Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 2.5 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

SEARCH
Piano Forums & Piano World
What's Hot!!
Hurricane Irma & Our Piano Friends!
--------------------
Posting Pictures on the Forums
-------------------
Forums RULES & HELP
-------------------
ADVERTISE on Piano World
(ad)
Virtual Sheet Music
Download Sheet Music Instantly
Virtual Sheet Music - Classical Sheet Music Downloads
Sheet Music...
(125ad)
Piano Life Saver - Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
(ad)
Piano Buyer Guide
Piano Buyer Spring 2017
(ad)
4th Finger Enigma Resolved!
Schumann's 4th Finger Enigma Resolved!
Who's Online Now
104 registered members (Alexsms, Andy001, Agent88, ando, alfredo capurso, AZNpiano, 20 invisible), 1,918 guests, and 1 spider.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
(ad)
Estonia Pianos
Estonia Pianos
Quick Links to Useful Piano & Music Resources
Our Classified Ads
Find Piano Professionals-

*Piano Dealers - Piano Stores
*Piano Tuners
*Piano Teachers
*Piano Movers
*Piano Restorations
*Piano Manufacturers

Quick Links:
*Advertise On Piano World
*Free Piano Newsletter
*Online Piano Recitals
*Piano Recitals Index
*Piano & Music Accessories
*Live Piano Venues
*Music School Listings
* Buying a Piano
*Buying A Acoustic Piano
*Buying a Digital Piano
*Pianos for Sale
*Sell Your Piano
*How Old is My Piano?
*Directory/Site Map
*Virtual Piano
*Music Word Search
*Piano Videos
*Virtual Piano Chords & Scales
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
#610622 - 01/16/09 04:17 PM Cold in the church!  
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 1,959
RonTuner Offline
1000 Post Club Member
RonTuner  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 1,959
Chicagoland
Many churches reduce the temp. during the week to save on energy costs.... this one was the coldest yet!

54 degrees F. and 14% humidity in the back for the Steinway upright, 58 degrees and 15% humidity in the front for the Conover grand.

Good thing I had my long-johns on!

Ron Koval

(ad 800)
PTG 2017 Convention
PTG Convention 2017 St Louis
#610623 - 01/16/09 05:55 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 476
Jeff A. Smith, RPT Offline
Full Member
Jeff A. Smith, RPT  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 476
Angola, Indiana USA
Once I became violently ill after tuning in a cold church. After that, I don't put up with it. Maybe now and then I'll tolerate 60 degrees, with warm clothing, but only if it's too much hassle to get the heat on. Usually I appeal to whoever's in charge, saying the piano should be tuned as close as possible to the temperature it'll be used at, explaining why.

Jeff


Jeff A. Smith
Registered Piano Technician
Indiana, USA
#610624 - 01/16/09 05:56 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 3,919
Supply Offline
3000 Post Club Member
Supply  Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 3,919
Vancouver Island, BC, Canada
Sometimes, sitting in the cold, I consider bringing along a little space heater to blow warm in my direction the next time...

#610625 - 01/16/09 06:00 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 476
Jeff A. Smith, RPT Offline
Full Member
Jeff A. Smith, RPT  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 476
Angola, Indiana USA
I've done that, or had one provided for me, but if you do it wrong the space heater will knock the tuning right out as you're working. Frustrating.

Jeff


Jeff A. Smith
Registered Piano Technician
Indiana, USA
(ad)
Piano & Music Accessories
piano accessories music gifts tuning and moving equipment
#610626 - 01/16/09 06:27 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 6,828
Jerry Groot RPT Offline
6000 Post Club Member
Jerry Groot RPT  Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 6,828
Grand Rapids Michigan
I have churches as low as 50 degree's. One time it was 48. Today was 60. Yes, back to work again finally!

I've been telling them to make it at least 60 in there. Even that is cold!


Jerry Groot RPT
Piano Technicians Guild
Grand Rapids, Michigan
www.grootpiano.com

We love to play BF2.
#610627 - 01/16/09 06:52 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 19,862
apple* Offline
apple*  Offline


Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 19,862
Kansas
silk long underwear

try Sierra trading post


accompanist/organist.. a non-MTNA teacher to a few

love and peace, Õun (apple in Estonian)
#610628 - 01/16/09 06:53 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 1,135
Sam Casey Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Sam Casey  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 1,135
SW Missouri
Frozen my keester in many a church. Done tunings in hat, coat and gloves. All in a days work.

#610629 - 01/16/09 07:03 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 33
Wayne Gregory Offline
Full Member
Wayne Gregory  Offline
Full Member

Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 33
Angier,NC
Several years back, I went into a large church in Raleigh, NC to tune a sanctuary grand. After a few minutes in a very brisk environment, I noticed an extremely cold breeze blowing across the piano. I pulled my coat together and kept working. It got colder and colder.
Finally, I went to the secretary in another building and asked if she could turn on a little heat.
She replied, "The computer-controlled system is broken and stuck on A/C. I have no control over it!"
With my usual tuning fee + a nice shiver factor fee, they won't forget me---and I surely won't FORGET THEM.
Wayne Gregory, Angier,NC

#610630 - 01/16/09 07:31 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 3,886
whippen boy Offline
3000 Post Club Member
whippen boy  Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Joined: May 2005
Posts: 3,886
San Francisco
One handy suggestion is to try to schedule a piano tuning immediately following the organ tuning (assuming it is a pipe organ smile ).

If the sanctuary is not within a few degrees of Sunday morning temperature when the organ tuners arrive, they will leave (and will likely bill for the trip). It doesn't take long for churches to learn that the heat MUST be on!

Since it takes organ chambers so long to come up to temperature, the heat needs to be on for about three hours prior to an organ tuning; by the time the organ tuners leave it should be at a very comfortable temperature throughout the sanctuary.

The only drawback is if the organ tuning takes all day, you'll be there rather late.

#610631 - 01/16/09 08:32 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 4,562
Bob Offline
4000 Post Club Member
Bob  Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 4,562
Florida
The last time the NAMM show was in Chicago, it was 10 below zero. It was so cold in there we were tuning with coats gloves and hats on. They had the dock doors open to unload trucks and the wind blew right in. That show is probably why a winter Namm show has never been to Chicago since.

#610632 - 01/16/09 11:49 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 2,009
Keith Roberts Offline
2000 Post Club Member
Keith Roberts  Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Joined: May 2004
Posts: 2,009
Murphys, Ca
I have always thought you had to tune a piano at the temperature it is played at. Just like using your tuning fork.

So as the church warms up, how flat does it go on the longer strings as compared to the shorter ones? How flat does a piano go with a 15* temperature change?

I won't tune the piano unless they do the routine they use on Sunday morning and then I add 2 degrees to the thermostat for the body heat factor. That's the only way it can be played with the organ.


Keith Roberts
Keith's Piano Service
Hathaway Pines,Ca
#610633 - 01/17/09 03:03 AM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,205
Dale Fox Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Dale Fox  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,205
Nor California Sacramento area
Quote
Originally posted by Bob:
The last time the NAMM show was in Chicago, it was 10 below zero. It was so cold in there we were tuning with coats gloves and hats on. They had the dock doors open to unload trucks and the wind blew right in. That show is probably why a winter Namm show has never been to Chicago since.
I believe it had more to do with complaints from the exhibitors about union strong-arm tactics than the weather. It got very expensive having to have a union member unplug the lights and move the furniture around. But it was cold. Brrrrr...


Dale Fox
Registered Piano Technician
Remanufacturing/Rebuilding
#610634 - 01/17/09 07:34 AM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 2,539
David Jenson Offline
2000 Post Club Member
David Jenson  Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 2,539
Maine
All in a day's work. Church music folks give a lot of references, so I try to "Git er Done".


David L. Jenson
Tuning - Repairs - Refurbishing
Jenson's Piano Service
-----
#610635 - 01/17/09 07:41 AM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 5,746
UnrightTooner Offline
5000 Post Club Member
UnrightTooner  Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 5,746
Bradford County, PA
Amen to that, brother! smile


Jeff Deutschle
Part-Time Tuner
Who taught the first chicken how to peck?
#610636 - 01/17/09 11:32 AM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 1,959
RonTuner Offline
1000 Post Club Member
RonTuner  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 1,959
Chicagoland
I left a note with the music contact that it may be better to tune after chuch when the building is warm if they are going to let the temperature drop that much during the week. It had never been that cold before... He knows and understands, we just deal with it the best we can.

Ron Koval

#610637 - 01/17/09 12:05 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 3,899
Bill Bremmer RPT Offline
3000 Post Club Member
Bill Bremmer RPT  Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 3,899
Madison, WI USA
Cold churches are the only place I am comfortable all year! I wear a short sleeve shirt with no undershirt all year long because most people have their homes heated too much for me while I work. I wear shorts and sandals in warm weather.

I have one of those coats that is actually one coat inside another. If it is cold in the church when I get there, I leave the inner coat on while I open up the piano, insert the mutes, etc. but after a few minutes tuning, I have to remove it. My tuning habits might be described as "high powered". I keep moving, full steam ahead and it generates a lot of body heat.


Bill Bremmer RPT
Madison WI USA
www.billbremmer.com
#610638 - 01/17/09 12:17 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 6,828
Jerry Groot RPT Offline
6000 Post Club Member
Jerry Groot RPT  Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 6,828
Grand Rapids Michigan
Most churches cannot afford to heat that large sanctuary 7 days a week. The extra cost would easily contribute thousands to their annual heating bill. It's cheaper to tune the piano an extra 3 times or so by a long shot and good for us too.


Jerry Groot RPT
Piano Technicians Guild
Grand Rapids, Michigan
www.grootpiano.com

We love to play BF2.
#610639 - 01/17/09 08:17 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 843
bellspiano Offline
500 Post Club Member
bellspiano  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: May 2004
Posts: 843
Boston, MA
This afternoon I tuned a new Chinese grand in a cold auditorium (54-58 F, yes, it rose slightly during the tuning) for a concert this evening. The impresario refused to turn on the heat on the grounds that it would be very expensive to do so. The concert is starting in 15 minutes -- I think the piano will be more in tune than it would have been if I hadn't been there, but I'm not sure. Uncomfortable situation in many ways.


Dorrie Bell
retired piano technician
Boston, MA
#610640 - 01/17/09 08:42 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 4,562
Bob Offline
4000 Post Club Member
Bob  Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 4,562
Florida
I found that unheated churches had higher ambient humidity, so the piano didn't drop in pitch as much in the winter. I kept my workshop at about 55 degrees in winter unless I was working in it. That kept the ambient humidity at about 25%

#610641 - 01/17/09 10:25 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 2,009
Keith Roberts Offline
2000 Post Club Member
Keith Roberts  Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Joined: May 2004
Posts: 2,009
Murphys, Ca
Hey Dorrie. I think I would like to hear for myself what it sounds like. In your instance where you are tuning for a one time only thing, You give it your best shot to make an improvement. In a Church, you are tuning for the whole year. It is worth the extra expense and a little extra time.

If you have a chance to hear what it sounds like, the guesses you make would get better.


Keith Roberts
Keith's Piano Service
Hathaway Pines,Ca
#610642 - 01/18/09 12:02 AM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 1,135
Sam Casey Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Sam Casey  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 1,135
SW Missouri
Bob that is THE secret why church pianos stay at all in the winter. Low temp, higher humidity. Tough working conditions sometimes but it work out.

Bill I too wear short sleeve year round. Can't work in long sleeves. Also as soon as the outside temps get anywhere near 60 it's shorts till the snow flies again.

#610643 - 01/18/09 03:13 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 3,899
Bill Bremmer RPT Offline
3000 Post Club Member
Bill Bremmer RPT  Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 3,899
Madison, WI USA
I tune all of the pianos at the Frank Lloyd Wright estate near here. They all leave in October and go to Arizona. The buildings aren't heated during the winter, so the pianos go as cold as the buildings get which is below 0ºF. However, when I return in June to tune them, they are always right at A-440.

One grey market Yamaha they have in a chapel always gets all stuck with verdigris. I found that cutting the Protech 50-50 with pure acetone really cuts the muck and makes the piano play well all season.


Bill Bremmer RPT
Madison WI USA
www.billbremmer.com
#610644 - 01/18/09 05:07 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 843
bellspiano Offline
500 Post Club Member
bellspiano  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: May 2004
Posts: 843
Boston, MA
Hi, Keith --
Thanks for your comments. I hope to hear more from the pianist, who hired me herself (she's a longtime customer) after vainly trying to get the theater to tune the piano. During the tuning, I kept thinking, would the strings render better if the hall were twenty degrees warmer? It was one of those little Chinese grands with a sudden string rise to get from the agraffe to the pins, not to mention a tight block. Bringing strings up to pitch was hard, lowering pitch from above was hopeless. I can't imagine that string flexibility is that dependent on temperature, but I did wonder.


Dorrie Bell
retired piano technician
Boston, MA
#610645 - 01/19/09 08:56 AM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 5,746
UnrightTooner Offline
5000 Post Club Member
UnrightTooner  Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 5,746
Bradford County, PA
When you think about it, if a building in not heated, the temperature changes more and the humidity less. I think the swings in humidity do more damage than the swings in temperature. As far as changing the tuning, I suppose that depends on how "hydroscopic" the sound board is.


Jeff Deutschle
Part-Time Tuner
Who taught the first chicken how to peck?
#610646 - 01/19/09 10:18 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 527
Mocheol Offline
500 Post Club Member
Mocheol  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 527
Dublin, Ireland
UnrightTooner.
I think you may mean hygroscopic.

Im not aware of any measuring device to assess how "hygroscopic" a soundboard is.

[moisture meters only measure moisture content they dont asess the hygroscopic nature of the material itself]

I think the only way that the hygroscopic nature of soundboard could be assessed would be in relation to notional external prevailing air conditions plus some idea of timber density and species.
Even then its accuracy would be questionable given the non-homogenic nature of timber.

If you know of some device or methods for assessing the hygroscopic qualities of timber I would be extremely interested to know.

Thank you


vcz
#610647 - 01/19/09 11:31 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 3,928
TimR Online content
3000 Post Club Member
TimR  Online Content
3000 Post Club Member

Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 3,928
Virginia, USA
Quote
Originally posted by Mocheol:
UnrightTooner.
If you know of some device or methods for assessing the hygroscopic qualities of timber I would be extremely interested to know.

Thank you
I don't even know the definition of hydroscopic.

But measuring the moisture content of wood is dead simple. You just touch it with a moisture meter, it measures the electrical conductivity and gives you a read out in percentage moisture. We used them all the time when I worked for the paper industry.


gotta go practice
#610648 - 01/20/09 08:39 AM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 5,746
UnrightTooner Offline
5000 Post Club Member
UnrightTooner  Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 5,746
Bradford County, PA
Yes, I meant hygroscopic. I have forgotten how many times I have corrected other Deck Officers on this. shocked

Just measuring the moisture content will not tell you how much moisture a material may absorb. Or how much a soundboard's crown, and therefore the piano’s pitch, will change.


Jeff Deutschle
Part-Time Tuner
Who taught the first chicken how to peck?
#610649 - 01/20/09 04:24 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 527
Mocheol Offline
500 Post Club Member
Mocheol  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 527
Dublin, Ireland
In the absence then of precision instrumentation to assess soundboard or other piano timbers does the whole thing then not boil down to a question of individual judgement based on experience and perhaps some moisture readings.?


vcz
#610650 - 01/20/09 06:39 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 190
Josef Offline
Full Member
Josef  Offline
Full Member

Joined: May 2001
Posts: 190
Every year the Sunday of or before Christmas I get up at three thirty in the morning and visit several churchs to do Harpsichords that are loaned or rented for cantatas or Handel's Massiah. The only way to survive is to demand the church turn on the heat over night and a fresh tuning in the wee hours of the morning. Never had a complaint about a harpsichord not staying in tune for the full show.

#610651 - 01/21/09 07:42 PM Re: Cold in the church!  
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 843
bellspiano Offline
500 Post Club Member
bellspiano  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: May 2004
Posts: 843
Boston, MA
Good news to report -- the pianist for the concert on Jan. 17 that I wrote about above called to say that the piano was most satisfactory and the concert went very well. I am relieved. Thanks for the support I got here.

(I think that my phone messages to the pianist before and after the tuning, so that she would know I had arrived and then know that the piano had been tuned, didn't hurt. A less anxious customer is a happier customer.)


Dorrie Bell
retired piano technician
Boston, MA

Moderated by  Piano World 

Piano Acc. & Gift Items in
Piano World's Online Store
In PianoSupplies.com ,(a division of Piano World)
our online store for piano and music gifts and accessories, Digital Piano Dolly, party goods, tuning equipment, piano moving equipment, benches, lamps Caster Cups and more.


Free Shipping* on Jansen Artist Piano Benches, Cocoweb Piano Lamps, Hidrau Hydraulic Piano Benches
(*free shipping within contiguous U.S. only)
(ad)
Pearl River
Pearl River Pianos
(ad)
Pianoteq
PianoTeq 6 Out now
(ad)
Lindeblad Piano
Lindeblad Piano Restorations and sales
ad
Pierce Piano Atlas


New Topics - Multiple Forums
Suggestions needed
by Twinstter. 09/20/17 04:23 PM
The Piano Book's 30th Anniversary
by S. Phillips. 09/20/17 04:02 PM
Harp as second instrument
by justyna_ewa. 09/20/17 03:48 PM
Do all the Privias share the same action?
by upbeat. 09/20/17 01:24 PM
OT- New Year
by PhilipInChina. 09/20/17 09:42 AM
Forum Statistics
Forums44
Topics181,950
Posts2,658,963
Members88,871
Most Online15,252
Mar 21st, 2010
(ad)
Accu-Tuner
Sanderson Accu-Tuner
Check It Out!
There's a lot more to Piano World than just the forums.
Click Here to
Explore The Rest of Piano World!!
Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers


 
Help keep the forums up and running with a donation, any amount is appreciated!
Or by becoming a Subscribing member! Thank-you.
Donate   Subscribe
 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
| Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter |


copyright 1997 - 2017 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.6.0