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best way to lower pedal tension on a grand piano #2887086 09/05/19 12:51 AM
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sroreilly Offline OP
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Can the spring be manipulated or would it need to be replaced if there was too much tension on the pedals... in this case the sustain.

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Re: best way to lower pedal tension on a grand piano [Re: sroreilly] #2887138 09/05/19 07:04 AM
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P W Grey Online Content
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Sroreilly,

If it is a coil spring you can substitute a similar profile spring with less strength, or (if necessary) cut a coil or two off the existing spring (I wound consider that a last resort).

If it is a leaf spring it too can be substituted with the same style but thinner metal. Or, try bending it a little. Measure the thickness with a micrometer. Then ask the supplier what their thicknesses are for the sabe length spring.

That is how I would go about it anyway.

Check to make sure that the damper upstop rail is adjusted correctly as this can sometimes give the impression of too strong a spring if too low.

Pwg


Peter W. Grey, RPT
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www.seacoastpianodoctor.com
pianodoctor57@gmail.com
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PK0T7_I_nV8
Re: best way to lower pedal tension on a grand piano [Re: sroreilly] #2887143 09/05/19 07:09 AM
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David Boyce Offline
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Impossible to make a specific recommendation without knowing the specifics of the piano. As a general suggestion, good idea to check all bearing points and make sure they are appropriately lubricated, and leather and felt parts in good condition. If the pedals are high off the floor, that could give someone with small feet an impression of them being hard/tiring to operate....

Re: best way to lower pedal tension on a grand piano [Re: sroreilly] #2887187 09/05/19 08:58 AM
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Sean - I believe P. W. Grey and D. Boyce are spot-on in their advice to you. If, after following Mr. Boyce's suggestions, you still have not achieved your desired reduction of effort, consider this:

--> I had a look at your YouTube channel, watched your "The End" video. Is the Bosendorfer in the video the one you are trying to modify to have reduced damper pedal effort? If so, you might contact Bosendorfer and ask who their spring supplier is and any technical specifics about the spring installed in your piano. Once you have that information, you could contact their supplier for a spring with lower tensions that would fit without other alteration on your piano.

Worth a shot.

And, BTW, very pretty piece, "The End".


Andrew Kraus, Pianist
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1929 Steinert 6'10" (Close copy of New York S&S "B")
Re: best way to lower pedal tension on a grand piano [Re: sroreilly] #2887239 09/05/19 11:34 AM
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If it is a leaf spring, sometimes you can shim up behind the back screw to lessen the force. Just keep in mind that the dampers have force on them which cannot be reduced.


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Re: best way to lower pedal tension on a grand piano [Re: Seeker] #2887285 09/05/19 01:29 PM
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sroreilly Offline OP
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Originally Posted by Seeker
Sean - I believe P. W. Grey and D. Boyce are spot-on in their advice to you. If, after following Mr. Boyce's suggestions, you still have not achieved your desired reduction of effort, consider this:

--> I had a look at your YouTube channel, watched your "The End" video. Is the Bosendorfer in the video the one you are trying to modify to have reduced damper pedal effort? If so, you might contact Bosendorfer and ask who their spring supplier is and any technical specifics about the spring installed in your piano. Once you have that information, you could contact their supplier for a spring with lower tensions that would fit without other alteration on your piano.

Worth a shot.

And, BTW, very pretty piece, "The End".



Thank you very much! The bosendorfer is great, pedals and all (I mean, there about 3 strings that buzz sometimes and I haven't tracked down the cause but that's for another day). This is a smaller piano from schulze pollmann, a 6ft grand piano. Came over from Italy in basically unplayed condition from the 90s. The sustain is stiff for sure. I had an Estonia 190 that had a sustain on the stiffer side but this is beyond that. I have to look at the back action and see if there is something going on there(thanks for the suggestion) but the piano shows signs of just having been sitting around so I was thinking maybe the springs just got stiff somehow(the parts are all in good condition and the factory is known for attention to detail so I can't think of another cause).

Since I have this attention I might also ask about the action:

using nickels to a ballpark estimate I'd say the keys are around 60g downweight. All the other renner pianos I have access to are between 45-50 grams. I used the ptfe powder on the knuckles. It seems to have helped some. The action regulation was actually pretty good once I got the hammers up off the rail. I figure I'll use the powder on the bushing of the keys. I can check to make sure that the knuckles are resting at the proper angle on the jacks, but again at first glance the whippens and everything look really good. Any other suggestions for lowering touchweight? I don't think this piano left the factory at 60g down weight.

Last edited by sroreilly; 09/05/19 01:31 PM.
Re: best way to lower pedal tension on a grand piano [Re: sroreilly] #2887292 09/05/19 01:56 PM
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You're on the right track. Lube all points of friction. Polish pins. Check action centers for freedom of movement. Keith Akins likes Mclube on the key pins (I'm pretty sure).

Pwg


Peter W. Grey, RPT
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pianodoctor57@gmail.com
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PK0T7_I_nV8
Re: best way to lower pedal tension on a grand piano [Re: P W Grey] #2887339 09/05/19 05:25 PM
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Originally Posted by P W Grey
You're on the right track. Lube all points of friction. Polish pins. Check action centers for freedom of movement. Keith Akins likes Mclube on the key pins (I'm pretty sure).

Pwg


You're right, PWG.

Any metal-to-felt surfaces or wood-to-metal or wood-to-wood moving joints can benefit from friction reduction by application of McLube which is a durable (but certainly not permanent) PTFE coating. McLube may be beneficially applied to:

1) bottom and sides of key frame
2) tops of brass capstans (not really worth it on WNG anodized aluminum)
3) balance and front keypins -- both at the top where the bushings rub and at the bottom to lubricate the keyhole.
4) keyframe guide pins
5) jack toes
6) bottom of drop screw

And in verticals...
1) sliding key covers
2) excellent for acrosonic-type spinet pickup finger guide pins

In all cases lubrication is a routine (but all too often neglected) service item that should be performed regularly and certainly before getting out the weights.


However, I don't advocate just putting weights on keys to see what it is an comparing it to somebody's "standard" even if that standard is on the internet and therefore must be correct (!?!?!). If there is a sensation of excessive playing effort, then it is time to start investigating .... but it may be that weights will never disclose the problem.


Keith Akins, RPT
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Re: best way to lower pedal tension on a grand piano [Re: kpembrook] #2887408 09/05/19 09:56 PM
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sroreilly Offline OP
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Originally Posted by kpembrook
[quote=P W Grey]
However, I don't advocate just putting weights on keys to see what it is an comparing it to somebody's "standard" even if that standard is on the internet and therefore must be correct (!?!?!). If there is a sensation of excessive playing effort, then it is time to start investigating .... but it may be that weights will never disclose the problem.



I agree with this. Having said that, I am comparing this piano action to an august forster, bosendorfer, and baldwin all with renner actions. They all feel noticeably lighter. My crude weight measurements seem to confirm my suspicion that the down weight is "heavy". I think this has been caused by stagnation.

Thank you again for the information. I don't think I have the mcclube, Ill have to order some =)

Re: best way to lower pedal tension on a grand piano [Re: sroreilly] #2887498 09/06/19 07:14 AM
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Keith,

There are several formulations of Mclube (or at least there used to be). Which one(s) do you prefer?

Pwg


Peter W. Grey, RPT
New Hampshire Seacoast
www.seacoastpianodoctor.com
pianodoctor57@gmail.com
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