16' Open Diapason The great walnut case with pipes of the 16' Open Diapason in the facade stand on the gallery above the chancel as they have for over 100 years. The only difference is that these pipes were originally polychromed and at some point they were painted gold. We found only the faint shadows of the original designs on the pipes. No pictures of the organ in that state have been located.
  • 16' Open Diapason
  • FBC Damaged Foot
  • shop voicing machine
  • FBC case
  • leather damage due to age
  • Pipes of one of the mixtures
  • 16' Open Wood Pipes
  • water damaged wind chests
  • Wind chest and wood pipes
  • old and new magnets
  • Great 16' Open Diapason
  • Toe surgery
  • new lead toe
  • 4' Harmonic Flute
  • treble pipes
  • replace the Vox

First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church in St. Paul, very close to the I-94/I-35E intersection ("Spaghetti Junction") is a very old and historic church with a Steere and Turner organ from the late 19th Century. Over its lifetime, this organ has been revised multiple times, and each time it got smaller! First the original tracker action was electrified and it got a new electric console. Then in the 1950's the whole original mechanism was discarded and pitman windchests were installed in newly-built chambers. A big pneumatic Moller console replaced the first electric console. Finally, many ranks were moved around within the organ, some harmonic pipes were cut off, the 16' Open Wood was disconnected and its treble pipes removed, and finally the Swell mixture was moved to the Great, with the Great mixture winding up in a box in the basement. Our task was to restore as much of the original tonal design as we could within the confines of the electric pitman windchests. We also removed the pneumatic console components and replaced the relay system with one that is much more reliable. Finally, we removed the shutters from the Great division and replaced the swell motors on the Choir and Swell, allowing the shutters to open a full 90 degrees. The resulting organ is something of a tonal revelation, with pipes restored to original locations, the Great mixture restored, and the full resources of the Swell restored. The original tonal design was far superior to what the organ had become over 100+ years of changing tastes.