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Hammond BCV and Leslie 31 advice wanted.


NewImprov

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I was just offered a BCV and Leslie 31 for free. They belong to a good friend of mine, who got them from his father, a local blues musician. They've been in storage for around 20 years, and no one really knows what condition they're in. I've seen them in person about a year ago, and the cabinets look good, they've been covered and dry the whole time.

 

Recently my friend had a tree fall through the shop on his property, and while none of his instruments or PA gear were damaged, he's thinking that it would be good to get rid of some things he's not using, so he's offered me organ, and to help move it the 80 miles from his place to mine.

 

So here's my questions:

What are people's opinions of the BCV? I've looked around online, and afficionados seen to like them. I'm thinking I'll want to add a percussion kit to it, are there any other mods recommended for an instrument of this vintage?

 

What about the Leslie? I'm hoping it;s a 31H, but I don't know for sure. I have heard tallboy Leslies before, probably 31H's, and loved the tone.

 

Can someone recommend a good Hammond technician, preferably in Portland, OR? The organ is in the Lake Oswego area, and I'm guessing I'll have a better chance of finding a good tech in Portland than where I live in Corvallis. Ideally, I'd like to hire someone who knows the instruments well to come out and look at it, and give me some kind of assessment of it's condition.

 

I doubt that I'll gig with this, but I've wanted to have a console for recordings and to learn to play pedals. I'm pretty excited about this!

Turn up the speaker

Hop, flop, squawk

It's a keeper

-Captain Beefheart, Ice Cream for Crow

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A BCV with a Trek II TP2B will be very close to a B3. Unless you use split vibrato/chorus (i.e. off for one manual, on for the other), or care about the routing of the percussion ping, there's nothing more you need to do.

 

You can fix the percussion ping routing with an AO10-A, B, or C from an early B2/C2, but will have to have some electronics chops to get it working. That would also get you swell cap expression pedal.

 

Oh, yes, a BC will also have ratchet-type drawbars. Not my favourite. A set of smoothies will set you back a bunch of dough. If you can find a complete Elegante or maybe Concorde, I can tell you how to convert. Requires soldering, drilling, and tapping.

 

As for what's wrong with it: the 31H amp and crossover need a total rebuild, as does the vibrato amp and rheostat box. Leave the resistors in the rheostat itself alone unless you can hear a problem.

 

And of course, there will be mechanical issues to go through. Felts, grommets, bearings, etc, ad nauseum. You don't have to do it all at once. Bonus: the keycomes on the BCs are maintainable.

 

Oh, yes -- find yourself a couple of M3s to steal key tops from.

 

Wes

Hammond: L111, M100, M3, BC, CV, Franken CV, A100, D152, C3, B3

Leslie: 710, 760, 51C, 147, 145, 122, 22H, 31H

Yamaha: CP4, DGX-620, DX7II-FD-E!, PF85, DX9

Roland: VR-09, RD-800

 

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Congrats! If the Hammond hasn't been run in a while, it may take some Hammond oil (and only Hammond oil) to lube it up so it will turn. It can take some time for the oil to work its way through before the generator can turn. The Leslie can be lubricated with sewing machine oil. Don't overdo either. There are plenty of sites with info about this and other Hammond info such as

 

http://bentonelectronics.com - tech near Houston, maybe he knows one near you

http://www.dairiki.org/HammondWiki/

http://www.captain-foldback.com

 

Maybe some info you're asking about can be found there as well.

 

Please keep us updated on how the move goes, what you find inside the Hammond and Leslie, etc.! We love :love: to see posts and pictures of projects like this!

"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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See if Cascade Organ Service in Salem is still in business. Owner Larry Carroll has been working on Hammond Organs since the late 60's.
C3/122, M102A, Vox V301H, Farfisa Compact, Gibson G101, GEM P, RMI 300A, Piano Bass, Pianet , Prophet 5 rev. 2, Pro-One, Matrix 12, OB8, Korg MS20, Jupiter 6, Juno 60, PX-5S, Nord Stage 3 Compact
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Congrats. Anytime this stuff is free get it. Problem with the web now so many people are educated. On the other hand the stuff was mass produced so you can find a lot of gear also.

"Danny, ci manchi a tutti. La E-Street Band non e' la stessa senza di te. Riposa in pace, fratello"

 

 

noblevibes.com

 

 

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^^^

So true. Note that it will be heavier than the usual B or C, because it has two separate tone generators (the second doesn't have as many wheels as the primary). Tuning is a bit different on the second, to provide a Chorus effect that none of the later Hammonds have. Also different from a Leslie on slow's Chorale.

But it is one heavy console.

 

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

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"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."

Jim

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Is that how it works on the older Hammonds? Two generators one detuned slightly .... like how I detune twin oscillators to get a bigger synth sound.

"It doesn't have to be difficult to be cool" - Mitch Towne

 

"A great musician can bring tears to your eyes!!!

So can a auto Mechanic." - Stokes Hunt

 

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I Know a couple techs in the Portland area that will be more affordable than Larry Carroll at Cascade in Salem. I doubt that Larry is still working on these.Cascade will ask top dollar to work on that kind of stuff.

 

PM me. I can hook you up with someone affordable and good. I am in the general area you inquired about.

 

 

BTW... the last Hammond I got like this was a 1942 BCV and it came with a 1942 30A. It was in Vancouver Washington.

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Is that how it works on the older Hammonds? Two generators one detuned slightly .... like how I detune twin oscillators to get a bigger synth sound.

 

The chorus generator actually has 2 wheels per note for those notes with chorus - one slightly sharp and one slightly flat to the corresponding wheel on the main generator. The 2 wheels might actually be on the same shaft, I don't remember.

Moe

---

 

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Wow, thanks so much for all the info, you guys are great! I'm starting to get really excited about this!

 

I'm hoping to go up to take a look at it pretty soon. Assume I know absolutely nothing about Hammonds technically (it's pretty close to the truth). Is there anything I should look for that would tell me to avoid this organ? I'm going to assume that I won't start it up, but are there any tests I can do to tell if it's worth putting the money into repairing/restoring? I can probably spare about a grand for repairs immediately. Eventually, I'd like to learn how to work on it myself.

 

I'd plan to arrange to have a tech look at it, but if I could identify that it was a basket case beforehand, it'd help a lot. I have a garage full of non-workng "project" instruments and gear already, and my wife has said the only way this Hammond comes into the house is in working condition.

Turn up the speaker

Hop, flop, squawk

It's a keeper

-Captain Beefheart, Ice Cream for Crow

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Half the wheels are not only on the same shaft, they are stuck together and share the same pickup! This signal is then sent through the same filter network as the regular tone on the main generator.

http://i64.tinypic.com/9hswg0.png

Hammond: L111, M100, M3, BC, CV, Franken CV, A100, D152, C3, B3

Leslie: 710, 760, 51C, 147, 145, 122, 22H, 31H

Yamaha: CP4, DGX-620, DX7II-FD-E!, PF85, DX9

Roland: VR-09, RD-800

 

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A lot of guys used to remove the chorus generator to lighten their organ up. Somebody gave me an orphaned chorus generator and I transplanted it into my B-2 custom chop. So I had chorus vibrato PLUS the chorus generator. They sound completely unalike.

 

The chorus generator is basically like having a 3 oscillator minimoog tuned in loose unison.

Moe

---

 

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  • 9 months later...

So, bringing this thread back to life after far too long. I just moved the beast into my rehearsal space. I've got a guy coming in a month to get it working, and I hope to install a percussion kit eventually as well. I have the pedals as well, they are just not in the photo.

 

26706556568_e996acee35_c.jpg

 

And here's the Leslie

26706556258_60931015de_c.jpg

Turn up the speaker

Hop, flop, squawk

It's a keeper

-Captain Beefheart, Ice Cream for Crow

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Is that a 31H or a 31A? You have a very early papier maché horn. Also the lower bearing support is different than mine, but I have a late 31H.

 

What's in the wierd box on the non-factory shelf? Some kind of crossover? (you're missing the crossover)

 

Wes

Hammond: L111, M100, M3, BC, CV, Franken CV, A100, D152, C3, B3

Leslie: 710, 760, 51C, 147, 145, 122, 22H, 31H

Yamaha: CP4, DGX-620, DX7II-FD-E!, PF85, DX9

Roland: VR-09, RD-800

 

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You're right, I meant to type "30A".

Hammond: L111, M100, M3, BC, CV, Franken CV, A100, D152, C3, B3

Leslie: 710, 760, 51C, 147, 145, 122, 22H, 31H

Yamaha: CP4, DGX-620, DX7II-FD-E!, PF85, DX9

Roland: VR-09, RD-800

 

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I was reading this thread and saw the above reference to Joe Luca. I was not familiar with him so I did a quick Svengle. OMG! Found this insane YouTube piece of his restoration of an old Model E.

 

 

Talk about a labor of love! A stunning restorative project that boggles the mind..

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Yeah he is a buddy of mine but was looking for a 30A. He just now is restoring a Novachord. Those 30A Leslie's are rare.

"Danny, ci manchi a tutti. La E-Street Band non e' la stessa senza di te. Riposa in pace, fratello"

 

 

noblevibes.com

 

 

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Yeah he is a buddy of mine but was looking for a 30A. He just now is restoring a Novachord. Those 30A Leslie's are rare.

 

Ironic, because when I saw his E project I thought of videos I've seen of a Novachord project that someone else had done.

 

Those types of insane restorations I find so fun to watch, but I could never in my wildest dreams imagine taking one on. I truly tip my hat to someone who has the mad skills to pull it off...literally better than new in the case of the Model E.

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Well the Model E is an elusive Hammond, kind of like a Leslie 142, you just don't see them. In the case of a model E they take a lot of work so when one comes up on the forums or E-bay I try to help people find a home for it.

"Danny, ci manchi a tutti. La E-Street Band non e' la stessa senza di te. Riposa in pace, fratello"

 

 

noblevibes.com

 

 

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Well the Model E is an elusive Hammond, kind of like a Leslie 142, you just don't see them. In the case of a model E they take a lot of work so when one comes up on the forums or E-bay I try to help people find a home for it.

 

I did know about the rarity of the E, but I didn't realize the 142 was also a rare beast? Although now that you mention it, I've never come across one myself. Always 145's I see.....

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  • 5 weeks later...

Today, the beast actually made some noise, briefly. The Hammond tech came down from Portland, and we spent the day going over it.

 

The good news: All the generators seem to work fine.

 

The not-so-good news: It made a ton of noise when we got it running, 60-cycle hum, crackles, and whooshing wind noises that dwarfed the organ tones. The tech took the preamp from the organ and the amp from the Leslie back to his shop to rebuild. He'll be back in a month or so, and we're going to rewire a bunch of stuff, replace the cable from the organ to the Leslie, and another cable that had been added on to switch speeds from the organ, and install a conventional Leslie hookup and half-moon switch. Will think about installing a Trek II percussion kit after this is working.

 

The Leslie, actually a Vibratone, is a Model 30A, serial# 318, so it's very early and rare. My tech recommended restoring and selling the Leslie, he thinks it's rare enough I can probably sell it for enough to cover a 122 or similar. The case is actually in very good condition for its age.

 

Getting kind of excited about this.

Turn up the speaker

Hop, flop, squawk

It's a keeper

-Captain Beefheart, Ice Cream for Crow

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