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Thread: years of manufacterer of wurlitzer funmaker deluxe with syntha solo

  1. #1

    years of manufacterer of wurlitzer funmaker deluxe with syntha solo



    Hi Guys</P>


    I was wondering if any one knows the years these organs where built.</P>


    Thanks </P>


    Torquil Gordon</P>

  2. #2
    Senior Member james's Avatar
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    Re: years of manufacterer of wurlitzer funmaker deluxe with syntha solo



    I am sorry to call them this, but the funmakers were just glorified toys. They were made from themid 60's to most of the 70's with many different models. They were far from some of the nice spinet and home organs as well as church organs that Wurlitzer made. All of the various organ companies made some awful junk during that time frame. When it was discoverd a small keyboard could do as much has those glorified toys the organ market began it downward plunge. </P>
    <P mce_keep="true"></P>


    James</P>
    Baldwin Church Organ Model 48C
    Baldwin Spinet 58R
    Lowrey Spinet SCL
    Wurlitzer 4100A
    Crown Pump Organ by Geo. P. Bent, Chicago, Illinois


    Organs I hope to obtain in the future:

    Conn Tube Minuet or Caprice even a transistor Caprice with the color coded tabs
    Gulbransen H3 or G3, or V.
    Wurlitzer 44, 4410, 4420, ES Reed Models, 4300, 4500, Transistor Models

  3. #3

    Re: years of manufacterer of wurlitzer funmaker deluxe with syntha solo

    Thanks for the Input Trumpet

  4. #4
    Moderator andyg's Avatar
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    Re: years of manufacterer of wurlitzer funmaker deluxe with syntha solo



    Whooaahh!! I have to slightly disagree with TT. Not all Funmakers were bad.
    </p>

    Wurlitzer, along with most manufacturers,
    did make some pretty dire things at times, that's true. The Funmakers
    all date from around 1973 ornwards, finishing in 1978/79. The upper end Funmakers were basically the same 'nice spinet and home organs' as the previous series, but slightly repackaged and with the later (and yes, quite awful) automatic rhythms and chords. However the basic tone and spec hadn't changed that much at that time.</p>

    For example, take the good old 4037, 3-manual with Orbit III from 1971 - very much old school late 60's transistor Wurli.That morphed into the almost identical 550 in 1973. You then swapped the Spectratone for a Leslie and got the 555 in 1975/76. Yikes, I can remember selling all of them back then.</p>

    Some of the later Funmakers (maybe 1976/77 onwards) did take something of, er, let's just say a downward turn, though.
    </p>

    I wonder if the 'glorified toys' you're thinking of aren't the Super Sprite models. We had a term for them over here, the first word was Super, the second wasn't printable in polite company and, as a rather British (Scottish, really) term, might not stand the US translation barrier, but it rhymed with Sprite!</p>

    Let's hope the OP has one of the better ones. </p>

    Andy G
    </p>


    </p>

    </p>
    It's not what you play. It's not how you play. It's the fact that you're playing that counts.

    New website now live - www.andrew-gilbert.com



    Current organ: Kawai SR6 + Leslie 760 Walnut, plus Kawai K1m synth module loaded with my custom sounds.
    Retired Organs: Lots! Hammond T402, T500 x 2, X5. Conn Martinique and 652. Gulbransen 2102 Pacemaker. Kimball something-or-other.
    Retired Leslies, 147, 145, 760, 710, 415 x 2.

  5. #5
    Senior Member geoelectro's Avatar
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    Re: years of manufacterer of wurlitzer funmaker deluxe with syntha solo



    Whenever I hear people call older organs junk or glorified toys I just have to say, you weren't there! You had to be there to understand the excitement those products gave people. </p>

    Remember, In the early 70's, there were no cell phones, no microwave ovens, no home computers. Wireless phones were new. Answering machines were just emerging. There was no internet! If you wanted something, you had to let your fingers do the walking (and that phone call had to be made at home or work) or go to the library. There were no CD's, Videotape machines were as big as a desk and no one but a business could afford one. You couldn't get a real piano sound on anything but a real piano! The early keyboards that were available were monophonic like the Mini Moog, Arp Oddesey, etc.</p>

    The organ market however was booming. Organ clubs were being formed and people were having lots of fun. By the end of the 70's, keyboards were starting to get real sophisticated. In 1978 the Prophet Five came out. It only had 5 notes at a time but compared to one... and, it was programmable.</p>

    Organ manufacturers held on into the eighties. I remember seeing the Lowrey MX-1 for the first time. Five years in the making, introduced in 1980, it was incredible. Sold initially for $18,500. But I digress...</p>

    The point is, we are so electronically sophisticated now, we can't imagine no computer or cell phone, MP-3's all over the place etc. You cannot compare the 60.s, 70's, or even 80's technology to today's. Heck, everything over 20 years old seems ancient. Most of those products we not expected to last over 20 years anyway. I mean, look how fast we dump things today for the next latest greatest gadget.
    </p>

    Rather than compare yesterdays technology to today's, try to imagine the circumstances those products existed in or better yet... ask!</p>

    Geoelectro
    </p>

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    Member afuller5's Avatar
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    Re: years of manufacterer of wurlitzer funmaker deluxe with syntha solo



    Hi all,</p>

    I would add one thing to Geoelctro's comments. Many of these so-called "toy" or "junk" organs begin the musical journey for some (if not many) of us. I was not born early enough to remember the golden era of the electronic organ in the '60s and '70s. I started in the early '80s, at age 13, with a small Yamaha spinet (115). It would be classified by many as a toy or junk, but I spent many hours on it learning to play. In fact, I still have it and play it regularly.</p>

    Later,</p>

    Allen
    </p>
    Currently own: Roland Atelier AT-90, Yamaha 115D, Roland DP-90SE, Yamaha PSR-S910

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    Member crossyinoz's Avatar
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    Re: years of manufacterer of wurlitzer funmaker deluxe with syntha solo

    [quote user="afuller5"]


    I started in the early '80s, at age 13, with a small Yamaha spinet (115). It would be classified by many as a toy or junk, [/quote]</P>


    G'day,</P>


    I'd hate to think of how many of these (A55 to us) here in Oz made it possible for people to play music.[:O] Our customers could have done a lot worse.</P>


    Cheers,</P>


    Ian</P>

    Hammond X77GT & Leslie 77P
    Lowrey C500 & Leslie 720/540
    Hammond T524 & Leslie 710
    Gulbransen Theatrum & Leslie 700
    Yamaha EL90T

  8. #8

    Re: years of manufacterer of wurlitzer funmaker deluxe with syntha solo



    Thanks a Lot Guys.</P>


    I bought the Old Girl anyway and love it.</P>


    $50.00 Canadian Donation to the church.</P>


    I like it.</P>


    I somewhat agree with the super sprite but My Deluxe is well built and sounds great</P>

  9. #9
    Senior Member james's Avatar
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    Re: years of manufacterer of wurlitzer funmaker deluxe with syntha solo



    I was around with the organs quite early. From the mid 50's onI was able to play on various brands that were built like a battleship with some great organ sounds. Auto features were unheard of nor even thought of back then. I remember a music teacher laughing at me when she was talking about the Hammond percussion feature that her spinet M2 didn't have but the new M3 did. Well, to me that is pure junk, and not useful at all. I asked her was that percussion drums and other percussion instruments. Well, I was a kid around 14 and took band at school so that was percussion to me if she did laugh. However, just think less than 10 years after that scenario many organs did have percussion that were drums, etc. I did think just some of the play along features were better than many auto rhythm features when I was selling organs.</P>


    I do know that many of the companies did make some very low end products, and yes, I am aware that many started out on them. However, as an accomplished organist it was always the top end of each organ when it came to the spinet models. I wouldn't settle for less, but remember that is just my opinion. As someone else said on here, "it is not what you play, but the fact you are playing." I do find that important. However, for me it is useful organ tones that I want such as those that are rich, useful, and not thin sounding. </P>


    I do remember selling Thomas organs that I was literally ashamed to sell, and the people who bought those cheap things didn't realize I had bought for the same price a quality name brand spinet organ for the same amount over 10 yrs back at that time.</P>


    It seems those organs were plagued with so many problems, and everything had a "clarinety" sound regardless of your settings. Such was the same with Hammond having the all flute sounds, most of the early Gulbransens were flute organs, yet these organs were built well with some good tones to be had if they did have limitations.</P>
    <P mce_keep="true"></P>


    Hammond had sucha boastabout the endless tones available, but to my musical ears I have found that a Hammond with drawbars sounds like a Hammond any way you set it. I have noticed only about 30 useful tones that can be identified as a stop name or a group of stops. In short, those dbar Hammonds, and flute Gulbransens could produce only a limited amouth of "useful" tones. Now if you want effects, warbles, squeaks, squeals, etc. you sure have them right there at hand.</P>


    Andy is right it seems Wurliter really lost it sure enough with the Sprite models, and they are toys period. I didn't care for the Funmaker series at all since they were a far cry from the nice home organs of a few years prior to the time they came on the market.</P>
    <P mce_keep="true"></P>


    I have heard some horrible sounds out of most any brand of organ, and I have had to listen to many inept organists in churches that just had to play the organ for their vainity. It is a shame that people need to feel important and have prestiage trying to play the organ for church or in some public place.</P>


    James</P>
    Baldwin Church Organ Model 48C
    Baldwin Spinet 58R
    Lowrey Spinet SCL
    Wurlitzer 4100A
    Crown Pump Organ by Geo. P. Bent, Chicago, Illinois


    Organs I hope to obtain in the future:

    Conn Tube Minuet or Caprice even a transistor Caprice with the color coded tabs
    Gulbransen H3 or G3, or V.
    Wurlitzer 44, 4410, 4420, ES Reed Models, 4300, 4500, Transistor Models

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