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Re: let off regulation [Re: Ron Alexander] #1167260
03/23/09 11:58 AM
03/23/09 11:58 AM
Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 147
Switzerland
I
insanity Offline OP
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Switzerland
I'm still awaiting the answer from Steinway. May someone here can answer some questions.

It is about raising or lowering the capstan the regulate hammer travel and aftertouch.
1. Is the goal of rising and lowering the capstan to get all hammers prefectely in line or is it more important to get exactely the same amount of aftertouch on every key?
2. Supposing all other adjustments of the action are in order. Should the key be lined up perfectly when aftertouch is set equal on all keys (I guess it should - and therefore if it is not possible, other adjustments like letoff or keydip need to be made?)
3. What would the positive or negative effects be, if the capstan were raised a bit higher than normal? Of course aftertouch would increase - but else?
4. Is aftertouch just a matter of personal preference? (within certain limits)?
5. Somewhere I read that increasing capstan height, and therefore reducing the hammer blow distance, would be useful to make a loud piano a little quieter. At the cost of increased aftertouch. Would anyone recommend this or should one focus on voicing the hammers a bit less powerful?

Thanks


Hamburg Steinway B
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Re: let off regulation [Re: insanity] #1167315
03/23/09 02:00 PM
03/23/09 02:00 PM
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 504
Brooklyn, NY
Z
Zeno Wood Offline
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Z

Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 504
Brooklyn, NY
If you're trying to figure out the interaction between all these different regulation adjustments, the best thing to do is get yourself a grand action model. Then get the Reblitz book, like Larry said, and go crazy. What's nice about an action model is that everything is a lot more visible and accessible, and you don't have to pull/push the whole keyboard around each time you want to change something.

Good luck, and have fun.


Zeno Wood, Piano Technician
Brooklyn College
Re: let off regulation [Re: Zeno Wood] #1167325
03/23/09 02:19 PM
03/23/09 02:19 PM
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 27,116
Oakland
B
BDB Offline
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Posts: 27,116
Oakland
It is futile to try to understand how an action works without looking at one. It is foolish to try to modify an action from the published specifications until one has set enough of them to those specifications and understands the relationship between the all the parts and their adjustments.

This is like trying to learn to cut gems and starting with a flawless 5 carat diamond.


Semipro Tech
Re: let off regulation [Re: BDB] #1167336
03/23/09 02:30 PM
03/23/09 02:30 PM
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 504
Brooklyn, NY
Z
Zeno Wood Offline
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Brooklyn, NY
An action model will also allow you to mess around and still have your Hamburg Steinway in playing condition...


Zeno Wood, Piano Technician
Brooklyn College
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Re: let off regulation [Re: Zeno Wood] #1167401
03/23/09 04:27 PM
03/23/09 04:27 PM
Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 147
Switzerland
I
insanity Offline OP
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insanity  Offline OP
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Joined: Oct 2006
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Switzerland
I really appreciate your concern of my Steinway not being in playable condition after me touching it smile

My action model is one key of my Piano. Lowest or highest... never used anyway.

Yesterday I spend a lot of time experimenting. IMHO best way to learn is if you can feel how it feels if something is wrong.
Due to these experiments I am now fully aware what letoff actually is.
I think my questions above show that. I have also read a long post of Bill Bremer about regulation.
Therefore I would really be grateful if someone expressed their thoughts - especially about 4. and 5.


Hamburg Steinway B
Re: let off regulation [Re: insanity] #1167460
03/23/09 06:02 PM
03/23/09 06:02 PM
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 3,219
Olympia, WA
rysowers Offline
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Posts: 3,219
Olympia, WA
Item 4: Yes. Some artists prefer minimal and others more. As Jerry mentioned earlier, the upper limit is going to be when the top of the jack touches the felt in the repetition lever window.

Item 5: If you want to make the piano a little quieter by raising the hammer line, do it by placing some thin felt under the thick felt that the back of the keys rest on. This will raise the hammers while at the same time lowering the key dip. This means you will end up with the same aftertouch.


Ryan Sowers,
Pianova Piano Service
Olympia, WA
www.pianova.net
Re: let off regulation [Re: insanity] #1167471
03/23/09 06:14 PM
03/23/09 06:14 PM
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 27,116
Oakland
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BDB Offline
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Quote
I have also read a long post of Bill Bremer about regulation.
Good. Now forget everything in his post, and get a copy of Steinway's CD, or something similar.

Quote
Therefore I would really be grateful if someone expressed their thoughts...
My thoughts are that if you have to ask questions like these, if you do not understand the value of experience, you should not be fooling around with this.


Semipro Tech
Re: let off regulation [Re: BDB] #1167606
03/23/09 10:32 PM
03/23/09 10:32 PM
Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 88
Ohio
W
wesquire Offline
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Posts: 88
Ohio

"Indeed I have a very good technician (who I found through this forum). But I wont see him until the next tuning appointment which is in half a year or so."


Why wait for your next tuning visit from your tech? Call him/her and ask for an evaluation of your action regulation against S&S spefications. If you want a different feel-touch-sound-etc-etc perhaps they can take care of your needs.

The care and feeding of a Hamburg "B" should not be in untrained hands.

Just my 48 years of $.02 opinions!


Retired industry professional.
Re: let off regulation [Re: wesquire] #1167649
03/23/09 11:51 PM
03/23/09 11:51 PM
Joined: May 2007
Posts: 1,645
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Dave Stahl Offline
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I agree with Wesquire. I don't want to discourage you from experimenting with the action, but the fact is, a visit from your tech will accomplish a couple of things: first, you'll be guaranteed will be done right. Second, you'll be able to watch a skilled technician (I'm assuming this is the case), and hopefully ask questions about what he's doing. You have far more to gain than to lose from this approach. Give him a call. Most techs like getting a break from tuning from time to time.


Promote Harmony in the Universe...Tune your piano!

Dave Stahl, RPT
Piano Technician's Guild
San Jose, CA
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JAniw3m7L2I
http://dstahlpiano.net
Re: let off regulation [Re: Dave Stahl] #1450729
06/05/10 10:36 AM
06/05/10 10:36 AM
Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 201
Sweden
J
jinorden Offline
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jinorden  Offline
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Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 201
Sweden
Hi Insanity,
It can be done.
' I get what you say. I'm a pianist, and also want to control the way my piano responds. Don't want to explain what I want in difuse metaphores, get something else, pay a lot, and get the ''that's all you can get from this piano unless you want to replace parts, and pay me even more.
But you need a lot of time, and some homemade tools, concentration and going slowly, it's easy to cause damage when regulating, as it's tight, and while turning one thing with a wire rod, you can bend or break something else around. The same with taking out the action, easy to break hammers by pressing keys inadvertently while dragging it out of the piano. Or trip while carrying it to a table, because of that stupid shoe or pencil you forgot on the floor.
I had a tech regulate my Steinway. Payed 1100 dollars worth of swedish crowns, and I got back my Hamburg O 1929 with keys resting on cushions in lower region, many keys no drop at all, so I could press upwards, but hammer would never fall back. Strike distance 50-51 mm. The jacks were aligned wrong, too backwards, away from the hammer, so the line that should be aligned with side of the knuckle core was 1 mm before the other side of the core. Jack tip sometimes lower than rep lever, as it should, sometimes not. Hammer line looked like small waves on a lake. My opinion, he did nothing, just filed and needled hammers to change the sound, so I get the impression work was done on the instrument.
So much for SOME techs.
The reason I was not happy with the action was, too light, uneaven, hard to control, an overall feeling that something or everything is wrong. The sound was ok, not amazing, but good.
What I did was to read on internet everything I could about regulation, and it's not easy to find, as all keywords return millions of adds, but very little usefull information. Everybody sells something, very few want to share. Bad for business, I pay more gladly to someone who I perceive as generous. Maybe an european thing, I don't know.
Anyway, I for one will never hire anyone to do anything on my piano. You know why? Cause now I know that a real regulation, voicing job can't be bought. If someone would really put the time and care to do it right, would cost a fortune. Probably 3-4 times more than normal or average price. So that's why someone with great experience, would go fast throu the motions, get it as playable as possible in the acceptable timeframe, get the money and off to the next job. Which is as it should be, no one can expect to get more than what they pay for, and you can't pay a real regulation. Unless you're Horowitz, or Gould, and you practically own the guy.
I read and read, and I got Reblitz, and another one by a german, and after 2 months of documentation I got the action out. It's when I discovered what was ''done'' on my piano.
I feel that I still don't know anything about it, but I know enough to not do any damage. Everything I did is in the second section from the left, and it's 100 times better.
This is what I did:
first I I raised the hammers by adjusting capstans, to 44,5 mm. Later, adjusting the jacks so they would be lower than the balance rail, I saw it affects the hammer line, so I redone the capstan regulation. By this, the shanks were not on the cushions anymore but 6-7 mm higher.
Next, I put the let off to 1 mm or a tiny bit more.
Next, the drop, another 1,5 mm. This made some hammers to doublestrike. I lowered drop, and it didn't anymore.
Last, I adjusted the jacks in the right line with knuckles. I discovered that because of wear of the leather, it works better repetitionwise if it's not exactly on, like in the books, but a bit off, don't remember in what direction. I did it by going 1/8 turn in different directions until I got the best repetition.
Now, there are things I took for granted, or I checked summarily.
1. Keydip. It's 10mm, and I don't bother with it. For now.
2. Weigh of keys. It's what it is, I didn't change parts, so it shouldn't change
3. Springs. Not to temper with,especially if they are the type without a tension regulating screw.
4. Pins, felts etc. Some wear is compensated through adjustments, the rest is the
way it is, I'm not renovating the thing.
4. Geometry (when replacing parts etc), bedding the action, dampers, all this and much more, over the head of me and other amateurs. Could try some, but it will take a month each, and the results, probably an unplayable instrument.
5.
6. .....
All this I take for granted, and I just work with capstans for strike distance, let off, drop, jack alignment and position in the window.

Another thing I didn't try, as it's not needed, is the backchecks. It works, same levels of checking, and the springs push back after slight release. After I finish regulating whole piano, I'll look closer at this.
VOICING Don't even dream of it. That's rocket science. Not even some ''experienced techs'' know much about it. It's not my intention to offend anyone on this forum, as I know nothing about any particular ones work. Each and everyone could be one of the best in the world. I'm speaking generally, of the thousands of local techs in each little town (or big), doing some work on the local church's piano, and even those employed of piano dealers, to maintain and repair their stocks.
I listened to some so called beautiful pianos for sale, renovated or restored to ''original condition'' . Some, many, sound awful. Wouldn't buy!
Been in showrooms with overhauled pianos that are so poor that I wouldn't pay half price. And so on, and so on.

Re: let off regulation [Re: jinorden] #1450732
06/05/10 10:41 AM
06/05/10 10:41 AM
Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 201
Sweden
J
jinorden Offline
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jinorden  Offline
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J

Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 201
Sweden
Sorry for long post.

Re: let off regulation [Re: jinorden] #1450748
06/05/10 11:14 AM
06/05/10 11:14 AM
Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 147
Switzerland
I
insanity Offline OP
Full Member
insanity  Offline OP
Full Member
I

Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 147
Switzerland
Thanks for you post. I also regulated my piano myself. I also got e book before I went to work. And atm it's already much better, but I guess its a gradual thing.


Hamburg Steinway B
Re: let off regulation [Re: jinorden] #1450751
06/05/10 11:18 AM
06/05/10 11:18 AM
Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 201
Sweden
J
jinorden Offline
Full Member
jinorden  Offline
Full Member
J

Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 201
Sweden
Hi hi, didn't see it's one year ago. So what happened?

Re: let off regulation [Re: jinorden] #1450755
06/05/10 11:22 AM
06/05/10 11:22 AM
Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 201
Sweden
J
jinorden Offline
Full Member
jinorden  Offline
Full Member
J

Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 201
Sweden
Allright. Great. I tune it myself too, and it turns out very good. With a software.

Re: let off regulation [Re: jinorden] #1451203
06/06/10 02:30 AM
06/06/10 02:30 AM
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 2,758
Mexico City
Gadzar Offline
2000 Post Club Member
Gadzar  Offline
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Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 2,758
Mexico City
ArenĀ“t there good piano technicians in Switzerland neither in Sweden?

Even here in Mexico, with some patience, one can find decent technicians who make decent regulations at decents prices!

And I am not talking only about me, there are 500 technicians in the hole country, and I bet that 10% of them, including me, do regulation jobs.

I can not understand how someone unexperienced can even think to tinker with such a fine instrument like a Steinway B. shocked

Of course there are bad technicians who make terrible things to our beloved pianos, the trick is to be carefull to avoid hiring them. The best way is to go by referals of other pianists who had their pianos repaired and are happy with the results.

About tuning your own piano with "very good" results...

I think you would be much more demanding and exacting when you hire a tech than with yourself.

It takes several hundrets of tuned pianos before you can say you can correctly tune a piano. Some say 500, others only 200.

But the truth is that it won't be by tuning your own piano that you will learn to tune.


Rafael Melo
Piano Technician
rafaelmelo@afinacionpianos.com.mx

Serving Mexico City and suburbs.

http://www.afinacionpianos.com.mx
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