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D-Type Spring & Loop Grand Action
#3004365 07/19/20 12:26 PM
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I finally got round to adding a page to my website that I've been meaning to have for ages. It's about the D-Type Spring & Loop grand action, made by the thousand by English action maker Herrburger Brooks. (Also sometimes called the 'simplex' action).

I don't know that any US maker had an equivalent. There are a cut-down type of grand action, without a repetition lever. There were fitted to the smallest and cheapest grands in a maker's range.

Apparently these actions were produced until 1967, but mostly you see them in pianos much older than that.

If you've not seen this kind of action, you might find it interesting: http://www.davidboyce.co.uk/d-type-spring-and-loop-grand-action.php

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Re: D-Type Spring & Loop Grand Action
David Boyce #3004416 07/19/20 03:49 PM
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Interesting page David. I've come across a few of these pianos under various names and they're all pretty awful to play! These baby grands are one instance where I'd recommend someone buys a good digital instead of working on one of these.

Some technicians try to say the Blüthner patent is a D-type, but of course it's not. It's not quite a double escapement but it does have good repetition once you know where the point of sound is. Point of sound is a pianists term for where in the key travel the sound happens, I don't remember the equivalent technicians term.

Re: D-Type Spring & Loop Grand Action
David Boyce #3004421 07/19/20 04:04 PM
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Very interesting. A slight variation from a typical upright action. I can see how it got the name Simplex.


-Bill L. - former tuner-technician
Re: D-Type Spring & Loop Grand Action
Joseph Fleetwood #3004425 07/19/20 04:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Joseph Fleetwood
Interesting page David. I've come across a few of these pianos under various names and they're all pretty awful to play! These baby grands are one instance where I'd recommend someone buys a good digital instead of working on one of these.

Some technicians try to say the Blüthner patent is a D-type, but of course it's not. It's not quite a double escapement but it does have good repetition once you know where the point of sound is. Point of sound is a pianists term for where in the key travel the sound happens, I don't remember the equivalent technicians term.

No indeed, the Bluthner Patent Action is a different thing altogther! I was contemplating a page about that too, or about Bluthner more generally.

Dr. Brian Capleton in "Piano Action Regulating" says on p95, of the D-Type Spring & Loop Action "The action is as much capable of sensitive repetition as the roller action, when it is well regulated". Well, I don't see how that can be! It has half the components! And in most of the nasty little pianos you find them in, the age is such that felt and leather parts are worn and moth-eaten, and the action not CAPABLE of well-regulation.

Re: D-Type Spring & Loop Grand Action
WBLynch #3004426 07/19/20 04:21 PM
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Originally Posted by WBLynch
Very interesting. A slight variation from a typical upright action. I can see how it got the name Simplex.


I think it was considered technically wrong to call it a Simplex action though, because Simplex was a trade name for some other kind of piano mechanism. Or something!

But yes, it's more like an upright action. And there are still lots of them around, in the UK!

Re: D-Type Spring & Loop Grand Action
David Boyce #3004520 07/19/20 10:01 PM
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Doesn't this type of action go back to the 1840s or thereabouts, maybe even earlier? Many square grands have a variation of this type of action.


JG
Re: D-Type Spring & Loop Grand Action
David Boyce #3004640 07/20/20 07:23 AM
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Yes I think so. I have a client who bought an old Collard & Collard from, I'd say, about 1875, and it has an action that is somewhat similar. Not possible to get a good end-on shot of the action, as the action 'brackets' are solid hardwood.


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