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Rectangular pipes with walls of varying thickness (Koenig)

Koenig Acoustical · Physics

This is two of a set of three open pipes with walls of varying thickness. has thicker walls. has thinner walls. Each pipe has a round foot at the base.

Accession Number:

Alternative Name:

Primary Materials: Wood: Pine, Mahogany


Both pipes are stamped “RUDOLPH KOENIG À PARIS”.

Both pipes have “94” written in ink on the base. This number refers to the set’s entry in Koenig’s 1873 catalogue.

Dimensions (cm):

731.1 = 43cm x 4.0 x 3.5; 732.2 = 43cm x 5.5 x 5.0


According to David Pantalony’s book “Altered Sensations” (New York: Springer, 2009): “Differences in thickness change the quality of tone, or timbre. A thin wall will vibrate more freely thus producing more harmonics… When played recently, the pipe with thin walls produced a more reedy timbre.” (pg 244)


Good. The pipes have some wear on the edges and on the feet from use. One of this set of three pipes is missing.

Associated Instruments:

Manufacturer: Rudolph Koenig, Paris

Date of Manufacture: ca. 1878


These pipes are part of a collection of acoustic teaching apparatus purchased from Rudolph Koenig by University of Toronto professor of physics James Loudon. These pipes were part of Loudon’s initial 1878 purchase, and form part of a comprehensive selection of organ pipes “representing a… demonstration of every possible organ pipe effect.” (Pantalony, Altered Sensations. (New York: Springer, 2009. Pg 119-122). These were likely used by students for investigations of acoustical properties at the university’s physics department teaching laboratory.

These pipes were collected from the Department of Physics, after a number had been used for some years as part of an interactive display.

Additional Information and References:

These pipes were originally given separate accession numbers. When re-catalogued together, a document was created that provides information on original accession numbers and other transition information. A paper copy of this document, as of the end of August 2016, is stored in the 2016 file in UTSIC’s paper archive and in each pipe set’s folder.

See Also: David Pantalony’s “Altered Sensations” (New York: Springer, 2009) in the text’s Catalogue Raisonné under the entry 95a (pg 244).

Historical Notes: