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Joined: Jan 2021
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Hello,
I recently purchased a new Yamaha C3X grand piano. I tested the model at the music store and really liked the touch. It didn't feel too heavy. The piano that arrived to my house feels a lot heavier. It's brand new, so never been played before.

I was wondering if the action will loosen up a bit? I'm hoping the touch weight gets a bit lighter as I'm getting fatigued.

Any info is appreciated!
thanks

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Have you contacted the store that sold you the piano?


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Hello, and welcome to Piano World!

Like Carey said, I'd contact the dealer and mention the heavier feel of the action to them, and see what they say.

Also, I do think the action will smooth out and become less heavy in time, but it depends on how much time it may take. A good servicing by an experienced tech, who understands how to lubricate certain friction points on the action, with special piano action lube products, can make a difference.

But I think contacting the dealer is a good first step in rectifying the issue.

Congratulation on your new Yamaha C3X, by-the-way! smile

Rick


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Are there a lot of rugs and "muting" kind of surfaces in your home? Those can dampen the sound of your piano and make the touch feel heavier because you have to expend more effort to play. But I would also talk to your dealer and see if there's something they can do.


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Is this the same piano you tried at the dealer?

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One thing you could do is measure the down weight with some coins with the pedal down. I think there some YT videos showing how.


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Hi! Yamahas can be heavy when new, and it could be that the shop floor had more hard surfaces for the sound to bounce off than your home does or it could be something else.

Either way it might help to call the shop and see what they say. The piano might loosen off over time as is common with Yamaha or it might not if there are any humidity issues.

Check the humidity in your home, and also book an appointment with a technician who can regulate and voice the piano.

Good luck

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As pianists we often meld sound and touch together and call it "feel".

I would guess that you did not get the actual piano you played. No worries, The C3x is a very consistent piano. I believe you have one that has not received the same voicing (or play) as the piano you played in the showroom. The sound is a little warmer and to get the same brightness as the one you played in the showroom you have to play harder, therefore the feeling of a heavier action.

I would play the piano as-is for a week or so. I personally enjoy a warmly voiced piano and you might fall in love. But after a couple dozen hours of play, the action will be a little played and it will be time to call the dealer. Ask for a complimentary voicing (maybe ask that now, but put it off for a couple of weeks).

You have a great piano and I am certain it will be the perfect instrument for you after a little TLC.

My 2 cents,


Rich Galassini
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First off, congratulations on your purchase. C3s can be terrific!

The piano could be objectively heavier whether the same piano or a different piano.
The piano could be the same but your perception has changed.
The change in acoustic and environment may have changed your perception.

The action will lighten up a bit over time as the felts compress, but may take longer than you desire or be insufficient.

I think Rich's advice of playing it for another week as is, is good advice. I would not be overly concerned but I would express my concern to the dealer. The Yamaha C3 is a lot of money and you deserve superb support from your dealer.

See how you feel in a week or so.
BTW, what repertoire are you playing and what did the C3 replace? An upright? A Digital? Another Grand?


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I'll take a week and play...but I have to be careful, I notice it fatiguing me...my forearm, the under part...muscle belly is getting sore. I've always had that, but seems to be happening quicker.

I'll call the dealer as well and see what they say. They threw in 2 free tunings...and said I should wait one month before getting it tuned.

I had a 5'8" Wissner piano that was about 100 years old. It had a lot of work but was starting to need more...inconsistent touch etc...and on the heavier side.

I hope I made the right decision. I'm concerned about the pains in my arms. I plan on trying to find a teacher who is knowledgable with these issues. I bet a lot of it is my technique.

thanks all!

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Originally Posted by jankowjaSF
I hope I made the right decision. I'm concerned about the pains in my arms.

FWIW, unless that C3 is dysfunctionally heavy, I mean on the order of 20% or more too much resistance/inertia etc the pains in your arms are more likely from your approach to playing and it would definitely be a great idea to work with a teacher who can help with that. Good luck!


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Forgot to mention, if anyone has great websites that give good advice about avoiding pain, I'd appreciate that. I found so many, but not sure which is the best

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My first thought was to wonder if you're sitting high enough. When I'm playing my elbows are a little higher than right angle so that gravity is doing a bit of the work. Also, teachers always tell you to relax your wrists. There's a lot of advice that you can find online:

https://www.google.com/search?q=piano+relax+wrists

I think instead of searching for how to avoid pain, you should look for how to play ergonomically. The result (reduced/eliminated pain) should be the same but I think you'll have better luck finding resources.


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What TwoCats said ...

Yamaha - https://www.yamaha.com/en/musical_instrument_guide/piano/play/play002.html

Physical exercise - Relax, take a break, don't over do it

Last edited by Withindale; 01/24/21 01:49 PM. Reason: TwoCats

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The friction in your piano's action should be measured. It is quick and easy to do. If it's high, your dealer should address it, free of charge. Once that is done, the static down weight will be known. That's a parameter of limited importance, but your dealer should know what is typical of Yamaha pianos, and therefore if your piano is somehow out of the normal range. As to technique to help avoid injuries, this teacher has several videos, all of which are excellent. Here's one.

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thanks!

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It's really beyond the scope of this forum to go into details about piano technique and how you should be playing to avoid pain, but you might find some help on the Pianist's Corner.

Also on Facebook there's the Piano Technique Discussion Group, and there's a group dedicated to the study of Dorothy Taubman's teaching.

There's another website I think called Freeing the Caged Bird by Barbara Lister-Sink, and there's also the Golandsky Institute. There's a pianist in the UK called Penelope Roskell who has her own website and claims to be an injury specialist, she teaches at Trinity Laban Conservatoire in London.

If you tell us your location it might be possible for someone here to recommend some help more local to you.

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thank you everyone...I'm located in San Francisco, CA...I've done a quick google search for specialists...but no luck yet. I will call some instructors this week...to see if they can help or if they know of a specialist .

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Originally Posted by jankowjaSF
thank you everyone...I'm located in San Francisco, CA...I've done a quick google search for specialists...but no luck yet. I will call some instructors this week...to see if they can help or if they know of a specialist .

I have a few friends who have worked with the Taubman institute and some who are in the Matthay Association and they may be able to help.

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When I bought my C3 in 2012, it had a somewhat heavier action than my previous piano. I knew this already because I specifically picked that C3. My tech measured the key weight and it was medium. It took a few weeks of practice sessions and I adapted to the heavier action without any injury. I kept the practice sessions short at first and slowly lengthened the sessions as my fingers, wrists, and arms grew stronger. I was also able to quickly adapt to other pianos touch weight because I had built up strength.

Talk to the dealer and perhaps your first tuning could include some regulation work. If the action is smooth, it does really compensate for heavier touch weight. Congratulations on your C3X. You bought a really beautiful piano that is a really beautiful and capable instrument.


J & J
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