For four years, I have tried to come up with a simple organ pipe design. Every design I tried had one or more drawbacks. I felt certain there was a simple design out there, just waiting to be uncovered.
When I was young, you could buy a wax flute for a dime. In school we were taught how to play the Flute-O-Phone. This instrument was a simple whistle with a tube attached to it. The tube had eight holes in it. This flute could play simple tunes. I tried to make this type of design but it was too complicated.
Years ago my Dad brought home a vortex valve from work. A vortex valve can turn compressed air into hot or cold air. After seeing this device and five dollar laser pointers, I feel anything is possible.
Yesterday I was watching a PBS show about life. The man was talking about epiphany experiences. He explained how you can be thinking about something for a long time and suddenly the answer appears. Well it did!
Right after the show I was sitting thinking about organ pipes, whistles and flutes when the design appeared! The next morning the thought returned. I went to my workshop and built the pipe. The pipe is a cross between a flute and a pennywhistle.
The organ pipe is a piece of 1/2" PVC pipe with a 1/4" hole in it. The hole is drilled in 1" from the end. A piece of 1/2" doweling 3/4" long is turned to 0.48" and put in one end. This piece of dowel (the fipple) has a 1/4" wide flat side. This flat side can be carved or sanded. This flat side lines up with the 1/4" hole. (See diagram.)
At this point, I am sending a drawing of the pipe to MMD. The pipe is perfect for MIDI or other experimenting. The rest is up to you! I have a use for this pipe and it will be used in my next monkey organ design. I invite you to make one of these pipes and to e-mail me.
John Conrad Kleinbauer
Sat, 4 Mar 2000 10:49:56 -0500