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#1242246 - 08/02/09 07:44 PM Crack between inner and outer rim after moving  
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SeilerFan Offline
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I recently moved my 11 year old Seiler Mod. 240 from Germany to the U.S. Some of you might have read my threads in the general piano forum. Together with my technician, I went over the piano after delivery and discovered that the outer rim had separated from the inner rim from a bit after the keybed all the way almost to the hind leg. I am posting photos that hopefully show the problem more clearly.
My technician advises me to have this glued. I agree with him but was curious what you have to say about that. When I shine a bright light from the top through the rim, little cracks of light are visible from underneath. The rift is about 1mm wide at its widest. The outer rim is not "loose" in the sense of my being able to move it. It still rests very firm in place. However, when I push it against the inner rim where the crack is, it moves ever so slightly, maybe a fraction of a millimeter. The other straight side (where the lid is attached) is completely fine. No cracks at all there. Also, the outer rim is very firm around the key bed. The piano sounds as always and has not suffered damage that would be visible or audible otherwise. It sounds wonderful and the soundboard which I meticulously searched is in great shape.

The movers in Germany got my grand out on a crane hanging from its beams upside down. I assume that during that period, the outer rim must have received some pressure that caused it to separate. The crate in which it was delivered in the U.S. was in perfect shape and there was no pressure on that side on the piano when we opened it. I strongly assume that the crack must have happened when it was craned.

Your expert thoughts are very much appreciated!

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]


When I shine a light from above, the crack is visible as it lets through some light:
[Linked Image]

Last edited by SeilerFan; 08/02/09 08:18 PM.
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#1242253 - 08/02/09 08:01 PM Re: Crack between inner and outer rim after moving [Re: SeilerFan]  
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Jim Berna Offline
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I would very seriously think of having the rim reglued! The tension of a piano in tune is great, and you really do not want any rim separations in it! See if you can find a rebuilder of fine pianos who would undertake this project!


Nothin like a Good Piano!

Jim Berna
Tuner-Technician
#1242259 - 08/02/09 08:20 PM Re: Crack between inner and outer rim after moving [Re: Jim Berna]  
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Jeff Clef Offline
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I'm so sorry about this, SeilerFan. You sound remarkably calm; I think it would shake my nerves up some. I guess you'll be contacting the maker to see what they have to say about it. And I would think the crane guys' insurance carrier will be part of the picture.

Does re-glueing the inner rim to the outer mean that the whole instrument will have to be torn down and rebuilt, or is it an easier process than that? I have never heard of a piano being damaged in this way.

I wish you the best of luck with it.


Clef

#1242266 - 08/02/09 08:37 PM Re: Crack between inner and outer rim after moving [Re: Jeff Clef]  
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SeilerFan Offline
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I have been told by my technician that epoxy could be applied in between the crack and then clamps would be used to glue it back into place. He thinks that it's not necessary to tear down the instrument. I will not have it torn down. It would break my heart.

I notified Kraus und Pabst. I have insurance on it that I purchased through them. I am just curious what reason they will "think up" to reject my claim (sorry about my generally negative attitude towards insurance. You pay lots of money for it and when you need it they usually are good at not helping you).

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#1242271 - 08/02/09 08:51 PM Re: Crack between inner and outer rim after moving [Re: SeilerFan]  
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Sam Casey Offline
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You are certain it was not like this before moving? Seems like odd moving damage.

#1242276 - 08/02/09 09:02 PM Re: Crack between inner and outer rim after moving [Re: Sam Casey]  
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SeilerFan Offline
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Originally Posted by Sam Casey
You are certain it was not like this before moving? Seems like odd moving damage.


Hi Sam, I am very certain as I inspected the piano thoroughly before having it moved. I would not have missed this crack. I instantly saw the crack after the piano had been set up when I crawled under it to check it out.

#1242328 - 08/02/09 10:22 PM Re: Crack between inner and outer rim after moving [Re: SeilerFan]  
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BDB Offline
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It looks like outer and inner rim separation to me. That is probably due to changes in humidity, such as might be encountered in a move from one climate to another. If shock had anything to do with it, it is likely to have just exacerbated a latent condition. The bond could have been weak even when it was glued in the factory.

Fortunately, it is mostly cosmetic. The outer rim is only a minor contributer to the strength of the piano. Unless it buzzes, it should not be a problem. A gap-filling adhesive should take care of it.


Semipro Tech
#1242331 - 08/02/09 10:26 PM Re: Crack between inner and outer rim after moving [Re: BDB]  
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Gregl Offline
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You can see the moving pics in the piano forum, and get good advise here...Good Luck S.F

#1242452 - 08/03/09 07:30 AM Re: Crack between inner and outer rim after moving [Re: Gregl]  
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SophieM Offline
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I'm sorry to hear about this, SeilerFan, I hope it gets fixed properly. I felt a cringe when I saw your post! eek

#1242549 - 08/03/09 10:37 AM Re: Crack between inner and outer rim after moving [Re: BDB]  
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SeilerFan Offline
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Originally Posted by BDB
It looks like outer and inner rim separation to me. That is probably due to changes in humidity, such as might be encountered in a move from one climate to another. If shock had anything to do with it, it is likely to have just exacerbated a latent condition. The bond could have been weak even when it was glued in the factory.

Fortunately, it is mostly cosmetic. The outer rim is only a minor contributer to the strength of the piano. Unless it buzzes, it should not be a problem. A gap-filling adhesive should take care of it.


Good ideas. However, I think the outer rim also serves as a tone and energy collector of sorts, supporting the overall tonal projection of the instrument. A strong connection between the rims seems to be necessary to fulfill that function.

You might be right that there might have been a latent crack before. Who knows? Nobody will ever know. I could have sworn, though, that this crack was not present before I had the piano craned a month ago.
I'll be in touch with the factory to find out what they say.

I'll defnitely will have the adhesive applied.

#1242684 - 08/03/09 01:56 PM Re: Crack between inner and outer rim after moving [Re: SeilerFan]  
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David-G Offline
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I am very sorry to hear this, and I hope it works out for you. I would definitely contact Seiler. Ask them if they feel that this matters, and what solution they would recommend. If this might have been due to some latent problem previously present, perhaps they might support you in some way even if it is (presumably) out of guarantee? I would definitely wait to apply adhesive until you have discussed the matter with Seiler. And if you are going to have something done, make enquiries as to the very best person to do it. I wish you the best of luck.

#1242737 - 08/03/09 03:22 PM Re: Crack between inner and outer rim after moving [Re: David-G]  
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Rod Verhnjak Offline
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I have repaired this type of separation more than a few times.
Generally it is cause by moisture related changes, but not always. I could see the weight on the struts causing unwanted stress and causing trouble. No one can say for sure.

I repaired one 3 weeks ago, and the piano was 2 years old, it was always in our area except from it coming from a factory in ?
I repaired it for a local dealer after the owner noticed it. I was paid by the factory under warranty

What I do if take off the lid, flip the piano, and fill the void with epoxy.
I do not clamp it, as epoxy is a better gap filler than a bonder.
Although it does bond very well.

It can then be scraped, sander and painted once it is cured.

If light is passing through, that does complicate things.
The person doing the job will need to mask off or use a removable putty on the top side before flipping the piano. Otherwise you run the risk of a big mess.

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]






Verhnjak Pianos
Specializing in the Restoration, Refinishing & Maintenance
of Fine Heirloom Pianos

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#1242763 - 08/03/09 03:52 PM Re: Crack between inner and outer rim after moving [Re: Rod Verhnjak]  
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Rod Verhnjak Offline
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Interesting side note.

Notice how far the struts on your piano are into the rim compared to the ones I posted.


Verhnjak Pianos
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of Fine Heirloom Pianos

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#1242799 - 08/03/09 04:40 PM Re: Crack between inner and outer rim after moving [Re: Rod Verhnjak]  
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Del Offline
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Rim separation is usually traceable to a less than perfect glue joint between the inner and outer rims. It is more common between inner and outer rims that are pressed simultaneously—that is, in one operation on one offset press. It can occur between inner and outer rims that are pressed and fitted separately, but it does not seem to be as common.

Sometimes the glue is left open to long and skins over before the two rims are brought together. Or the two rims are not perfectly mated and a good, tight joint is never formed. Whatever the cause the joint can look just fine for years and then open up. There is usually some catalyst leading to the joints ultimate failure—some kind of climate change, a shock during moving, etc.

Rim separations are rarely a serious structural or tonal problem. They should be repaired, of course, but after a competent repair the piano will be as good as new.

The suggestion is made to tip the piano over and fill the void with epoxy. Ordinarily I would concur. In this case, however, I’d want to take another step first. Since the opening goes all the way from the top of the inner rim to the bottom filling the void with epoxy with the piano tipped over will allow epoxy to drizzle down along the inside surface of the outer rim. Unsightly, to say the least. As a first step the technician should take steps to seal off the opening along the top edge of the inner rim. This can be done by running a bead of thickened epoxy along the top edge of the inner rim using a plastic glue syringe. Once the top edge of this joint is filled than I’d flip the piano and fill the joint with epoxy.

You’ll want to be careful in you’re attempts to clamp the rim tight. It’s pretty easy to dent these highly polished polyester surfaces. I’d try to draw them together some but I’d not worry if I couldn’t get them fully joined. Epoxies are excellent gap fillers and is strong enough to hold the two together even with a significant gap.

ddf


Delwin D Fandrich
Piano Research, Design & Manufacturing Consultant
ddfandrich@gmail.com
(To contact me privately please use this e-mail address.)

Stupidity is a rare condition, ignorance is a common choice. --Anon
#1242848 - 08/03/09 06:16 PM Re: Crack between inner and outer rim after moving [Re: Del]  
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Rod Verhnjak Offline
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Originally Posted by Del


The suggestion is made to tip the piano over and fill the void with epoxy. Ordinarily I would concur. In this case, however, I’d want to take another step first. Since the opening goes all the way from the top of the inner rim to the bottom filling the void with epoxy with the piano tipped over will allow epoxy to drizzle down along the inside surface of the outer rim. Unsightly, to say the least. As a first step the technician should take steps to seal off the opening along the top edge of the inner rim. This can be done by running a bead of thickened epoxy along the top edge of the inner rim using a plastic glue syringe. Once the top edge of this joint is filled than I’d flip the piano and fill the joint with epoxy.

ddf



Agreed this is what I meant in my previous post. Your just a far better communicator grin

If light is passing through, that does complicate things.
The person doing the job will need to mask off or use a removable putty on the top side before flipping the piano. Otherwise you run the risk of a big mess.


I have used strip putty sold for trailer seams. It comes in a roll and it packs very nicely. Once the epoxy cures you can remove the putty. I use it as a epoxy stop when needed.

The thick epoxy Del mentioned also works quite well.


Verhnjak Pianos
Specializing in the Restoration, Refinishing & Maintenance
of Fine Heirloom Pianos

www.pianoman.ca
Verhnjak Pianos Facebook

#1242866 - 08/03/09 06:51 PM Re: Crack between inner and outer rim after moving [Re: Rod Verhnjak]  
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SeilerFan Offline
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Thanks so much Rod and Delwin for your great advice. I appreciate your taking the time to respond to this more than you can imagine!!!

I heaved a big sigh of relief as I was a bit scared when I discovered this. I love this instrument so much. It sings and speaks to me. I am glad that it can be repaired in a process that is not too complicated and does not endanger the integrity of the instrument.

Rod, with respect to the Seiler underbelly - inner rim brace construction, it seems to be built like a tank. It's pretty beefy. I always wondered if there is a substantial difference between the radial braces and the ones on my piano? I would assume not really, but I was wondering how these companies come up with different designs. What make is the piano in your picture?

Last edited by SeilerFan; 08/03/09 06:53 PM.
#1242887 - 08/03/09 07:18 PM Re: Crack between inner and outer rim after moving [Re: Rod Verhnjak]  
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Del Offline
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Olympia, Washington
Originally Posted by Rod Verhnjak
Originally Posted by Del


The suggestion is made to tip the piano over and fill the void with epoxy. Ordinarily I would concur. In this case, however, I’d want to take another step first. Since the opening goes all the way from the top of the inner rim to the bottom filling the void with epoxy with the piano tipped over will allow epoxy to drizzle down along the inside surface of the outer rim. Unsightly, to say the least. As a first step the technician should take steps to seal off the opening along the top edge of the inner rim. This can be done by running a bead of thickened epoxy along the top edge of the inner rim using a plastic glue syringe. Once the top edge of this joint is filled than I’d flip the piano and fill the joint with epoxy.

ddf
Agreed this is what I meant in my previous post. Your just a far better communicator grin


It's called experience, Rod. (And you don't need to ask...)

Quote
"If light is passing through, that does complicate things.
The person doing the job will need to mask off or use a removable putty on the top side before flipping the piano. Otherwise you run the risk of a big mess."


I have used strip putty sold for trailer seams. It comes in a roll and it packs very nicely. Once the epoxy cures you can remove the putty. I use it as a epoxy stop when needed.

The thick epoxy Del mentioned also works quite well.


If this piano is typical of Seiler there won't be much room between the edge of the plate and the inside of the inner rim. But it's worth a try.

ddf


Delwin D Fandrich
Piano Research, Design & Manufacturing Consultant
ddfandrich@gmail.com
(To contact me privately please use this e-mail address.)

Stupidity is a rare condition, ignorance is a common choice. --Anon
#1242913 - 08/03/09 07:53 PM Re: Crack between inner and outer rim after moving [Re: Del]  
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Just make sure, as you can see daylight from the bottom, that the glue does not drip and mess up your floor.


Semipro Tech
#1243430 - 08/04/09 02:47 PM Re: Crack between inner and outer rim after moving [Re: BDB]  
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Sorry to read of your problem with the rim. I was fearful when I saw your delivery photos. I have never seen a grand slung from the supports underneath. In every crane job I have worked the piano was slung upright or on its long side on a grand board. IMO the separation is due to stresses in the instrument that were never engineered for.

You have received excellent advise on the fix. I am confident that all will be well down the road.


Co-Author of The Complete Idiot's Guide To Buying A Piano. A "must read" before you shop.
Work for west coast dealer for Yamaha, Schimmel, Bosendorfer, Wm. Knabe.

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