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Hammond L122 Organ - How does this fit in the Hammond range?
Old 21st June 2006
Lives for gear

Thread Starter
Hammond L122 Organ - How does this fit in the Hammond range?

Considering making an offer on one of these.

Here's the stats:
Hammond Tone Wheel Organ L122
Serial number 76303
Purchased new in 1966 by a local church, carefully used and maintained before being purchased by the present owner.

I can't find much info about this model, so I'm wondering if anyone has played with one of these?
I'm into the funk, jazz, stuff so I'm looking at it for that type of use.

Is this the same as L100 with a different finish?
The obvious question is how does it compare to a B3?
What's a ballpark range one of these might be worth?
Or is it better getting a more modern keyboard type setup perhaps with a leslie type speaker for B3 type organ sounds?

Old 21st June 2006
Lives for gear
ImJohn's Avatar
I'm late for work so real quick :

I just bought a Hammond M-111 for $200. I probably paid too much but I got it working after a good oiling and some TLC.

The M-100 and L-100 series are very similar and are the smaller 'spinet' sized Hammonds. Keith Emerson likes to beat up his L-100 on stage and a M-100 was used on Procol Harum's Whiter Shade Of Pale. They have shorter keyboards than the C3 and B3 (they don't go as low) and they don't have 'foldback' which give the C3 and B3 a fuller sound in the higher octaves.

The last 2 digits in a L-1xx or M-1xx just refer to the cabinet style

Here are some links to read : (good place to get oil, parts and advice)
Old 21st June 2006
Lives for gear
Kingtone's Avatar

John basically covered it.
i had an L100 years ago... not bad for a 'Portable' hammond... still a bit of a lift... would you believe i used to get it in and out of my van on my own...
not a bad sound... but is nothing without a proper leslie hooked up. Unless the particular model has been modded... im pretty sure they didnt normally have a leslie hookup on it. I had to get mine modded. didnt cost much. i only paid $50 AUD for mine.. then spent $100 on getting some new caps and an overhaul... so all in all.. well worth the money for a great authentic hammond sound.
hope this helps...
Old 22nd June 2006
Lives for gear
ImJohn's Avatar
Hi Kingtone,

On my M-111 it's plauged with random bursts of noise/static. (out of the onboard amp/speakers) I think I read that this can be common but i have not seen what the remedy is yet. Replace caps? Replace tubes? Just clean the cobwebs/spiders out of it?

Thanks for any advice!
Old 22nd June 2006
Lives for gear
Kingtone's Avatar

not sure really... im not so much a tech as a player. do you have a local valve guru around near where you live? is well worth getting them to have a look... cos they will fix any problems and tweak it to sound best.

the problem i had with my L100 was the motor caps... and some other little bits. it just hummed REAl loud whenever it turned on... and the motor wouldnt go. but no random noise etc....

sorry cant help you any further than that
Old 22nd June 2006
Lives for gear

$ .02

unfortunayely ive had to work on a lot of these type in addition to fewer keys you'll notice it doesn't have as many stopps either... so wont have the extension one would get from a b3pops and crackles can often be tube related... and a good guitar amp guy can easily handle it if thats all... the real problem is in the vibrato scanner/gennerator/keyswitches... if the scanner works great if it doesnt you may be ****ed as not many guys have the knowledge to do much less the parts.... if the vibratos out pm me and maybe i can recommend someone... the genneratorif its moving your halfway there.... remember to oil religously...2-3 times/year if its not spinning...then usually one of two problems bad motors/starting cap somepeople are still rebuilding motors and the caps are rare but available... if on the otherhand it could be frozen and its not easy to breakloose...gotta remove the start motorgrab the bar gingerly and twist... dont want to marr the end of the bar...also you can use wd40 to help break loose BUT not alot and add lots of the hammond stuff afterward as wd40 will burn it up in the long run.... as for keyswitches last time i checked they were available but beleive me you dont want to replace them.... serious pain in the ass even IF YOU KNOW WHAT YOUR DOING.... clear??? on the otherhand you can try to clean them alittle... which requires one oragetan and or a long screwdriver/flashlight.... if while standing at the back you look down the right side (i think its the right) youll see a large screw that seems to be alone...not obviously part of holding down something / doesnt have a mate on the othersideso while you hold down the keys... the oragetan turns the screw back and forth there by burnishing the switches against the busbar... and also as i think was mentioned eark\lier by someone it will require a kit to link to a leslie.... class dismissed .... "there will be a test on thursday"
Old 22nd June 2006
Gear Maniac
Try to stay away from L100s. Way less reliable than a B3 / C3, very different sound (in a bad manner), no foldback, no that cool vibrato, no good preamp, less keys, bass keybord is crap, less features, etc......

Of course, it is cheap.
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