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one reed too loud

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  • one reed too loud

    I was gifted a Malcom 12 stop reed organ in decent condition. I am attempting to do some minor restoration. The A above middle c is loader than the other treble notes when the vox celeste and or the dulcet stops are engaged. I removed the reed and it appears to be a replacement reed. It has less wear marks and coloration is different. Is there a way to dampen the sound of this reed without changing the pitch?

  • #2
    Missy,

    Welcome to the Forum! I hope you continue to participate here.
    Originally posted by missy4721 View Post
    Is there a way to dampen the sound of this reed without changing the pitch?
    Not that I'm aware of. The cause could be that the mute felt is torn just above the reed cell, or that the reed somehow has a placement different than the other reeds (unlikely). However, your best bet is probably to find an original replacement reed from another set.

    Do you have the means to take a photo of the offending reed with a couple reeds on either side of it? That would help identify the reed maker.

    Again, welcome to the Forum.

    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)
    • 9 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 4 Pianos

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    • #3
      Michael,
      Thank you for your response. I will try to find an original reed replacement and probably several if possible. I'm hoping I will fond one with similar volume as all the other reeds in this great old parlor organ. Here are images of the reeds, the A reed is the loud one. If you have any other advise it will be received with appreciation.

      As far as I can tell the felt seems to be in good repair. I think this organ has had attention some time in the past possibly the 1930's judging by felt patching, strap replacement and dust accumulation. The tuning is great. I have the vox humana to repair as it is sluggish to engage then done! I hope.


      Again thank you for your help and your welcoming greeting.


      Missy



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      • #4
        Looking at pic 3 of 5, you can see how the middle reed's tip isn't twisted down low enough into the base as the neighboring reeds are. This is the cause of the disagreeable sound. Carefully bend the corner down to match the others.I use round-jaw pliers for these jobs.

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        • #5
          SubBase,

          Thankyou for your reply. I wondered about that but I am to inexperienced to reason it out, other than it looked different than all the others.
          Your recommendation is appreciated. My next day off of work I'll fix it and post my results.

          Thanks again
          Missy W.

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          • #6
            I can't guarantee it will maintain the same pitch, it may be a little flat. Or sharp.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by SubBase View Post
              I can't guarantee it will maintain the same pitch, it may be a little flat. Or sharp.
              SubBase

              Thanks. I think I'll take the chance . If it goes sharp or flat I have a contingency plans. I found an article on correcting the pitch of brass reeds and I'll give it a try . If I fail at that. I will locate an original replacement reed from another set as suggested in a previous post from Michael.

              Thanks again for the help !

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              • #8
                Even a "new" reed will need fine tuning. if it's flat, scrape the tip, support the reed with a small card or single-edge razor blade, a dull one if you're prone to bleeding from cuts. Scrape the heel to make more flat. Tiny scrapes until you get the hang of it. If you handle it several times, let it cool off before checking the pitch, hand warmth makes it go flat, cooling returns it back up in pitch. A great tuning app is cleartune.
                Casey

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                • #9

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by missy4721 View Post
                    Thank you for your reply dated 10/14/18
                    I took a couple weeks away from the repair. I crimped the reed tongue with rounded jewelers pliers and the volume diminished. The pitch was not affected.
                    The voice of that reed is slightly brassy to my ear but others seem not to notice .
                    Missy,

                    Thank you for returning to share your experiences with us. Yet another testament to crowd sourcing on the Forum! Thank you, Casey.

                    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)
                    • 9 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 4 Pianos

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