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Would it be feasible to splice this? #2704737
01/14/18 04:56 AM
01/14/18 04:56 AM
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lbonini1 Offline OP
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My Kimball Grand has what I can make out to be (officially 3, they loop around of course) broken Treble Strings and my usual technician is on leave and at the moment I cannot find any good technicians around me (I am still looking)

I was just wondering, would it be feasible at all to splice these wires?

[Linked Image]

Please let me know,I'm interested in this as a temporary solution and I'd say I can be pretty handy with this as I have worked with wire like this before... thanks again!

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Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: lbonini1] #2704779
01/14/18 11:50 AM
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Based on how and where they broke the answer is NO. They need replacement, and you can doubtlessly expect more to go as well. Sorry.

Pwg


Peter W. Grey, RPT
New Hampshire Seacoast
www.seacoastpianodoctor.com
pianodoctor57@gmail.com
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Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: lbonini1] #2704798
01/14/18 12:34 PM
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There will be blood.

Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: lbonini1] #2704847
01/14/18 03:01 PM
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Bill Bremmer RPT Offline
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I am all in favor of splicing where it is a better solution than replacement but this case is not one of those. As Peter said, if you have that much now, there is likely to be more. It may actually be a better choice to restring that part of the piano. If that is done, the technician may want to check the scaling because if it was strung with a too high breaking point, that may be the reason why this has happened.

You should also have the hammers filed or replaced if they are too far worn. That would also contribute to this kind of failure.


Bill Bremmer RPT
Madison WI USA
www.billbremmer.com
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Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: Bill Bremmer RPT] #2704855
01/14/18 03:22 PM
01/14/18 03:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Bill Bremmer RPT
... the technician may want to check the scaling because if it was strung with a too high breaking point, that may be the reason why this has happened.

You should also have the hammers filed or replaced if they are too far worn. That would also contribute to this kind of failure.


Keep in mind that if the scale had too high of a breaking point that rescaling -- in the sense of changing wire sizes-- will not help. No matter what diameter of wire is used, breaking percent remains unchanged. For example, thicker wire will be stronger but is more massive therefore requiring higher tension with a net result of having the same breaking percent.
If that is indeed the situation, then it becomes necessary to either move the bridge or the plate to change speaking length of the string. I currently have a Kawai GS-50 in my shop where I did just that. The GS (and KG as well) series is notorious for having long scale (note 88 was 57mm!!) which resulted in 80% plus breaking percent in the top treble section. I moved the plate towards the back 2.5mm so note 88 is now 54.5mm with a break percent of 70%. (I was trying for a 3mm movement but micro-adjusting plate location is a challenge. I'm happy to be within .5 mm of my target.) Of course, I expect tonal improvement as well because the high tension long scales tend to scream.

The comment about hammer shaping is right on. Poorly shaped hammers can promote string breakage as well as sounding bad.



Last edited by kpembrook; 01/14/18 03:23 PM.

Keith Akins, RPT
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Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: lbonini1] #2704882
01/14/18 04:23 PM
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If several notes with the same size wire break, it could have been a bad batch of wire. I have had that happen. If they break somewhere other than at the capo bar, I would say that is especially likely. If they break at the capo bar, it is probably from playing, but not necessarily.

With a Kimball, there are two ways of dealing with it that make sense economically: Replace the strings, or replace the piano. Unless there is something simple to do, it just does not make a lot of sense to pour money into this piano.

Last edited by BDB; 01/14/18 04:24 PM.

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Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: lbonini1] #2704892
01/14/18 04:56 PM
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Although there is no way to determine for sure, it is possible that this area of the scale was massively over-pulled by someone, either at the factory, or later during a pitch raise. If so, and the wire was stretched beyond its elastic limit, but not enough to break it right then, it is simply a matter of time before the inevitable breakage.

Agreed that hammers can do this, as well as a very heavy and repetitive hand in that section. Wire fatigue is the culprit, no matter how it came about. I would replace what is broken, but as soon as the next one breaks, recommend complete section restringing...or just do it as was mentioned before.

Since in my experience Kimballs don't have a habit of doing this sort of thing, it argues that something has happened to THIS piano to bring it about.

Have fun! I love stringing pianos.


Peter W. Grey, RPT
New Hampshire Seacoast
www.seacoastpianodoctor.com
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Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: P W Grey] #2704921
01/14/18 06:55 PM
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Hello Mr. Grey, I was not the one that broke the strings in the first place haha, I play fairly loudly but not THIS loudly and definitely not loudly up there!

This was an issue with the Piano when I got it months prior, things just got in the way for my schedule and my tuner's schedule so the only thing really that could be done was tune it up (Even I had to tune it up a few times)

My assumption with this poor instrument is that someone tried to tune it quite badly and wrecked it, it's literally the whole G unison up in that range that does not work and it's affected the F# and the Ab next to it. The reason I come up with this is because down below on the B2 when I first got it, one of the strings was badly out of tune (Ringing at a Bb), I first assumed that particular pin may have been loose but I tuned it up and it's been tuned up a bit since with no other work done to it and has maintained a perfect unison. Just goes to show what happens when people who have zero idea what they're doing get their hands on a cheap tuning kit. wink

---

As for everyone else, thank you for your guidance, I will definitely be replacing the strings up here but I will be leaving that to the RPT when he returns, I do not feel comfortable removing the pins to do so and unless anyone has a suggestion on how to do this WITHOUT removing the pin, I'll leave this to them smile

Thanks again!!!

Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: lbonini1] #2704922
01/14/18 07:06 PM
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Replacing strings should not be done by replacing the tuning pins unless you are replacing all the strings. You unscrew them about a turn, put the string in place, cut it to length, and then wind a coil on a spare pin. Remove the coil from that pin, put it on the tuning pin in the piano, and then pull the string to pitch. Very quick and easy, if you are experienced!


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Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: lbonini1] #2704951
01/14/18 09:37 PM
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What BDB described is called the "dummy pin" method and is by far the preferred method. But more tools and knowledge are required than what you probably have, so as you said...leave it to the RPT. Smart move.

Pwg


Peter W. Grey, RPT
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pianodoctor57@gmail.com
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Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: lbonini1] #2705016
01/15/18 04:20 AM
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Originally Posted by lbonini1


I was just wondering, would it be feasible at all to splice these wires?

[Linked Image]

Please let me know,I'm interested in this as a temporary solution and I'd say I can be pretty handy with this as I have worked with wire like this before... thanks again!


Max done it's so. Old breaked strings he reinstalated as it was possible upright piano "PETROF"

Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: P W Grey] #2705036
01/15/18 06:49 AM
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Ah I see, something I did not know! - I'm truly interested in becoming more knowledgeable in the Piano Technician field so I certainly am hoping to keep educating myself. As for re-stringing this section, I'm just going to fix the broken ones for now (Officially only 4 full strings after removing all the broken ones)

If more break after that I'll just have to re-string the WHOLE HIGH TREBLE area thing. While it does seem a bit difficult, I'd love to be able to string the wires myself so I can learn but at this point I feel like due to the amount of strings it is, it'd be better to leave it to a pro...

Last edited by lbonini1; 01/15/18 06:49 AM.
Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: lbonini1] #2705039
01/15/18 08:06 AM
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Quote
I'm truly interested in becoming more knowledgeable in the Piano Technician field so I certainly am hoping to keep educating myself.


That's great! There are some very helpful books you could get. Best of all, most comprehensive and up-to-date by far, is Mario Igrec's Pianos Inside Out
It's expensive though. At beginning level, you might find it very useful to have The Haynes Piano Manual which is the only piano technical book in full colour throughout. It's very reasonably priced. The standard text, until Pianos Inside Out, was Arthur Reblitz's Pianos - Tuning Servicing and Rebuilding. It's still excellent, with very clear explanations.

If you are wanting to tackle string repair yourself, why not buy some music wire of the correct thickness (use a micrometer to measure). You can probably get short lengths on Ebay. Or, use existing wire in the piano and make do with bichords instead of trichords, on the broken trichords, until your technician comes.

Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: kpembrook] #2705057
01/15/18 10:32 AM
01/15/18 10:32 AM
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Originally Posted by kpembrook
Originally Posted by Bill Bremmer RPT
... the technician may want to check the scaling because if it was strung with a too high breaking point, that may be the reason why this has happened.


Keep in mind that if the scale had too high of a breaking point that rescaling -- in the sense of changing wire sizes-- will not help. No matter what diameter of wire is used, breaking percent remains unchanged.


Thanks Keith,

Now, I seem to remember you writing about this before. Naturally, if you put on a larger size wire, it will break because it cannot take the required tension. However, I fail to understand how a smaller gauge wire would have the same tensile strength.

I know, for example that Kimball had some "happy" wrapped string specifications for its small verticals that experienced too many of them breaking. Yamaha also had a problem with a certain vintage P-22 for which nearly every one of them, strings #13 & #14 would break. In the latter case, I believe they shortened the wrapping.

Wrapped strings and plain wire would of course, have different factors but could you please explain how, for example, if a particular note of the scale had size 14 wire but would consistently break, if the same wire were replaced with 13 1/2 or even 13, how the tensile strength would remain the same? It seems counterintuative.


Bill Bremmer RPT
Madison WI USA
www.billbremmer.com
Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: Bill Bremmer RPT] #2705107
01/15/18 12:42 PM
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The smaller gauge wire does not have the same tensile strength, but it requires less tension. The change in tensile strength and the change in tension follow each other, so the strings are at the same percentage of breaking strength.


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Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: Bill Bremmer RPT] #2705109
01/15/18 12:44 PM
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For mis-scaled trebles, one other alternative is worth examining. I have only recently learned about Paulello XM music wire, a grade of wire that has higher tensile strength than standard music wire:

http://www.stephenpaulello.com/en/les-5-types-daciers


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Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: lbonini1] #2705134
01/15/18 02:00 PM
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I can't tell for sure from the pictures where the strings are breaking, but it looks like it may be where they cross over the red underfelt near the hitch pins. If all the strings are rusty at that point, the underfelt would be the cause.
If the underfelt was not properly washed during manufacturing, it can cause the strings to rust and eventually break.
I've seen this on a number of pianos.
A close up picture would help.


Professional Piano Technician serving the Tampa bay area. website: mckaigpianoservice.com
Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: lbonini1] #2705264
01/15/18 08:37 PM
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Lbonini1,

How old is this piano? Do you have a serial number?

The only way to determine if breakage is due to faulty scale drafting is to measure the speaking lengths of the strings, record the current gauge numbers (micrometer measurement is better) and calculate the tensions currently in existence. Average tension would be in the 150 - 160 lb per string. Someone might need to help you with that if you're going to analyze it.

If you are mechanically inclined, stringing is not beyond the imagination for you. BUT, you need tools, supplies, and patience.

Pwg


Peter W. Grey, RPT
New Hampshire Seacoast
www.seacoastpianodoctor.com
pianodoctor57@gmail.com
(Best way to contact me privately)
Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: BDB] #2705311
01/15/18 11:30 PM
01/15/18 11:30 PM
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Originally Posted by BDB
The smaller gauge wire does not have the same tensile strength, but it requires less tension. The change in tensile strength and the change in tension follow each other, so the strings are at the same percentage of breaking strength.


Thank you, BDB.


Bill Bremmer RPT
Madison WI USA
www.billbremmer.com
Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: P W Grey] #2705539
01/16/18 08:20 PM
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lbonini1 Offline OP
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I've got the tools, just need the strings....
...and the patience, Lol wink

I may be inclined to do so now that I've found surplus rolls of wire on eBay, I was very hesitant to even try to take on the task since I could not find anything but those big huge rolls of wire that I wouldn't know where to put or what to do with after but now that I've found them, I may take this on as it might be a good learning experience for me.

I've researched the dummy method as described above and it is definitely a way better way to do this than removing the pins from the Piano and with a coil-maker (Which i can either DIY or buy a premade one) it shouldn't be a problem to get these done... still before I purchase anything I need to keep researching and reading up on this subject.

That said, does anyone have a tried and true method of measuring how much of the wire is needed for the job? I'm assuming one 10 foot roll may be enough but I'm not sure.

Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: Ed Foote] #2705661
01/17/18 08:04 AM
01/17/18 08:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Ed Foote
There will be blood.


Ha ha. How true that is! I wish I had a nickle for every time I've had that nasty stuff find a finger or thumb.


David L. Jenson
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-----
Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: lbonini1] #2705688
01/17/18 10:22 AM
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Have you measured the diameter of the wire needing replacement, and matched that to what you are finding prospectively on eBay?

BTW, there are plenty of you tube videos that clearly show how it's done. Some are better than others.

Tape your fingers up to reduce blood loss. ☺

Pwg

Last edited by P W Grey; 01/17/18 10:24 AM.

Peter W. Grey, RPT
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Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: P W Grey] #2706644
01/20/18 12:52 AM
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Yes I have done that and have matched it up accordingly. I have also found the best method for measuring the wire length correctly, the problem now for me however is, I need to get a dummy tuning pin but I do not want to buy a set of 5 just to get 1 but, from what I can tell that's going to be my best course of action unless anyone here can provide me with a way to buy just one...

Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: lbonini1] #2706674
01/20/18 03:40 AM
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A set of tuning pins is 250.

Lots of us have old tuning pins lying around, so you might just ask for one.


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Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: lbonini1] #2706866
01/20/18 09:33 PM
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I'm not sure why you don't hire a tech. They have the wire, the tools, and the know-how. 'Save you a lot of fussing and frustration.


David L. Jenson
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Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: David Jenson] #2707021
01/21/18 12:21 PM
01/21/18 12:21 PM
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Originally Posted by David Jenson
I'm not sure why you don't hire a tech. They have the wire, the tools, and the know-how. 'Save you a lot of fussing and frustration.


It is the intrigue of the challenge. That is how piano technicians are born! There is nothing like the sense of accomplishment when a person can say, "I did it!" I can remember the first time I strung a whole piano, took a sharpened hammer shank, raked it across all of the strings and proclaimed as Dr. Frankenstein did, "It's alive!"


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Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: lbonini1] #2707195
01/21/18 09:02 PM
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I would imagine you could find a piece of junk piano somewhere near you and rob a pin out of it. Must be...they are everywhere. So:

1) Remove all broken wires.
2) Back out tuning pins one full turn.
3) Measure out a wire long enough to complete two TP and two wires plus some.
4) Bend the wire around the hitch pin at the mid point of the wire (the loop).
5) Feed the loop down under the capo bar away from you and hook it around the hitch pin (use a spring clamp to secure it on there)
6) Cut the wire 2.75" past the middle of the appropriate TP.
7) Wind a good coil on the dummy pin, remove it with needle nose pliers and install on that TP.
8) Repeat for the second TP.
9) Guide through bridge pins, pull up a little tension (not much).
10) Neaten up coils with coil lifter and align strings pretty much where they want to go.
11) Gradually pull up tension evenly on both TP keeping everything neat, tight, and aligned.
12) About halfway up to tension use pliers to push the beckets fully into TP holes.
13) Seat the wire at the back of the hitch pin all the way to the plate (use hammer and screwdriver tap).

Now repeat for all remaining broken wires.

Finally use string spacer to align final position of unisons spaced evenly and pull up to full tension, tune.

You're done!

Pwg

Last edited by P W Grey; 01/21/18 09:03 PM.

Peter W. Grey, RPT
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pianodoctor57@gmail.com
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Re: Would it be feasible to splice this? [Re: Bill Bremmer RPT] #2707215
01/21/18 09:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Bill Bremmer RPT
Originally Posted by David Jenson
I'm not sure why you don't hire a tech. They have the wire, the tools, and the know-how. 'Save you a lot of fussing and frustration.


It is the intrigue of the challenge. That is how piano technicians are born! There is nothing like the sense of accomplishment when a person can say, "I did it!" I can remember the first time I strung a whole piano, took a sharpened hammer shank, raked it across all of the strings and proclaimed as Dr. Frankenstein did, "It's alive!"


Bill the optimist."That is how piano technicians are born!" Uh, OK. I suppose I'm a bit of a grumpy Guss 'cause I usually get called in to revive the dead monster.


David L. Jenson
Tuning - Repairs - Refurbishing
Jenson's Piano Service
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