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Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Aaron Garner #2044297 03/07/13 01:26 AM
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The above is a good example how technical jargon or postering of sorts - instead of simply getting results - can confuscate an issue.

Even more treadful is the fact that a company does not seem to respond to a customer's query, something the maker here would perhaps reconsider if they'd know "who" is actually being involved....

[Kudos and respects to Aaron not having played this card wow]

The situation shows just once again that when discussing "pianos" a lot more is involved than generally meets the eye.

For us it always has been part of our own decision "who" to represent - and perhaps who "not"

We once had an action geometry problem with a Sauter 7' grand piano we couldn't solve. [or at that time didn't know "how"..]

Sauter company immediately sent us their top technician all the way from Germany to rectify the situation.

No questions asked....

Understanding that Sacramento is less of a distance here?

Norbert wink

Last edited by Norbert; 03/07/13 01:36 AM.

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Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Aaron Garner #2044602 03/07/13 04:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Aaron Garner
I'm sad to say that I need to solve the problem through the legal system which is not the best way to go in my opinion.

Aaron, in case you haven't seen my PM, I'd suggest you post recordings of some offending notes at pp to ff on the tech forum, together with some close up shots of the strings at the capo bar and the bridge. It might just help to pinpoint the problem and lead to a solution.


Ian Russell
Schiedmayer & Soehne, 1925 Model 14, 140cm
Ibach, 1905 F-IV, 235cm
Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Aaron Garner #2044615 03/07/13 04:17 PM
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What's up with M&H? You guys have got me worried. There has been no update on their website since August(or February, I never can tell with USA dates)2012. Is anybody home there? I had my new (dormant 2009 wood action) M&H delivered last summer. It had a broken A0 shank. Not fixed yet. According to my dealer, the part is still on order.

As an aside, I seem to have only one note (A#5) that has false beats (on all the strings of the triad). Can't get it to settle down. All other notes on piano have no issues.

Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Withindale #2044679 03/07/13 06:12 PM
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Ian,

How would I get a shot of the capo? I'm pretty sure I remember where it is. Would I take the action out and stick a camera under the strings? I can Google capo. By the way, pretty much all of the notes in the upper two octaves have false beating. I'll see if I can take some pictures this weekend. Their tech did check the capo and said it was fine.

Mwm, sorry you are having some issues as well. I've yet to have anyone answer an email or phone call. I know the Burgett brothers from years ago and they are really nice people so I'm surprised at how they do business. Perhaps they don't get involved until something escalates. I should reiterate that they have sent their tech guy out a number of times, but nothing has been fixed. If this were a car, I'm quite certain that most dealers would replace it if they couldn't fix it.

The dealer did call me back (amazing) and said M and H was working on it.


2013 Mason and Hamlin BB
Full-time music professor (theory) and jazz pianist
Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Aaron Garner #2044695 03/07/13 06:43 PM
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My issues are minor relative to yours. During the period that I was in the process of choosing/aquiring my piano, I communincated with Cesar R. at M&h many times. He was most helpful and instructive. I would think a replacement is in order. You would most defintely need to choose one from the floor. There appears to be a significant variability in the sound at the moment. Good luck. Keep us posted.

Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Aaron Garner #2044701 03/07/13 06:47 PM
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What PW needs is a Mason Mike - Sorta like Kawai Don, only different.


Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.
Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Aaron Garner #2044707 03/07/13 06:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Aaron Garner
How would I get a shot of the capo? I'm pretty sure I remember where it is.

I meant from above from the tuning pins to the capo and a bit beyond. Ed McMorrow wrote about string spacing earlier on. Better news from the dealer.


Ian Russell
Schiedmayer & Soehne, 1925 Model 14, 140cm
Ibach, 1905 F-IV, 235cm
Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Aaron Garner #2044808 03/07/13 09:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Aaron Garner
If this were a car, I'm quite certain that most dealers would replace it if they couldn't fix it.

The dealer did call me back (amazing) and said M and H was working on it.


Hi Aaron,

I'm sure you're upset about your piano, but I'd like to point out that a piano shouldn't be compared to a car. If you wanted to go that route--well, you bought a 2007 model in 2012, and you did 'drive it' off the lot after you'd inspected it. What would they replace it with? Another 2007? I'd think the better route for them would be to either give you a refund (probably not likely), or give you credit towards a new model with the WNG action.

Also, I'm curious: The problem with the upper two octaves only appeared to you when a tuner came and said he couldn't tune it properly, or did you notice that there was something wrong before that point? Are they really unplayable notes? Or just not as nice as the rest of the keyboard?

I too bought a MH BB last year, but it was used, and the dealer refused to give me a warranty because I'm finicky. That, and he lowered the price further than he appeared to want to. Go figure. In any case, I'm just telling you this because now that I've had my piano for 5 months of course I've found lots of little things that could bug me, BUT, without having a warranty, I find they don't really bother me as much as they could.
My last piano was as close to perfect as I could find (a Shigeru SK2), but chose character, with flaws, over it. I still question my wisdom in all this, but in the meantime I grow to appreciate the MH more everyday, warts and all.

I hope you get your issue resolved one way or another. Its not a nice feeling thinking you're in a situation you can't change.


Recordings of my recent solo piano and piano/keyboard trio jazz standards.


Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Aaron Garner #2044879 03/08/13 03:26 AM
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Scepticalforumguy,

Your point is well taken and I agree.

Like a lot of pianos in stores, the BB needed to be tuned. It wasn't horrible, but still out. Yes, I did notice it before the tuner came, but I assumed that after it settled into my house after a few tunings it would be fine. The upper two octaves just cannot be tuned so that the unisons sound clean.

I'm not sure how to answer the question about the notes being unplayable. Sure I can play the upper two octaves, but they don't sound in tune. There are actually more notes in other parts of the piano that have problems. I think it's a defective piano and two other very respected techs have agreed.

I'm going to give them a few more days before I find another way to solve the problem. The last thing I want is a lawsuit, but if that's what it takes I'll go that route. I just hate the idea of not being able get the issue resolved between me and M and H.

I'll keep you posted. Perhaps M and H will make this right, but I have my doubts.


2013 Mason and Hamlin BB
Full-time music professor (theory) and jazz pianist
Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
scepticalforumguy #2044918 03/08/13 06:06 AM
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Originally Posted by scepticalforumguy
Originally Posted by Aaron Garner
If this were a car, I'm quite certain that most dealers would replace it if they couldn't fix it.


Hi Aaron,

I'm sure you're upset about your piano, but I'd like to point out that a piano shouldn't be compared to a car. If you wanted to go that route--well, you bought a 2007 model in 2012, and you did 'drive it' off the lot after you'd inspected it. What would they replace it with? Another 2007? I'd think the better route for them would be to either give you a refund (probably not likely), or give you credit towards a new model with the WNG action.
The point of the car analogy was simply to say the piano should be replaced if it cannot be fixed. It certainly doesn't have to be replaced with a 2007 model, but I think the OP should have a choice of wood or WNG actions and, most importantly, a particular BB that he likes. If the piano has to be replaced it certainly shouldn't cost the OP any more money no matter what the price of a new BB is.

Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Aaron Garner #2044944 03/08/13 08:37 AM
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It seems to me if the M&H technician sent out to fix the problem tells the customer the false beats in the upper two octaves are irreperable, and that the piano has a basic flaw, the manufacturer needs to replace the instrument per the terms of the warranty. This is what other manufacturers do. Why is this so complicated for M&H?

Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Aaron Garner #2045007 03/08/13 10:59 AM
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Pianomarevelous and Numerian,

I completely agree with both of you and all the comments on this forum have been very meaningful to me. I not only teach for a living, but I spend many hours at my piano so having a good instrument is extremely important. I still really love M and H pianos and believe that the vast majority are fine instruments. I know they are because I've played many.

On a positive note, after literally dozens of calls and a few emails, I finally got a reply from M and H. I didn't get a resolution, but at least it's a start. I really would love to have my faith restored in M and H because I think they are fundamentally good people. I used to record for the Piano Disc Company when they first started and were really small. I know Kirk and Gary are super nice people which is why I have been so puzzled at how they have handled this. The other people I've met in Sacramento are also good people even if some of their business practices are a little flawed.

Anyway, thanks again for all the generous responses and private emails. Hopefully this will have a happy resolution.


2013 Mason and Hamlin BB
Full-time music professor (theory) and jazz pianist
Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Norbert #2045021 03/08/13 11:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Norbert
The above is a good example how technical jargon or postering of sorts - instead of simply getting results - can confuscate an issue.

Even more treadful is the fact that a company does not seem to respond to a customer's query, something the maker here would perhaps reconsider if they'd know "who" is actually being involved....


Treadful and Confuscate are my new favorite words. smile

Mark

Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Aaron Garner #2045033 03/08/13 11:55 AM
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Aaron:

Wishing you a happy outcome! Agree that the owners of Mason Hamlin have always impressed me as very fine people.
It's the dealer, the other 'company' which keeps confusing me..

Norbert smile


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Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
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Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Aaron Garner #2045036 03/08/13 11:59 AM
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The Tech's advocating the placement of lead upon the bridge/soundboard to solve false beats in the treble are on the wrong path. The added mass will only damp the volume of tone and make it have a thinner sounding tone.

Some aspects of false beats are still a bit of a mystery to the piano world. I would have to hear and inspect the piano to make any meaningful diagnosis-so posting here has it's limits.

Good luck.


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Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Norbert #2045039 03/08/13 12:05 PM
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Norbert,
I am surprised that a piano dealer who prides himself on knowing a "world famous piano technician" would have to get a tech from Germany to come to BC to solve a Sauter action problem. Perhaps you need to find better tech's locally-or have they soured on you?


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According to NASA, 93% of the earth like planets possible in the known universe have yet to be formed.
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Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Aaron Garner #2045057 03/08/13 12:55 PM
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Quote
I am surprised that a piano dealer who prides himself on knowing a "world famous piano technician" would have to get a tech from Germany to come to BC to solve a Sauter action problem.


Don't know where this came from as it doesn't address company resonsibilty. Warranty starts at dealer level.

If I detect a level of cynicism or glee in your message don't understand what motivates you to it.

The problem with our piano was the action geometry which made piano a bit touch too heavy for most of our customers.

This was about 18 years ago.

When they send a factory tech who then re-drilled & reset all the capstans and then re-regulated entire action I thought it was exemplary service.

It was also interesting to watch a 65 years old factory tech tackling such issue with great confidence and experience.

In fact several local techs attended at that time and were very interested to meet the man and see him in action.

It was particularly nice seeing a company taking responsibility looking after its customer. [us] It's also nice a company is not denying that problems can occur and then acting on it in a responsible manner.

The piano is now used in home concerts and loved by every single pianist playing on it.

Hoping the same will come true for Aaron!

At same time why not contact OP and see if your own expertise as top RPT would be of help to him to resolve the case?

Opportunity to gain hero status!

Norbert thumb

Last edited by Norbert; 03/08/13 02:04 PM.

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Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Aaron Garner #2045058 03/08/13 12:57 PM
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"On a positive note, after literally dozens of calls and a few emails, I finally got a reply from M and H."

These are "very fine people"?

Very fine people return customers' phone calls.

Sorry - I am not impressed.


Amateur Pianist and raconteur.
Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Aaron Garner #2045075 03/08/13 01:45 PM
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Furtwangler,

I would have to agree with you. I guess the comment was my attempt to focus on something positive for my own sanity. This ordeal has caused a lot of stress in my already stressful life and the fact that they emailed me was positive. This has also taken up a tremendous amount of my time which like most of us I have very little of. But, I do absolutely agree. Just a simple response like, "we're working on the problem" would have made a world of difference in my book.


2013 Mason and Hamlin BB
Full-time music professor (theory) and jazz pianist
Re: Mason and Hamlin Problems
Aaron Garner #2045108 03/08/13 02:54 PM
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My previous company did a study against our close competitor on the number of defective units both companies shipped. Our competitor shipped significantly larger number of defective units. We had always been proud of our quality in general but no manufacturing company could ship 0% defects, still our defect rate was at less than 1% while our competitor was closer to 12%.

The reason for the study was that our competitor had a customer satisfaction rate of 95% while we had a customer satisfaction rate of only 80%. What's more the study showed that while the initial customer satisfaction of our competitor was only at 65% because of the high defect rate, because they had such excellent customer response time and speedy field replacement response that their customer satisfaction went to 95% versus our 80% even though we rarely shipped defects.

There is a lesson here. If customer response is ordinary, it really doesn't matter how good your stuff is. Customers do not remember an uneventful purchase. They do remember when they had problems and you were there to resovle their problem quickly leading to a much better impression of your company than the company that didn't give them any trouble to begin with.

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