Posts Tagged ‘organ’

Organ Donor

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

My friend Flex Unger has a small recording studio in Brooklyn full of broken toys and good intentions.  A lover of to-do lists, Flex recently went around the studio taking pictures of the things he’d like to fix or convert in the coming months, which he posted on his blog along with short descriptions of the forthcoming projects.


Organ parts

[NOTE: This post has been updated to correct gross errors in my understanding of all things technical.  Despite years of wood shop, metal shop, power shop, a class on bike repair and accelerated physics, I still don’t quite get how to take things apart or put them back together again.  Apologies if you rushed out to try these projects at home between 5 and 11pm EST.]

My favorite of these resolutions is the master plan to deconstruct and recycle an old Viscount organ (shown above, in pieces) to make a portable drum machine and build an amplifier and a mini organ.  Inspiration for extracting the organ’s drum machine came from the YouTube clip below; and from a primal calling to amass the world’s largest collection of portable beat-making devices.  The hope is to use a 1/4 inch jack from the organ’s circuitry so that the device can be output into an amp.

Project #2 is an amplifier that will serve purposes equal parts form and function.  Flex has an oven range—rescued from the trash!—attached to a wall that is supposed to reverberate for an echo effect.  If I understand correctly, by extracting the organ’s speaker and its covering, he can a) preserve the attractive vintage fabric look of the Viscount and b) use it to build a makeshift PA that will carry sound over to the oven range.


Organ fabric

Project #2 has the added bonus of incorporating this rad-looking Zenith tube radio found on the streets of Brooklyn, which will serve as the amplifier.


Tube radio

For the third and final project, Flex plans to collect the remaining parts and put them back together in the form of a mini-organ.

Stay tuned for progress reports.  And if, by chance, you’re in the market for a green recording studio for your next creative audio project, consider Clean and Humble, a trash and artist-friendly space.

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