

    • #10
      One recommended temporary fix for pump organs is hot glue from a glue gun. it won’t hold forever, but it might temporize for long enough, and it won’t damage the wood.

      Comment


      • myorgan
        myorgan commented
        Editing a comment
        I think perhaps he's looking for a solution with longevity vs. brevity.

        Michael

    • #11
      WE FIXED IT!!! We had to cut into the ceiling (four 3/4 inch plywood boards + tiles) to get right under the joint. There was a gaping crack between the two wind lines, so we put in wood putty and then put on pressure resistant duct-tape. Even when the organ was first installed we got 3 seconds of "whine" when turning it on. Now we have 0.00 seconds!!! And we did it with a janitor!
      “I play the notes as they are written (well, I try), but it is God who makes the music.” - Johann Sebastian Bach
      Organs I Play:
      - Home: VPO Compiled from Allen 2110 parts
      - Church: M.P. Moller 1951 (Relocated 2015) 3 manual, 56 stop, 38 ranks (Opus 8152)

      Comment

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