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Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: BenP] #2240350
03/02/14 06:51 PM
03/02/14 06:51 PM
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 971
P
Paul678 Offline
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Paul678  Offline
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P

Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 971
Originally Posted by BenP


Ideally I would tune it in two visits. One pass to just above pitch, and a few weeks later a second pass to stabilize it. I don't like using Tunelab's overpull if the piano is more than 50-100 cents flat; it does a good job calculating but I feel it's too risky to pull old, rusty strings 30-40 cents sharp when it's not necessary.


So the first pass will be to something like A=442, or something like that?

Tunelab's overpull mode has a default sharp limit of 10 cents for the bass bridge, and 25 cents for the rest of the notes, so hopefully this will prevent me from snapping a string.

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Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: Greg the Piano Tuner] #2240363
03/02/14 07:11 PM
03/02/14 07:11 PM
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 4,154
Virginia, USA
T
TimR Offline
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TimR  Offline
4000 Post Club Member
T

Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 4,154
Virginia, USA
I don't know if there's an equivalent to this in the piano tech world.

The brass instrument repair techs tell me there are two questions they REALLY don't want to hear the wrong answer to:

1. Did you try to fix it yourself first?

2. Did that involve JBWeld?


gotta go practice
Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: Greg the Piano Tuner] #2240394
03/02/14 08:08 PM
03/02/14 08:08 PM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 50
Boston
G
Greg the Piano Tuner Offline OP
Full Member
Greg the Piano Tuner  Offline OP
Full Member
G

Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 50
Boston
To Paul678:

When I see an old klunker that hasn't been tuned since Abbott and Costello were on TV, I just see how far under 435 the A is. (I'm an aural tuner and I carry a 435 fork along with my 440) If the piano was built before 1941, I'll keep it at 435, since that what it was designed for. If it's a console or studio, I might try for 440, if I don't see any rust. Just lower each string a small amount before you raise it, to break loose any connection at the tuning pin. If it's a spinet, I keep the A wherever it is. Broken strings on a spinet are a nightmare.

Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: Greg the Piano Tuner] #2240416
03/02/14 08:55 PM
03/02/14 08:55 PM
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 971
P
Paul678 Offline
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Paul678  Offline
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P

Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 971
Originally Posted by Greg the Piano Tuner
To Paul678:

When I see an old klunker that hasn't been tuned since Abbott and Costello were on TV, I just see how far under 435 the A is. (I'm an aural tuner and I carry a 435 fork along with my 440) If the piano was built before 1941, I'll keep it at 435, since that what it was designed for. If it's a console or studio, I might try for 440, if I don't see any rust. Just lower each string a small amount before you raise it, to break loose any connection at the tuning pin. If it's a spinet, I keep the A wherever it is. Broken strings on a spinet are a nightmare.


Thanks Greg, I didn't know that:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A440_(pitch_standard)

I read that you're supposed to first lower the pitch on any older piano, to reduce the risk of breakage....

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Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: Ed McMorrow, RPT] #2240435
03/02/14 09:51 PM
03/02/14 09:51 PM
Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 2,604
Strong, Maine
David Jenson Offline
2000 Post Club Member
David Jenson  Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 2,604
Strong, Maine
Originally Posted by Ed McMorrow, RPT
Chuck,
Free beers!! If news of that gets around Homer Simpson will take up piano tuning.


I have a nagging suspicion that Homer Simpson might be tuning pianos in my area. The tunings are really bad, and the customers ask if I'd like a beer.


David L. Jenson
Tuning - Repairs - Refurbishing
Jenson's Piano Service
-----
Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: Greg the Piano Tuner] #2240568
03/03/14 07:50 AM
03/03/14 07:50 AM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 5,886
Bradford County, PA
UnrightTooner Offline
5000 Post Club Member
UnrightTooner  Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 5,886
Bradford County, PA
Two comments come to mind:

"If we are not home, just come on in. We have a very large dog, but he's friendly." (I made sure they were home!)

"We decided not to pay for the tuning you did because the band didn't even use the piano." (This was a bar. I never got paid, but learned a thing or two.)


Jeff Deutschle
Part-Time Tuner
Who taught the first chicken how to peck?
Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: Greg the Piano Tuner] #2240618
03/03/14 10:05 AM
03/03/14 10:05 AM
Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 2,071
Conway, AR USA
bkw58 Offline

Silver Supporter until December 19, 2014
bkw58  Offline

Silver Supporter until December 19, 2014


Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 2,071
Conway, AR USA
Top 12 Unfulfilled Promises:

12. My house is easy to find.

11. One of my neighbors will let you in.

10. The key is under the large rock in the front yard.

9. I won't set the alarm.

8. The kids are well behaved.

7. My parents had to leave, come on in.

6. He doesn't bite.

5. You can hear a pin drop.

4. It's in the mail.

3. The housekeeper doesn't vacuum on Tuesdays.

2. It's tuned semiannually.

1. It's a piano.


Bob W.
Piano Technician (Retired since 2006)
Conway, Arkansas
www.pianotechno.blogspot.com
Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: Greg the Piano Tuner] #2240635
03/03/14 10:56 AM
03/03/14 10:56 AM
Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 526
USA
J
Jbyron Offline
500 Post Club Member
Jbyron  Offline
500 Post Club Member
J

Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 526
USA
I'm going to pick up all my kids now, we'll be right back.


Tuner-Technician


Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: Greg the Piano Tuner] #2240644
03/03/14 11:30 AM
03/03/14 11:30 AM
Joined: Apr 2010
Posts: 445
E
erichlof Offline
Full Member
erichlof  Offline
Full Member
E

Joined: Apr 2010
Posts: 445
Hi Bob,
In your list, is #6 for the dog or for the kid? laugh

Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: UnrightTooner] #2240667
03/03/14 12:34 PM
03/03/14 12:34 PM
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 971
P
Paul678 Offline
500 Post Club Member
Paul678  Offline
500 Post Club Member
P

Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 971
Originally Posted by UnrightTooner


"We decided not to pay for the tuning you did because the band didn't even use the piano." (This was a bar. I never got paid, but learned a thing or two.)



So what exactly did you learn here? Collect payment
first? I've been getting paid after the deed is done.

I'd be mad enough to get a .357 to collect my money!

You DID tune the piano!

Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: Greg the Piano Tuner] #2240723
03/03/14 02:35 PM
03/03/14 02:35 PM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 5,886
Bradford County, PA
UnrightTooner Offline
5000 Post Club Member
UnrightTooner  Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 5,886
Bradford County, PA
The first thing I learned was not to trust the owner of the piano store that gave me the lead. When I explained the situation he replied, "Forget it. He's a deadbeat. He won't pay." Like if the owner knew the guy was like that, why did he give me the lead? Because he was a deadbeat, too, and that sort of behavior was acceptable. (This is true with other behaviors that some people find acceptable...)

The second thing, was that sometimes people don't pay, and it is just part of doing business. Not all people are trustworthy, but it is still best to trust people, to a point, otherwise the Enemy wins. He especially wins if you grab a weapon out of prideful anger.


Jeff Deutschle
Part-Time Tuner
Who taught the first chicken how to peck?
Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: Greg the Piano Tuner] #2240750
03/03/14 03:27 PM
03/03/14 03:27 PM
Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 2,481
Niagara Region, On. Canada
Emmery Offline
2000 Post Club Member
Emmery  Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 2,481
Niagara Region, On. Canada
If they don't pay, you just pull this out of your bag and start working it into your other hand like a kid working in a new baseball mit (and I bet you thought it was just for center pins)...
[Linked Image]

Last edited by Emmery; 03/03/14 03:28 PM.

Piano Technician
George Brown College /85
Niagara Region
Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: Greg the Piano Tuner] #2240998
03/03/14 11:23 PM
03/03/14 11:23 PM
Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 4,983
Seattle, WA USA
E
Ed McMorrow, RPT Offline
4000 Post Club Member
Ed McMorrow, RPT  Offline
4000 Post Club Member
E

Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 4,983
Seattle, WA USA
I think I have gotten stiffed a total of four times in my 40 plus years. Some pay a little slow. A couple of crooked piano dealers tried to stiff me but I took an action part with me each time.

I don't think weapons are needed!


In a seemingly infinite universe-infinite human creativity is-seemingly possible.
According to NASA, 93% of the earth like planets possible in the known universe have yet to be formed.
Contact: Ed@LightHammerpiano.com
Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: Greg the Piano Tuner] #2241100
03/04/14 06:25 AM
03/04/14 06:25 AM
Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 2,604
Strong, Maine
David Jenson Offline
2000 Post Club Member
David Jenson  Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 2,604
Strong, Maine
"My pet Boa Constrictor has escaped and I think it's in the piano." It really happened!


David L. Jenson
Tuning - Repairs - Refurbishing
Jenson's Piano Service
-----
Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: erichlof] #2241127
03/04/14 07:59 AM
03/04/14 07:59 AM
Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 2,071
Conway, AR USA
bkw58 Offline

Silver Supporter until December 19, 2014
bkw58  Offline

Silver Supporter until December 19, 2014


Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 2,071
Conway, AR USA
Originally Posted by erichlof
Hi Bob,
In your list, is #6 for the dog or for the kid? laugh

laugh


Bob W.
Piano Technician (Retired since 2006)
Conway, Arkansas
www.pianotechno.blogspot.com
Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: Greg the Piano Tuner] #2241431
03/04/14 06:43 PM
03/04/14 06:43 PM
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 389
East Nashville,TN Scottsville...
N
Nash. Piano Rescue Offline
Full Member
Nash. Piano Rescue  Offline
Full Member
N

Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 389
East Nashville,TN Scottsville...
" I paid 54,000.00 for my prized grand piano and then I hired these movers for 20.00 to move it, then they dropped it and have no insurance, I'm Appalled !!... Do you think you can fix it? and if so will it cost more than 40.00 ?

The frequency of calls like this are on the rise.


J. Christie
Nashville Piano Rescue
www.NashvillePianoRescue.com
East Nashville
Bowling Green, KY
Scottsville KY.
Chamber of Commerce
Member/Sponsor

Putting inspiration in the hands of area musicians
Through restoration/renovation
Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: Nash. Piano Rescue] #2241799
03/05/14 05:05 PM
03/05/14 05:05 PM
Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 849
Boone, Iowa, USA
C
Chuck Behm, CPT-E Offline
500 Post Club Member
Chuck Behm, CPT-E  Offline
500 Post Club Member
C

Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 849
Boone, Iowa, USA
Quote
I paid 54,000.00 for my prized grand piano and then I hired these movers for 20.00 to move it, then they dropped it and have no insurance, I'm Appalled !!... Do you think you can fix it? and if so will it cost more than 40.00 ? - Nash Piano Rescue


You say, "40? Why, I'm quite sure I'm sure we can get it done for less. In fact, for 30 you can have a complete rebuild done. You put 25% down and I'll have my technicians get started on it. Let see, 25% comes out to $7,500." - That should shut them up. Chuck


Tuner/Technician/Rebuilder/Technical Writer
www.pianopromoproductions.com
515-212-9220

"The act of destruction is infinitely easier than the act of creation" - Arthur C. Clarke
Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: Greg the Piano Tuner] #2241845
03/05/14 06:38 PM
03/05/14 06:38 PM
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,557
Sandy Eggo, California
O
OperaTenor Offline
2000 Post Club Member
OperaTenor  Offline
2000 Post Club Member
O

Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,557
Sandy Eggo, California
"It just needs to be tuned."

- From a father of nine, concerning an old Chickering console. It was at least as filthy as any piano I've ever worked on, and had a lot of abuse issues (broken string, broken and missing hammer, bad previous repairs, broken key buttons, all kinds of interesting filth, ~$.75 in change, mostly pennies, liquids spilled on the keys, etc.)



Happiness is a freshly tuned piano.
Jim Boydston, proprietor, No Piano Left Behind - technician
www.facebook.com/NoPianoLeftBehind
Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: Greg the Piano Tuner] #2241875
03/05/14 07:39 PM
03/05/14 07:39 PM
Joined: Feb 2002
Posts: 1,930
El Cajon, CA
88Key_PianoPlayer Offline
1000 Post Club Member
88Key_PianoPlayer  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Feb 2002
Posts: 1,930
El Cajon, CA
I'm wondering if cases like that (paying so much for piano and so little for service/emergencies) are because people don't budget for the piano properly? As in, they throw ALL their piano budget at the piano purchase, leaving nothing for anything else. Wouldn't it have been better to pay $52k for an alternate piano and $2k (or whatever it costs when done properly) for the move and insurance? Or if a $52k piano wasn't good enough, save up a little more money? (Btw I'm a Dave Ramsey fan, so I'm not saying "borrow more money". :p )


Associate Member - Piano Technicians Guild
1950 (#144211) Baldwin Hamilton
1956 (#167714) Baldwin Hamilton
You can right-click my avatar for an option to view a larger version.
Re: What's the worst thing a customer can tell you? [Re: Greg the Piano Tuner] #2242072
03/06/14 07:38 AM
03/06/14 07:38 AM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 5,886
Bradford County, PA
UnrightTooner Offline
5000 Post Club Member
UnrightTooner  Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 5,886
Bradford County, PA
"The salesman said that this brand of piano (Kawaii) never needs tuned. But my daughter says I should get it tuned anyway. I bought it 20 years ago." Btw, it was from the same store that whose owner I learned not to trust.


Jeff Deutschle
Part-Time Tuner
Who taught the first chicken how to peck?
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