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Joined: Feb 2012
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Alnyc Offline OP
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I recently purchased a Mason Hamlin BB. The hammer on key 36 has come loose 4 times now and the tech can't seem to fix it. Now a bigger pin is in the key but the hammer is not striking all the strings. The note is muffled. Anybody have this problem ? What is the warranty on this 1,000 piece of crap I have sitting in my den ? I should have bought a Steinway. Mason & Hamlin is junk. The workmanship on the harp, plate, is junk. Looks like it was casted by a 3 year old who was let loose in a foundry. Let me guess- CHINA -
Save your money. Don't buy Mason Hamlin. Any advice on the unfixable key wil be appreciated.

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Many will dispute your statements. (as she raises her hand)

Talk with your dealer. Call MH. We can't help.


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i believe warranty is 10 yr/lifetime original purchaser. didn't you ask the dealer before you purchased?

but let me guess... you purchased a used BB. didn't you examine the piano/harp before you purchased? didn't you have your tech, who can't seem to fix a loose hammer, look at it?

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Brand new piano. Still had plastic on it. No I didn't inspect harp. Did mention it was brand new ?

Last edited by Alnyc; 02/21/12 09:24 AM.
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If I were you, I'd be frustrated too...

Like Lilylady said, have you talked to the dealer? M&H's are well regarded around here...

You say the hammer came loose... was the hammer coming loose/un-glued on the shank, or was the flange pin coming loose and working its way out? In my view, it shouldn't have taken a good tech 4 attempts to fix it and then leave it misadjusted. Something ain't right...

Rick


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M&H pianos are as good as it gets so something is drastically wrong. Email them from their website and speak to their representative as I'm sure they would honor the warranty and see that anything that is wrong would be repaired/corrected.

You should have papers on it that specify the warranty--usually 10 years tho Steinway is only 5. If your tech is unable to correct this (is he from the dealer?) then I imagine the M&H people will see that someone competent comes to see about it.

Ralph


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Originally Posted by Alnyc
Brand new piano. Still had plastic on it. No I didn't inspect harp. Did mention it was brand new ?


so you purchased it sight unseen/unplayed? was the piano prepped at the dealer? did you purchase from an authorized MH dealer? if you did they surely will be standing behind this instrument to fix any problems and regulate the piano to your liking at no additional cost over a period of time. if the tech is from the dealer demand a different one.

Last edited by Entheo; 02/21/12 09:47 AM.
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Originally Posted by Alnyc

Now a bigger pin is in the key but the hammer is not striking all the strings.

Brand new piano. Still had plastic on it. No I didn't inspect harp. Did mention it was brand new ?


So, you bought the piano without playing it or having it prepped? I don't think the aesthetics of plate casting are easily correctable - why would you not look inside the piano before buying it? What do you mean by the "bigger pin is in the key", as it relates to a hammer coming loose?

The issues with the loose or badly aligned hammer (something I have experienced with other brands of piano) should be easily fixed by a competent technician.

fwiw, the equivalent Steinway B would probably set you back an additional $25,000. You probably shouldn't buy one of those until it's properly set up by the dealer, either. Both pianos have the potential to be fantastic.


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Originally Posted by Varcon
M&H pianos are as good as it gets so something is drastically wrong. Email them from their website and speak to their representative as I'm sure they would honor the warranty and see that anything that is wrong would be repaired/corrected.

You should have papers on it that specify the warranty--usually 10 years tho Steinway is only 5. If your tech is unable to correct this (is he from the dealer?) then I imagine the M&H people will see that someone competent comes to see about it.

Ralph



Definitely contact M&H and - and if they aren't responsive try contacting their national representative (you can send me a PM for that individual's name). You should have received a warranty card signed by M&H's owners. Warranty is 10 years bumper to bumper. And FYI, the workmanship on my own eight year old BB is excellent....plate and all.

Last edited by carey; 02/21/12 10:15 AM.

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there's something wrong with this picture. why would Al (2 posts) be coming here for advice if he just bought a brand new BB from an authorized dealer? does anyone know an authorized MH dealer who wouldn't have checked & prepped the piano before delivery (who has ever had a piano delivered in plastic?) and then made sure any problems were corrected to the buyer's satisfaction?

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Alnyc,

Have you communicated with your dealer? If not, please call them today. This is not something that your independent tech. should have to attempt to bear the burden for.

A hammer popping off can happen. Bad glue joints can occur and are easily fixed. However, if you have a new composite action there are specific adhesives that should be used - otherwise the problem will recur. maybe this is what is happening.

If you need additional help, please call me at the number below. I probably cannot help directly, but I certainly can direct you to the best help.

There is no reason you should be having these issues.

Good Luck,


Rich Galassini
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This is very hard to believe. The M&H product and their committment to customer satisfaction is second to none. Also, much of what the OP states doesn't make sense.

Alnyc, if you are for real, and interested in solving what sounds to be a minor problem on an excellent instrument, call their National Service Manager, Cecil Ramirez at 916-567-9999.

I am confident that he will do what is necessary to have the problem corrected.


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Well, I bought mine and had to wait for it to be finished and after a long wait the dealer brought it straight from the train to my house in the crate. It was taken out of the crate in the living room. Set up in the room I wished it placed and the finish was beautiful, the tuning so good that it was several months before he came back to tune it. I don't think I could have been happier with a purchase.

M&H seems to be very good--equal to the best if not better I think.
I've never regretted NOT getting a Steinway.

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Originally Posted by Alnyc
I recently purchased a Mason Hamlin BB. The hammer on key 36 has come loose 4 times now and the tech can't seem to fix it.

At this point it seems to me that the problem is the tech.
Originally Posted by Alnyc

Now a bigger pin is in the key but the hammer is not striking all the strings.

I don't see what a "bigger pin" - presumably in the flange to which the hammer shank is attached - has to do with a hammer that came loose. What did your tech say about that?
Originally Posted by Alnyc

The note is muffled.

Hard to why say without seeing & hearing the piano. Is that the ONLY muffled note? How different is it from the ones immediately adjacent? You could have a voicing problem, or your tech could have hung the hammer improperly so it doesn't strike all three strings, or there could be a leveling issue with the strings, or, or, or...
Originally Posted by Alnyc

Anybody have this problem ? What is the warranty on this 1,000 piece of crap I have sitting in my den ? I should have bought a Steinway. Mason & Hamlin is junk. The workmanship on the harp, plate, is junk. Looks like it was casted by a 3 year old who was let loose in a foundry. Let me guess- CHINA -
Save your money. Don't buy Mason Hamlin. Any advice on the unfixable key wil be appreciated.

Since you haven't got the service you need from the selling dealer, presumably the authorized Mason & Hamlin dealer for your geography, were I in your place, I would contact Mason & Hamlin and complain directly to them. It is, after all, their reputation on the line, and I'm sure they want to know when things aren't working well with their dealer network. Do let us know how things work out.

As to the Steinway vs. Mason & Hamlin aside in your original post - there are passionate partisans here on PW on both sides of that question. I think I can say (without aggravating either side) that build quality can be roughly equal at the various price points and sizes within the lines. Beyond that, it's a matter of personal taste, and to some extent the kind of music that will be played on the piano and in what size rooms, that factor into a choice between the two brands. NEITHER are junk.

Last edited by Seeker; 02/21/12 10:49 AM.

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The piano was purchased from a M&H dealer on long island. (not from craigslist or sight unseen) I played it and it sounded great . The owner of the store/tech has been back 4 times. I have spoken to him about it. The notes adjacent to key 36 sound a lot different. Sharp and crisp. The last few fixes worked- for about 2 weeks. I have called M&H. Waiting for a call back. This is extremely frustrating for the price I paid for this piano. Thanks for the national number. I will call that next.

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Something here is amok.


I often wonder what could have been.

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Unless I am mistaken, Faust Harrison is the authorized Mason & Hamlin dealer for Long Island. They are a high quality dealer with good customer service. Neither of the owners of Faust Harrison are piano technicians, so either someone other than the owner of the store is coming out to help you, or you bought this piano from someone other than the authorized Mason & Hamlin dealer for Long Island.
I am sure that you are not happy with note 36. If your description of the problem is accurate, it should be a pretty straigh forward fix, especially for Faust Harrison. If this is not a straight forward fix, perhaps something else is going on which none of us can understand without seeing the piano in person.
Faust Harrison will take great care of you. I suggest you continue trying to solve your problem with them ( if that is where you bought it ) A new Mason & Hamlin BB is a high quality instrument. The problem you are describing does not sound serious and could happen with any new piano. Again, what is actually going on may be different than your description. I would take a step back, relax, and keep working with your local dealer. If there really is something happening that is beyond a quality dealers ability to address, I am sure Mason & Hamlin will support you, but I really doubt that it would come to that.

Best of luck. I look forward to hearing about the resolution to this issue.


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It would be interesting, I think, to learn just which M&H dealer this piano is supposed to have come from. It would also be interesting to know the serial number so its history could be traced from the factory to its present location.

Almost nothing in this story rings true if, indeed, the piano is new. A loose hammerhead is not rocket science; any technician coming from a real M&H dealer should be able to easily fix this relatively minor problem. The first time with no call-back. Even if the action is one of the new WN&G composite actions any technician regularly working for a M&H dealer will be familiar with this most basic servicing issue.

And what is meant by, “Now a bigger pin is in the key but the hammer is not striking all the strings?” Assuming this refers to a larger pin being installed in an action center (to compensate for a loose flange bushing), this also is not rocket science. Competent technicians do this sort of work routinely and it seems unlikely to me that a technician sent out to service a new M&H would not be able to replace a centerpin and not be able to align the hammer properly to the strings. And that is assuming that an action center on a new M&H piano actually needed a new centerpin.

Finally, I’ve seen quite a few recently built M&H pianos and, while the plate detailing and finish may not be the equal of, say, Bösendorfer standards—neither, it might be noted, is the price of the piano—it is quite good by most any other standard. In other words, M&H plates do not, “Looks like it was casted (sic) by a 3 year old who was let loose in a foundry.” This description might have been accurately used to describe a plate cast by the old Wickham foundry and used in one of the pianos built during the last of the Aeolian days but it I find it hard—no, impossible—to believe it accurately describes a plate used in current production M&H pianos.

As I say, it would be interesting to know—really—just what is going on here.

ddf

Last edited by Del; 02/21/12 01:48 PM.

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Can you post a photo of the plate, alnyc?

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Great post, Del.


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