Mechanical Music Digest  Archives
You Are Not Logged In Login/Get New Account
Please Log In. Accounts are free!
Logged In users are granted additional features including a more current version of the Archives and a simplified process for submitting articles.
Home Archives Calendar Gallery Store Links Info
MMD > Archives > September 2002 > 2002.09.24 > 07Prev  Next


Organ Pipes of MDF Board
By Hans van Oost

As I stated before, organ pipes can be made of any material, providing
that the walls are sufficiently stiff to contain the air column.  I have
seen and heard organ flue pipes made of all kinds of natural woods,
plywood, organ metal, zinc, copper, brass, concrete basses (!), Bristol
board (a complete organ made by a Swiss), stoneware, Perspex, various
plastics, and papier mache.

I figure that they can be made of stainless steel or degraded uranium
as well!  I have never made flue pipes of MDF board, but I cannot see
why that would not make good sounding pipes.

Birch plywood was used by the late Carl Frei Jr. for making smaller
scale pipes like violins and stopped celestes.

Quite another question is: Why would you make pipes out of that
material?  Is it cheaper?  Maybe, but figure out what you will save
in time to construct MDF pipes which can be voiced properly.  I can
imagine that you make bass pipes from MDF, but in that case you will
still have the problem of shaping upper and lower lips and maybe the
looks of MDF pipes, which may be a problem for customers.  For voicing
purposes you will have to use normal wood for the lips.  Another
factor, already mentioned, may be the reaction to changes in relative
air humidity.

Planing of MDF is impossible, but thick walls do not harm the sound;
thin walls do, so the only precaution to take is not making the walls
too thin.

Some reactions point to the acoustic properties of natural wood.  I do
not agree with these, because the main purpose of pipe walls is NOT to
vibrate!  That is why most church organ pipes are made of organ metal,
a tin-lead alloy which has no structural resonance of its own!

Hans van Oost, Netherlands


(Message sent Tue 24 Sep 2002, 15:58:12 GMT, from time zone GMT+0200.)

Key Words in Subject:  Board, MDF, Organ, Pipes

Home    Archives    Calendar    Gallery    Store    Links    Info   


Enter text below to search the MMD Website with Google



CONTACT FORM: Click HERE to write to the editor, or to post a message about Mechanical Musical Instruments to the MMD

Unless otherwise noted, all opinions are those of the individual authors and may not represent those of the editors. Compilation copyright 1995-2019 by Jody Kravitz.

Please read our Republication Policy before copying information from or creating links to this web site.

Click HERE to contact the webmaster regarding problems with the website.

Please support publication of the MMD by donating online

Pay via PayPal

No PayPal account required

                                     
Translate This Page

. .