Swinging Bells!

Discussions on various technical aspects of carillon instruments and standards.

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Re: Swinging Bells!

Postby TerryMcGee on Fri Mar 29, 2013 11:25 am

Don't know about Ellacombe systems in Australia. Did get the sound files though. I'll see what I can get out of them.

Terry
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Re: Swinging Bells!

Postby JohnGouwens on Fri Mar 29, 2013 2:56 pm

I am certain you will find a difference with the raised clappers. Anybody could hear that difference! The legato/staccato thing is harder to hear on an individual note, and very difficult to get the volume equal. (I didn't always manage the latter.)
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Re: Swinging Bells!

Postby CarlSZimmerman on Fri Apr 12, 2013 11:23 pm

JohnGouwens wrote:There is, by the way, one carillon (no swinging bells) with eight bells fitted additionally with Ellacombe hammers - Christ Church Cranbrook, in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. The rack is lower in the tower than the carillon console.


Another Taylor carillon in America used to be fitted similarly - Germantown, Philadelphia. The 8-note chiming rack remains in place on the wall of the landing in the stairway to the playing room, but the ropes are long gone. This did not use externally-pivoted hammers such as in the video John linked, but suspended clappers inside the bells - just like carillon clappers.
Carl Scott Zimmerman
Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - home of at least 36 bell foundries or bell sellers, 1821-1961.
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Re: Swinging Bells!

Postby JohnGouwens on Fri Apr 12, 2013 11:30 pm

Indeed! I didn't know that had been the case at Germantown. Thanks for that interesting bit of information! I think there's a reason Ellacombe hammers are unusual "extras" in a carillon with no swinging bells - if you are already playing the bells from a stationary position, you don't need the awkward Ellecombe stand to play it - much easier to use the carillon console - whether you're a carillonneur or not!
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Re: Swinging Bells!

Postby CarlSZimmerman on Sat Apr 13, 2013 5:25 am

I suspect the reason was to enable a non-musician to produce some "music" that's more interesting than a single tolling bell would be. Changes by the numbers would do that, and anyone can learn to play a taut-rope rack by the numbers with five or ten minutes of instruction.

Incidentally, there are multiple varieties of taut-rope rack and of accompanying striker actions. This is one of many topics I hope to address eventually on TowerBells.org.
Carl Scott Zimmerman
Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - home of at least 36 bell foundries or bell sellers, 1821-1961.
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Re: Swinging Bells!

Postby JohnGouwens on Sat Apr 13, 2013 2:18 pm

I'll look forward to that, but pounding out changes is easier to do on a carillon console than off of a rope rack. Looking for YouTube posts of Ellacombes in action, I was surprised how often they seemed to be applied to tower tubular chimes in England. James Treat's "New England Bell Company" did that, as I recall you telling me, but I guess when Deagan got into the market, electrical systems became the norm here - but evidently not in England. It would take some digging (which I'm sure you are doing) to find where Ellacombe systems are. Who besides Taylor installed them in North America?
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Re: Swinging Bells!

Postby TerryMcGee on Wed May 01, 2013 8:57 am

Now, just in case you don't routinely keep across the Journal: Advances in Acoustics and Vibration, there's a new paper on swinging bells, by Jim Woodhouse et al at Cambridge (UK): The Dynamics of a Ringing Church Bell

http://www.hindawi.com/journals/aav/2012/681787/

They show how the clapper on a swinging bell continues to bounce on the surface of the bell after changing sides, with of course impact on the bell's decay. Nicely illustrated - click on each of the image thumbnails for full-size.

Terry
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Re: Swinging Bells!

Postby JohnGouwens on Wed May 01, 2013 2:25 pm

It depends on how it "clappers." Taylor normally balances free-swinging bells so that that clapper contacts the bell surface at the peak of it's arc (flying clapper), in which case it readily would bounce off, and out of the way. In teaching a couple of Campanology students recently, I compiled a series of links to show examples of things. I posted this example earlier, but since I'm discussing it, here it is again. With smaller peals, they apparently tend to let them "ring down" at the end, meaning they let go and the bells go into a more normal swing. In this video, that happens near the end at 4:55, and you hear, suddenly, when they are no longer being damped by the clappers!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RUIPNIddeig
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Re: Swinging Bells!

Postby CarlSZimmerman on Wed Oct 16, 2013 2:12 pm

For those interested in the technical details of the bells in that video:
http://dove.cccbr.org.uk/detail.php?DoveID=WORCESTRMA
Amusingly, one can see the electric clock hammers striking the old bells in theit timber frame while the new bells in their steel frame are active below. The anonymous service bell is also seen briefly at one point. At the end of the video clip, "catch in Queens" stops the bells from striking further.
Carl Scott Zimmerman
Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - home of at least 36 bell foundries or bell sellers, 1821-1961.
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