Moving A Hammond Organ

Dave Cornutt has posted a great blog post over at Sequence 15 about moving in his Hammond organ:

About the organ: It’s an A100, one of the spinet styles that Hammond produced mainly for the home market. Despite that, it’s a full-up tonewheel organ, with exactly the same layout, sound generation, and controls as the venerable B3. In fact, if you are looking for that B3 sound but find the price tag daunting, you can pick up an A100 and get that exact same sound for $500-1000 less. I don’t know why it is that the A100 should sell for that much less than the B3 when they both use the same components. The only difference is that the A100 contains a built-in power amp (two, actually) and speakers, so you don’t have to have an external tone cabinet to play it. (Despite that, it does have a socket for connecting a Hammond tone cabinet, or with the proper adaptor, a Leslie.)

The A100 weighs about 350 lbs., and this one has a magnetic attraction for my toes. I actually dropped it on my toes once! So, of course, as we were moving it in, my shoe got stuck in a gap in the floor between the hallway and the room, and it nearly ended up on my toes again. 

Dave’s right – you can fairly regularly see A100’s going for a few hundred dollars. I think his second paragraph explains why – they weigh 350 lbs, but they don’t have the caché of a B3. 

His post also has some interesting A100 secrets and lots of extreme close up organ gear porn.

6 thoughts on “Moving A Hammond Organ

  1. “Routinely see A100’s going for a few hundred dollars” … really?

    I tend to keep my ear fairly close to the ground and can’t share this sentiment. Granted, buying organs in 2008 is a feast or famine situation – if the seller just wants it GONE, you usually just gotta haul it away; but almost all the A100’s I see are billed with the “Same guts as the B3!” which hence boosts up the price.

    Regardless, nice lil’ blog post from Dave, and must say I don’t envy him and his move (or his toes) in the slightest.

  2. Walkathon – I reworded that to tone it down a bit – but watch craigslist and want ads for people getting rid of their grandparents’ organs….

  3. Yep, synthead is right, people pretty much dump B3’s and other Hammonds, Upright or Grand Pianos with the “You move it you can have it” because they’re just massive, heavy things to deal with.

    We had a B3 & Leslie combo that we gave to someone who was setting up a cafe’ / music club, and an upright piano to another fellow when my parents moved out of their house. We got both units from the same situation; someone was moving and needed them gone.

  4. SH, much appreciated. And no arguments that at just the right place, right time, one can score a classic organ cheap. But, for every B3 or (God willing) GX1, it’s gonna be 500 lesser Baldwins or space-hogging Allens, etc.

  5. These reviews are correct. The B3 and A100 Hanmonds are built like an A1 tank. The keyboards built today are bunch of crap. The Hammond has an athentic non artificial sound. Somebody out there is going to have to start building tone generators, I think the Hammond is picking up popularity in the younger generations. The demand is increasing.

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