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Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
Chuck Behm, CPT-E #2348045 11/10/14 08:18 AM
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Does anyone use old pinblocks for bass bridge cap material?

Manufacturers years ago were quite generous in how much wood they used for pinblocks. I've seen some with plenty of undrilled wood available.

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Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
kpembrook #2348075 11/10/14 10:17 AM
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Originally Posted by kpembrook
Originally Posted by Pian-O-Tech


I have the mazzaglia punches. They have certainly been better than nothing -- or using a single punch. However, I saw some marvelous punches recently at the Davenport PTG Regional made by Christian Bolduc. I bought a set on the spot. They are truly sharp, compared to the Mazz. punches and come in a wider variety of widths.

Haven't used them yet, but I will next week. . .


Is this the set? Bolduc bridge punches (picture #6)

Last edited by David Jenson; 11/10/14 10:19 AM.

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Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
Chuck Behm, CPT-E #2348082 11/10/14 10:40 AM
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Oh...I was meaning to ask about the length exposed above the cap [but the overall length is also important to the thread] So, both of you say longer pins in the cap is better--seems reasonable. I have sometimes found that long pins exposed above the cap are problematic (i.e., ones that are not filed short enough)--they tend to cause more issues with string falseness. Naturally, this could be caused by other issues, so my current thinking is based on careful observation up until now. Additionally, many of the historic european instruments that I have examined have had very short pins exposed above the cap [which also happened to be scaled smaller in diameter near the top as compared to today]. <----small diameter pins, especially when the spacing is tight, makes structural sense to me. I haven't noticed any problems with pins that have diameters that are too small in diameter...yet...[the problem exists, I just haven't observed it]

WilliamTruitt, it seems like you might be advocating for the OP to make his own cap? If so, would you mind sharing what has worked for you (i.e., how you go about it). But, what I would find even more important: what have you tried that really doesn't work at all (i.e., since you are one of the few thinkers/observers in the piano world, that information is even more significant).

Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
Chuck Behm, CPT-E #2348139 11/10/14 12:55 PM
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Will says: it matters, but it is not the only thing. High quality, quartered, dense hard rock maple is important. It is hard to come by these days, and when you order fresh stock it is a crapshoot whether or not you get good stuff. For that reason, I have been making my own horizontally laminated maple veneer caps.

next time you condemn one of those old clunker uprights to the burn pile, remove the back posts first.
You may be surprised at the quality of the maple.

In regard to pins and their diameters they start small at the top and get larger toward bass, coincident with increasing wire diameters as part of getting a consistent string off-set.
Also I don't care much for pins that have been filed flat on the top. It takes a bit extra time to punch them all down to a consistent height but a shiny rounded top without file scars is more appealing to me.



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Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
Chuck Behm, CPT-E #2348155 11/10/14 01:26 PM
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A454.7, you are a shameless flatterer. :-) There are people who frequent this forum and this topic who know more than I do. But at least you are not throwing rotten cabbages at me. I get my quartered rock maple veneers from Herzog Veneers in High Point, North Carolina and glue them together with Unibond 800. There is a liquid resin and powdered hardener that comes in 2 or three colors, so you can make the glue lines almost invisible. I just clamp the veneers between two large flat blocks, and then trim to fit from there

I'm not advocating or discouraging Chuck from making his own caps, it certainly adds time and it is a lot of glue joint surface that has to have glue on it.

Ron Nossaman has made the point that the part of the cap where the pin has to be held most securely is near the top. Otherwise, the pin can flagpole and cause false beats.

I drive my pins to a consistent but low height off the top of the bridge and do not file them.

I think I am like most people who have struggled to do top notch bridge work. You want a clean termination without false beats. I've had my share of those over time. I also use thinned epoxy or CA glue as driving fluid which will then set up and hold the pin the most securely. I can't say that I never have false beats, but these days they are mostly confined to the top octave. Haven't nailed that part down yet. And the kind of wire and how we handle it is also a wild card in this mix.


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Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
WilliamTruitt #2348176 11/10/14 02:03 PM
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Originally Posted by WilliamTruitt
But at least you are not throwing rotten cabbages at me.
...not yet anyway (i.e., there is reasoning in that). There's still time though: people change through knowledge gained. There was once a time when the whole world was flat...

Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
Chuck Behm, CPT-E #2348211 11/10/14 03:34 PM
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Genius is often misunderstood. After all, the cabbage chuckers used Shakespeare for target practice...


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Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
Chuck Behm, CPT-E #2348371 11/10/14 10:31 PM
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Some cabbage would be useful right now. I am cooking dinner.


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According to NASA, 93% of the earth like planets possible in the known universe have yet to be formed.
Contact: Ed@LightHammerpiano.com
Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
Ed McMorrow, RPT #2348377 11/10/14 10:50 PM
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Quote
I believe Chuck asked for more pictures and less words on how to recap a treble bridge. . . After reading the first few posts, I was intrigued and looking forward to methods and photos. Turns out this thread has once again derailed. - Jean Poulin


Hi all - just got back from a stint of watching grandsons. Left the laptop at home for a bit of relaxation without the temptation to do any kind of business.

Fired up the computer when we got home and took a look here to see what had been added to this thread, and what do I find? Words, words, words . . . but not one photo! Doesn't anyone know how to run a camera?? (Thanks, Jean, for pointing this out.) Really would like to see some well-documented (photographed) methodology.

Maybe I'm speaking just for myself, but I get more out of a few well taken shots of a process, than a whole lot of words. Waiting patiently. Chuck



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Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
Chuck Behm, CPT-E #2348380 11/10/14 10:57 PM
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P.S. - Sorry if I sounded unappreciative for all the efforts which have been put into your descriptions - I'm sure they will prove to be scintillating when I read them over. Just hoping to have some visuals to go along with all the text. Thanks, and good night. Chuck



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"The act of destruction is infinitely easier than the act of creation" - Arthur C. Clarke
Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
Chuck Behm, CPT-E #2348384 11/10/14 11:02 PM
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A long time ago, there was one of the amateurs here (I think it was Woodfab) who decided to replace a bridge cap. He started by practicing carving notches on some scraps of maple. I can give no better advice but to do that as well. You might even start with some other wood, and work up to maple.


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Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
Chuck Behm, CPT-E #2348388 11/10/14 11:10 PM
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Practice marking, drilling, notching and pin insertion too.

Chuck, Sorry, I don't do well with cameras.


In a seemingly infinite universe-infinite human creativity is-seemingly possible.
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Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
Chuck Behm, CPT-E #2348393 11/10/14 11:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Chuck Behm


Fired up the computer when we got home and took a look here to see what had been added to this thread, and what do I find? Words, words, words . . . but not one photo! Doesn't anyone know how to run a camera?? (Thanks, Jean, for pointing this out.) Really would like to see some well-documented (photographed) methodology.

Maybe I'm speaking just for myself, but I get more out of a few well taken shots of a process, than a whole lot of words. Waiting patiently. Chuck



Lol!! Funny stuff, Chuck! I'm a visual person too.

But in this case, I can only be a researcher/messenger.

But there doesn't appear to be much more on this topic, except
for a few pics at the end of this page:

http://mckaigpianoservice.com/6.html

As always, don't shoot the messenger!

grin ha

Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
Paul678 #2348402 11/10/14 11:41 PM
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Quote
Chuck, Sorry, I don't do well with cameras.- Ed McMorrow, RPT


Really a shame, Ed, because you give some of the most detailed and precise information about methods - I would love to see photos of your techniques to go along with your descriptions.

Photography is so simple with modern digital cameras. I use a cheap (around $100) point and shoot for all my pictures - and I've had close to 1000 of them published in the Journal over the years. My only secret is that I take a lot of pictures of any method I'm writing about, throw them all on my computer for a better (full-size) look, and I pick the best ones.

Please consider giving it a try at some point! Respectfully, Chuck Behm

Last edited by Chuck Behm; 11/10/14 11:41 PM.

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Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
Chuck Behm, CPT-E #2348406 11/11/14 12:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Chuck Behm
Quote
Chuck, Sorry, I don't do well with cameras.- Ed McMorrow, RPT


Really a shame, Ed, because you give some of the most detailed and precise information about methods - I would love to see photos of your techniques to go along with your descriptions.

Photography is so simple with modern digital cameras. I use a cheap (around $100) point and shoot for all my pictures - and I've had close to 1000 of them published in the Journal over the years. My only secret is that I take a lot of pictures of any method I'm writing about, throw them all on my computer for a better (full-size) look, and I pick the best ones.

Please consider giving it a try at some point! Respectfully, Chuck Behm


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Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
accordeur #2348460 11/11/14 07:30 AM
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Hi Ed (and all) - If taking photos seems so difficult, open this, and scroll down to installments #52 - 55. Hopefully some of these ideas will help. Seriously, it's not all that difficult. And Ed, from what you describe you are the master of precision - I'm impressed by everything you write. I'm betting your photos (once you got over your attitude [to wit: :I don't do well with cameras.")]) would be outstanding.

Please give this some thought the next time you have one of these projects in front of you. Granted, it does take a bit more time to take photos of a process as you go, but by doing so you would be doing the profession a huge favor. Chuck


P.S. There is also a part 5 and 6 of my article on shop photography. I don't have them listed on the website as of yet, but here are direct links: Shop Photography: Part 5 and Shop Photography: Part 6


Last edited by Chuck Behm; 11/11/14 08:11 AM.

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Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
Chuck Behm, CPT-E #2348562 11/11/14 12:59 PM
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In my experience it is not taking pictures that is the issue here, it is getting them posted.
The instructions followed to the letter just do not work for me.


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Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
Gene Nelson #2348602 11/11/14 02:12 PM
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Hi Gene - Are you referring to posting photos here, or instructions for repairs? If you're having trouble posting photos try this link to tiny pics . It's what I use to place my pictures on Piano World threads, and it's really pretty easy. Chuck



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"The act of destruction is infinitely easier than the act of creation" - Arthur C. Clarke
Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
WilliamTruitt #2348611 11/11/14 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by WilliamTruitt
I'm not advocating or discouraging Chuck from making his own caps, it certainly adds time and it is a lot of glue joint surface that has to have glue on it.
But...is it worth it? Do you get a better result, or is it part of the fun?

Re: Recapping bridges tutorial needed
Chuck Behm, CPT-E #2348616 11/11/14 02:55 PM
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For me it is. One advantage that I find is that it will notch more consistently with far less concern about tearout and diving grain, since each lamina is .6 mm. thick. You will need a very sharp chisel, but that is always true. These days I'm using a couple of nice Japanese mortising chisels.

It's all the work that you would be doing to thickness and shape bridge stock, plus the time and effort of gluing up the lamina. I'm good with that, others mileage may vary.

I've been giving thought to making the top lamina or two a harder wood than maple or beech, as that is the surface that the strings bear on. A harder wood would have greater resistance to crushing, which may hold the top of the bridge pin more securely.


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