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Thread: Story & Clark - Reed Organs Multiplying like Tribbles

  1. #1
    ppp Pianississmo Tamara'sFirstOrgan's Avatar
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    Story & Clark - Reed Organs Multiplying like Tribbles

    A Neighbor is giving me a Free Organ - Story & Clark. It was listed on Craigslist Portland. It has a few problems of course, but is quite playable.

    It was partially restored, and then placed in a barn for a year and a half. A Mouse nested inside, chewed a tiny hole in the bellows that is hard to find, and also chewed the inner length of one stop.

    All of the stops are missing the little labels. All of the keys work. Tone is very nice, constant, and differerent voice from my Cornish which still needs work.

    The former owner is a Woodworker who carved and placed on top the scroll decoration. The wood isn't quite a perfect match, but it looks nice.

    It looks better with top shut, with those missing knob covers. But keys are in good condition. There is a lift compartment and inside that is a small can with a few missing/left over pieces. We pick Story and Clark up tomorrow AM !!!!!

    I looked online for Story & Clark Company information, and didn't find much, although there are many photos.

    I did find a title written by a Reed Organ Society Member , but only available at a couple of distant libraries.
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    ppp Pianississmo Tamara'sFirstOrgan's Avatar
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    Got it home this morning. Difficult day ; my husband (and the former owner) didn't know any better, and laid the organ on it's back in the truck for the trip home. A neighbor helped unload it. Opened it up, keys all frozen and askew. It sure looked broken. Very upsetting. We laid it on it's front , cushioned by pillows for awhile. I was hoping that reverse gravity would restore what had happened on it's back. I posted situation on Facebook Reed Organ Site and got very helpful advice. When I first tried to joggle and lift keys to fix, they just stayed frozen. But later I calmed down after playing Cornish Organ for awhile (still with the stuck A) and my hands were more sensitive. Went from right to left, and the keys settled back to home position and worked again !!!! It definitely needs bellows help ; the owner before last worked on them, but they are more breathy than the Cornish which hasn't had work. Very pretty !

  3. #3
    ff Fortissimo Organfella's Avatar
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    1 members found this post helpful.
    Hi Tamara.

    That is a nice piece! The Story & Clark is rather more robustly built than the Cornish and sounds very good. Here is a picture of my one in darker wood finish:

    20160723_124244.jpg

    It appears that the kneeswells have come adrift and are hanging loose in the front. How many stops does it have?

    If it sounds breathy and requires extra pedalling the bellows are definitely in need of repair, particularly if as you say, some rodent had had a nibble at the cloth. But it is always worth saving, especially when it looks as nice as your one.

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

  4. #4
    ppp Pianississmo Tamara'sFirstOrgan's Avatar
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    Smile It's Very Pretty

    ​The knobs are almost all missing their labels. The Story & Clark identity must have been painted over, but the right pedal has the trademark.

    The wooden knee swells , not really attached, fell off while moving. I put them in the storage compartment.

    The bellows blow puffs of very musty smelling air. Actually old mildew smell. I am thinking that I'd like new material installed, if that's not too expensive.

    The woodwork carving is very beautiful. So lovingly executed - cheerful suns with beams that fan out, delicate flowers and vines, and I think snow flakes.

    The stop voices mostly work, but perhaps 3 are silent.

    It is better built than the little Cornish, now that you mention it. But ironically, the Cornish was kept by one family, banged around a bit, not restored, but has a loved air to it and smells fine. The Story & Clark was passed around, played to bits, half restored then put into a barn, rescued by a Rock Musician who kept it in the garage and used a shop vac to attenuate the air flow. Then appeared in my living room

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    ff Fortissimo Organfella's Avatar
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    1 members found this post helpful.
    It is a lovely organ. However, from what you describe I would guess that it needs a full restore. The kneeswells falling off, the musty smell, the stops not working all point to the need for some extensive work. But if you have someone handy around, like your piano man, it will be well worth it and you will not be sorry...

    The bellows cloth is very expensive. I restored the bellows on a Sherlock-Manning and paid something like $200 just for the cloth. But it is still worth it. That particular organ I received in a partially dismantled and partially wrecked condition and managed to work it back to fully playable state.

    Here is a couple of pictures:

    After some work

    20150924_112325.jpg

    The original condition, note the empty gut...

    20150504_190718.jpg

    Take care

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

  6. #6
    ppp Pianississmo Tamara'sFirstOrgan's Avatar
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    Beautiful Restoration Work !! Wow !

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