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MMD > Archives > June 1999 > 1999.06.18 > 13Prev  Next

Sanfilippo Band Organ with Brass Horns; Deagan Uniphone Bells
By Matthew Caulfield

Dave Brown asked whether Jasper Sanfilippo's Wurlitzer with the brass
horns was a 163, 164, or 168.  My bet is that Dave was looking at the
Wurlitzer 180 which Jasper purchased last year from Jim Wells and had
overhauled by Mike Kitner.  Jasper also bought several years earlier
Jim's Wurlitzer 165 -- perhaps the earliest known 165 -- but it doesn't
have any brass and it is the only 165 that has statuettes of
trumpet-blowing ladies on the two pedestals on either side of the swell
shutters.  Wurlitzer copied its 165 facade from the Bruder Elite Apollo
facade, but simplified the design by omitting the statuary that the
pedestals were intended to hold.

There are a couple of other unique features on the Sanfilippo 165 band
organ: its 22 bell bars are not rectangular, but are slightly ovoid in
shape, and the organ topknot is slightly more elaborately carved than in
later 165's.  If memory serves me correctly, the open pipes are also
tuned by the European method rather than by the use of tuning slides,
testifying to the Bruder roots of the Wurlitzer 165.

Wondering whether the shape of the Sanfilippo 165's bell bars might
relate somehow to a product of the Chicago Deagan Company (Deagan is
known for its Uniphone Bells and the Wurlitzer 165 tracker layout does
have a stop labeled "Uniphone Bells"), I purchased pages 77-78 from an
old Wurlitzer musical instrument catalog that recently came up on eBay.
The pages advertise "Wurlitzer Dance Bells," "Wurlitzer Professional
Bells," "Deagan Roundtop Orchestra Bells," "Deagan Song Bells," and
"Deagan Marimbas."  While the texts and illustrations were interesting,
they shed no light on the question I hoped for an answer to.

Matthew Caulfield

(Message sent Sat 19 Jun 1999, 03:56:54 GMT, from time zone GMT-0700.)

Key Words in Subject:  Band, Bells, Brass, Deagan, Horns, Organ, Sanfilippo, Uniphone

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