[ Ref 060523 MMDigest, Cushion Pouches of "Wurstpelle"
Wurstpelle or sausage skin is in fact a wrong name. The material is
also known as "zephyr skin" and "Darmleder" (intestine leather), which
is also misleading because the material is neither skin nor intestine.
In Europe the pouch material is sold as "similileer" and it is made
of peritoneum (the blade carrying the intestines) of different animals,
mostly cows. There are several sources of this material in Europe,
Laukhuff in Germany being the best known. I am sure that there are
sources in the Americas.
It is used in all kinds of mechanical instruments like pneumatic
organettes and orchestrions. Most fairground organs have small
pneumatics made of this material in their key frame relays. It is
strong, airtight and very lasting (those inside my Mignon organette
are still going strong after 100 years!)
Hans van Oost, Netherlands
[ The common names don't reflect the material, although the material
[ is the same in each case. My 7 kg dictionary of 1927 says:
[ peritoneum (per'i-to-ne'um) -- In mammals, the smooth transparent
[ serous membrane that lines the cavity of the abdomen and is
[ reflected inward over the abdominal and pelvic viscera, thus
[ consisting of two portions, the parietal layer and the visceral
[ layer. The former is closely adherent to the walls of the abdomen
[ except in certain places along the back, where it extends forward
[ in folds to invest the viscera.
[ -- Robbie