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 Post subject: Unusual 27 keyless 'Fair' Organ
New postPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2012 9:18 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 17, 2010 6:38 pm
Posts: 5
Location: Pewsey, Wilts

We have recently acquired a small 27 keyless organ, playing by cardboard book music. We believe the organ was built by an enthusiast to accompany their small scale steam engine, the blower and keyframe motor run of 110 volts, we have been informed this was because the organ was powered by the little engine it was displayed with.

Going by what is painted on it's little proscenium, the organ was constructed in 1987 by someone named "CHAPPA" and yes that is Chappa and NOT "CHIAPPA" !!! as far as we know this organ has nothing to do with Chiappa Ltd. Though there is of course the possibility that Chappa is a misspelling of Chiappa. But I've not heard of them building organs as small as 27 keyless.
It's an interesting coincidence none-the-less!

The organ itself consists of 12 melody notes, 8 accompaniment notes, 5 bass notes, 1 note for a percussion effect, and of course a final note used to shut off air supply when the keyframe bridge is lifted. It has no registers, manual or automatic.

Pipe work consists of an interesting 3-rank mixture for the melody; 1-rank of Brass piccolos, 1-rank of violins and 1-rank of stopped flutes.
The accompaniment and bass are made up of stopped flutes.
For percussion there are two sticks with tambourine jingles on them, operated by two pneumatic motors.

The organ was owned for the past 17 years by a Mr Gallie of Penzance, Cornwall, who built an excellent aluminium box trailer to house and display the organ. We understand the engine the organ was originally with was sold, together with organ, but the organ was not wanted by the engines new owner and this is how it passed to Mr Gallie.

The organs front has Dutch street organ style solid wood carvings, and is decorated in basic colored glosses and gold paint finishes, it has a Dutch name "Kleine Engel" which we are informed translates as "Little Angel" in English.
However the sound of the organ is far from being Dutch, the unusual fixed melody mixture makes it speak quite confidently, it is not at all a harsh tone, but puts you in mind of a small English fairground organ that would of been used alongside the smaller entertainments such as Juvenile roundabouts etc.

I would suspect this was the impression that was intended as it was used alongside a steam engine.

I will post pictures on here if I can work out how to, but we would love to know if anyone has any information, pictures etc or corrections if we've made any wrong presumptions!!!

Best wishes,



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