Tonal Philosophy

Goulding & Wood instruments are characterized by balance and sophistication in the tonal design and voicing. We strive to cultivate a maximum amount of color and variety while maintaining a tight, cohesive ensemble. Believing that congregational singing is the foundational concern of the organ, we build instruments with generous fundamental development to clearly delineate pitch. Multiple stops at 8’ pitch, broad scaling and clean, incisive voicing combine to serve as a strong base of the organ’s sound. Judicious use of upperwork completes the chorus, adding to the coloristic possibilities, while the power of the sound is always driven at the 16’ and 8’ range. Mixtures supply brilliance without ever becoming overstated or overpowering. In all, the objective is a gentle, pleasing sound that envelops the audience or congregation. Read more

Mechanical Philosophy

Pipe organs incorporate extensive mechanical resources, and it is essential that they be as musically conceived and carefully built as the pipework that they support. If the mechanics do not cooperate in achieving the same goal as the tonal design, the instrument will never reach success. Complementing our primary focus of supporting worshiping congregations, our mechanical resources provide reliable, sustainable support that encourages the style of voicing we employ. Read more

Introduction to the Goulding & Wood slider chest action

Many factors contribute to the sound of a pipe organ. Certainly the quality of pipe work and the manner in which it is voiced plays an essential role. So too does the acoustic environment of the instrument. Another vital characteristic is the chest action. Frequently, ample attention is paid to the first two issues with only a passing regard given to the third. Even more commonly, organists and organ builders focus on key action - is it mechanical or electric - without any regard to the operation of the chest mechanics. At Goulding & Wood, we believe that our chest action is among the finest built today and that our uniquely designed slider chests contribute greatly to the success of the sound of our instruments. Read more

Design of the Goulding & Wood slider chest action

On various occasions we have been asked to describe our unique, electro-pneumatic slider and pallet windchest. Particular emphasis is given to solving the age-old problem of devising a remote key-action system for this chest that is musically responsive over a wide range of wind pressures. We are often asked why would we want to consider such an action with the reliability of the modern day pitman chest system for remote action organs and with the technical advancements that have been made in mechanical key-action instruments. The answer to this question actually goes back beyond the formation of Goulding and Wood Inc., twelve years ago, to the late 1950's when John Goulding and I were both associated with the E.H. Holloway Corporation. Read more

Casework and console appointments

Goulding & Wood organs participate actively in the liturgical and aesthetic properties of the church through their visual presence in the room. Once thought superfluous or even injurious to the sound of the instrument, cases are much more than decorative add-ons; rather, the encasing of the organ focuses the sound while the round bodies of the display pipes blend the sound of individual pipes into a unified sonorous voice. By the same token, the architecture of the room benefits from a collaboration with the organ as one of the largest elements. Read more