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Piano near the sea #609313
02/08/08 07:43 AM
02/08/08 07:43 AM
Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 1,192
Torquay, Devon, England
cruiser Offline OP
1000 Post Club Member
cruiser  Offline OP
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 1,192
Torquay, Devon, England
As yet I haven't received a response to this question over at the Piano form, so I thought I'd try here smile

We've recently bought a house near the Baltic sea in northern Germany which is large enough (the house, not the sea!) for the grand piano which I can't wait to buy.

The house is located approximately 0.5 Km from the water's edge and my question is, could a piano suffer adversely in this location - from salty air?


Michael
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Re: Piano near the sea #609314
02/08/08 07:46 AM
02/08/08 07:46 AM
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,866
Massachusetts
R
Roy123 Offline
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Roy123  Offline
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R

Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,866
Massachusetts
Yes. I have spoken to a piano tech on Cape Cod, which is along the Atlantic Coast in the NE portion of the US, and she indicated that rusty strings are very common there.

Re: Piano near the sea #609315
02/08/08 08:26 AM
02/08/08 08:26 AM
Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 2,598
Strong, Maine
David Jenson Offline
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David Jenson  Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 2,598
Strong, Maine
They suffer somewhat. I have many customers in and around the Casco Bay area (Portland, ME), and some rust on strings and pins is common, but not universal. If attention is paid to humidity control and the piano is kept closed most of the time the effects are minimized.

That distance should be no problem. Most of the rust I see is in really old houses right ON the water.

David


David L. Jenson
Tuning - Repairs - Refurbishing
Jenson's Piano Service
-----
Re: Piano near the sea #609316
02/08/08 11:26 AM
02/08/08 11:26 AM
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 2,015
Murphys, Ca
K
Keith Roberts Offline
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Keith Roberts  Offline
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K

Joined: May 2004
Posts: 2,015
Murphys, Ca
In Hawaii the pianos that were within 1/4 mile or 0.5 Km from the water had far more rust and such. Of course the constant warm temperature has a lot to do with it. Predominant wind direction too. I can smell the salt in the air when you get into it. You have to assess your particular location. An Edwards string cover, made of wool, will help keep the strings from rusting.


Keith Roberts
Keith's Piano Service
Hathaway Pines,Ca
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Re: Piano near the sea #609317
02/08/08 11:55 AM
02/08/08 11:55 AM
Joined: May 2007
Posts: 1,645
D
Dave Stahl Offline
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Dave Stahl  Offline
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Posts: 1,645
I tune several pianos on the coast. The climate on our coast is not tropical. In fact, most of the time it's quite cool and often very foggy.

A newish grand that I service has been in a place of business about 2 blocks from the Pacific Ocean for about 2 years. We put an Edwards cover on the strings and have had no rust issues at all. Interestingly, the scuffing that the sustain pedal gets from shoes grinding little granules of salt into the shining coating has caused it to rust.

Other pianos I service there have heater bars in them and have had no problems whatsoever.

If you are 0.5 km from the salt sea air, I would recommend that you get a string cover and a Piano Life Saver unit appropriate for your area.


Promote Harmony in the Universe...Tune your piano!

Dave Stahl, RPT
Piano Technician's Guild
San Jose, CA
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http://dstahlpiano.net
Re: Piano near the sea #609318
02/08/08 02:29 PM
02/08/08 02:29 PM
Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 1,192
Torquay, Devon, England
cruiser Offline OP
1000 Post Club Member
cruiser  Offline OP
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Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 1,192
Torquay, Devon, England
Thanks for your advice everyone! smile


Michael
Re: Piano near the sea #609319
02/08/08 05:17 PM
02/08/08 05:17 PM
Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 2,598
Strong, Maine
David Jenson Offline
2000 Post Club Member
David Jenson  Offline
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Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 2,598
Strong, Maine
Could you let that poor dog out!

David


David L. Jenson
Tuning - Repairs - Refurbishing
Jenson's Piano Service
-----
Re: Piano near the sea #609320
02/08/08 06:37 PM
02/08/08 06:37 PM
Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 338
A
Artisan Piano Offline
Full Member
Artisan Piano  Offline
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A

Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 338
Prevailing wind conditions are an important factor. If you have on-shore winds you can pretty much count on salt spray on everything. How choppy the water is in the area makes a difference too. One clue is to look at all the metal fixtures on the house, screen frames, door hardware, etc; this will probably indicate the extent of the problems. Ask the neighbors.
In some areas where I live everything rusts badly in a matter of 2 or 3 years, electronic equipment dies in about the same amount of time. In other areas, just as close to the ocean, where the winds run parallel or off shore the problem is not so significant.
String covers are essential, I also recommend keeping the piano closed up when not in use. Under extreme conditions, I recommend a piano cover too. It's amazing how much gets through the small openings in the cabinets, even the hinge across the cover of a grand.
>There is now a product, Bull Frog, which emits a vapor that protects metal, I haven't started using it yet, but other technicians in my area are and are praising it. They use the cups. (Anyone on the forum know about this stuff?)
http://www.bull-frog.com/products/


Steven
RPT
Re: Piano near the sea #609321
02/08/08 07:15 PM
02/08/08 07:15 PM
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,292
North Carolina
Ron Alexander Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Ron Alexander  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,292
North Carolina
HAHAHA David that's funny!!!!

Steven, the Bull Frog products are new to me, but I sure am gonna find some of them. I dont see a heck of a lot of rust on piano strings since I dont live near the ocean, but I want some of those strips for my toolbox. Thanks for posting that link.


-----------------
Ron Alexander
Piano Tuner-Technician
Re: Piano near the sea #609322
02/08/08 07:45 PM
02/08/08 07:45 PM
Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 338
A
Artisan Piano Offline
Full Member
Artisan Piano  Offline
Full Member
A

Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 338
Ron, the strips are supposed to work well in tool boxes etc.


Steven
RPT
Re: Piano near the sea #609323
02/08/08 07:59 PM
02/08/08 07:59 PM
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,292
North Carolina
Ron Alexander Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Ron Alexander  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,292
North Carolina
I read that on the website. I hate having to clean the tips of my tuning hammer now and then. I definitely am going to find those strips. Will let you know how they work for me.


-----------------
Ron Alexander
Piano Tuner-Technician
Re: Piano near the sea #609324
02/09/08 05:32 PM
02/09/08 05:32 PM
Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 3,919
Vancouver Island, BC, Canada
Supply Offline
3000 Post Club Member
Supply  Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 3,919
Vancouver Island, BC, Canada
There is a great deal of variability of environmental factors which may or may not affect a piano. Proximity to the ocean in itself means nothing.

I live on an island, my house looks down onto the ocean, about .5 mi away. My pianos do not show any signs of rust that I could attribute to salt air. The same goes for my clients' pianos, who mostly live in the same situation. Do I see rust on pianos? For sure. But the fact that there is no rust on other pianos in the area tells me it is not a question of location, probably this piano was stored or moved incorrectly in the past.

We have fairly dry summers. Occasional rain, but generally very moderate humidity. I would suggest that rust on pianos in Hawaii an New England has more to do with the high humidity and muggy summers than the ocean.

Surf and wind can surely be a factor, but the Baltic is hardly known as a surfer's paradise. You may experience rain in the summer there, but not prolonged periods of hot & muggy, high humidity conditions. Bringing up Hawaii is a bit of a ridiculous comparison. (Nice dream though). cool

I would say not to worry - no extra precautions are needed. If you need more assurance, take a look at pianos in the area - in school, churches, stores etc. Ask local technicians - they will have a wealth of first hand knowledge of local conditions affecting pianos. thumb


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