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End of the line for Hamichord and EXP-Edition Module?


Dnsmo

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Andrea at Crumar tells me that the Hamichord M-C3 and EXP-edition module are being phased out and are no longer available for purchase online.

 

He suggested that I contact stores in Europe which have sold those two products to find out what inventory remains, which I am doing.

 

If anyone knows of anyone selling either of these (retail or privately), please let me know here.

 

Thanks.

Dennis

Dennis
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This has been discussed before.

 

Over in one of the yahoo! groups, Andrea or Guido explained the relationship between Crumar and BGMI. They are NOT the same company. Crumar or GSi lets BGMI use the VB3 software in the Hamichord and will continue to do so, as well as let them sell the Hamichord via the Crumar site. But, since they don't have control over it, that's why it says "Ask for availability" as they do not directly know.

 

The really interesting part is that he hinted at a Mojo with more console-like features...

"I'm so crazy, I don't know this is impossible! Hoo hoo!" - Daffy Duck

 

"The good news is that once you start piano you never have to worry about getting laid again. More time to practice!" - MOI

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This has been discussed before.

 

Over in one of the yahoo! groups, Andrea or Guido explained the relationship between Crumar and BGMI. They are NOT the same company. Crumar or GSi lets BGMI use the VB3 software in the Hamichord and will continue to do so, as well as let them sell the Hamichord via the Crumar site. But, since they don't have control over it, that's why it says "Ask for availability" as they do not directly know.

 

The really interesting part is that he hinted at a Mojo with more console-like features...

Joe,

 

The update I received today from Andrea at Crumar would seem to supersede the information in the previous discussion which you referenced above.

 

Andrea told me that both pieces are, in his words, "soon to end of life products" and that what remains of any new inventory is only available in retail stores in Europe. My post here is made in hopes that someone might know who still has Hamichords and the EXP-Edition modules for sale if they will no longer be manufactured, as Andrea indicated.

 

 

 

 

Dennis
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Andrea at Crumar tells me that the Hamichord M-C3 and EXP-edition module are being phased out and are no longer available for purchase online.

 

He suggested that I contact stores in Europe which have sold those two products to find out what inventory remains, which I am doing.

 

If anyone knows of anyone selling either of these (retail or privately), please let me know here.

 

Thanks.

Dennis

 

Another question might be, for the past Hamichord purchasers like myself for long term ownership: does anyone have parts to hoard for future service (though if you are PC savvy you can continue forever, actually). More specifically, not the computer part that can be easily upgraded but the PCB boards that handle the firmware in case they fail. I would guess though perhaps 10 or 15 years+ could be expected. My expectation will probably be the Hamichord moves over to the 'money' (the Mojo group) and many or most of the same parts will be used (easily wrong). Someone told me they moved over (correction welcome) the Pari tonewheel organ injection molding vintage tabs, vibrato knob - to the Hamichord in the first place. *Expensive* to start over with that too. That trend could continue. Perhaps new name - a lot of same parts.

 

W.

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I have an M-C3 that I use to control VB3 in my laptop. I view it as a long-term investment, so here's hoping that parts will be available for a long while. I've had mine for a couple of years, and I have already had to replace the half-moon switch once.
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Andrea at Crumar tells me that the Hamichord M-C3 and EXP-edition module are being phased out and are no longer available for purchase online.

 

He suggested that I contact stores in Europe which have sold those two products to find out what inventory remains, which I am doing.

 

If anyone knows of anyone selling either of these (retail or privately), please let me know here.

 

Thanks.

Dennis

 

Another question might be, for the past Hamichord purchasers like myself for long term ownership: does anyone have parts to hoard for future service (though if you are PC savvy you can continue forever, actually). More specifically, not the computer part that can be easily upgraded but the PCB boards that handle the firmware in case they fail. I would guess though perhaps 10 or 15 years+ could be expected. My expectation will probably be the Hamichord moves over to the 'money' (the Mojo group) and many or most of the same parts will be used (easily wrong). Someone told me they moved over (correction welcome) the Pari tonewheel organ injection molding vintage tabs, vibrato knob - to the Hamichord in the first place. *Expensive* to start over with that too. That trend could continue. Perhaps new name - a lot of same parts.

 

W.

 

Parts? You have to be kidding.... Anyone buying any electronics made in the past 20 years can forget about replacement parts continually being manufactured... It's called "planned obsolescence". Thats why I always suggest that instead of spewing $20,000 on a "New B3", spend $6000 on a good classic B3. At least you will know that there won't be a time when that classic Hammond cannot be repaired...

'55 and '59 B3's, Leslies 147, 122, 21H, Motif XS7, Mellotrons M300 and M400, Wurlitzer 200, Gibson G101, Vox Continental, Mojo
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H Dave,

 

How many $20K New B3's do you think have been sold to common musicians like ourselves? I couldn't justify the cost and most of us in the forum wouldn't either, especially when it cost 4x or more than than an original B3.

 

I do agree with the planned obsolescence of parts though. Many synthesizers from 20-30 years ago could be shelved if key chips are NLA and that key chip fails. Analog CX3 comes to mind as well as a Juno 106. I had to sell my Ensoniq SD1 for parts because I couldn't find one of the component parts and got tired of searching the internet for parts. Ensoniq's basic response was "sorry"..

 

D Dave

57 Hammond B3; 69 Hammond L100P; 68 Leslie 122; Kurzweil PC3; M-Audio Code 61; Voce V5+; Neo Vent; EV ELX112P; GSI Gemini & Burn

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The perfect example of the effect of building something that will last "forever" is the Hammond organ company. Nobody who had one ever needed a new one and eventually everyone who wanted one had one. Their mission was accomplished.

 

They tried to make cheaper more affordable organs but time had moved on.

 

Now that the Hammond sound is popular again, what is keeping the price of vintage Hammonds affordable? Current digital emulations. If they weren't plentiful, what would the price/demand for old ones be?

 

And if the companies don't keep making new ones that people will buy eventually they will be gone too.

 

What company today can forecast what spares they will need in the future or have the capital available to make something they won't receive a return on for 10, 20, 30 years. If you had to decide to put the capital necessary to make say 10,000 main boards that possibly won't ever actually all sell (these units would be the ones inventoried for beyond the expected 7 year life) or put that money into designing the next generation model, it is an easy decision. And adding the cost of making those boards to the price of the model into which it goes will price the instrument out of the market.

 

At the speed technology changes, component manufacturing companies can't be expected to make obsolete parts forever. Even if a company wanted to make a short run of main boards to extend the repairability of an instrument they would have to design a new main board. Nobody is going to do that.

 

Embrace obsolescence, it is how we get new stuff.

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Parts? You have to be kidding.... Anyone buying any electronics made in the past 20 years can forget about replacement parts continually being manufactured... It's called "planned obsolescence". Thats why I always suggest that instead of spewing $20,000 on a "New B3", spend $6000 on a good classic B3. At least you will know that there won't be a time when that classic Hammond cannot be repaired...

 

No I am not kidding. Obviously you did not read the word "hoard" in my remarks. There are not going to be parts in the future unless a 3rd party copies the PCBs.

 

I meant now<----to put aside.

 

The question is for owners who may want them: WHO may have parts NOW that could be sold.

 

The Hamichord actually was not designed from original concept to be obsolete (but upgraded with slight improvements) actually. It is just a classic B3 interface with a computer board that can be upgraded indefinitely. The firmware boards are what I am concerned with.

 

Also, in my opinion, the Hamichord is a 'classic-interface B3' type instrument in a league of its own (like the KeyB) unlike the myriad of releases of other keyboards that go on forever. The interface is 100 percent there and the VB3-2 is 100 percent there or just about depending on opinion. There really is no where else to go except even lighter weight, intrinsic quality and portability, imho, with minor tweaks of the instrument unlike the vast improvements of other keyboards and come and go and come and go.

 

(if anyone knows where I actually can buy some parts contact me privately I might be interested in bulk parts too)

 

W

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Even the original Hammonds can have things break that are almost impossible to replace. I serviced them for years. Mechanical parts - such as the key switches, pedal switches and that sort of thing. Some of the things COULD have been made with a very good machine shop - except that the original $5.00 part would have $5,000 to do so.

 

In electronics, I've gone from tubes through transistors, through Integrated Circuits and generational changes. Building large scale integrated circuits - the factory costs are measured in billions - and when the next generation (usually involving smaller traces and more precise registration of the partly optical process of manufacture) comes, the old stuff is removed completely. Even if a company could afford to keep the old plant on line - costs of building a small number of a particular part would greatly exceed the costs of the device to be repaired. Add on to that the legal changes - when the EU decided to place a legal limit on the use of lead in everything - most electronics of any type used lead. Redesign for lead-free is not a simple matter - the lead has to be replace with something, and that often requires a quite different manufacturing process (also none of the lead-free stuff seems to make as long-lasting connections as the old lead solder).

 

So, the unavailability of parts for older devices is not just the desire for added profit (although that may factor in), but it is the reality that, when a product is designed and made, with an expectation of selling X units, a total of X + Y parts are made, where Y is the number of parts that the company decided in advance to stock for repairs. If Y is too large, the company goes broke, if Y is too small, the repair window is too small. There are also some legal issues here. Generally, in most countries where the equipment is produced, laws only require that repair material be available for a seven year period.

 

JMcS has it down correctly. Move along folks, no conspiracy here (there are enough places where there IS a conspiracy, but this is not the place).

 

Howard Grand|Hamm SK1-73|Kurz PC2|PC2X|PC3|PC3X|PC361; QSC K10's

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Even the original Hammonds can have things break that are almost impossible to replace. I serviced them for years. Mechanical parts - such as the key switches, pedal switches and that sort of thing. Some of the things COULD have been made with a very good machine shop - except that the original $5.00 part would have $5,000 to do so.

The need for obsolete mechanical parts is just the kind of problem that 3D printing is likely to solve.

 

JMcS has it down correctly. Move along folks, no conspiracy here (there are enough places where there IS a conspiracy, but this is not the place).

I agree. There is no "planned obsolescence" in the classic sense here. Hamichord has no interest in selling you something that will fail prematurely, with the expectation that you will then buy a new Hamichord. OTOH, Apple has sold lots of new iPods and such because the lack of a replaceable battery often makes it simpler and more cost-effective to buy a new iDevice!

Maybe this is the best place for a shameless plug! Our now not-so-new new video at https://youtu.be/3ZRC3b4p4EI is a 40 minute adaptation of T. S. Eliot's "Prufrock" - check it out! And hopefully I'll have something new here this year. ;-)

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Getting back to the original topic of this thread -- does anyone know how to contact BG Instruments, the manufacturer of the Hamichord and EXP-edition module? A website or e-mail address? What do current owners of these units do if there is a service issue?
Dennis
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Years ago I worked for a copier manufacturer in our dealer service department. A few of the dealers I visited decided to become Apple dealers. Apple required these dealers to buy a large initial computer inventory and huge parts inventories for the models they sold. The way Apple worked at the time was when the check cleared they would ship the order, whatever the order. These dealers decided they would buy our copiers (because they could do so on credit) and use the proceeds from copier sales to fund their Apple venture. Apples didn't sell nearly as well as they expected (this was the early - mid 80's) and they were stuck with more computers than they could sell and parts they were never going to need. Eventually my company said no more credit and some of these dealers owed us twice what their credit limit was. We actually had salesmen who convinced region mangers that they needed to override the credit limit and sell the dealers more on credit so they could pay us what they owed us. It wasn't ever going to happen. Apple asked the dealers what the phone number of their nearest competitor was, pointed out that the dealer agreement prohibited selling the computers and parts to another dealer and also prohibited them from buying the stuff so good luck.

 

I had to inventory these dealers to determine the value of the machines, parts and supplies we were going to repossess. It was rough watching these guys sit there crying in their coffee as their business dissolved.

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What do current owners of these units do if there is a service issue?

 

I send an e-mail to the two Andreas and Guido. Someone always responds.

 

I do not know how to contact the other Andrea (of BG instruments?). Do you have an address for him? Is he the creator of these products? Is there a website associated with them (other than Crumar)?

Dennis
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BG's old site used to be bgmi.it, but that still redirects to crumar.it. A whois lookup wasn't particularly helpful either.

"I'm so crazy, I don't know this is impossible! Hoo hoo!" - Daffy Duck

 

"The good news is that once you start piano you never have to worry about getting laid again. More time to practice!" - MOI

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There's one reason why Roman aquaducts, bridges, and buildings are still standing: they didn't know how to do the math (they didn't know about the parallelogram of forces). So, they overbuilt rather than run a narrow margin and risk failure. Budgets weren't unlimited, and emperors wanted to make as many big showy (and useful) things as possible to awe the populace. If the engineers had been able to say "At this budget, it'll last 2000 years, but if we shave here and there, it'll cost half as much and last 200 years," no doubt the emperors would often have gone for the cheaper option and built more stuff.

 

The difference is we know better now. :laugh:

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Andrea (Agnoletto of Crumar) posted the following in the MojoMusicians Yahoo! group in answer to the same question. I don't think he'd mind me sharing it here as well.

___

 

Time to be clear (again...) :-)

 

BG's musical instruments: manufacturer of Pari.e electromagnetic organ and later

hamichord and Mojo... me and Guido started collaboration with them back in

2008... we created Hamichord and Mojo. After that, we simply decided to move all

to our own company for a lot of reasons... Now Bg's srl is inactive meaning they

are not working and there aren't plan to go on...

V.M. Connection: actual society (me and Guido)active from 2009 manufacture Baby

Grand, Bassman, selling Guido's VST and all projects of Bg's musical

instruments... from 2012 we also manufacture Mojo (and some news to come... ).

We are owners of Crumar Brand.

 

We have good relationship with people behind Bg's srl (only one remain) we are

now trying to help them to sell all parts, instruments and so on that they still

have; after that I think they'll close business. I was there last week for

understand clearly the situation... they still have a lot of things... two brand

new hamichords ecc ecc... we are still thinking the best way to sell those

things surely with a good discount... we, as Crumar, agreed with them on offer

assistance after selling...

 

Things they have:

2 new hamichords M-C3 wooden with stand

1 new hamichord stand for M-C3 black road

8 wooden leslies cabinets (the ones of pari.e called "rotary")without

electronics (very interesting for a DIY project)

2 flight cased leslies (the ones of pari.e called "rotary")without electronics

(very interesting for a DIY project)

1 flight cased leslies (the ones of pari.e) full

3 ex-demo pari.e electromagnetic organ new k-61

various spare parts ( a lot): we, as Crumar, bought some parts (useful last year

for mojos), but the rest are for hamichords (panels, metal, ecc ecc), so not

useful for us. Then they have drivers, woofers, PCBs, components ecc ecc...

 

So they asked me to help them selling the instruments above... obviously with

good discount... if someone is interest in... I will take care of this, from

shipment to assistance... prices will be something like 35/40% less than

original prices...

 

If you need to understand how Pari.e new k62 and related leslies look like, you

can visit http://www.parieorgan.it/organ_it.htm and

http://www.parieorgan.it/speaker_it.htm

 

bye

 

Andrea Agnoletto

 

"I'm so crazy, I don't know this is impossible! Hoo hoo!" - Daffy Duck

 

"The good news is that once you start piano you never have to worry about getting laid again. More time to practice!" - MOI

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