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Pouring sheets of lead for pipe organs


[YouTube - Link]
Bedient pipe organ company creates pipe organs by hand in Lincol, NE.  The pipes of organs are made out of lead which they make out of sheets they pour themselves. 

I live in Lincoln and am a friend of an employee who works there.  He thought it was pretty cool and I thought I would submit it.

- via beerorkid

From the Upcoming ueue, submitted by \'\' beerorkid.


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The missing piece of information regarding high lead pipes is that the metal is tensioned by hammering rendering it stiff enough to stand for hundreds of years if otherwise unmolested. I built an organ in 1979 with hammered metal pipes made of 98% lead. The other 2% was tin and antimony.

The pipes are as stright today as the day they were made.

One argument in favor of high lead pipes is that they give an unmistakable tonal bloom which cannot be obtained with other metals. It will, of course, not take a high polish. I was hoping that my pipes would oxidize black in time, but there is insufficient airborne polution in the little country church in which the organ is located to accomplish that.
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Our recipe for that particular batch in the video is 96% lead and the remaining amount a combination of tin, antimony and copper. The temperature of the molten liquid you see is about 700 degrees F. A large ventilation system above the casting table removes most of the fumes.

Lead is used for most of the interior pipes because it does not vibrate when air is pushed through it--so you only hear the note played and not a bunch of metal rattling around.

The shiny pipes you see on the facades of most organs are high-polished Zinc. Pipes are also made of wood. Visit Bedientorgan.com for more information.
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The metal also needs to be soft enough for them to do fine tuning and shaping of the pipes- at least according to the Dirty Jobs episode where Mike works with an organ cleaning company.
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Why do we even use lead anymore? I mean, yeah... its cheap/available... but surely the health risks aren't worth the price cut. Oh wait... thats right, money trumps life. Lol what was I thinking?
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My dad was an organ builder, as was his father. Muy dad's pipe maker was in Alliance, OH. Yes there is lead in those pipes. Each pipe maker has a preferred alloy to get the preferred tonal quality. For example: a Diapason from pipemaker "A" will have a different tone than one from pipemaker "B"

It was fun seeing this video.
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