2017 was our 20th year online!

Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 3 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!

Shop our online store for music lovers
SEARCH
Piano Forums & Piano World
(ad)
Wessell Nickel & Gross
PianoForAll
(ad)
Best of Piano Buyer
 Best of Piano Buyer
(ad)
Faust Harrison Pianos
Faust Harrison 100+ Steinway pianos
Who's Online Now
62 members (Burkey, Auraltuner, 36251, 3B43, 19 invisible), 453 guests, and 395 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
(ad)
Estonia Pianos
Estonia Pianos
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Hop To
Page 1 of 2 1 2
Cracked Steinway plate
#627394 04/17/06 01:34 AM
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,560
O
2000 Post Club Member
OP Offline
2000 Post Club Member
O
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,560
Hi All,

I have a friend with a 5'8"(as I recall, I could be wrong) SS grand ~50 years old, with the stanchion in the middle of the high treble cracked all the way through, about midway in its length.

Is this piano repairable?


Happiness is a freshly tuned piano.
Jim Boydston, proprietor, No Piano Left Behind - technician
www.facebook.com/NoPianoLeftBehind
(ad)
Piano & Music Accessories
piano accessories music gifts tuning and moving equipment
Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627395 04/17/06 01:38 AM
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,046
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 1,046
In many cases, yes. You will need to consult a piano rebuilder who can examine the piano.


Mike
Registered Piano Technician
Member Piano Technicians Guild
Not currently working in the piano trade.
Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627396 04/17/06 08:33 AM
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 6
M
Junior Member
Offline
Junior Member
M
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 6
Hello OperaTenor,

I assume your talking about a model "M" (5'7")Steinway. If the cracked plate is cracked at the "Strut" I would recomend replacing the plate.
I have some suggestions about that. Your friend may want to look for an XR ("M" scaled Steinway player piano). They can ussually be purchased for a reasonable price. You can use the plate from the XR and discard the rest.
Pictures of this cracked plate will tell the story and if you would like to send me some, go to www.maestrosmusic.com and fire me some detailed photos.
Good luck!!!


maestro88
Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627397 04/17/06 10:38 AM
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 3,458
3000 Post Club Member
Offline
3000 Post Club Member
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 3,458
I'm aware of two repair methods for plate crack repair, both done with the plate in the piano: a "brazing" method, and a "lock-stitch" method, where a succession of overlapping holes are drilled, tapped, and filled with screws. I don't know if either method is suitable for a crack that goes clean through. I've heard that neither method is warranteed.

Replacing the plate involves restringing and a lot of detailed custom refitting (i.e. $$$$$), like replacing a car's engine -- except that a plate is generally not designed to be replaced.

--Cy--


Cy Shuster, RPT
www.shusterpiano.com
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Director, PTG Norfolk 2016 Technical Institute
http://convention.ptg.org
Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627398 04/17/06 12:06 PM
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,560
O
2000 Post Club Member
OP Offline
2000 Post Club Member
O
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,560
Hi All,

Thanks for the information. For some silly reason, I thought plate replacement wouldn't be viable(like, where on earth would we find one?!!).

Yes, it is an "M". I seemed to recall that, but it's been awhile since I did the research, and wasn't willing to stick my neck out that far on the forum without rechecking. It is the strut that's cracked. I'll take photos of it within the next couple of weeks and post them/-email them to you.

These folks are reasonably well-to-do, and the piano has sentimental value, so I think they'd be up for plate replacement, along with everything that would entail.

Given this information, I can counsel these folks to look into this.

Thanks again!

PS. I forgot they're called "struts".


Happiness is a freshly tuned piano.
Jim Boydston, proprietor, No Piano Left Behind - technician
www.facebook.com/NoPianoLeftBehind
Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627399 04/17/06 12:19 PM
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 3,770
3000 Post Club Member
Offline
3000 Post Club Member
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 3,770
S&S does sell replacement plates. It entails a lot of work to fit the new plate, and a new board, pinblock, and bridge caps will need to be made.


G.Fiore "aka-Curry". Tuner-Technician serving the central NJ, S.E. PA area. b214cm@aol.com Concert tuning, Regulation-voicing specialist.
Dampp-Chaser installations, piano appraisals. PTG S.Jersey Chapter 080.
Bösendorfer 214 # 47,299 214-358
Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627400 04/18/06 03:14 AM
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 3,754
3000 Post Club Member
Offline
3000 Post Club Member
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 3,754
Hi OT

I have another option that may work. We have been successful on 2 plate struts that has never had a reoccurring problem. The only 2 we have done. One piano was done 20 years ago. If the crack is in the appropriate place, we have used parachute fabric dipped in epoxy and wrapped the damaged area to build it up. When it is dry you can sand and repaint the plate. It will be as strong at the cast iron. Once again if it is the right kind of place that will not affect strings etc. If done right you would never know it was repaired. Contact me and I will send you some pictures of the before and after. smile

Regards,

Rod Verhnjak
Verhnjak Pianos
Surrey B.C. Canada


Verhnjak Pianos
Specializing in the Restoration, Refinishing & Maintenance
of Fine Heirloom Pianos

www.pianoman.ca
Verhnjak Pianos Facebook

Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627401 04/18/06 03:33 AM
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,560
O
2000 Post Club Member
OP Offline
2000 Post Club Member
O
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,560
Hi Rod,

Thanks for the offer. I've sent you an e-mail.


Happiness is a freshly tuned piano.
Jim Boydston, proprietor, No Piano Left Behind - technician
www.facebook.com/NoPianoLeftBehind
Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627402 04/18/06 02:22 PM
Joined: Nov 2005
Posts: 10
F
Junior Member
Offline
Junior Member
F
Joined: Nov 2005
Posts: 10
Hi OT, When I was working at L.A. City School's Piano Repair shop in the mid 70's, we had a similar situation arise. Since the piano was due for a restring anyway, we pulled the plate, and had it welded. The welding proceedure was quite interesting. First, we notched out the crack; that is, cut a v-shaped notch on both sides, almost to the center of the strut, then welded it with nickle arc-welding rod. We would make a shallow weld on each side, at the base of the v. After letting it cool completely, we would make another pass, slowly building it up. After repeating this weld and cool proceedure, it finally filled up. We resprayed the plate, restrung it and the piano was just fine for 5 years that I know of. Good luck.

Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627403 04/18/06 02:56 PM
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,560
O
2000 Post Club Member
OP Offline
2000 Post Club Member
O
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,560
Thank you, F. Johnson. Mr. Verhnjak sent me some photos and a detailed explanation of the repair he does, and I think we're going to go with that, especially since this crack appeared shortly after a restringing some years ago, and the piano doens't need to be restrung.

Besides, I was rasied to think that if you weld cast iron, you end up with two extremely brittle zones, one on each side of the weld.

Of course, who knows? Once I discuss all of the options with the owners, they may decide to ship it off to SS for a new plate....


Happiness is a freshly tuned piano.
Jim Boydston, proprietor, No Piano Left Behind - technician
www.facebook.com/NoPianoLeftBehind
Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627404 04/19/06 05:03 AM
Joined: Jul 2005
Posts: 1,094
S
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
S
Joined: Jul 2005
Posts: 1,094
Well I'm no technician when it comes to pianos but as far as cast iron goes welding it is 'not on' unless you can control the expansion and contraction. Any form of heat into a cast iron casting is a major source of further stresses that will show in time. The only way for such a complex item as a piano frame is to heat it all over in a special furnace then weld it a with a oxy-acetylene torch. Clearly this is impractical.

Tig welding will work but not on a stressed item as the piano frame is. Unless you can control the expansion and contraction process it is a no no.

I wonder what caused the crack in the first place.

Alan

Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627405 04/19/06 05:38 AM
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 1,983
C
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
C
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 1,983
If these folks have the money to even consider restoration or remanufacture of this piano, then the attempted "repair" of this plate seems like the least logical option. Either they seek a new plate and have the pinblock and bridge/soundboard changes done the right way, or they should resolve to finding a similar piano already rebuilt. The tens of tons of pressure that the plate is subjected to, along with the "expansion/contraction" factor make the "repair" option a poor choice. That would be my advice to them.


Piano Technician/Tuner
Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627406 04/19/06 05:05 PM
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,560
O
2000 Post Club Member
OP Offline
2000 Post Club Member
O
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,560
Hi swingal,

The usual cause of a crack is a flaw in the metal. It can be a bubble or impurity, causing the metal to respond to change counter to what the surrounding metal does, resulting in the crack to relieve stress.

Hi CC2,

I just got hold of the owners, confirmend the model and serial(it's actually a 1948 "M"), and am now going to go over the options as I see them. The mechanical reinforcement Cy mentions, however inelegant aesthetically, is probably functional, however the aspect of the crack going all the way through is still a question. To me, welding's out - too much embrittlement resulting. I think what I'll relay to them as their best bets are shipping it off to Steinway for plate replacement, or employing the very generous Rod's repair(he sent me photos and detailed instructions on doing it - quite impressive).

The piano has sentimental value, so I believe they'd prefer to restore it rather than replace it.

As for me, I always think it's a shame to junk an otherwise fine instrument if there's a reasonable chance of saving it.


Happiness is a freshly tuned piano.
Jim Boydston, proprietor, No Piano Left Behind - technician
www.facebook.com/NoPianoLeftBehind
Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627407 04/21/06 11:46 PM
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 3,754
3000 Post Club Member
Offline
3000 Post Club Member
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 3,754
Hi OT,

Let me know if my idea works out for you. If you have any questions just let me know.
If you have some pictures of the strut in question please send the to me.

Do you think I/you should post the stuff I gave you.
I do not know how to post pictures.

Regards,

Rod Verhnjak


Verhnjak Pianos
Specializing in the Restoration, Refinishing & Maintenance
of Fine Heirloom Pianos

www.pianoman.ca
Verhnjak Pianos Facebook

Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627408 04/22/06 12:17 AM
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,560
O
2000 Post Club Member
OP Offline
2000 Post Club Member
O
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,560
Hi Rod,

Thanks again, I will let you know how it all "plays" out(sorry, couldn't help it laugh ).

I'll take pictures of the strut and post them.

If you don't mind, I'll post the photos and your e-mail instructions to me verbatim. I have a site to park the photos at.

V/R

Jim


Happiness is a freshly tuned piano.
Jim Boydston, proprietor, No Piano Left Behind - technician
www.facebook.com/NoPianoLeftBehind
Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627409 04/22/06 02:11 AM
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,560
O
2000 Post Club Member
OP Offline
2000 Post Club Member
O
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,560
From Rod:

This plate was done in 1987 and I still maintain the piano. There are no problems or new cracks.
Parachute material is very strong and will not rip. With the added epoxy when dry it is very strong.
Welding with Titanium also works but the plate has to be removed.
As far as I know Steinway will not sell a plate unless they install it.
We do all the Steinway & Sons Warrantee work in out area and they would not sell us a plate for a Steinway 'D" the someone "Modified" to make it "Better"
So the piano was sent to New York for a new soundboard and plate.


[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

First we removed all the old paint right to the cast iron.
We loosened the tension.
Pre filled the crack with runny epoxy

[Linked Image]

Soaked the strips of parachute material in the epoxy
Wrapped it 5 times overlapping the fabric
We wrapped it in 5 stages waiting one day in-between each wrap for the epoxy to dry
We sanded in-between each wrap.

[Linked Image]

Before the primer we used a little Bondo to smooth everything out
We then repainted the area.
Tuned the piano.

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]


Happiness is a freshly tuned piano.
Jim Boydston, proprietor, No Piano Left Behind - technician
www.facebook.com/NoPianoLeftBehind
Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627410 04/22/06 06:32 AM
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 3,458
3000 Post Club Member
Offline
3000 Post Club Member
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 3,458
Thanks for posting that, OperaTenor, and thanks to Rod for sharing that technique. That's a new one on me.

--Cy--


Cy Shuster, RPT
www.shusterpiano.com
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Director, PTG Norfolk 2016 Technical Institute
http://convention.ptg.org
Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627411 04/22/06 11:11 AM
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,560
O
2000 Post Club Member
OP Offline
2000 Post Club Member
O
Joined: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,560
You're welcome, Gramps. wink

I would never have conceived of something like this, either. It seems to me to be akin to putting a carbon fiber(in this case epoxy-nylon) cast around the crack, which functions primarily to keep the joint in alignment and therefore the stress bearing in the proper direction.

Sure looks clean when it's done.


Happiness is a freshly tuned piano.
Jim Boydston, proprietor, No Piano Left Behind - technician
www.facebook.com/NoPianoLeftBehind
Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627412 04/26/06 08:15 PM
Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 17
M
Junior Member
Offline
Junior Member
M
Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 17
Hello OperaTenor


I see that you have little dilemma concerning a cracked plate in your model "M" Steinway. I have a spare Steinway model "M" plate. The piano that it is from was exposed to some water damage and the only thing worth salvaging from the piano is some hardware, legs, and the HARP.

If you want I will see what year this Steinway M is that I have and we can compare notes to yours. More than likely it will fit just fine, if in fact your piano is a model "M" Steinway 5'7'' in length.


Get back to me if this interests you. We can take care of all shipping to your neck of the woods or we can install the harp, strings etc in your piano for you.


Thank you,

Michael Kaufman
Piano Restoration & Sales Expert
Country Piano
3942 Hillside Way
Burdett, NY 14818
607.546.2712 - Direct Line
607.546.7914 - Fax
www.countrypiano.com
Countrypiano@aol.com

Re: Cracked Steinway plate
#627413 04/27/06 08:31 PM
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 92
D
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
D
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 92
Waht happen when not repair the plate?

Page 1 of 2 1 2

Moderated by  Piano World 

Link Copied to Clipboard
(ad)
Pianoteq
PianoTeq Karsten Collection
(ad)
PianoDisc

PianoDisc
(ad)
Piano Life Saver - Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
(ad)
Mason & Hamlin Pianos
What's Hot!!
News from the Piano World
Our October 2020 Free Piano Newsletter is Here!
---------------------
3,000,000+!
------------------
Posting Pictures on the Forums
-------------------
Forums RULES & HELP
-------------------
ADVERTISE on Piano World
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Gospel-Jazz Chord Progression & Scale
by BB666 - 10/30/20 07:33 AM
Guitar Center Mulls Restructuring
by newer player - 10/30/20 12:44 AM
Anthony Hopkins / National Cat Day
by MH1963 - 10/29/20 09:38 PM
Download Sheet Music
Virtual Sheet Music - Classical Sheet Music Downloads
Forum Statistics
Forums41
Topics202,488
Posts3,018,703
Members99,068
Most Online15,252
Mar 21st, 2010
Please Support Our Advertisers


Faust Harrison 100+ Steinways

Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver

 Best of Piano Buyer

PianoTeq Bechstein
Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

Virtual Sheet Music - Classical Sheet Music Downloads



 
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 - 2020 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.4