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Blackwell Residence - 2/9 Wurlitzer (in progress)
Seattle, WA
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Console Rebuild Project, Progress Report - 2/1/2002

The objective of this project was to tastefully enlarge a Wurlitzer Style B console to be similar to a Style 216, the largest two-manual console produced by the Wurlitzer factory. The project began in 1997 with a Style B console from opus #1132 and surplus parts from several other two-manual consoles. Over the next several years, a variety of structural modifications and re-veneering was completed.

Click for a larger version of this image (61K) Here is a picture of the console in 1997 before modifications. Note the Style B stop rail arrangement with 37 tabs on the main rail and 7 tabs on the backrail. The manuals had three pistons each and there was one swell shoe.
The veneer was in excellent shape except for the base. According to a previous owner, the organ was installed in a basement and the console sat in about 1" of water for a few days. Most other parts were in great shape (except for the ivory keytops which needed to be replaced).
The console was complete except for the bench. A replacement bench was acquired but it had many layers of white paint and the legs had been shortened.
Fortunately, the Style B blowbox was fully loaded with magnets for 60 stops even though only 37 were used. The pneumatic combination action was retained for the main stop rail. The back rail will have 31 SynDyne stop action magnets. Each manual will have 10 divisional pistons. The Solo manual will also have 5 generals. Click for a larger version of this image (36K)
Click for a larger version of this image (63K) Click for a larger version of this image (39K)
Click for a larger version of this image (58K)

The veneer was failing and the corner joints had opened. The old veneer was carefully removed with a heat gun (thank goodness they used hide glue). The console base was then planed, reshaped and reglued. Mahogany was replaced were necessary. New mahogany veneer was applied.
The most significant modification was the replacement of the original Style B stoprail with another Wurlitzer factory stoprail holding 63 stops. A second swell shoe and two piano pedals were also added.
To accommodate accessories and future additions, two pull-out push button drawers were added. These drawers were constructed with a slim profile and are able to retract from view when not in use.

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