Riverside and Wolverhampton

nigelsdtaylor nigeltaylor at k...
Tue Jun 15 13:57:09 BST 2004

Riverside bourdon.
The interference beat I counted at about 4 1/4 per second, which 
corresponds with the hum figure X2 and the 2nd partial figure 
differential. The interference beats caused by 2nd partials not 
aligning with hums is far more pronounced than nominals/2nd partials. 
Even 1 beat per second (say hum 220, 2nd partial 441) is perfectly 
clear, even to the untrained ear. There was no "doublet" to speak of 
in the Riverside bourdon hum note: the figures I obtained bring 64.6 
and 64.64. There is some corrosion, but not enough to affect a bell 
this much! Was it the forks, or did Cyril have trouble pitching very 
low frequencies?
I listened to Wolverhampton in 1981 and thought they were very good 
outside. The trebles were rather dead but very bright, and the tenor 
and 11th boomed and there was some hum. The clappers were replaced 
with S.G.'s soon after. We restored the wrought-iron clappers and put 
them back in 3 years ago, after complaints that the bells did not 
sound as good as they did before fitting with S.G.'s.
The tuning figures according to G & J do not look too bad. There was 
an attempt to correct the (as cast) sharp quints in the trebles, 
which in most cases overshot slightly. The 10th was almost a maiden 
apart from a very sharp 2nd partial, and this bell has been heavily 
cut in the shoulder, but has survived 93 years! I shall compare 
C.D.'s figures with the original G & J figures. There is some 
corrosion that will tend to deaden the bells, and this will also have 
flattened the bells very slightly.
G & J abandoned radical tuning to old bells in the mid 1920's, mainly 
because they were very busy. Thaxted was an exception to this because 
Michael Howard did come from Thaxted and took a keen interest in the 
job. Wally Spraget tuned them according to Michael Howard's 
suggestions, but admitted to me not long before he died that 
they "went a bit too far"!
Nigel Taylor

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