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#1939879 - 08/09/12 01:57 PM Single String vs Loop String assembly  
Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 86
bajabill Offline
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bajabill  Offline
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Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 86
mid USA
What are the pros and cons of these build features? I would think the single string is a better design, but what does the hundreds of years of piano service say. I assume since both are still in use, both are acceptable, and both can be done poorly.

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#1939898 - 08/09/12 02:50 PM Re: Single String vs Loop String assembly [Re: bajabill]  
Joined: Jun 2011
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Johnkie Offline
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Johnkie  Offline
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England
Single strings are a great deal more work to fit but they do look nice. A drawback to strings with individual "eyes" is a longer time to settle tuning wise unless greater attention is paid during fitting and subsequent bedding in.

Loops on the other hand are just as good, quicker to fit and take less effort to bed-in through not having to ensure tight coils at the hitch-pin ends.

So .... as far as performance is concerned .... there is no difference once the steel has been bedded in and the initial stretching period has passed on either method.

Your assumption that both methods can be done poorly is quite correct - unless done properly either method will suffer from tuning stability problems wink


Concert Tuner & Technician for the past 49 years in the United Kingdom
and Member of the Pianoforte Tuners' Association (London)
www.jphillipspianoservices.freeindex.co.uk : E-mail jophillips06@aol.com
#1939900 - 08/09/12 02:51 PM Re: Single String vs Loop String assembly [Re: bajabill]  
Joined: May 2001
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Rich Galassini Online content
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Rich Galassini  Online Content
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Philadelphia/South Jersey
Dear Baja,

The single stringing technique was used originally because the more delicate strings in the early days of piano were morelikely to snap under ther fingers of pianists - like Liszt. If one "single strung string" snapped a recital could still go on.

Also, it has been said that a "looped" string that was being used for two different notes could be somewhat unbalanced in tension and the tone and/or tuning could be somewhat less stable. This is not something that I personally feel is at all significant.

Both styles of stringing are acceptable and looped stringing is so much easier to do well and neatly.


Rich Galassini
Cunningham Piano Co.
Phila, Pa.
(215) 991-0834 direct line
rich@cunninghampiano.com
Check out the Science Channel's "How Its Made" featuring our piano restoration:
http://www.cunninghampiano.com/how-its-made/
#1939971 - 08/09/12 05:16 PM Re: Single String vs Loop String assembly [Re: bajabill]  
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bajabill Offline
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bajabill  Offline
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Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 86
mid USA
My initial concern with the loop design was the different tension loads on either side of the pin.

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#1939975 - 08/09/12 05:25 PM Re: Single String vs Loop String assembly [Re: bajabill]  
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Pianolance Offline
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Pianolance  Offline
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Nashville, TN
Originally Posted by bajabill
My initial concern with the loop design was the different tension loads on either side of the pin.


I've always wondered that myself, however, more than a century of modern piano manufacturing would seem to indicate that it really isn't much of a problem.


Knabe 5'2" Louis XV Walnut circa 1927
Very part time piano broker.
#1940047 - 08/09/12 08:16 PM Re: Single String vs Loop String assembly [Re: bajabill]  
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Silverwood Pianos Offline
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Silverwood Pianos  Offline
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Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 4,263
Vancouver B. C. Canada

The German loop often used in single loop stringing can be significantly weaker and prone to breakage if not installed correctly.

I find a piano with single loop stringing to have more stability season to season.

I expect that the pin being referred to is the hitch pin? I don’t believe there is load on one side of the pin. The way in which the loop is manufactured and how it tightens against itself causes load on both sides.

Here is a photo set of loop stringing. Photo number 12 of this photo set shows a loop made improperly on purpose. When made and installed properly, as the string is tightened, the right side tries to straighten up against the resistance of the loop on the left side creating equal load on the pin.
On the right side of each photo there is text to be read by left clicking on the word “more”

Happy viewing…

Blüthner Aliquot Tour


Dan Silverwood
www.silverwoodpianos.com
http://silverwoodpianos.blogspot.com/
http://www.facebook.com/SilverwoodPianosDotCom
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."
#1940053 - 08/09/12 08:35 PM Re: Single String vs Loop String assembly [Re: Silverwood Pianos]  
Joined: Dec 2011
Posts: 149
ventil Offline
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ventil  Offline
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TX
Thanks, Dan. Very informative.


David M. Boothe, CAS
#1940130 - 08/10/12 12:53 AM Re: Single String vs Loop String assembly [Re: Silverwood Pianos]  
Joined: Apr 2006
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OperaTenor Offline
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OperaTenor  Offline
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Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,556
Sandy Eggo, California
Originally Posted by Silverwood Pianos

The German loop often used in single loop stringing can be significantly weaker and prone to breakage if not installed correctly.


YES!!!! But I don't even think it's necessarily a quality issue.

I tune the pianos for a dueling piano bar here in San Diego. Until recently, their pianos were a pair of Kohler & Campbell baby grands with German-looped strings. They broke an average of four per week, so i got really good at making German loops.

Every time you kink a piece of piano wire, it becomes weaker. German looped strings have more kinks than loop strings, so that's why I think they break more frequently.

BTW, the new pianos are Brodmann CE 175's and while we're having problems breaking bass strings, we have yet to break a plain wire string, and they're looped.

Last edited by OperaTenor; 08/10/12 12:54 AM.

Happiness is a freshly tuned piano.
Jim Boydston, proprietor, No Piano Left Behind - technician
www.facebook.com/NoPianoLeftBehind
#1940133 - 08/10/12 01:00 AM Re: Single String vs Loop String assembly [Re: bajabill]  
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BDB Offline
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BDB  Offline
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Oakland
However, there is rarely a lot of strain at the loops. Strings just do not break there. Most pianos will break strings at the capo bar or agraffe if they break from overuse, or at the tuning pin from rust.


Semipro Tech
#1940155 - 08/10/12 03:37 AM Re: Single String vs Loop String assembly [Re: bajabill]  
Joined: Jan 2009
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beethoven986 Offline
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beethoven986  Offline
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Performance is about the same. Looped strings are much easier to work with, and in terms of factory production, they're cheaper.

#1940185 - 08/10/12 06:26 AM Re: Single String vs Loop String assembly [Re: bajabill]  
Joined: Mar 2006
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BoseEric Offline
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BoseEric  Offline
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Fairfield County, CT
Whereas individually tied strings tend to indicate higher quality, some high end makers, Steingraeber for example, do not use them.


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