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Messages - Alan Lenhoff

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1
I bought the exact cord in the Sweetwater link I posted yesterday.

Alan

2
Alan, how did you connect the piano to this? It looks like input only uses a 3 prong DIN.

That's correct. I bought one of these to run between the piano and the re-amp box: https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/PXM105--hosa-pxm105-5-foot. The box has a standard 1/4" output to the amp.

Alan


4
It's monophonic. It basically replicates the Minimoog functionality, although it does have a few additional features.  (For example, you can switch it between low-note priority, high-note priority or last-note priority.)

Very cool little device that makes lots of wonderful fat sounds!  For me, it's a way to learn the basics of analog synthesis for a small fraction of the price of a Minimoog.

Alan

5
I have to give a shout-out to my Behringer Model D, Behringer's $299 version of a Minimoog, which I've paired with a 32-key Arturia Keystep.  I've never owned a Minimoog, but many who have claim the Behringer sound pretty much matches the real deal.

Alan

6
The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Re: '79 Suitcase Randomly Turns Off
« on: April 27, 2019, 09:09:56 PM »
It's been a long time since I did this repair, and I only owned that piano for a few months. So we may need someone else to chime in on this.  But, to be clear, there are two of those Molex connectors. I believe there is one on each of two boards.  Both connectors should first be re-soldered and then given a bit of hot glue to keep the problem from repeating.

To reach the boards, I believe I removed the back speaker baffle board by removing all its screws.  Once you're in, there are plastic locking things on each corner of the boards. You use your fingertips to pinch one of them, which releases that corner of the board and lets you pull off that corner. Work your way around the board to remove it. 

Given my poor recollection of all this, I'd welcome someone who knows these pianos better to confirm -- or amend -- my instructions.

Alan

7
The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Re: '79 Suitcase Randomly Turns Off
« on: April 24, 2019, 09:53:14 PM »
One possibility: Suitcase pianos of this era are prone to intermittent failures caused by cold solder joints where plastic Molex connectors are soldered to the amp boards.  Read this thread and the other threads mentioned in it:  https://ep-forum.com/smf/index.php?topic=8450.msg44725#msg44725

Alan


8
The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Re: Custom Paint Job on Harp Cover
« on: February 07, 2019, 09:11:36 PM »
Ever since I got the piano I have been in search for the elusive "suitcase cab, but no piano" for sale. It doesn't help that the suitcase piano went through several iterations itself, narrowing down possible candidates to only a 4-pin model.

Check this out:  https://www.musicgoround.com/product/40081-S000086632/used-fender-fender-rhodes-amplifier-keyboard-amps  An early '70s cab.  The listing says local pickup only in Duluth MN, but these Music Go Round stores generally will ship.

Alan

9
Other Keyboards & Software Synths / Re: New Gibson G201
« on: February 06, 2019, 12:31:45 PM »
>>What is a TV Repair Shop?  >>

Believe it or not, there are several storefront TV repair shops not far from me.  The old guys with headband magnifiers and the tube testers are long gone, but these shops seem to survive by doing factory warranty work on modern TVs.  (I think that mostly means ordering new replacement boards, rather than doing actual troubleshooting or replacing individual components.)

In this post-Radio Shack age, when I have no idea where to buy electronic components without waiting three days for delivery, I have been known to walk into these shops and beg them to sell me a few caps I need for a keyboard repair.

Alan

10
Other Keyboards & Software Synths / Re: New Gibson G201
« on: February 06, 2019, 08:01:16 AM »
A Farfisa pedal will not work unless either the pedal or the organ has been modified.  (My organ has not been modified, since I have a Gibson pedal.)  The link I posted has very specific, step-by-step instructions.  I'm not sure what "extra help" you would be looking for, but if you find that information insufficient, you probably ought to find someone near you who has some general electronics experience. (No "keyboard tech" required for something so simple.  Do you have a TV repair shop near you?)

But the photos make it look like the organ (and possibly the amp) suffered significant damage in shipping. It's quite possible the issues go far beyond the pedal problem -- and beyond what you can hope to fix yourself with a few suggestions from members of this forum. (Especially since you don't seem to have electronics experience.) If you can't find a local tech (or are unwilling to invest the money to pay one for what might be substantial work), you may want to consider your option of returning it.

Alan




11
Other Keyboards & Software Synths / Re: New Gibson G201
« on: February 02, 2019, 03:54:00 PM »
Gibson organs will only make sounds if you have a dedicated volume pedal or make a modification to bypass the pedal.  Details here: http://www.combo-organ.com/Gibson/gibson.htm#VolumePedal

Alan

12
Is Nashville within your driving range?  Murph Wanca of Nashville Pro Hammond can take care of your Wurli. He handles a variety of vintage keys needs for many top Nashville acts.  NashvilleProHammond.com.

Alan

14
In the midwest, Max Brink, at Chicago Electric Piano Co., would be a good choice.

Alan

15
For Sale / FS: Baldwin Electric Harpsichord
« on: January 02, 2019, 09:40:37 PM »
A friend is offering this Baldwin electric harpsichord and Baldwin amp, best known for being used by the Beatles ("Because").  I hesitate to call any keyboard  instrument "rare," but these are very hard to find.  I've not seen the instrument that's for sale.  It's in Windsor, Ontario, Canada, just across the river from Detroit.

https://detroit.craigslist.org/wyn/msg/d/windsor-baldwin-solid-body-electric/6784859700.html

Alan

16
Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / Re: DIY Sustain Pedal
« on: December 29, 2018, 08:59:02 AM »
I love the wrench options, allowing you to take a workman-like approach to your music. (Perhaps you could create a Fender Rhodes hard hat to put you in a proper playing mood, too.)

>>I'd hate to be in the middle of an intense and amazing solo wherein the pedal is supposed to slip away and ruin everything, but suddenly it stays where it's intended.>>

Good point! 

Thanks for the laughs guys!

Alan

17
Other Keyboards & Software Synths / Re: Gibson G-201
« on: December 06, 2018, 11:00:40 AM »
>>Actually I messaged him and he did say it would come with a matching bench.>>

Maybe you found another eBay G101 auction.  I was talking about this one:  https://www.ebay.com/itm/Gibson-G101-Portable-Organ-w-Pedals/143038793770?hash=item214dc6c82a:g:gsoAAOSwvytcBdxF:rk:2:pf:0  The seller acknowledges in the description that the orange and black colors of the bench indicate that it came from a G201.

Alan

18
Other Keyboards & Software Synths / Re: Gibson G-201
« on: December 06, 2018, 07:49:39 AM »
I just found it on Reverb.  Nice looking organ!

The pedals aren't easy to find -- and when you do find them, they can be quite pricey.  From a functional standpoint, the bass pedals don't add much, IMHO.  (As I recall, they just duplicated the sounds of the lowest octave of the bottom manual.) But they do look cool!

If it helps, the volume and bass pedals you need are identical to those sold with the Gibson G101 and the Lowrey T2 organ.  The volume pedal may also be the same as the Lowrey T1 pedal, but I can't confirm that.  (You'd probably know that, given your screen name.)  The bass pedals used on the Farfisa Compact series organs and the Lowrey T1 are identical to the G201 pedals except that they use a different connector to the organ.  Finding an original connector would take some sleuthing.

BTW, there's now a Gibson G101 organ on eBay now that's being sold with a black and orange G201 bench.  If you really wanted a G201 bench, maybe you could convince the seller to sell it separately, since it doesn't match the organ he is selling anyway.

Alan

19
Other Keyboards & Software Synths / Re: Gibson G-201
« on: December 03, 2018, 07:19:09 AM »
Under the lid, you'll find 12 tone generator cards like these:  https://picclick.com/Gibson-G201-G101-Lowrey-T2-Combo-Organ-Tone-392084752496.html#&gid=1&pid=3

The tall cans, each marked for a note, are the tuning coils. Turn on the organ and let it warm up for about 15 minutes. Use an allen wrench through the top of the cans to very slowly and carefully rotate the cores to tune the notes.  (You can damage them with rapid movements.)  Clockwise raises the pitch; counter-clockwise flattens the pitch. When the metal allen wrench is in the coil, it will affect the pitch, so tune them to the pitch you hear AFTER you have removed the wrench.  (This will take some trial and error to get right.)  Each coil will tune all of the notes (on both keyboards) with that name. (In other words, tuning the C coil, will tune all the C's on your organ.) So tuning those 12 coils will tune all the keys on the organ.

Alan


20
For Sale / Re: FS: Kustom Kombo tuck-and-roll combo organ
« on: November 10, 2018, 01:32:40 PM »
Sold!

21
For Sale / FS: Kustom Kombo tuck-and-roll combo organ
« on: November 07, 2018, 08:55:50 PM »
A real unique collector's item: A 1967 Kustom Kombo organ. Black tuck-and-roll Naugahyde. Organ is in very nice cosmetic shape, and has a very unique, versatile and full sound for a combo organ. It's playable, but has a short list of small electronic issues, so it can use a trip to a tech.  The organ originally had four 12" speakers in its built-in amp.  It now has replacements (vintage Rolas), and one is missing. A previous owner set it up with half-moon switches (speed and echo) and a Leslie kit, so that it can either be used with a Leslie or through its internal amp.  Because it looks so good, it's a great candidate for restoration.  Must be picked up at my home in southeast Michigan.  Price is highly negotiable.  Let me know if you are interested or have questions.

For reference, here's some info about this organ: http://combo-organ.com/Kustom/index.htm

Alan





22
The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: Wurlitzer 140b
« on: October 31, 2018, 10:06:17 PM »
Prices for many vintage keyboards tend to be erratic, but I'd expect that yours (assuming it's in the US) would fetch maybe $1,100 to $1,500. I'm assuming that "slight hum" isn't too bad, but that at its age, it needs some skilled electronic and mechanical tech work to make it sound and play its best.  You might be at the high end of the range if you are willing to ship it or you live near major music centers  (like NYC, LA).  Figure less than that range if you are in a hurry to sell it, or if you want to sell it locally in an area without a large, active music community. 

Alan

23
>>Doesn't sound very useful to me. >>

Sean, what you've described is exactly what they were trying to achieve -- filtering out the upper harmonics to leave a more pure fundamental bass tone.  Without that, the PB would sound like the lowest 32 notes of a Rhodes 73, rather than like a bass guitar.

Alan

24
Here's a schematic someone posted on Fenderrhodes.com.  I can't vouch for the accuracy of it.

http://www.fenderrhodes.com/img/service/manual/piabassscm.gif

Alan

25
The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: Some DIY reflections
« on: August 13, 2018, 04:47:00 PM »
I was listening to some early Ray Charles versions of What'd I Say and I can hear some slightly out of tune notes as well as one or two that are a little dead-sounding.

What a great song! What a great performer!  That said, the piano he plays on that song is just beyond awful.  Some of the buzzy, dead notes sound like he's plucking rubber bands.

It's just a reminder that a great artist can make even the worst instrument sing.

Alan


26
The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Re: 1978 Suitcase Amp Distortion
« on: June 30, 2018, 04:10:48 PM »
Do you have the Janus/Haigler amp in yours? (Identifiable by the bass and treble sliders above the keys.)

If so, there is a common issue that can cause distortion and intermittent issues. There are Molex connectors on the power amp that are held in place by nothing but solder.  Sometimes, re-soldering them (and then securing the connectors in place with a little hot glue to prevent a recurrence) can solve the problem.

Even if this is not your issue, it's well worth doing as preventive maintenance.

Here are two threads to read that will tell you all you need to know about this issue:

https://ep-forum.com/smf/index.php?topic=8450.msg44725#msg44725

https://ep-forum.com/smf/index.php?topic=7916.msg41087#msg41087

Alan


 

27
Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / Re: Wurlitzer 140B
« on: June 14, 2018, 12:45:02 PM »
By the way, Vintage Vibe sells a kit with all the parts you would need:  https://www.vintagevibe.com/products/wurlitzer-140b-amplifier-rebuild-kit

Alan

28
Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / Re: Wurlitzer 140B
« on: June 14, 2018, 12:42:27 PM »
I can't help you track down the issues you mention. (Although I suppose the low volume might have resulted from someone turning down the gain control on the amp.)  But your photos suggest all your components are original, which makes them about 50 years old.  I would suggest a re-build.

Several years ago, I re-built mine, mostly following this https://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0666/2821/files/Wurlitzer-140B-Rebuild_Schematic_a0f7a56a-ebaa-43f2-a518-519f29bd843b.jpg?5315161266642194721 plan from Vintage Vibe.  I replaced all the electrolytic caps (including the filter caps in the cans), the small transistors (look for extra low-noise ones) and the power resistors. I don't believe I changed the power transistors.  The before/after difference was dramatic.  People say the 140B amp is inherently noisy, but mine sounds great, and ought to be reliable for years.

The 140B is a great Wurli. It deserves an amp working at its best.

Alan

29
The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: Tuning one note
« on: June 12, 2018, 10:03:02 PM »
So, should I loosen it and slide it slightly backwards?

Yes! Always try the easiest (and most easily reversible) solution first. Moving the reed forward or back is how Wurlitzer taught its techs to make small tuning adjustments. Don't pull out a file or soldering iron unless you can't change the pitch enough by moving the reed. (And if you do need to remove or add solder, it's critical to retain the proper pyramid shape of the solder.)

Alan

30
Other Keyboards & Software Synths / Re: Duo end blocks
« on: May 28, 2018, 08:58:29 PM »
You might want to contact Peter Hayes, who occasionally posts to this list. Peter does a lot of Clavinet restoration at Electronic Edge in Yellow Springs, Ohio.  http://www.elecedge.com/  He might be able to restore or replace your blocks,  or share a restoration technique.

Alan

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