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-----Original Message-----
From: Mike
Sent: 6 July 2008
Subject: Deagan Hand Chimes Question
Hi Jim,

I have acquired an eight piece set of hand chimes which were in pretty poor condition when I received them and have since restored them. There is no specific marking on them to indicate if they are Deagon Chimes or perhaps a good copy. The history I have on them is that somewhere back in the 1940's there was a quartet known as the Four Bits of Harmony who used them in their act. Some members of the group were graduates from another more popular ensemble known as the Modernaires which I remember quite well. Some of the members of this quartet as I understand the story became the members of the original Dapper Dans in DisneyLand in the mid 50's and used these very chimes. Of that I am certain. In later years when Disney World opened in Florida another set of hand chimes were acquired for use there. While I am told this set shown below are Deagon Chimes I would like to verify it if I could. There are no specific markings to indicate that but they certainly do look like other Deagon Chimes pictures I have seen. Do you have any knowledge you might care to share about hand chimes such as shown below? I would appreciate any thoughts you may have.


Awesome ebook!

Hi Mike - thanks for your email.

I'm not going to be a great deal of help to you I'm afraid - this is really not my area of expertise. After asking a couple of colleagues, we agree that Deagan traditionally would put their label on there somewhere so if there is no hint it may not be one of theirs. It is not certain however. Around that period though Deagan often labeled instruments with a small stamped and painted sheet metal plaque - usually brass or bronze. It would either be riveted on to metal or nailed onto timber. During restoration did you come across a pair of holes in the timber anywhere that could have been made by brass nails? If so that would most likely confirm Deagan origin.

If you haven't already, have a read of a discussion I had a while ago - it is written up as an article on - there is a few links there worth chasing up - in particular some of the guys involved with organs might be able to help you. There is an enormous amount of interest in organs and there history and restoration around the globe and I suspect the chimes pictured are like those "shaker" chimes that were often used in organs and manufactured by the Deagan company. Follow the link to the organ foundation or google a bit on organs and you might find a network of people more able to help you.

Good luck!!

All the best
Jim McCarthy

Awesome ebook!

answers by Jim MCCarthy - 16/11/2003

For more help on instrument building you can email Jim.

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