Welcome to the ABA! Bell Talk Forums Bell Foundries, Manufacturers and Artisans Questions I have about Maas-Rowe Electronic Carillons

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    • #11099

      I am a female with Autism the aspergers kind. I have a major interest in Church Bells-Carillons Electronic carillons . My favorite electronic carillons are the Maas-Rowe ones. I have some questions about carillons my questions are:
      1. Can an electronic carillon like a Maas-Rowe one do bell peals?
      2. Can an electronic carillon like a Maas-Rowe one play the music manually instead of an automated time?
      3. Can a keyboard be hooked up to an electronic carillon like a Maas-Rowe one to where you can play a Keyboard hooked up to an electronic carillon through the Bell Tower Speakers?

      If you know the answers please message me


    • #14565

      I spent some time restoring a Maas-Rowe system from the 1980’s for a church in Oregon. This model had pairs of steel rods tuned an octave apart to generate the tones for the Westminster Quarters and peals, and used 8-track tapes for music. The 8-tracks were all warped and unusable, so music could not be played manually except through single strikes from the notes listed below. The system gave a choice of three programmable single-bell peals and one multiple-bell peal. Bells in a multiple-bell peal start sequentially, but not necessarily from small to large. Each peal allowed the operator to select from seven bell pitches (C’, D’, D’, F’, G’, A’, or B’) and were adjustable for any length of time. There were two “D” notes: one with a standard minor third partial which was used in the Angelus strike (followed by the “F”), and the other “D” with a major third partial used with the Westminster Quarters. The low “C,” used for the funeral toll and the Angelus peal, also had an low Eb rod, the striker of which I removed because it made the tone murky.

      Overall, I’ve found Maas-Rowe systems to be about my least favorite electronic carillons in terms of tone quality, but they offer more flexibility in programming than other systems from that period. Maas-Rowe continues to produce steel rod instruments, as opposed to digital samples or CD’s, and they typify the classic “artificial bell” sound. If I were going to buy fake bells for my church, I’d probably go with Schulmerich. Their new systems are digitally-sampled, but my home town parish in California has a Schulmerich Basilican carillon dating from 1954 which contains 25 rods, a roll player, and a keyboard. All of them still operate and the system sounds every fifteen minutes throughout the day. While the Schulmerich only sounded pitches in octaves when the Westminster Quarters were sounding, it did not allow the user to adjust the duration or pitches of the pre-programmed peals.

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