Concertola Ten Roll
Automatic Changer

Pictured without its case, this machine represents perhaps the most complex home entertainment device of its day.  Using the push button tablet at the far left, any of the ten rolls could be selected to play.   Some concertolas had multiple tablets so that the organ roll player could be controlled throughout the home.  If continuous music was desired, the "Program" button was pushed and all rolls would play in order.  At any time, the user could push the "Repeat" button, and the roll that was playing would continue to repeat.

A vacuum pump, which cannot be seen, is located in the base of the machine.  The vacuum powers all operations of the concertola. The electric buttons only program the vacuum system.   Two vacuum powered wind motors are used.  One wind motor operates the drum holding the rolls. That drive train is a worm gear arrangement.  The other operates the roll drive mechanism.   Since organ rolls are marked to play at various speeds called "Tempo",  an automatic scheme of setting the tempo is present in this machine.  



At the very bottom of the picture, is a fan accordion pneumatic with variable width segments.  This four segmented accordion can set the tempo of the roll.   It responds to special roll perforations that precede the beginning of the music.   One feature unique to the concertola is that the roll is wound backwards on the lower spool.  It can be seen above.  In 1929, this concertola cost $3,500.

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