Silver Octopus Studios    





In addition to our product range of sample sets and hardware, we offer a number of other services which are connected to organs and organ building


Whilst we are involved in the production of sample sets for Hauptwerk together with hardware etc. we also believe that a Hauptwerk instrument is not always the best solution for the needs of either a church or individual.

Our extensive experience working with both pipe and pipeless organs together with an extensive knowledge of the technical aspects and history of both types allow us to be able to offer a valuable consultancy service to clients. Many of the so called official organ advisers have little or no knowledge of pipeless instruments. At best this can merely be put down to a lack of knowledge about pipeless organs but at worst their lack of knowledge is down to a complete hatred and non-acceptance of anything that isn't a real pipe organ. The same applies to some pipe organ builders. There are of course both organ advisers and organ builders who haven't got their heads stuck in the sand and realise that in some cases a pipeless instrument or possibly a hybrid instrument is both a valid and musical solution however, in many cases they have limited knowledge of what is available and what can be done.

In reality, there are only two really valid reasons why any alternative to a real pipe organ should be considered either new or secondhand. The first is available funding and the other is space. Of course, there are other lesser reasons why a pipe organ is not the answer but unless there are a sufficient number of these other reasons coupled to either of the above main reasons, the best solution is a pipe organ.

The issue of rebuilding or restoring an existing organ either purely as a pipe organ or as a hybrid is perhaps a little more complicated. Again, the really valid reasons suggested above may make the whole question academic. However, unless the building is completely being re-ordered the space issue is not quite so convincing. If there is space for the existing organ then it follows that there should be space for a rebuilt or restored version of the same. Obviously, enlarging an existing instrument may require considerably more space than is available which would strengthen this objection. Although it is uncommon to find a pipe organ without a single saving grace, sadly there are some pipe organs that are just so appalling in terms of original workmanship or musical quality that they just aren't worth wasting further monies on. Unfortunately in cases like these, there is little that can be done except start again. However, in many cases, much can be done to provide a worthwhile and musical instrument based on the original material.

We offer an unbiased consultancy service which seeks to offer the best advice on a course of action for the particular client. If the best course of action is a new pipe organ or a restoration of an old one we will not seek to suggest any other alternative. If the best course of action is to opt for a pipeless instrument then we will provide the client with the accurate and honest pros and cons of the instruments from the various different manufacturers as well as alternatives such as Hauptwerk.

We do not get paid a commission by any pipe or pipeless organ builder and as a result we feel that we are able to offer advice based on facts rather than any pecuniary advantage to ourselves. Our consultancy services seek merely to provide clients with accurate information pertaining to all solutions so that they can make an informed decision.

If the choice is made to opt for the pipe organ route either as a new instrument or as a rebuild, we are happy to work with both the client and the chosen pipe organ builder as a consultant in matters of specification and overall design. We can also point you in the right direction of organ builders who we consider would be the most suitable to carry out your particular project.

Should you wish to avail yourselves of our consultancy services, please contact us in the first instance with a basic resume of what your existing  situation is (including details of any instrument already in your possession) along with what you hope to achieve. The next stage is normally a visit to your church so that a more detailed idea of the situation can be obtained. This is followed by an initial report with some basic recommendations and possible solutions.

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Hauptwerk instruments have the distinction that in many cases, they can be installed by amateurs. Most of the sample sets available for Hauptwerk provide little in the way of facilities to edit the sounds apart from through the basic voicing tools provided in the program and since a large majority are installed on instruments for the home, this is often sufficient.

However, church installations are a very different matter and professional voicing, balancing and regulation becomes more important if not essential. Our installation service can cover everything from basic setting up of an instrument in the church to the correct placement of speakers and note by note / stop by stop tonal finishing. This is very similar to the on site finishing required by all pipe organs.

It is up to the individual client as to how much we become involved. At the most basic level we may merely give the client pointers in the right direction as to who they might approach. At a more involved level we may act as a complete project manager from start to finish. Of course, we can be involved at any stage or for a specific part of any project as the customer wishes.

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We are able to offer pipe organ tuning to clients at reasonable rates. This can range from simple touching up of stops that have slipped out of tune (especially the reeds) to complete retuning of an instrument throughout. Although we can provide note holders if required, to keep costs down, we recommend that someone from the church assists in this task such as the organist or a musically inclined member of the church. Minor adjustments and regulating can be made to pipes if needed but most of this sort of work goes beyond the remit of "tuning" or what can be achieved on site and therefore has to be carried out in a more specialised environment.

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Many of the problems found in pipe organs are often down to simple adjustment or small repair work and these can be undertaken on site using the minimum of equipment, tools and materials. We are able to undertake such minor repairs and alterations either as and addition to normal tunings or separately.  For more complicated problems, this usually requires such work to be carried out in a workshop environment which we can undertake through our own facilities. Alternatively, we can also recommend other companies or individuals capable of undertaking such work.

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Pipe Organs

The main assembly room with two organs almost ready for final installation

We are able to design and build new pipe organs to any specification and covering all aspects of the instrument. Actions can be mechanical pneumatic or electric. We can also undertake complete restorations and rebuilds of existing instruments. With several decades of experience and many instruments built or rebuilt our affiliated company has gained a reputation for producing work carried out to the highest of standards and materials. With a very comprehensive range of wood working machinery, metal casting shop and stock, we are able to accommodate most projects.

Our experience with hybrid instruments allows us to be able combine new or existing pipe organ components with pipeless technology.

Please contact us for further information and details of instruments completed.

The photos below show some of our workshop facilities;-

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Copyright 2013 Silver Octopus Studios
Last modified: 24-01-2019