World’s First Harmonic Bell, 1999/2000

Hasell and McLachlan harmonic bell.jpg

Dublin Core


World’s First Harmonic Bell, 1999/2000


This is the world’s first harmonic bell ever made. The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra has a two-octave set of these bells that were produced for Australia’s Centenary of Federation celebrations in 2001 by Australian Bell Pty Ltd.
The bell was cast in silicon bronze using modern resin sand casting techniques. The inside and outside profiles were formed in a sand mould by rotating laser cut steel profiles on turntables. This prototype is exactly as cast without any further tuning. It has the first seven frequencies in a harmonic series and is about one semitone sharper than the expected pitch of A3 (220 Hz).

For further information, see N. McLachlan, A. Hasell, et al. (2003). The Design of Bells with Harmonic Overtones. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 114 (1), p.505-511.




On loan from Neil McLachlan