What I can do and what is practical

I got a chance to sit down and play (ha-ha) an organ other than the one at church.  It sounded GREAT!  Then I got to see what made it sound so great.  Entire ROOMS and floors of the building filled with pipes, miles of pneumatic relay tubing, and 3 massive 65hp blowers.  It helped me understand that the one at church is MUCH closer to what I’m going to be looking at for a residence organ.  Corners are cut, definitions are bent, and distinctions are blurred.

Here’s the plan for the (eventual) final instrument.  I have designs for and can build all of this:

Pedal Swell Great
32′ Contra Bourdon Resultant 8′ Geigen Principal 61 pipes 16′ Bourdon 12 pipes
32′ Resultant Resultant 8′ Rohr Flute 61 pipes 16′ Quintadon 12 pipes
16′ Bourdon From Great 4′ Geigen Octave 12 pipes 8′ Gedeckt 61 pipes
16′ Lieblich Gedeckt 32 pipes 4′ Nacht Horn 61 pipes 8′ Hohl Flute 61 pipes
16′ Principal 12 pipes (ext. of Great) 2 2/3′ Nazard 61 pipes 8′ Principal 61 pipes
8′ Lieblich Geschallt 12 pipes 2′ Block Flute 11 pipes 4′ Forest Flute 12 pipes
8′ Octave From Great 2′ Flautino 60 pipes 4′ Gedeckt 12 pipes
4′ Lieblich Flute 12 pipes 1 1/3′ Larigot 5 pipes 4′ Octave 12 pipes
4′ Choral Bass From Great 8′ Salicional 61 pipes 2 2/3′ Twelfth 61 pipes
8′ Violoncello 32 pipes 4′ Gemshorn 61 pipes 2′ Octavin 61 pipes
4′ Gemshorn From Swell 4′ Viola 61 pipes 2′ Wald Flute 11 pipes
Swell to Pedal Tremulant IV Mixture 183 pipes
Great to Pedal 4′ Viola From Swell
Swell to Great

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  1. #1 by Joshua on December 19, 2011 - 4:56 PM

    That gives 35 stops, 17 ranks, 976 pipes total. I have stages planned out where at the end of each stage, I will have a fully playable instrument. The first stage will have only the 73 Open Diapason pipes (the 8′ Principal and 4′ Octave)

  2. #2 by Joshua on December 22, 2011 - 7:51 AM

    I’ve hit a snag I hadn’t accounted for: weight. Wooden pipes are heavy (though not as heavy as the 50% lead, 50% tin metal pipes). The total crated weight of a 32 note 16′ Bourdon rank is 782lbs. In total, the organ I’m building would end up weighing well over 1 ton. That causes problems not only in installation (whose floor joists can support 1 ton of weight?) but also in moving – not many movers I know are willing to transport over a ton of freight at typical residential rates.

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