Residence of Dr Brett McKern

Camden Park

Built 1989 Rodgers Organ Company
Rebuilt 2014 various
Enlarged 2018

3m, 16 sp.st, 7c, 5 rks ext, el.mag.
Gt: 16.8.8.4.4.2⅔.2. Sw: 8.8.8.4.4. Ch: 8.8.4.2. No independent Ped stops


This instrument was built in 1989 as the two ranks of 'wind-blown' pipes for a Rodgers Concord 760 electronic organ. It was installed at St Paul's Church, Burwood when the pipe organ was inoperable. On restoration of the Davidson organ the Rodgers was sold to St Luke's Church, Enmore in 1998. It was in use there until 2011 when the Wordsworth and Maskell organ restoration was completed. The Rodgers was offered for sale, but was now old technology and a buyer was not forth coming. Over a year passed and it looked as if the Rodgers would never find a home, and believing it may perhaps find a use as a practice organ for a student, the pipes and electronic component were divided and Brett McKern bought the two ranks of pipes. The electronic organ remained unwanted until 2014 when a buyer was found.

The 'wind-blown' component of the Rodgers organ had two extended ranks of pipes which sat displayed functionally in a 'planter box' arrangement. There was no bellows and the wind was provided by a small regulator. The original pipework included a 73 note Principal, perhaps built by Ruffatti like other Rodgers pipework, and a 73 note flute using Laukhauff pipework. The flute is stopped wooden for the bottom 37 notes then a conical spitz flute, and of untapered pipework for the top 16 notes. Both extended ranks provide full compass for 4' and 2' stops. As part of the Rodgers instrument, 8' stops were provided with an electronic bass, and some stops of the Great division played pipe or pipe and electronic ranks together. The Rodgers Concord 760 also had a 'Positiv' division which only played the pipe stops. This specification was as follows.

Great
Principal
Bourdon
Octave
Flute
Nasat
Super Octave
Waldflöte

Positiv
Bourdon
Principal
Flute
Octave
Quint
Pipe Tremulant

8
8
4
4
2-2/3
2
2


8
4
4
2
1-1/3

(pipe duplicated stops only)















 

These two ranks were to become a small independent extension organ, playable via MIDI, from any MIDI-equipped keyboard, organ console or computer. Consequently, while it does not have its own console, it would form a complete instrument, rather than being a pipe component of a hybrid instrument as it was originally. As such, it was intended to find an 8' stopped bass that could be used to extend the instrument to 8'. A redundant 8' octave was acquired of pipework made by Kendall. This sits on a unit chest made by Darrell Pitchford.

MIDI deals with the note switching, and a 'stop box', like a mini console, controls the stops. These systems were designed and built by Craig Hall of Custom Midi Organ Solutions. Three rotary switches assign the three divisions to any MIDI channel from 1 to 5. This means that they can all be played from one channel if using a single keyboard, or variously applied to different keyboards on a console of more than two manuals.

With only two ranks, versatility was paramount in a practice instrument played daily, so many extended stops and couplers were included to afford many different sound combinations. The specification at that stage was:

Great
Bourdon
Open Diapason
Stopped Diapason
Principal
Flute
Twelfth
Fifteenth
Swell Super-Octave to Great
Swell to Great
Swell Sub-Octave to Great

Swell
Lieblich Gedact
Principal
Flute
Nazard
Piccolo
Swell Super-Octave
Swell Sub-Octave
Principal Tremulant
Flute Tremulant

Pedal
Bass Flute
Quint
Choral Bass
Octave Flute
Swell Octave to Pedal
Swell to Pedal
Great to Pedal

16
8
8
4
4
2-2/3
2





8
4
4
2-2/3
2






8
5-1/3
4
4




B TC
A (grooved to 8' stopped bass)
B
A
B
A
A





B
A
B
B
B






B
B
A
B



 

In 2015 one of the four redundant single manual organs was purchased from the Dallas Brooks Masonic Centre in East Melbourne. Built in 1969 by Fincham, this instrument had three enclosed ranks and no pedals. The large-scaled principal rank was sold and a replacement second Fincham Dulciana purchased from Australian Pipe Organs. This enclosed division was added to the residence organ in 2018 and the case was reconfigured for its new home. Again the note switching was completed by Craig Hall of Custom Midi Organ Solutions, who also designed and installed the MIDI-controlled swell mechanism. Hargraves Pipe Organs completed the rewiring in the organ. The current specification is as follows.

Great
Bourdon
Open Diapason
Stopped Diapason
Principal
Flute
Twelfth
Fifteenth
Swell to Great
Choir to Great
Principal Tremulant
Flute Tremulant
Cymbalstern

Swell
Lieblich Gedact
Dulciana
Dulciana Celeste
Flute
Dulcet
Swell Super-Octave
Swell Sub-Octave

Choir
Gedact
Dulciana
Flute
Piccolo

Pedal
No independent stops
Great to Pedal
Swell to Pedal
Choir to Pedal

16
8
8
4
4
2-2/3
2







8
8
8
4
4




8
8
4
2







B TC
A (grooved to 8' stopped bass)
B
A
B
A
A




(6 bells)

(enclosed)
C
D (grooved to Gedact)
E TC
C
D (top octave from Gedact)



(enclosed)
C
D (grooved to Gedact)
C
C






 










Notes and photo provided by Brett McKern (October 2018)