The first stage of the restoration of the 1959 Mascioni organ at St. Mark’s Church, Rabat

1st UPDATE - Restoration of the three Bellows:

The first main stage of the restoration of the 1959 Mascioni organ at St. Mark's Church is now completed. The three double-rise bellows, have been completely restored / releathered, re-installed and re-activated.

Prior to the restoration, the bellows still employed the original 1959 leathering. This leather was not completely worn-out, and may have provided a few more years of service with some patch-up work.

However, given the nature of this restoration which aims to give all-round long term reliability, patch-up work was not good enough. It pays not to do things by halves, and hence the bellows were fully restored (not simply patched-up). This is a very time-consuming process.

All the three bellows were extracted and taken to Robert Buhagiar's workshop in Zabbar where they were each dismantled into separate components (frames, ribs, etc). All parts were then cleaned from old leather and other materials, and repaired as necessary. Subsequently these components were re-assembled again with new leather and finally the completed bellows were re-installed on-site.

Following this meticulous restoration, the bellows will perform reliability for at least 40 years, though in all probability, much more than that.

Robert Buhagiar

 

 


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