Royal Eijsbouts Bell Foundry
Asten, The Netherlands
Chime Master's affiliation with the bell foundry of Royal Eijsbouts (Dutch: Koninklijke Eijsbouts) means we can supply you with a single bell, a peal of swinging bells, a chime, or a carillon with electrical or traditional mechanical clavier playing action.
Eijsbouts has been in business for more than 135 years and has provided bells for prestigious installations all over the world. In 2006, Eijsbouts cast the world's largest swinging bell for a resort in Gotenba City, Japan. Weighing 79,750 pounds with a diameter of twelve and a half feet, it would qualify for the Guinness Book of World Records.
Research and Campanology
Eijsbouts physicists and campanologists have developed, in cooperation with the University of Eindhoven, proprietery software that accurately predicts the vibrational characteristics of a bell based on its profile (the combination of the inner and outer shapes) and material composition. The calculations show the frequency and amplitude of the dominant harmonic partials, as well as their decay characteristics.
The profiles and bronze alloy compositions of historic bells have been imported into this program for analysis. Improvements can be tested on the computer before test castings are made for verification purposes. These developments have lead to a number of standard bell profiles that ring with various timbral qualities.
The Hemony profile, named for the famous 16th century founders François and Pieter Hemony, provide a richly harmonic sound commonly heard in the Flemish region of Europe. Many listeners prefer the sound of the English profile modeled after the beautiful carillon bells cast by the early 20th century founders Gillet and Johnston.
Bell making has not changed much since the twelfth century, although a modern foundry uses contemporary tools and materials. It can take several weeks to cast a bell from making the mold, to pouring the molten bronze, allowing sufficient time for cooling, cleaning and tuning.
Regardless of the technology used in the design of the bell, the musically trained human ear is the most valuable instrument utilized in the manufacture and tuning of the bells. Every Royal Eijsbouts bell we sell is a finely tuned musical instrument. So even if you purchase a single bell, you can be sure that bells added in the future will ring harmoniously together.
How Many Bells Do I Need?
Typical non-musical peals consist of three or four bells. Four bells can be chosen to play a familiar clock chiming melody. Our control system library provides 150 hymns that can be played on a chime of eight bells. This quickly doubles to more than 300 for a 10-bell chime then gradually grows to nearly 1000 for a 14-bell chime. Beyond 14 bells, a carillon of 23 or more bells allows any song to be arranged in a musically pleasing way.
Tuning Historic Bells
The renovation of a tower is the perfect time to think about improving your bells. Historic bells had little or no tuning applied to them after casting. Listen to the difference tuning made for the 1881 William Blake Chime we renovated for Channing Memorial Church in Newport Rhode Island:Blake Chime - Untuned
Blake Chime - Tuned
Custom Bell Profiles and Tuning
We have successfully used the bell profile design software tools to match the timbre of bells from Early American foundries. New bells added to old chimes in this way do not stand out as sounding different than the older bells. If you would like to add bells to your chime or peal, allow us to visit and make an analysis of your existing bells.Blake Chime - with new Eijsbouts bell
Casting bells with a lost-wax process is a time consuming process that makes every bell a unique individual. Ornamentation is first molded in wax, down to each letter, then painstakingly applied one by one to the wax false bell. You may submit custom artwork that will be machined into a mold to make a wax appliqué that will be used to cast your bell with designs that are meaningful to your organization.
Undecorated and Stock Bells
In cases when you need a bell fast, we may have a stock bell that will meet your requirements. These bells are also priced to be more affordable than custom decorated bells.
Manual Play Keyboards
We can modernize your bells with clappers and transmission components that make your chime easier to play. A carillon-style baton keyboard will make room for additional bells and allow you to play with more dynamic musical expression.
Architects and Engineers
If you are working on a bell, chime or carillon project, please call us early in the design process. We can help you integrate the visual and acoustic elements required for a successful design. You will also find valuable resources on the excellent GCNA website.