Russian ship (?) bell with a cut
July 9, 2007 at 5:46 pm #10602
I have recently purchased an interesting Russian imperial bell. Since it was originally gotten from a ship salvage yard, I assume it is a ship bell (“rynda” they called it). It is from 19th century and is marked with a two-headed eagle seal and the writing on it says it is produced by “P. I. Olovyanshchnikov” factory. The size is marked “19 and 3/4”. The sound is excellent. It is 18.5 pounds. The bell itself is 9.5 inches tall. With the mount the height is 12.25 inches. The diameter of the bell is 8.5 inches.
The strange thing about the bell is that there is a neat vertical cut going through it, from the rim up, about 3-1/2 inches. It looks like the cut was professionally made, it’s definately not a crack. The guy who sold this to me claimed that this was the way of tuning bells, which I’m not sure of.
What could be a possible reason for the cut? I’m very new to bells and am not sure if this was a common practice? And in general, if anybody have any information on this kind of bells he/she is willing to share — I would greatly appreciate it.
Thanks a lot.
PS: I’m posting some pictures — the cut shows on the third one.
July 18, 2007 at 8:19 pm #13143
I would greatly appreciate ANY information on this, or similar, bell. Speculations or general thoughts are most welcome, too. Like, has any one heard about cutting the bell like this as the way of tuning it? I did notice it produces a dual tone, kind of “ding-dong” sound. Could that be a purpose of the cut?
July 18, 2007 at 8:38 pm #13144AnonymousInactive
Marsha, who was born and raised in Russia told me:
Yes, it is “rinda” – ship bell. There is something besides the name of manufacturer written around the bell but it’s hard to see. I don’t know anything about cut in the bell, never heard about it.
Responses are opinions of individuals based on their personal research and knowledge.
July 18, 2007 at 8:51 pm #13145
Thank you very much. I’ll reproduce the rest of the signature when I get home from work.
By the way, what’s the general consensus about cleaning old bells? I know it’s a personal choice, but it would be nice to know some pros and cons. It would be nice to see it shine, but patina is unique also and once I remove it — there’s no coming back…
July 19, 2007 at 12:00 pm #13146Peter HydeMember
Restoration and cleaning any old item is subject to different points of view. If you are interested in maintaining or improving resale value it is best to go with the general consensus. With bells that would mean limited cleaning – certainly not going back to ‘as new’
If you are not worried about preserving value then it’s really up to you. I dislike dirty bells. So I clean and polish all my old bronze bells. I use a non abrasive metal polish called Autosol which is recommended by the Whitechapel Bell Foundry. But I never get to the point where the bell becomes really shiny. I like them to look old but nice!
- You must be logged in to reply to this topic.