Construction Process

Console Table Top

First step is the construction of the console table. It is made of premium pine board without knothole texture from Lowes’s.  Several panels are glued together and the structure is is built with cross beams on the bottom. Overall table size is 65.5 x 26,5 inches with keyboard recess of 33 x 4 inches. Most parts are attached together with Titebond II premium glue. Some screws are on the bottom part. Joints are grinded so there is a smooth transition where two parts are glued together. This is needed for the subsequent staining and polyurethane coating steps.

console-table
table-top

Console Table Top (view from above)

table-bottom

Console Table Top (view from below)

preliminary setup

Preliminary Setup

Console Side Panels

The side panels are made of plywood with premium pine inserts and molding. They turned out nicely. This is a typical example of “engineering on-the-fly”. I use a general concept or plan and then during the construction process I make changes based on practicability, aesthetics and personal taste.

On the second picture you see the left side panel on the console table. The side panels will be attached to the table later together with the Knee Panel which offers the needed lateral stability.

All construction parts have to be modular for easy disassembling, transport and later reassembling at the school.

side-panel
side-panel

4 FATAR Cherry Wood Core Manuals (Keyboards) have been added. Each one has an output that goes into a MOTU MIDI Express 128. Also the Pedal MIDI goes into this interface. From there it goes via USB to the PC-1.

Knee Panel

knee panel

The Knee Panel includes several steps:

  1. Recess for the 3 Swell Shoes
  2. Frame enforcement
  3. Molding around the edges
  4. Adjustment for Pedal Board transition
  5. Attachments to Side Panels
  6. Structural enhancement on backside of Knee Panel.

Back Panel

Here you see the transition from the knee panel to the back panel. The back panel has venting holes for accessories placed in the console. Most likely the two computers will be placed in the console with a remote start switch, thus no access to the computer itself is needed. The swell shoe opening and the perforated back panel should be sufficient for the needed airflow.

back panel
back-wall

Toe Stud Boards

Toe-Studs

Toe Studs are switches that are positioned to the left and right side of the swell shoes. They are controlled by the organist’s foot tip which explains why they are called Toe Studs. The switches send out a MIDI signal and can be used for various tasks such as stop combinations, manual/ pedal couplers and more. Our organ will have 16 toe studs. Some of them will be used for instrument selection of the Vienna Symphonic Library Synchron Player.

The Studs will be on a separate board that is ergonomically optimized, so they can be reached easily by the organist, without body stretching on the bench. This is especially important for a 4 manual organ, which demands a higher action radius from the organist.

toe-studs-left
left-toe-stud-a
toe-studs-console
toe-studs sideview

That completes the shell of the console. Now all parts will be disassembled for further refinements such as treating holes and gaps with wood filler, sanding uneven joints and preparation for final finish.

Applying stain and lacquer will need some researches to match the color of the bench and pedal board.

bench

It took me 7 full days to construct the shell. Only 7 minutes to disassemble it.

All measurements are in compliance with AGO (America Guild of Organists) standards for a 4 manual organ. This allows the organist to play the instrument with minimum adjustment,

The console is done. Now the internal devices will be added: Computer(s), MIDI merger, Power Outlets, Control Module with Computer Remote Start, Connection Cables (120V AC, MIDI and 12V DC) and Pedal Light Bar. Next will be Keyboards and Side Jambs.

disassembled
Organ Console

4 FATAR Cherry Wood Core Keyboards (Manuals) have been added. Each has 61 keys (5 octaves).  Each Manual has a connection that goes into a MOTU MIDI Express 128. This is a MIDI controller that allows USB connectivity with the PC-1.