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1903 Farrand 33A Restoration Complete (with video)

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  • 1903 Farrand 33A Restoration Complete (with video)

    With help from people here and other online resources, I have completed my first organ restoration project. Before I started, I knew nothing about reed organs, and don't even know how to play a keyboard instrument (I'm working on that). But. I like antique clocks and stumbled on this organ while searching for clocks online. I was intrigued and as you are all aware, the price was right - not even something worth haggling over (although I did). Now that it's restored, it must be worth at least a whole dollar more. 😀

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    I video recorded the whole process and created a playlist here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SOAi...SE_LfsMpfIPv5g nZturMT_d I apologize in advance for the hand-held cell phone quality, poor script and lack of David Attenborough's or Morgan Freeman's voice narration.

    This clock has turned out to be a real diamond in the rough. The case is fully intact and nary a scratch on it. The finish is in unbelievable good shape with no dull or crazed spots. I would not call it a professional restoration job because I didn't replace all the felts and leathers. I did clean everything including a couple of silent or rattling reeds, replaced the cloths and some felt, reglued a few joints and did a temporary hack job on the bellows and a addressed a few other items as seen in the videos. Other than that, the mechanics were in great working order. No signs of previous repairs or vermin. I am still missing Viola 4ft and Violina 4ft stop labels and am keeping my eyes open.

    If anyone sees anything wrong with my process or results, I would appreciated the feedback - I'm still learning. After the video, I learned the term pitman rods, for which I was calling them pallet rods.

    It was really a fun project and I had already purchased a rather beat up Farrand organ for parts (just in case I needed them for this one and it was nearby) and just recently picked up a free Chicago Cottage Co. organ in slightly worse starting condition, but I expect it will clean up nicely too.


  • #2

    Thank you for the update on your organ! I can see OAS (Organ Acquisition Syndrome) has bitten you. Better watch out!

    I can't wait to see the video of your progress. Occasionally, there is a vendor online who sells the stop labels for pump organs on eBay. I'll keep an eye out.

    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)
    • 10 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 6 Pianos


    • #3
      Something happened to the link (extra space got in there somehow) so only plays the first video it doesn't run through the playlist. This link should run through all the videos.




      • myorgan
        myorgan commented
        Editing a comment

        You did a great job documenting the repairs. That will provide a nice reference for people for years to come–thank you!


    • #4
      Thanks Tom for sharing with us. That is a nice organ and a good yob you did on the old gal. You will never be sorry that you invested time in this project. But as Michael mentioned - the bug seems to have bit! What a pleasure!

      "Don't make war, make music!" Hammonds, Lowreys, Yamaha's, Gulbransens, Baldwin, Technics, Johannus. Reed organs. Details on request...