Rebuilding the Æolian Orchestrelle
58-Note Player Reed Organ, 1912 Model "W"
by Richard Vance
Copyright (C) 2000 by Richard Z. Vance
rev. B, 29 July 2000

Chapter 2.1 - The Stop-Action Side Chests; Introduction

    This first technical section deals with the rebuilding of the two vertical side chests, which supply wind to all the ranks, and contain the stop actions.  One may well ask why I am doing this first, rather than starting with the wind supply and bellows.  I am working on these, but a lot of reconstruction was needed on them, so while that is going on, I decided to tackle this area.  Also, these chests form the basic structural backbone of the whole organ, and have to be finished before the wind system is tested, or anything else is assembled. The following diagram shows what goes on inside them.

    The tube from the primary pouch and bleed goes to a pallet which is opened when the stop is pulled.  This tube is also teed to a row of pallets which are successively opened by a wedge actuated by the left knee-lever, the crescendo (or "tonal" to use Aeolian's nomenclature), so that more and more stops are opened as the crescendo level is increased.  When the primary vents the big pulldown, the pallet feeding the rank is opened, and the "Winchester" vent on the rank chest is closed. There are six such arrangements on each side for the ranks.  There is also a seventh one on the right side for the Vox Humana motor, and another big primary which vents the keyboard pallet chest when the manual is turned off.  Two more primaries, similar in action but having much larger pulldowns, are located on the framework below the deck, to open the supply to the 16' rank, and to operate the muffler for the 16' half-stop.

    This chapter is subdivided into several parts:
        Chapter 2.2 - Preparing the chest
        Chapter 2.3 - Replacing the self-energizing gaskets
        Chapter 2.4 - Recovering the pulldowns
        Chapter 2.5 - Releathering the pallets
        Chapter 2.6 - Making and installing the Winchester vent pallets (mine were all lost, being on the outside where they got knocked off.)
        Chapter 2.7 - Rebuilding the primaries.  This will be added later, when I get all the special material for valves, and can begin such work.
        Chapter 2.8 - Assembling and testing the entire chest

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