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 Post subject: STEAM WHISTLE CALLIOPE MADE IN THE USA Kenny g
PostPosted: Tue May 09, 2017 11:41 pm 
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Boat Name: S.S. NORMAN J
Custom Calliopes built by Kenny G

http://www.customcalliope.com

article on Steamboats .org
http://www.steamboats.org/whistle-calliope/848.html

Recent article of the 38 note Steam Calliope built for a California Steam Park
March 21, 2017

LALSRM Purchases a Custom-Built 38-Note Steam Calliope
By Diana Manchester with Kenneth Griffard

Los Angeles Live Steamers Railroad Museum is always interested in enriching our steam program, which includes functioning steam locomotives in six scales, and a stationary steam plant that demonstrates 19th century steam technology. We learned of “Kenny G’s Calliopes” through Discover Live Steam, and ordered a custom-built 38-note calliope from Ken in 2016.
Kenneth Griffard of Three Rivers, Michigan, is one of a handful of modern calliope manufacturers. Ken’s initial interest in calliopes was fueled by his passion for steam riverboats, which he restores and operates. He built a 10-note steam calliope for his first steamboat rescue, and later a 25-note version for his refurbished 15-passenger sternwheeler.
"I believe LALSRM’s calliope is the only 38 note calliope in operation west of the Mississippi," Ken said.
Kenny G’s Calliopes are made of bronze-casted whistles and run on 20 psi steam (or compressed air) operated by Bestek PNOMIDI remote controllers. When in operation, steam is released by electronic command and travels through the manifolds to valves individually controlling the various sized whistles. At first, the metal is cold, creating a slightly higher note. As the whistle warms up, the note drops in pitch. This is what makes the characteristic calliope sound. The whistles are tuned to notes chromatically when manufactured. Keeping the calliope in tune is an ongoing endeavor.
As with all the calliopes Ken offers, the LALSRM model was built to custom requirements. The Museum wished to keep the calliope on two 7-1/2” gauge flatbed railroad cars, which meant that, instead of the whistles and manifold connected in one long row, two shorter, separate rows were needed. The electronic configuration in the MIDI controller was redesigned to direct the music signals to this special setup.
The new calliope has been assembled and tuned by LALSRM member Thaine Morris. Thaine has restored a vintage air compression calliope as well as a several antique mechanical music boxes. He also owns and operates steam boilers that he uses in his special effects business.
Ken makes no bones about the decibel level of calliope music. “They are very loud,” he says. “I give my steamboat passengers earplugs before I play mine.” Ken recommends making the calliope performance a special event of one or two songs, scheduled for posted times of day. Then its operation is unique and anticipated. People soon learn that the nostalgic sound of a calliope will last briefly, and can relax and (hopefully) appreciate the experience of a bygone era.


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 Post subject: Re: STEAM WHISTLE CALLIOPE MADE IN THE USA Kenny g
PostPosted: Tue May 16, 2017 1:17 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 07, 2013 9:16 pm
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Location: Northeast Ohio, USA
Boat Name: SL Nyitra
What do you use for the electro-mechanical valves?

-CB


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 Post subject: Re: STEAM WHISTLE CALLIOPE MADE IN THE USA Kenny g
PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2017 12:05 am 
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Boat Name: S.S. NORMAN J
Steam rated valves are used. These were designed to match the voltage and response needed for the PNOBESTEK MIDI system. Original valves were steam rated 12 volt, however they needed to be tweaked with a resistor to work with the voltage of the new system. The 25 note Calliope seen on the SS NORMAN J has the original 12 volt valve conversion. Calliopes' built after mid 2016, all are at the higher voltages and older ones have been converted if upgrading to the latest WIFI system.


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 Post subject: Re: STEAM WHISTLE CALLIOPE MADE IN THE USA Kenny g
PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2017 1:43 am 
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Location: Northeast Ohio, USA
Boat Name: SL Nyitra
cuz i Ken wrote:
Steam rated valves are used. These were designed to match the voltage and response needed for the PNOBESTEK MIDI system. Original valves were steam rated 12 volt, however they needed to be tweaked with a resistor to work with the voltage of the new system. The 25 note Calliope seen on the SS NORMAN J has the original 12 volt valve conversion. Calliopes' built after mid 2016, all are at the higher voltages and older ones have been converted if upgrading to the latest WIFI system.

Part number?


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 Post subject: Re: STEAM WHISTLE CALLIOPE MADE IN THE USA Kenny g
PostPosted: Fri May 26, 2017 11:07 pm 
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Joined: Thu Feb 28, 2013 11:00 am
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Boat Name: S.S. NORMAN J
If you would like some technical assistance on selection of a steam valve, please reach out to me on my website throughout the contact information page.
Kenny G
WWW.CustomCalliope.com


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