... notes from my workshop: Restoration projects                                                                                                        2

J.S. Bach: Toccata & Fuge in D flat, arr. for Theatre Organ


J. Trayser  & Cie, Stuttgart

This is a one-manual pressure harmonium, up to now still awaiting final restauration.  The technical and musical condition of the instrument is rather good - but, as you can see on the pics, the veneer is stained rather dark, the music rack is missing, and the carpets on the threadles have been replaced by patches of leather.
Trayser No. 310
There are eight stops, unfortunately 
all the stop faces are missing. 
According to their functions and by comparison with another Trayser instrument listed in the ROS Reed Organ database , the stop faces should probably read:

Forte                             (bass)
Sourdine                   (= 8' soft)
Cor Anglais                   (= 8')
Voix Celeste                 (= 8' + 8')
Flute                              (= 8')
Tremblant                 (= 8')
Forte                              (treble)

This means that the instrument has 1 1/2 complete sets of reeds, a beater tremolo, and the expression feature.

Can anybody give me a hint  how the stop faces originally looked like,and submit information how they should read correctly?

The harmonium  has a  typical pressure-harmonium-style oak case with simple carvings, the hinges and two  handles are made of brass. The keys are Ivory-plated. The stop board is not enameled black as seen in most harmoniums. The stop knobs and pulls have been  left unstained and show the natural colour of light wood. Above the keyboard,  there are two medals attached. One of them shows the name of the manufacturer "J. Trayser & Cie, Stuttgart", the other one lists four industrial exhibitions at which the manufacturer won prize medals: München, Paris and last Stettin 1868. So the instrument should be dated on a year after 1868.

After several hints given by the community of reed organ afficionados I found the serial number of the Instrument where it ought to be ( numbers are hammered into the wood of the upper side of the left part of the case, near the left hinge) - but some former refurbishing of the Instrument (sandig and varnishing) made it difficult to see. I had to take a strong quartz light bulb to find it. So now I can date the Instrument: The serial reads 101XX (five digit number, the latter two numbers are sanded down ad unreadable) . The engravings on the medal plates show the Year 1868.  According to the ROS Reed Organ database , the Trayser serial number 11696 matches with the year 1867 - so, the serial number 101XX should correspond to that time.

The instrument  was found some years ago in the attic of a village school in northern Germany in very bad condition, and  has been partly restored by the former owner:

The top board including the key cover have been replaced, and the bellows (exhausters/ reservoir) has been  rebuilt completely. As far as I can judge, the latter was done by an expert. The carpets on the treadles were replaced by patches of leather, and most of the wood has been stained in a rather dark colour. The music rack is missing, but one visitor of this website gave me some detailled hints how it looked like.

Can anybody tell me,
whether the treadles were covered originally with carpets or with leather?

The last years the instrument spent in a garage and now it is awaiting a final restoration .... up to now, I unfortunately had no time for that work.

Please contact me by e-mail: martin.r@gmx.de


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J M. Rutenfranz  14 January 2008  martin.r@gmx.de                             
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