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...things that rattle on and around your piano when you play? I have only been playing for three or four months but I swear that twice a day I find that a particular note resonates with some object on or near the piano and I have to spend 5 minutes obsessively hitting that key over and over and trying to move things around to locate the source. My wife *loves* to decorate my piano with candle holders and little trinkets and Christmas lights, etc, and those are quite often the culprit, but recently I swear that the power cord from my DP, which rests on my baseboard heater, is causing the aluminum on the heater to rattle. The plastic binding on my method book has been a culprit in the past, as well...

What's particularly annoying is that different notes cause different things to vibrate. So some songs don't cause an issue and others do. I usually spot a vibration during the Hanon exercises since they span the whole keyboard. Moving an object just a tiny bit can either fix an issue or create a brand new one.

Is my piano driving me insane or does anyone else have this issue? smile Do I need a "no decorating the piano" rule?

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You are a tolerant hubby indeed, mooshinator. I have a "touch my piano and you die" rule in my house, myself. laugh And, yes, buzzes and squeaks drive me crazy. On my piano, it's my fallboard lid. It's one of those absolutely stupid designs with the hinged lip, and if it's folded at the wrong angle, it will buzz while I'm playing. So I'll launch into a piece, but a few notes I might hear a buzz, then I have to reach up and waggle it back and forth until I find an angle that doesn't buzz. mad

The other thing that drives me crazy is sometimes if the soles of my shoes are even the slightest bit wet (e.g., I've just come in from outside when it's been raining), I'll get a horrendous squeak while pedaling. Drives me NUTS!! I can't even go on playing but have to go change shoes.



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Yes, buzzes drive me nuts too. The record button on my keyboard buzzes like crazy, but I can prevent it by placing a soft eraser on top of it.

But whenever the eraser isn't there, it buzzes and rattles. I'm tempted to remove that record button, and not just because it buzzes. grin


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During the fall this year the glass in the window above my piano was vibrating with certain notes. It was annoying but I learned to ignore it since there's nothing I could do about it really other than reglaze the window pane and I knew I wouldn't have time for it. It's not rattling right now, but next summer I'll have to consider fixing the problem.

A no decorating the piano rule might be a good idea. I only keep 3 or 4 things on top of the piano and they are all piano related.


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Until then you may want to keep a safe distance.
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Just adding that, yes, sympathetic buzzing noises drive me up the wall too and make me stop everything to fix it.


Rachel Jimenez Piano teacher in Brooklyn, NY / Author of Fundamental Keys method
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At one time my mother put her oil lamp collection on top of our piano. I complained that they clinked. She put doilies under them. I complained that they buzzed. She finally took them off.

NOW I play on a DP and live directly in front of a bus stop. There is something about our local buses that creates interference with the piano. (Similar to the having a cell phone ring too near computer speakers.) Not only is it annoying, it SCARES me every time it happens. shocked I'll get used to it I suppose?

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Yes, and it drives me nuts as well. Usually C#6 will start the ball rolling, but other notes/chords will do it as well. I have a lid self-closure that is metal and I will sometimes have to put a rubber band around it to make it stop.

Like Monica- the fall board lid will sound off and sometimes it will be the music rack. These are just the things on the piano. There are other things near the piano which will have sympathetic vibrations when certain notes are played. All of these will start the hunt for the guilty culprit. I just can't go on until it is resolved- must be my personality.








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Originally Posted by mooshinator
...things that rattle on and around your piano when you play? I have only been playing for three or four months but I swear that twice a day I find that a particular note resonates with some object on or near the piano and I have to spend 5 minutes obsessively hitting that key over and over and trying to move things around to locate the source. My wife *loves* to decorate my piano with candle holders and little trinkets and Christmas lights, etc, and those are quite often the culprit, but recently I swear that the power cord from my DP, which rests on my baseboard heater, is causing the aluminum on the heater to rattle. The plastic binding on my method book has been a culprit in the past, as well...

What's particularly annoying is that different notes cause different things to vibrate. So some songs don't cause an issue and others do. I usually spot a vibration during the Hanon exercises since they span the whole keyboard. Moving an object just a tiny bit can either fix an issue or create a brand new one.

Is my piano driving me insane or does anyone else have this issue? smile Do I need a "no decorating the piano" rule?


My DP has something like a loose screw inside of it that rattles every time I hit a G4 if the DP is turned up to a certain volume. To solve this I simply have it play through a stereo system, but I can't do this when I take the DP to play at places. Someday I'll open it up and find out what's causing it, when I'm brave!


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Originally Posted by Morodiene

My DP has something like a loose screw inside of it that rattles every time I hit a G4 if the DP is turned up to a certain volume. To solve this I simply have it play through a stereo system, but I can't do this when I take the DP to play at places. Someday I'll open it up and find out what's causing it, when I'm brave!

Maybe you could just shake it and see if it moves! cool

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The speaker on my DP doesn't give the instrument justice. Put on headphones to the headphone jack, it's a different story.....

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Yes, buzzing drives me nuts too, but I have lots of stuff on top of the piano & most of the buzzes have been resolved. However, I usually keep a pencil handy when I'm playing. A few days ago, I had put the pencil on top of the piano & the vibrations moved it right off the edge. I was in the middle of a piece & it came flying at me like a dart!!


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My teacher says rattles are good for you because they make you concentrate.


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All my headphones start buzzing after a VERY SHORT time... It is becoming expensive to buy good headphones every few months or even weeks.... frown



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.. or a metal reflector shield in the lamp on the ceiling...
Took me only half an hour to find out what it was ... and two paper clips to fix it


"The creative process is nothing but a series of crises."
(Isaac B. Singer)

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I thought I was the only one that go crazy with this sort of thing! I've gone on buzzing-thing hunts in my piano room. The culprits have ranged from the screws on the lid hinge and my music desk to other objects in the room. I ended up getting a flat blade screw driver and going over each one. So much for practicing that night. My back was killing me from bending over while doing this. Gazillion Screw Conglomerates, also in partnership with American Tape and Glue, must have stock in piano companies. 30 minutes later I had my gazillion screws tightened up. By the time I got done, the urge to practice was long over.

Another time it was a light bulb. Every time I'd press A4, there was this zinging sound like there was something sitting on the strings. I checked for a fuzzball, a string, or a piece of paper that would vibrate when I played that note. Nope, couldn't find it. Then one day I noticed the light flickered a little when I played that particular key. It was the filement in the bulb. Every time I played, the little wire vibrated and the zinging sound came out.

We have an old chime clock up on a bookcase in my room. One day every time I played E above Middle C, I heard the note coming from somewhere else in the room. I ended up, after quite a search, tracing this down to the old chime in the clock. A piece of a business card stuck between the wires killed that buzzy thing off.

The other weird one was the A on my old Italian virginal. Every time I played the A above Middle C (A440) on the piano, I heard a continuous A-sound like the note was poorly dampered. I again did the old piano check, but it turned up nothing. Then finally one day I recognized the sound, and traced it to the instrument on the shelf. A push down on the damper fixed that one.

So far I'm lucky now and seemed to have killed off the buzzes in my room. In the past there were quite a few more particularly when my mom used to put fancy dishes and things on the old spinet. I would get the weirdest sounds, and would trace them down to the crystal dishes. Sometimes it was because they were barely touching, and would vibrate against each other when I played. Moving the items around sometimes helped, but usually it transferred the sound to another spot on the piano. I then resorted to removing the items when I practiced.

I would say that the weirdest thing that happened was a helicopter going over. The vehicle was heading to the local hospital so it was hovering over my house, which is within walking distance from the trauma center. The rotor was tuned to E-flat, and it reverberated throughout my room. I happened to be playing something in the same key, and the copter was just slightly out of tune from the piano!

John


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Originally Posted by joyoussong
Yes, buzzing drives me nuts too, but I have lots of stuff on top of the piano & most of the buzzes have been resolved. However, I usually keep a pencil handy when I'm playing. A few days ago, I had put the pencil on top of the piano & the vibrations moved it right off the edge. I was in the middle of a piece & it came flying at me like a dart!!


Welcome to the forum, joyoussong. smile That's a terrific story, if slightly scary. I had never considered the possibility that my piano might take hostile action against me as a result of its long years as a prisoner of an Adult Beginner. I shall take pains to keep any pencils weapons out of its grasp. grin

Actually, this has been an eye-opening thread for me. I had known from reading this forum that acoustic pianos were prone to idiosyncratic buzzes and squeaks and rattles, but I thought digitals were immune to all that, and in my darkest hours of frustration at trying to pinpoint the source of a buzz, I've contemplated chopping my piano into firewood and switching to a digital. But now I see that digitals are not immune to their own frustrating noises... hmmm... Guess that's just the price of making live music.

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Originally Posted by ChopinAddict
All my headphones start buzzing after a VERY SHORT time... It is becoming expensive to buy good headphones every few months or even weeks.... frown

That doesn't sound right. Wonder what's up?

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Originally Posted by BlueBKLYN
Originally Posted by ChopinAddict
All my headphones start buzzing after a VERY SHORT time... It is becoming expensive to buy good headphones every few months or even weeks.... frown

That doesn't sound right. Wonder what's up?


I agree. Either he's playing too loud and blowing out the speakers, or breaking the cord. The first issue is dangerous to the hearing, and hopefully this isn't the issue! frown The latter one is solved by longer a cord.

I picked up a nice pair of Sony headphones at FYE for about $50.00 They have a really nice cord on them so they don't get caught and break on me like others have. I also have another nice pair of Koss, but they have a coiled cord that's too short, and get caught on everything.

John


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Originally Posted by Monica K.
You are a tolerant hubby indeed, mooshinator. I have a "touch my piano and you die" rule in my house, myself. laugh And, yes, buzzes and squeaks drive me crazy.


Me too! I have a no toys, pens, pencils, erasers near the piano rule. Also no sneezing at the piano keyboard while playing rule. My 6-year-old still occasionally does this, he's trying to learn to turn his head, but doesn't always remember. Little boys can't multitasks. Playing, sneezing, and remember to turn his head away overloads his circuits.

My DP produces an intolerable buzz at treble E consistently. Drives me nuts. If the buzzing gets too much I just lower its pitch a little. The acoustic seem to do it on different keys on different days since its tuning isn't identical from day to day like the DP! On the acoustic, one time the middle G would buzz and my daughter was yelling "Dad!" every other minute because it bothered her so much.

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Monica - I totally understand the comments you made about buzzing things, and squeeking shoes.

I have changed the wall decor several times to get buzzing picture frames away. I had to take down a chandelier that originally hung over the piano because some of the crystals would rattle and vibrate. Then, worst of all, some unexplained buzz happened in the left part of the case under the damper area when I would play the E-flat two octaves above middle C. I was practicing a recital piece at the time, (of course it was in the key of E-flat) and I nearly went nuts during that two week period until my tech came out and adjusted something in the action and it stopped.

I like to play barefoot most of the time, but since the rebuild and installing a new spring, the pedal is stiffer than on my previous piano, so I have started wearing shoes. So, I go through the same frustration with squeeky shoes.

I recently played a beautiful new piano that a friend purchased, and the damper pedal squeeked so much that I called the dealer up on his behalf and got someone out to remedy the situation.


Cary Rogers, PharmD
San Francisco, CA
1887 Knabe 6'4" (Rebuilt)
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