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File, sand and/or needle inside my Baldwin?
#3050324 11/28/20 01:18 AM
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Hi all...
Just bought a Baldwin Hamilton 45"in VG shape...except for slight grooves in hammers.
They're not trenches...but I assume getting them back in shape would soften and round the tone a bit.
Question: Can I sand, file and/or needle the hammers without taking the keyboard out?
Put protective cloth below the hammers...and vacuum dst and debris?
Previous owner had it tuned recently...but I intend to have it regulated and retuned after having it moved.
All thoughts/opinions welcomed. Dan

Re: File, sand and/or needle inside my Baldwin?
DanD #3050367 11/28/20 06:43 AM
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Why not leave that to the piano technician? There may be other things affecting the tone.


Ian Russell
Schiedmayer & Soehne, 1925 Model 14, 140cm
Ibach, 1905 F-IV, 235cm
Re: File, sand and/or needle inside my Baldwin?
DanD #3050372 11/28/20 07:00 AM
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You can't file the hammers without removing the action (keyboard doesn't come along on a vertical piano). It is best left to a tech. You might post a picture on the tech forum to get a recommendation on whether it's time for this or not. Slight grooves are common even on new pianos.

Re: File, sand and/or needle inside my Baldwin?
DanD #3050384 11/28/20 08:09 AM
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You can voice with needles using an upright piano voicing tool, or put a few strokes on each hammer with a small brass brush (a temporary but effective solution, if you don’t mind spewing a little felt dust inside your piano) without removing the action. But that’s about all. You need to have clear access to all sides of the hammer to properly reshape them...though I suspect some “tech” around here has been using a dremel to remove the grooves off hammers by squaring off the hammer’s contact point with the string (a really bad idea).


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Re: File, sand and/or needle inside my Baldwin?
DanD #3050432 11/28/20 10:31 AM
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Hello DanD, and congratulations on your Baldwin/Hamilton Studio upright!

Those pianos are known for their playability and durability, and have that distinctive "Baldwin tone", usually.

On reshaping the hammers, I agree with the others that the action would need to be removed, or at least tilted back far enough to have access to the back side of the hammers.

If you are going to have a tech come out to do some tuning and regulation, you can talk to them about what you want to do regarding the hammer reshaping, and I'm sure they have experience at it.

To reshape the hammers, as terminaldegree said, you need the same access to both sides of the hammers. You have enough room on the top side to use a sanding paddle, large emery board, or strips of sandpaper to do the reshaping on the front side of the hammers. But there is not enough room on the back side of the hammers with the action in place and the reshaping would be uneven to say the least.

I also agree with terminaldegree about using a small brass wire brush lightly on the crown of the hammers as a temporary measure to tame the harshness a bit.

Enjoy your new-to-you Baldwin/Hamilton 243!

Rick


Piano enthusiast and amateur musician: "Treat others the way you would like to be treated". Yamaha C7. YouTube Channel
Re: File, sand and/or needle inside my Baldwin?
DanD #3050539 11/28/20 03:48 PM
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Congrats on your Baldwin🙂 I would recommend looking at this thread on using a alcohol/fabric softener liquid to “chemically voice” your hammers if you are going to do it yourself. You can use a brush and you want have to remove anything ...

http://forum.pianoworld.com/ubbthre...e-tone-of-piano-hammers.html#Post2960174

Re: File, sand and/or needle inside my Baldwin?
DanD #3050623 11/28/20 07:02 PM
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Thanks all...
Will play it safe and have tech review and prescribe. There's no rush
and it may already be almost there.
Yes...very happy with purchase, thanks again. Dan

Re: File, sand and/or needle inside my Baldwin?
DanD #3050943 11/29/20 03:50 PM
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One thing to beware of. If you don’t use proper procedures and technique in shaping hammers on a upright you would be surprised how easy it is to break hammers right off. Then you’ve got more problems than you wish you had.


-Bill L. - former tuner-technician
Re: File, sand and/or needle inside my Baldwin?
WBLynch #3051021 11/29/20 07:43 PM
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Thnx, Bill. I'm too chicken to try too hard. Dan


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