Free Reformed Church
Outreach Drive, Legana
B. 2009-10 Hans Meijer. 1m., 8 sp.st., 1c., tr.
Second manual prepared for.
Man: 220.127.116.11-2/3.2.II-III.8. Ped: 16.
The basis for the new organ, built by Hans Meijer, of Launceston, was formed by the two slider chests that came from a 1918 Fincham organ from Hobart. Both were made of American Redwood and in very good condition. There was no need for an extensive restoration. The glue joints were perfect and there were no runnings or ciphering. Because the new organ was going to have mechanical action, the bottom boards of the pallet boxes and the action springs had to be renewed. Now, stainless steel 0.9mm pulldown wires pass through a brass strip with 1mm holes. All pallet springs had to be replaced with stronger ones. Both chests are equally long and determine the width of the case of 2500mm and depth of 1250mm. One slider chest has room for seven stops on the Great and the other three stops on the Positif. With the exception of the Oboe, all rackboards have been made new in cedar.
A new case was designed, consisting of a lower section and an upper section. The lower section has been reinforced with a frame to support both slider chests and the new stop and key action. The case panels have been made of solid Tasmanian Oak. The toeboards of the slider chest are situated just below the impost. Two rectangular panels below the impost give access to the windchest of the Positif, which is situated in front of the Great windchest. The roof of the organ is made of Baltic Pine tongue and groove boards. To restrict the depth of the case, the Pedal Bourdon 16 is placed at the back of the organ, standing behind a passage board with the new Pedal windchest below.
The keyboard is new and covered in recycled ivory, the sharps of ebony. The organ has a suspended action. In order to achieve greater accuracy in manufacturing the action, all drawings were made in full size. At about two-thirds of the length of the key is a wire which pulls down a backfall. In turn, this backfall pushes up the end of another backfall. The other end of this backfall pulls down a tracker to the arm of a roller. The other arm of the roller pulls down the wire to the pallet. Backfalls, backfall beams, rollers, roller arms and studs are made of Myrtle. The keys are of fine Spruce. The rollerboards are made of King Billy Pine. The Positif pipework and trackers have not yet been installed, but the rollerboard is already in place.
The action is not bushed, resulting in a very direct contact between key and pallet. There is no action noise owing to precise drilling of roller arms and studs. The trackers are made of Cedar with Huon Pine end caps, fitted with a threaded brass wire. The pedal coupler roller board and backfalls for the Great to Pedal and Positif to Pedal are made in the same way. The Pedal keyboard and the organ bench are from the Keith Davis organ.
The blower is situated in a room behind the organ. The Bourdon 16 from the Davis organ speaks on a wind pressure of 70mm and the rest of the organ on 60mm. The Pedal has a small bellows in the same room. The bellows with the blind valve is placed in the bottom of the organ behind the Pedal rollerboard. All wind trunks are made in cedar.
GREAT – MANUAL I
POSITIF – MANUAL II
Provision for three stops
Pedal - I
CC to EE stopped, FF and FF# open wood, GG – e2 in front
CC 22.26; C 15.19; C1 12.15.17
CCC-CC in King Billy Pine; remainder in Redwood
Pitch: a1 = 440 HZ @ 20° Celsius
Temperament: Harald Vogel
Total number of pipes: 498
The pipework is arranged with CC on the far left and CC# on the right and going down to f#3 and g#3 in the centre. As the Fincham organ had 61 keys and the Legana organ has 56 keys, there are five grooves left unused. I decided to leave the five lowest bass grooves unused to free up space for the lowest octaves of the Open Diapason, the Gedackt and the Principal. This also has the advantage that the longest rollers could be made shorter to reduce torsion. The toeboards of these stops needed to be regrooved to fit the largest pipes.
With the exception of the front pipes and the lowest octave of the Principal, all pipes are cone tuned. The finished pipes are slightly coned in for greater tuning stability. Apart from the lowest octave of the Bourdon 16, all other re-used pipes have been rearranged, shifted up or down, cut to lower the mouths and cut to length, so that they fit the tonal design for this organ.
The front pipes C0 to G2 of the Open Diapason, have been made new in my workshop of spotted metal. The Principal 4 consists of a higher lead content (77%) with low mouths in the bass and rising to quarter mouths in the treble. Both stops can be very effectively used in a small plenum. The Fifteenth of spotted metal adds brightness to this without becoming sharp. The Nasard has been designed to blend these stops together and can be used as a solo mutation stop when the second manual pipework is in place. This option was also considered in the design of the Mixture with its Tierce rank from middle C. The Tierce has a much narrower scale than the rest of the Mixture pipework. In the plenum, the Tierce rank produces a pleasant reedy sound. The Fincham Oboe had been altered before I installed it. It is now a rather soft reed, sounding like a short resonator Echo Trumpet. It adds little volume to full organ, but makes the bass more distinct. This stop can be used very effectively on its own. The Gedackt is taken from the Davis organ. It was made of spotted metal with high arched mouths. The pipes were revoiced by separating the pipe body from the feet, lowering and straightening the mouths and then resoldering the whole together. From C1, the red felt was taken out of the caps and narrower caps were fitted with waxed paper. The improvement in tone and character is remarkable.
The instrument has been very well received by the congregation. All stops can be used effectively in a variety of combinations and it supports the signing of the congregation very well.
From an article by Hans Meijer that appears in OHTA News October 2010