[Bell Historians] Meneely Bellfoundries - both of them

D Cawley dave at d...
Sat May 4 17:44:20 BST 2002

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The point that was being made is this: that Clinton Meneely was prepared to=
make quite a considerable outlay on casting bells which would never receiv=
e any tuning whatever at his hands. In this he was comparable with T C Lewi=
s of Brixton in the 19th-century, cf St Andrew, Wells Street, Marylebone (n=
ow Kingsbury, Middx) and Shipbourne, Kent. But note that Lewis despite his=
published beliefs did tune some of the bells in his largest chime, at Roeh=

This is not the same thing as has been alluded to in the recent tit-bits re=
Leighton Buzzard / Newport / Charminster and Albany / St Lawrence York, wh=
ich involved matching elsewhere a bell in place of which a second casting h=
ad been made, and sometimes involved further tuning the first casting.

There is nothing new in this; before me are the G&J figures of the Chicago =
carillon, cast 1929-31. For the 72 bells there are 89 recorded entries some=
of which are recorded as repeated casts, the unselected bell going elsewhe=
re. Some of the top bells were not originally cast for Chicago - which all=
in all is a wonderful sounding instrument.

Re the steel bells of Bassaleg (and see my RW article of 23/29.12.00, pp 12=
59-1263). I don't recall any one claiming they were good; my article said =
that they weren't at all bad. I think anyone who has merely chimed them in=
the Galleries at Sheffield is in no position to judge how they sounded whe=
n rung: as chimed on the Ellacombe at Bassaleg, they sounded awful. As rung=
, as I say, not at all bad - by no means as satisfying as Thornborough or =
Waddesdon, really much the same as Chalford but in a very much larger tower=

----- Original Message -----=20
From: David Bryant=20
To: bellhistorians at yahoogroups.com=20
Sent: 02 May 2002 21:02
Subject: Re: [Bell Historians] Meneely Bellfoundries - both of them

> de Turk's article states=20
> The Troy foundry disdained this idea of tuning, as did most other > Ame=
rican bellfoundries, preferring to have the 'natural bell tone'. > They b=
elieved that the proper design of a bell's profile brought itws partials in=
to the correct relationship and > that tuning by the > removal of metal was=
practiced by founders whose > bells had faulty profiles. (He) was not
> interested in carillons, their method of making bells and chimes having=
proved successful enought over the years. In making a chime. three > or f=
our times the number of bells would be
> cast from which the most harmonious would be selected. The remaining o=
nes were sold as single bells.

Taylor's have often done this with carillons - cast duplicate sets of
bells from which the best would be selected, with the others sold off as
stock bells. The 6th at St Laurence, York, was from a duplicate set for
the Albany City Hall carillon.


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