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Dampp Chaser question #2925467 12/21/19 02:55 PM
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Gesualdo Offline OP
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I have a be a Yamaha S400B. I love it! I live in Minneapolis where humidity fluctuates from 10%-90% over the year. I try to maintain my piano at 42% humidity. I’ve been able to do this pretty well using a dehumidifier and air conditioning in the summer and then the furnace humidifier and a room humidifier in the winter. However, I seem to spend more time trying to regulate the humidity and keep it consistent than I do playing! :-). I know dampp chaser’s can be pretty good in upright pianos but do they really work well on a 6 1/2 foot grand piano?

Thanks,
Mike


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Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: Gesualdo] #2925511 12/21/19 05:09 PM
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P W Grey Offline
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They don't work AS WELL in a grand, however with the addition of an undercover as well as possibly a full top cover, they can be an excellent augmentation to your room control.

Pwg


Peter W. Grey, RPT
New Hampshire Seacoast
www.seacoastpianodoctor.com
pianodoctor57@gmail.com
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PK0T7_I_nV8
Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: Gesualdo] #2925568 12/21/19 07:53 PM
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Rick_Parks Offline
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Peter might do a double take on this one smile
If you do not wish to be bothered about the room climate control-- then yes, I would say a Damp-Chaser system (the double bucket system) would work to keep it in order.

I installed one at the local high school years back on a 7' grand there...The instrument was continually fluctuating wildly sharp and then flat, because they could not control the stage and auditorium... The Damp-Chaser has kept it within 3 cents each time I've been out since. Been about 6 years now. Just tuned it the other week-- was slightly more out because they hadn't tuned it the last round.

So, the system does definitely keep the instrument stable for tunings. What I've always questioned was the long-term possibilities of problems they might result in for the instrument (soundboard and pinblock in particular). No testing has ever been done from this standpoint. Ahhh, but this has all been argued many a time, so I'll stick with a, 'go-for-it', if you cannot be bothered to keep the room controled. Always best to keep the room controlled so that the piano has 1 climate to dwell in.

Now, does somebody want to help Peter up off the floor?

Last edited by Rick_Parks; 12/21/19 07:56 PM.

Parks and Sons Piano Service
www.parksandsonspiano.com
Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: Gesualdo] #2925575 12/21/19 08:17 PM
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MarkL Offline
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I live in similar climate and found that using this programmable controller for the humidifier and dehumidifier simplified things for me. It will choose which device to send power to based on the room humidity so at least you don't have to fiddle with that part. So when my central furnace humidifier can't provide enough humidity, the standalone humidifier will be turned on to help. When the central air conditioning can't remove enough moisture, the dehumidifier will be turned on to help. I also like the controller because the humidity sensor is on a cable which I hung under my soundboard.


Yamaha P90, Kawai GL-10
Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: MarkL] #2925577 12/21/19 08:21 PM
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MarkL, if only there were more people like you out there! smile The world would be a much better place to work in!

Last edited by Rick_Parks; 12/21/19 08:22 PM.

Parks and Sons Piano Service
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Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: Gesualdo] #2925584 12/21/19 08:55 PM
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Bosendorff Offline
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Hi Mike,

I live where RH fluctuations are even worse than where you are. For sure a DC system will help protect your piano and keep the tunings more stable, even without your room control. One thing to follow with discipline though with a grand is to always close the lid after playing. I personally use a custom electronic controller with my DC system as here the optimal setting for RH is not the same (see my sig if needed - still works perfectly after 7 years).

Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: Gesualdo] #2925596 12/21/19 10:11 PM
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Fidel Offline
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Here in Detroit humidity and temperature fluctuate wildly. My house is a sieve.

On my 7 foot grand the dampp chaser keeps me inside 5 cents but more typically 3. I do spot tunings every few months and a full tune twice a year. There is a lot of guess work that goes into deciding how much to "stretch" my piano's tuning but once I decide it pretty much stays there.


Scarlatti K. 466, 521, 434, 24
Haydn Hob. XVI/35, 36
Mendelssohn Op. 54
Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: Gesualdo] #2925597 12/21/19 10:17 PM
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LarryK Online Content
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I’m considering the purchase of a Yamaha DYUS1, a YUS1 with Disklavier and I don’t think it is recommended to install a DamppChaser inside with the electronics, is it?

I see there was an external system that went between the back posts:

BSV8PS-SB

but I can’t find it on the Dampp Chaser website. Is it still manufactured?

We live in New York City and our humidity does fluctuate between 20-70%+, I guess.

What are the risks of not installing one?


Yamaha U1 Silent Piano
Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: Gesualdo] #2925729 12/22/19 10:43 AM
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MarkL (quote)
I live in similar climate and found that using this programmable controller for the humidifier and dehumidifier simplified things for me.

I have for 2 years used this same controller by InkBird to regulate 2 DC dehumidifier rods on my grand. I don't need a humidifier in San Francisco, The unit is marketed to small commercial greenhouses and works flawlessly. It has a corded very accurate remote sensor that goes under the soundboard, while the unit itself with an LED readout mounts on the wall next to the piano. This allows me to easily keep an eye on the relative humidity of the soundboard.

Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: Gesualdo] #2925753 12/22/19 11:44 AM
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P W Grey Offline
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LarryK,

You simply discuss the matter with your tech/installer. He/she will order it. It is VERY effective.


Rick,

With effort I have picked my self up off the floor, a little bruised and confused, but nonetheless happy. 😁

Pwg


Peter W. Grey, RPT
New Hampshire Seacoast
www.seacoastpianodoctor.com
pianodoctor57@gmail.com
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PK0T7_I_nV8
Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: P W Grey] #2925757 12/22/19 11:50 AM
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Originally Posted by P W Grey
LarryK,

You simply discuss the matter with your tech/installer. He/she will order it. It is VERY effective.


Rick,

With effort I have picked my self up off the floor, a little bruised and confused, but nonetheless happy. 😁

Pwg


Thanks. When the time comes, I will order it. So, it is effective even though it is mounted on the back side? Is the back covered?


Yamaha U1 Silent Piano
Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: Gesualdo] #2925777 12/22/19 01:28 PM
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It is even better! It is a pain in the neck to install, plus you have to move the piano out from the wall to replace humidifier wicks, but it does in fact work better than the "normal" system.

Pwg

Last edited by P W Grey; 12/22/19 01:29 PM.

Peter W. Grey, RPT
New Hampshire Seacoast
www.seacoastpianodoctor.com
pianodoctor57@gmail.com
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PK0T7_I_nV8
Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: Rick_Parks] #2925829 12/22/19 04:21 PM
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MarkL Offline
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Originally Posted by Rick_Parks
MarkL, if only there were more people like you out there! smile The world would be a much better place to work in!

Actually the last time my tuner was here he told me I was putting him out of business. It had been a year since the previous tuning and he said there was nothing to do. I took him out to lunch so he wouldn't go hungry.


Yamaha P90, Kawai GL-10
Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: Gesualdo] #2925857 12/22/19 06:10 PM
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I cannot speak with absolute certainty as to precisely why it seems to work better, but it does seem to. I'm sure it has something to do with the back cover keeping things enclosed. One could possibly argue that a back cover would help the normal internal system as well and I would agree with that argument.

Some have suggested that the addition and subtraction of moisture from the crowned side of the sound board (internal) is detrimental to the SB in and of itself, whereas placing it on the opposite side (the back) would enhance the construction method in the SB. This may have merit but I have no accurate data to prove it one way or another. All I can say is that the one back side system I have installed took an insanely crazy unstable piano and turned it into a rock solid instrument that barely needs touch up once a year. (But what a project installing the thing!...😩😂😲😣😢😞😂😩😲). Had no choice though because there was absolutely no place to put it internally.

Oh, I almost forgot. The humidistat is located INSIDE the piano, whereas the humidifier/dehumidifier is located outside. This may also have something to do with it...maybe .

Pwg

Last edited by P W Grey; 12/22/19 06:11 PM.

Peter W. Grey, RPT
New Hampshire Seacoast
www.seacoastpianodoctor.com
pianodoctor57@gmail.com
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PK0T7_I_nV8
Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: P W Grey] #2925865 12/22/19 06:31 PM
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LarryK Online Content
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Originally Posted by P W Grey
I cannot speak with absolute certainty as to precisely why it seems to work better, but it does seem to. I'm sure it has something to do with the back cover keeping things enclosed. One could possibly argue that a back cover would help the normal internal system as well and I would agree with that argument.
N
Some have suggested that the addition and subtraction of moisture from the crowned side of the sound board (internal) is detrimental to the SB in and of itself, whereas placing it on the opposite side (the back) would enhance the construction method in the SB. This may have merit but I have no accurate data to prove it one way or another. All I can say is that the one back side system I have installed took an insanely crazy unstable piano and turned it into a rock solid instrument that barely needs touch up once a year. (But what a project installing the thing!...😩😂😲😣😢😞😂😩😲). Had no choice though because there was absolutely no place to put it internally.

Oh, I almost forgot. The humidistat is located INSIDE the piano, whereas the humidifier/dehumidifier is located outside. This may also have something to do with it...maybe .

Pwg


Interesting. Thanks for that information. Does the back cover change the sound?


Yamaha U1 Silent Piano
Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: Bosendorff] #2925918 12/22/19 10:09 PM
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Brilliant!


Andrew Kraus, Pianist
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1929 Steinert 6'10" (Close copy of New York S&S "B")
Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: Gesualdo] #2925920 12/22/19 10:17 PM
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P W Grey Offline
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No change in sound. It's basically high quality speaker cloth.


Pwg


Peter W. Grey, RPT
New Hampshire Seacoast
www.seacoastpianodoctor.com
pianodoctor57@gmail.com
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PK0T7_I_nV8
Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: Gesualdo] #2926191 12/23/19 06:37 PM
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Will make one more point about the Damp-Chasers. If you are going to order the system, make a commitment now that you WILL do the upkeep that is needed:

- Water must be added EACH time the light comes on for it (you cannot just ignore it)-- else your humidifier pads will dry up and basically, in the end, destroy the sensors they rest on.

- The Pads for the humidifier are required to be changed 2 times a year (normally by the tech- but you could do it if he/she showed you how)--- or else, you'll end up with a crusty mess in the humidifier buckets!

- AND, make sure the water does not stand in the hose to the buckets--- clear the hose out each time completely (this is the biggest challenge for the customers, in my opinion). A slime will build up, turn black, and mildew will set-in in the hoses and spread throughout.

- OH, and NEVER EVER unplug the system and forget to plug it back in------- that's probably 2nd place on the list of things that happen.


Just, let me be clear-- these systems can quickly become a REAL MESS if they are not paid attention to properly. I would say that it only really takes 1 year of neglect (from what I've seen), and you'll be paying extra to clean it all up.

I'm sure your tech will inform you on all this at the time--- but just wanted to give you a heads up that all is not hands off and let it do the work.


Parks and Sons Piano Service
www.parksandsonspiano.com
Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: Rick_Parks] #2926222 12/23/19 07:55 PM
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LarryK Online Content
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Originally Posted by Rick_Parks
Will make one more point about the Damp-Chasers. If you are going to order the system, make a commitment now that you WILL do the upkeep that is needed:

- Water must be added EACH time the light comes on for it (you cannot just ignore it)-- else your humidifier pads will dry up and basically, in the end, destroy the sensors they rest on.

- The Pads for the humidifier are required to be changed 2 times a year (normally by the tech- but you could do it if he/she showed you how)--- or else, you'll end up with a crusty mess in the humidifier buckets!

- AND, make sure the water does not stand in the hose to the buckets--- clear the hose out each time completely (this is the biggest challenge for the customers, in my opinion). A slime will build up, turn black, and mildew will set-in in the hoses and spread throughout.

- OH, and NEVER EVER unplug the system and forget to plug it back in------- that's probably 2nd place on the list of things that happen.


Just, let me be clear-- these systems can quickly become a REAL MESS if they are not paid attention to properly. I would say that it only really takes 1 year of neglect (from what I've seen), and you'll be paying extra to clean it all up.

I'm sure your tech will inform you on all this at the time--- but just wanted to give you a heads up that all is not hands off and let it do the work.


Wise words, thanks for posting these warnings.

I would program events in my iPhone to make sure I did the necessary maintenance.

Do you use distilled water or regular tap water?

Last edited by LarryK; 12/23/19 07:56 PM.

Yamaha U1 Silent Piano
Re: Dampp Chaser question [Re: Gesualdo] #2926223 12/23/19 07:56 PM
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These issues are minimized with the use of distilled water. Of course use of the DC pad treatment is mandatory.

As with cars...neglect leads to problems and poor performance.

Pwg


Peter W. Grey, RPT
New Hampshire Seacoast
www.seacoastpianodoctor.com
pianodoctor57@gmail.com
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PK0T7_I_nV8
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