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Wicks DIRECT-ELECTRIC® action

The foundation of Wicks' success lies in our Direct-Electric® action. Wicks was the first company to use electro-mechanical action. In fact, we invented it in 1914 as an alternative to bulky and complicated pneumatic and electro-pneumatics. Direct-Electric® is the epitome of simplicity. With one moving part, this action has proven itself to be the most durable, reliable, serviceable, and useable of all the types of pipe organ action available today. Each note of every stop in the organ has it's own valve, and applying low voltage electric current to the unit causes the valve to immediately open. Cutting off the current lets the valve close. It's as simple as that.


Click inside the box to see how Direct-Electric® works

Some fallacies of Direct-Electric® action

Notice its many advantages:

Quiet operation: With no pneumatics exhausting air, and no large pallets to move, Direct-Electric® action is silent. Its single moving part removes the noise caused by pneumatic actions that have a host of moving parts. With no noisy primaries, you get no noise from the organ should a key be depressed with no stops drawn.

Durability: The absence of many parts, as well as the elimination of perishable thin leathers or membranous materials places the Wicks action far in advance of anything else insofar as durability is concerned. This is practically nothing to wear out. Our action is made of steel and wire. For this reason, we can with confidence offer a stronger guarantee than any other builder can possibly consider duplicating.

Economical: We reduce to a very low point all cost of repair, replacements, and adjustments, with the greatest saving in annoyance, as well as interruptions. Inexpensive to install, the real value of Direct-Electric® action comes in the years of reliable service without regard to changes in humidity, air pollution, or the effects of age that lead to the inevitable, costly releathering required of other types of action.

Prompt: "Direct from key to pipe" is a old Wicks slogan. It describes tersely how the pipe has been restored to the fingertip of the organist, as in the tracker action. With only one moving part, it accomplishes immediately the first duty of an organ action - namely, to sound the pipe. In other systems time is wasted in setting complicated parts into motion before the pipe can sound. In a Wicks there is absolutely no delay. Absence of slow stop motors means stops play the instant they are drawn.

Reliable: Since the Wicks system is free of 75% of the parts of other actions, such as primaries, intermediates, air channels, complicated stop actions, etc., it is not only the simplest of all organ mechanisms, but also the most reliable. It seems logical in comparison with more cumbersome and complicated actions, but the best example is in the thousands of Wicks organs built over the past 80 years that are still playing today!

Practical: Direct-Electric® action is the most practical organ action today. The possibilities are endless. The layout of pipes on a chest is determined by the speaking room necessary for the pipe, not by the layout of the action or winding channels. Unique and decorative layouts, such as for playing facade pipes are only at the limit of your imagination. Placing facade pipes away from the main chests requires no channels or extra wads of tubing. Pipes can be placed so that they are easier to tune, making it possible for the organ technician to accurately tune every pipe. Pressures can be set wherever one desires. Our action functions flawlessly at 1 inch of wind pressure, and our new high-pressure units are tested up to 32 inches. It is easier to list the difficulties that this action frees you from, than it is to list all the possibilities it allows.

Other companies use actions similar to Wicks' Direct-Electric®, but no other company has built an action that is as reliable and functional as Wicks, or has the years of experience in implementing this action into a successful pipe organ.

Many people ask us how long our Direct-Electric action lasts. Unfortunately, this is a question we cannot answer, because we don't know. The first units installed over 80 years ago are still playing today!

Recent News:
May 2
"Party on the Pipes" visits Wicks
Apr 5
Guest AGO Members Treated to Opus 6436 Ready for Installation
Nov 9
Wicks announces Tom Briggs as management consultant
Oct 12
Organ Dedication, October 15th
Sep 20
Wicks Organ Company shop hours have changed!
Recent Installations & Rebuilds:
6434 First United Methodist Church, Hampton, Virginia
6430 St. Cecilia's Convent, Nashville, Tennesee
6428 First Methodist Church, Waxahachie, Texas
6427 Holy Child Parish, Bridgeville, PA
6426 Church of St. Gabriel, Cincinnati, Ohio