Whitacre Heath Campanile
The original installation
Started in 2000 as a single bell in a frame hung for ringing. This frame was used as a test bed using a bell removed from a try your strength machine made for the 1977 Silver Jubilee celebrations in the village. The wheel was altered several times but the diameter of around 23" was finally setting on partly due to space constraints and partly due to the behaviour of the bell with this size wheel. The acquisition of a second larger bell from a friend and then another couple being donated rapidly made me rethink the idea of the bells and the eight frame was created soon after. The bells are hung in two four bell frames designed so they would be spaced out and made into a twelve at any future point without destroying the rope circle.
As Built 2002 - 2015 : Engineering Details
Designed to be assembled on the cheap the installation has cost me around £100 pounds excluding the bells. Using 2" bedstead type angle iron frame which is level with the headstock bearings with the pulley blocks (sash window nylon pulleys) mounted on brackets lower down level with the bottom of the 22" wheels. These wheels are made up of a laminate of 6mm/13mm/6mm MDF with two quarter spokes cut in the upper half. The new tenor has a slightly different wheel as it is pushing the envelope of the frame width. Headstock bearings are plumber blocks with self aligning bearings attached to 18mm rod headstocks with the wheels mounted on a 5mm plate. The bells themselves are attached to the headstock with individual clappers which bolt through the crown of the bell with one bolt. As each bell is often very different in its size and source each clapper is very much an individual item. The frame was suspended in the room of my garage workshop and the pulleys arranged to miss my head and the car roof! Ropes were 6mm nylon and as the "sallies" would not fit through the pulley blocks. Sallies were represented by being spray painted onto the rope.
All wheels are weighted so that virtually no vibration was applied to the shed and affectively the bell is only present to supply the noise.
The frame is two sets of four with wheels headstocks and pulleys fitted to all. Six bells were fitted - they are not all in tune being a semi tone out in places. Bells have been added as they are found and the original 11oz tenor was replaced in July 2008 with the current bell, which is believed to be from a bell buoy boat. There are several other bells in stock but these are either duplicates or not suitable.
Bell Details for Whitacre Heath Campanile 2002 to 2015
Bell 8 - F# - 20lb 5oz ex Bell-buoy boat bell Bought Ebay and fitted July 2008 - originally an 11oz old air raid warning bell
Bell 7 - G# - 3lb5oz Chromed ex-fire engine bell Poor sound but right note would like to replace it when one turns up
Bell 6 - A# - 11lb 4oz Gordon’s bell Gift from Gordon H. Lane (1932-2015)
Bell 5 - B - 3lb 1oz Jubilee 1977 Removed from a try-your-strength machine made for the 1977 Jubilee
Bell 4 - C - 2lb Temporary bell out of scale but gives a six bell tower for now
Bell 3 - C# - 2lb 8oz Proper 4th of future 8
Bell 2 Pit Empty pit with fittings
Bell 1 Pit Empty pit with fittings
Missing a top D# F F# bells for the top three
New Home from 2015 - Palace Campanile
The installation was last rung on Saturday April 18th 2015 and movement took place the following weekend with the completed installation ringable by Sunday April 26th. The frames remain identical but the clearance is much improved being now about 3m up removing the need to be wary of the bells being so close to your head. It is hoped that proper ropes with sallies can now be installed. Thus the Palace Campanile was created.