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Thread: Cardboard hinges....replace with same or change to canvas

  1. #1
    ppp Pianississmo RogerK's Avatar
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    Cardboard hinges....replace with same or change to canvas

    Good morning folks,

    I am new to this forum and spent most of yesterday reading through the wealth of information posted here regarding reed organs. Thank you to all that have taken the time to post and help to keep these organs alive!!

    Here is my dilemma. I am restoring a reed organ made by J. H. Long of Lebanon PA. and have found the bellows hinges to be made of 5/64" thick cardboard/pressboard and covered on the inside with book cloth. There is no rubber cloth sealing the outside of the hinge. The 'purist' side of me says stick with the cardboard and find a suitable cardboard replacement but the 'realist' side of me says to re-hinge with canvas as used in later organs. The hinges are brittle and must be replaced but I'm not sure what to use as the replacement. Is book board as used in book binding suitable for these hinges? I'd appreciate your opinions as to how to proceed. Photos of the hinges:
    Long, exhauster hinge, inside.jpgLong, exhauster hinge.jpg

    Thank you!!

    Roger

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    ff Fortissimo SubBase's Avatar
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    1 members found this post helpful.
    This is the main feeder hinge? As in, the one along the bottom?
    Never seen one like that. Quite optimistic to think a bit of linen would hold up through 10's of thousands of cycles.
    Are the rest of the feeders cardboard and leather, or just rubber cloth and cardboard stiffeners?
    I prefer canvas (or denim if oriented not to stretch) in an x-pattern for the bottom hinge (secured with a few 3 oz. tacks), then rubber cloth to make airtight. Or cloth & leather.
    Not every style of bellows manufacture permits x-hinges, so a strip would be more appropriate.
    Casey

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    ppp Pianississmo RogerK's Avatar
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    Hi Casey
    Thanks for responding! Yes, this is the hinge used on the main feeder. The cardboard is actually folded in half to make the hinge and the inside fold was then covered with the linen. Looking at the end of the feeders and reservoir, initially I though I was looking at a leather hinge. It wasn't until I opened the feeder that I realized it was folded cardboard. Each side of the feeders is covered individually by a piece of rubber cloth with cardboard ribs. The corners are closed with leather gussets.

    I'm going to use canvas. I was leaning in that direction and your input finalized the decision!

    Thanks!

    Roger

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    ff Fortissimo Silken Path's Avatar
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    Hi, Roger - Welcome to the forum. Are you documenting this restoration online anywhere?
    -- I'm Lamar - Rodgers W5000C - Conn 643 Theater - Hammond M3
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    pp Pianissimo Rodney's Avatar
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    Hi Roger,

    Welcome! I always have found this forum helpful - there is plenty of good stuff here.

    Good choice on using canvas, as it is something that you just will not need to worry about breaking again in your lifetime. I often feel the same dilemmas when I want to keep a restoration historically close to the original as possible, yet the materials or workmanship were not a good choice by the builder.

    There are no records in the Gellerman database on JH Long, other than an entry on the Long Organ Co., which is possibly a stenciled organ. Do you have any pictures of the case to share before you started the restoration?

    All the best,

    Rodney
    To play a reed organ or harmonium, it helps to disconnect your feet from your brain and connect them to your emotions.
    Most of all, be creative, make music and have fun...


    Website: http://www.rodneyjantzi.com/

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    ppp Pianississmo RogerK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silken Path View Post
    Hi, Roger - Welcome to the forum. Are you documenting this restoration online anywhere?
    Thank you! I put pictures on Flickr under RWKDE to go with my notes as I work so the instrument owners can see the progress. The photos are public so please feel free to browse. The pictures before this organ are of an Electrova coin operated nickelodeon I restored last spring.

  7. #7
    ppp Pianississmo RogerK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rodney View Post
    Hi Roger,

    Welcome! I always have found this forum helpful - there is plenty of good stuff here.

    Good choice on using canvas, as it is something that you just will not need to worry about breaking again in your lifetime. I often feel the same dilemmas when I want to keep a restoration historically close to the original as possible, yet the materials or workmanship were not a good choice by the builder.

    There are no records in the Gellerman database on JH Long, other than an entry on the Long Organ Co., which is possibly a stenciled organ. Do you have any pictures of the case to share before you started the restoration?

    All the best,

    Rodney
    Thanks, Rodney, for letting me know that there isn't any additional information in the Gellerman database. The owner was particularly interested in this organ because it was "manufactured" in Lebanon, PA, his hometown. I've not found any numbers that I could even consider serial or model numbers. The only unusual feature I've found other than the cardboard hinges is that the stop rods are connected directly to the mutes, swells, couplers, etc by wires and pivots rather than the normal linkages that can be easily disconnected at the ends of the stop board.

    Also, I followed you on YouTube for quite some time now and thoroughly enjoyed your playing. I had an Estey 11 rank pipe organ like the one you played on your vacation to the Estey Museum which I sold without restoring. I've been kicking myself ever since hearing you play that organ. Please keep posting those videos!

  8. #8
    ppp Pianississmo RogerK's Avatar
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    Update: What I thought was a cardboard hinge with book cloth reinforcement turns out to be a leather, fiberboard, book cloth "sandwich". The "sandwich" was glued up flat then folded and glued and tacked to the boards. The reservoir hinge is still intact but I don't trust the tightness of leather at this point. My plan is to make a wooden spacer the same thickness and shape as the hinge "sandwich" and use the cross tab canvas hinges as described by Casey.

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