Hammond M102 Update


How you doing folks? Staying safe?

Its a weird world that we are in at the moment isn’t it, we are nearly there, just a few months to go! I thought I would drop you a line as I have been quiet of late. Quiet but very busy !

My M102 project has stalled a little (unsurprisingly) as we are locked down over here in the UK and my Tech can’t get over to help me with the mods. We have stripped it down entirely and removed the gooey foam from the keybeds (which actually hadn’t got near any of the wires yet) and have installed the “missing” foldback on the top drawbars (to emulate the C3). “poor man’s” foldback has been installed on the lower manual at the bottom octave which is designed to give the impression of a lower octave than actually is.

poor man’s foldback
..and there it sits

The hope was that we would have her back together by Christmas but the lockdown has seen to that unfortunately. Its not just a matter of reassembling though, there are more things that we need to do to it before its roadworthy with my band.

Firstly having already removed the speakers we need to make it run with my gigging Leslie 145. That’s simple ish, although there are load issues as the M102 is a power and pre amp not just a pre like the C3. The reverb tank on the M is cool and it would be nice to keep that but as that is a power amp as well as a pre we need to work at the loads again with the aim of feeding that back into the line signal going out to the Leslie.

Once that’s done we are onto the tweaking really; the next thing is to bring the key click back. Hammond kindly put in key click filters to stop this “defect” and we need to take them out again to re-create this “wonderful defect” and make it sound more organic.

and reassemble….



At this point then we will have a working M102 with no foam, two foldbacks, no speakers, a Leslie connection and no Key click. You could leave it at that really but to finish it off we have just another couple of things. A couple of volume pots on the large end cheek will allow for Reverb and Master Volume and we are investigating building in a Lounsberry Organ Driver with only the pots proud of the cheek – this will help us with gain and overdrive. The last thing after that is all complete would be to chop it in half..

Then I think, its done, lets get her on the road and crack her up! Oh and my local venue manager Mike has christened her “Gloria”…

Stay safe all, nearly there!


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