June 2003

The MIDI System

For the past few years, I have submitted stories about organ experiences and happenings from the early railroad days, and have made it a point to stay away from the Stinson products, but for this one time only I feel the need to answer some questions that have surfaced concerning our MIDI system.

These questions come from many people including readers of The Carousel News & Trader. The MIDI system we use has left some misunderstandings with people not acquainted with these installations. It is our belief here at Stinson Band Organ Company that we have a duty to our buyers to use the finest products in the manufacture of our organs, which we believe would have been used by the old manufacturers if they had been available at that time. Customers want the new instruments they purchase to play long hours with no operator and very little service. The question has been asked many times about our view of the old instruments. Having worked on all types of the old organs over the years, I can only say we have great respect for the builders of these fine instruments which, if properly maintained, will be around for many years to come. It is always a thrill to finish a complete rebuild on an old organ and see it go out the door sounding like the day it came from the factory.

For the people who ask if our organs are original, we can only answer, "Yes" they are original from the Stinson factory but are built in modern times. Stinson Band Organ Company turned to MIDI organs three years back, but we still build roll-operated organs on request. We have installed our MIDI systems on many of the older style organs, and would like to clarify some items about the system.

First of all, we have respect for the older organs and install our systems where they are mostly out of sight. Second, we install the systems where they can be removed with no alterations to the organ if they should be sold in the future as antiques. Third, we leave the organ with the ability to play the music roll along with the MIDI system.

To remove parts of the older organs, and install the new, would not be in the best interest of the owner and would not be the desire of the Stinson Band Organ Company. With our system installed, it is possible to have the better of two worlds with out destroying the integrity of your instrument. I hope this answers some of the questions asked by readers of The Carousel News & Trader.

And, so it goes at the old organ shop.


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