Tips and Advice for Moving an Organ

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How to Move an Organ

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Organs are large musical instruments, similar to pianos, which require a lot of care and maintenance to ensure that they are able to function properly. And, much like pianos, they can be one of the more difficult large items to move if you are relocating and taking your organ with you. Because they are musical instruments that contain a lot of delicate parts and must be handled very carefully, it's not an easy task to move one out of your old home and transport it to your new home.

Because of the level of difficulty involved with moving an organ and the level of expertise and experience needed to do it successfully, it's usually smartest to hire specialty movers like a professional organ or piano moving company to get the job done for you, since putting an expensive instrument like an organ into the hands of professionals is a lot better than trying to move it yourself. However, if you're moving on short notice and hiring a professional isn't an option, there are some things that you need to know before beginning the process of moving your organ.

Most importantly, you're going to need help and that help should come in the form of a few friends, family members or neighbors as well as some heavy-duty moving aids like a hand cart or an appliance dolly. You should also take the matter of safety very seriously when moving large items like organs and you should be mindful of the proper methods for moving large items, so as to not endanger anyone involved in the move, or risk damaging the item. This guide will provide you with some tips and advice on how to safely and carefully relocate your organ without damaging any of its delicate parts, as well as how to get it prepared for the move and the loading and unloading process.

Get some help

It goes without saying, but the first rule of moving heavy and delicate items like organs or pianos is to find several helping hands that are ready and willing to assist you with the move. Under no circumstances should you ever attempt to move an organ on your own. No matter how strong or physically capable you may be, there is too much risk involved in an organ move for you to attempt to do it yourself without risking damage to the instrument or injury to yourself. So, your best bet is to gather as many people as you can to help you on moving day. Ask around and try to have at least four or five of your most capable friends, family members or neighbors present to help you out with the move.

When you're planning and preparing for how to best move your organ, remember to take into consideration all of the factors that make large items so difficult to move, like their weight, their size and their overall cumbersome design. For example, an organ can sometimes weigh up to a few hundred pounds and, depending on how big the instrument is, can be at least a few feet in height, making it extremely difficult for just one or two people to be able to get enough leverage to attempt moving it on their own.

Getting some help for the move is especially necessary if there are stairs involved with the move. By doing so, you're risking damage to your property, as well as the house you are trying to move the organ out of, and you're also risking serious injury.

Preparing the organ for the move

Before you begin with the actual moving of the organ, you'll need to prepare it for the move by making sure that it's ready to be transported. This means that you should clear the organ of any superfluous objects or accessories that can come loose during the move and potentially fall off or break. For example, make sure that you fold down the music stand on the organ, and also remove any accessories or attachments on the top or sides of the instrument. Also move the bench away from the organ and set it aside to move separately, once you've taken care of the actual instrument.

Then, you should prepare the path of your move by clearing it of anything that can potentially get in your way while you're attempting to move the organ. Make sure to clear the area thoroughly and make sure that there are no hazards or debris on the ground that you can trip over, as well as any large pieces of furniture or moving boxes that can make maneuvering the organ more difficult than it already is.

Next, you'll need to obtain your supplies for the move. You'll need a large furniture dolly or a hand truck and a few moving blankets to use as protection for the organ to prevent damaging it or scratching it during the move. Place a thick moving blanket draped over the dolly or hand truck making sure to cover up any metal so that when the organ is placed onto it, its wooden surface won't come in contact with any metal that can potentially scratch or damage it. When you've prepared the dolly or hand truck for the organ and you've gathered all of the helping hands that you'll need to assist you with moving the organ, you're ready to begin the actual moving process.

Moving the organ

When you've prepared everything and you're ready to move the organ, the first task is to position it correctly and to get it on the hand truck or dolly that you've procured for the move. Place the dolly or hand truck as close to the organ as possible, to minimize the distance that you'll have to carry the organ before setting it down on the dolly and to also limit how high you'll have to lift it in order to be able to maneuver it. Then, have four people ready to lift the organ, with one person positioned at each corner of the organ.
  • The first step is to tilt the organ slightly to allow the two people on the left side of the organ to get a good grip on the underside of the instrument. Once they do, tilt the organ to the other side to allow the two people on the right to get enough of a grip to lift the organ carefully.

  • When lifting the organ off the ground, remember to lift using your legs and not your back. Bend at the knees and use a squatting motion to gain leverage on the organ and lift, and do not bend at the waist, as this can cause you to injure your back. Then, only lift the organ high enough to get it onto the dolly or hand truck.

  • Place the organ onto the dolly or hand truck gently, placing one end down at a time. Once it's on the dolly, wrap it in a moving blanket to protect the surface from being scratched by the dolly or the handlebars on the hand truck. Then, if needed, apply any straps to secure the organ to the dolly or hand truck and tighten them.

  • When maneuvering the organ on the hand truck, position one person at each end - one to push the dolly or hand truck and the other at the opposite end to hold onto the other and keep it stable during the move.

  • Move the organ slowly and make sure to keep it steady, with at least one hand placed on it at all times to keep it from moving. Once you've gotten it out of the house and loaded it onto the moving truck, repeat the process of lifting the organ to get it off of the hand truck and gently lower it to the ground. Then remove all padding and straps.
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on June 13, 2013

Movers.com - Moving Expert
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