The effect of tuning slots on the sound characteristics of labial organ pipes is investigated in this paper by means of laboratory experiments. Besides changing the pitch of the pipe, the tuning slot also plays an important role in forming the timbre. The objectives of this contribution are to document the influence of tuning slots built with different geometries on the pipe sound and to validate the observed tendencies by means of reproducible experiments. It is found that the measured steady state sound spectra show unique characteristics, typical only for tuning slot organ pipes. By separately adjusting the geometrical parameters of the tuning slots on experimental pipes, the impact of each scaling parameter on the steady state spectrum is determined. It is shown that the scaling procedures used currently in organ building practice do not provide sufficient control over the sound characteristics, leaving the capabilities provided by the tuning slot unexploited. Subjective comparison made by organ builders of sound recordings of various setups confirms that the observed sound quality of tuning slot pipes is strongly dependent on the scaling of the slot.

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