'Organ 2' plans


After having built my first organ, I immediately decided that I should build an even bigger and better organ. To this effect, I started making plans for it on my computer. Unlike the first organ, this one was going to have a design, and everything would be so much better. Of particular interest was making something that could support multiple registers of pipes, and building it in such a way that the pipes could be more easily removed for tweaking, voicing, and tuning.

Seeing that I don't actually play the organ, except for improvising on it when nobody is in the house, I never was able to either justify the effort, or find the motivation to do it. Nevertheless, I think the drawings might be interesting to look at.


    Organ design front

    Front view of my 'Organ 2' design

The fan and pressure regulating bellows would go under the main part of the organ. I didn't bother trying to plan this part out.

Unlike the organ I built, in this design, the valves are spaced far enough apart so that the pipes can be directly connected to the wind chest. This requires a lever mechanism of some sort to translate the motion of the keys to the windchest. In this design, this is achieved by all the slanted levers on the front.


    Organ design side

    Side view of my 'Organ 2' design

The windchest would be arranged in such a way that one register consists of two interleaved rows of whole tone scales, so that the organ does not need to be wide enough to accinidate all the pipes in one row. As such, each register has two rows of valves in the wind chest.


    Organ design valve detail

    Wind chest cross section of the 'Organ 2' design

The wind chest was going to be what is known as a 'ventil windchest' design. This type of windchest has one valve for each pipe in each register, as opposed to one valve to operate all the pipes operated by that key. In this design, the various registers are turned on by pressurizing various sections of the wind chest - thus no troublesome sliders to jam. It also has the advantage that the the various registers can be operated at different pressures, and that the response time is quicker.

Organs that use solenoids to open valves at the pipes are of course even quicker, but to purists, this is an abomination, because it takes away the velocity sensitivity of the keys. The design of my first organ is very sensitive to how fast, and how far the keys are pressed, and I consider this to be a feature.

The design here does have the potential problem that the shafts passing through the windchest must pass through various chambers in the wind chest, each of which may be pressurized differently. Thus, finding a good way of passing the shaft through a hole without too much air leakage around it, and without binding, is one of the key challenges of implementing this design.

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