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25-Dec-2016 08:23

All available information must be taken as a whole, and, combined with some general tips and observations provided below, a narrow range of probable production years can be arrived at which in many cases will be accurate enough for most people's desires.

One thing to remember in this chronological quest is these instruments were built to be played, not (in most cases) to become museum pieces.

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Your information will be placed in a holding area for review and added to the age list after acceptance.

Some of the entries on the age list show actual known production dates and can be used as markers to guage the quality of other entries around them.

Until this work is published, the Age List will continue to function more or less as it has; a quasi-definitive source of this information and a registry of Hammond and Leslie product owners.

To include a Leslie speaker or Hammond Tone Cabinet see the bottom of this page. Beginning in late 1935 and continuing to mid-1975, the archetypal instrument we think of when hearing the word "organ" was produced by the thousands.

Please include an email address so I can contact you if I have a question. With a production history covering more than forty years, determining the exact manufacturing date of tonewheel Hammonds used to be difficult; new models were not introduced every year and production changes that were made were often subtle.

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Some of the component parts of Hammonds and Leslies have EIA codes printed on them.

Tubes with "Hammond" silk screened on them typically have a code consisting of two pairs of numbers separated by a dash.

The format is YY-WW, where YY is the last two digits of the year and WW is the number of the week in that year. Many capacitors have a date code on them, but some do not.

Most of the tone generator wax and Mylar capacitors do, as well as pre- and power amplifier multi-section can electrolytic capacitors.

The code typically takes the form of YYWW, where YY is the last two digits of the production year and WW is the production week. All of the speakers in Hammond organs, Hammond Tone Cabinets and Leslie cabinets dating from 1946 forward that I have seen have production date codes stamped on them. The coding scheme is XXXYWW where XXX is the company EIA code (Jensen = 220, Rola = 285, Heppner = 575), Y is the last digit of the production year, and WW is the production week.

Thanks to the Electronics Industry Association (EIA) code conveniently placed on them by the manufacturer, many individual components can be dated to the year and week of production.