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Joined: Mar 2012
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I used the Korg to start with on the C and E notes.After that I tuned the 5ths approximately by ear and then by removing beats .The flattened 5ths were estimated by tuning then accurately by ear and the used the Korg to measure the small drop in frequency using the cents figures on the dial . My first attempt was a bit too much so I ran through that section again .That group of flattened 5ths will be the only part I need
So the Korg use was very minimal . The tuning method is like following a chain so it`s best to write it all down as you go . I made a small chart to show the sequence .
Hakki mentioned an ETD and just to be sure I looked up the acronym . 48 possibles but Electronic Tuning Device seemed too obvious . Is there one designed just for pianos ? I just like the fact I can do so much with a tiny help on a few notes .
If I listen to Brigette Ungerer starting the Chopin Nocturnes I instantly feel as if it`s out of tune despite her excellent playing . The Kirnberger III for Chopin sounds perfect to me . The refined interaction of notes in Chopin is there to savour .
My struggle with tight pins was greatly improved by the rotation treatment . The alteration of the action position had no negative effects .I tested that by relaxing the tension on the action bolts .When I lifted the treble end up where it used to be there was no difference . The silent (clunky) effect came from the string dents in the hammers . As soon as these were smoothed out the trouble vanished .
One of the last hitches was trying to get accurate unisons . The best way for stubborn notes was to press the hammer upwards (inwards) with the hammer vertical. Keep the upward pressure as the note is tuned as close as possible and then gently pull downwards (outwards ). That pulling or flexing works best from the higher (pin flex ) position.It takes some practice to stop just at the critical point .
Just to clarify Flexing is good. Flexing is reversible .Bending is bad .Bending is permanent .

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Originally Posted by Jt2nd

Hakki mentioned an ETD and just to be sure I looked up the acronym . 48 possibles but Electronic Tuning Device seemed too obvious . Is there one designed just for pianos ?
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Hakki --Ah you`re going too fast for me .

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When I tested my "hand made "temperament it was difficult to concentrate because a number of the notes that used to crack and stick were making wobbly distacting sounds.
To quote a line from the film "My Cousin Vinny" --"Let me see, what else can we Pile on ".
In the background is the fact that I am going deaf . My left ear has stopped working completely .
The right ear with a hearing aid , in the last few months , refuses to understand the tv news . Music and speech is limited to an electronic loop on my laptop .
But I can tell if the piano is in tune.
So I fitted the felt tape on the middle notes to get back to basics.
This time round I went back to the Korg Orchestral Tuner as I suspected the G, D and A notes.
Testing the white notes the only notes off centre on the dial were
F ----5 cents sharp and A ---10 cents flat . So the estimated 6 cents flattening of the fifths was not far out . The F note had been altered separately as it had not sounded right .Don`t count that one .
The black notes alternated from 5 cents sharp to 5 cents flat .
But I have had some practice at tuning octaves by now. And I have already used the Korg to retune 4 guitars in 4 different temperaments .That worked very well .
So now I will retune and not try to estimate the octaves by humming them as a singer might do .

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Today I tuned the whole piano . Where`s my medal ? The first time I have done that and the first time I have used a muting strip . The Korg was used to set the centre octave. Don`t give up on the Korg just yet I told myself. What I am pleased as Punch about is discovering how to get rid of interference between unison strings . Up till now I was getting a lot of strange sound effects like yaweeyaweeyaw. To cure that I got as close to the note (coming down ) and then with the lever vertical simply pulling to flex the pin . Often it would start off the lower beats again so the impact hammer was especially useful here . Just a strong bump to the right and a gentler bump to the left put the pin a tiny bit sharper than before and the leverage brings the sound in as one lovely glowing note and no disturbance.
The Hammer is a Keyes impact hammer . The video for pin leverage is by Howard Piano Industries who also made the hammer . Well done .Full credit there .
That brings me full circle from the original problem where sticky pins would have made all that impossible. There is a Howard Piano video showing that leverage method on a grand piano but today it was used several times with complete success .It`s the icing on the cake for tuning . Very happy with that . And the Bach first Fugue sounds exactly in tune along with the first Chopin Nocturne.
I think my daughter will be very proud of me . No damage done and no strings broken .

Last edited by Jt2nd; 03/08/19 06:39 PM. Reason: I had to look up the name of the tuning hammer and the people who made the video .
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A good test for a temperament is to compare C major and something a bit further out like Bach Well Tempered Prelude No 8 in E flat major. Nice and slow for me but with 6 flats . The chords sound perfect in both keys . A bonus is there are very few beats , if you dislike beats . The Rosalyn Tureck recording of No 8 has some very noticeable beats but in that case they sound wonderful . Obviously that is in Equal Temperament .

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Just in case I lost track of the tuning I compared and wrote out the frequencies of the notes with the Szynalski tone generator.
The tones are in one Hz steps but it was close enough for this. It became obvious some notes had fallen in the cracks .The hardest note to tune was A0 .I had that at 23 Hz which was wrong I happened to have a printed list of frequencies for a digital piano .The lowest note on the list was 27 Hz .That sounded much more convincing but on my own I would have been guessing .
For some reason the D5 was quite low next day . That was simple to adjust . All 3 strings were out of tune together so , one of my octave mistakes .
I learned to be more aware of how a lower octave note will disturb the centre string being tuned . After that I was still uncomfortable with A5. Only a tiny change was needed but it suddenly fitted into the puzzle. I had to go to and fro double checking each A string a few times till it would settle as one solid note . The batch of very tight pins has become manageable by now but some are still not easy to adjust .

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I found the final tuning adjustment with these treble strings can be done far better by judging the speed of beats and then relying on a pull on the lever from a vertical position .This is using the flex of the pin to bring it in tune. Not by bashing the lever handle down but giving a steady pull while playing the note . I had more practice at this today . My hearing level was very low last week . Maybe a head cold . Not quite man flu though .
I feel a bit guilty as I am so new to pianos but the way I did this may give players or even techs some useful indicators . The pins were really so tight they were beyond the use of normal lever skills . There is a strange machine they use to pound away and settle in piano hammers. Maybe Baldwins need to make a machine to run in the pins for us .

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I found the final tuning adjustment with these treble strings can be done far better by judging the speed of beats and then relying on a pull on the lever from a vertical position .In the treble section the beats are quicker and it`s a fine judgement to guess when to change to a pull down action .This is using the flex of the pin to bring it in tune. Not by bashing the lever handle down but giving a steady pull while playing the note . I had more practice at this today . My hearing level was very low last week . Maybe a head cold . Not quite man flu though .
I feel a bit guilty as I am so new to pianos but the way I did this may give players or even techs some useful indicators . The pins were really so tight they were beyond the use of normal lever skills . There is a strange machine they use to pound away and settle in piano hammers. Maybe Baldwins need to make a machine to run in the pins for us .

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During ths topic I have been using a Keyes Impact Hammer with an adjustable sliding weight to alter the impact leverage . Most times I have used the weight at the end of the shaft. In the treble section the shorter strings can be tuned with the weight much nearer the pin . The most difficult note I had was the G5 . When I had done a large number of rotations (about 120 ? ) that note was still being stubborn. The weight would be at maximum distance from the pin and with the normal gentle twist there would be no movement. It was not as rigid as before but I gave two of the pins an extra 40 rotations .I think that tots up to 160 rotations . They still gave quiet squealing sounds at first . Now the G5 can be tuned with the gentle twisting movement on the lever, weight at the half mast position , and the action fits in with the other treble notes . Even the vertical pulling action for these trebles alters the tuning very quickly . I always do the final "twist "on the lever to tune down to the note ( or near the note ) and finally sometimes a very slight pull to the right frequency. As with twisting the pulling is always downwards and never upwards at the end.
It took a long time to get the nerve to work out this method.

Last edited by Jt2nd; 04/06/19 04:02 PM. Reason: Small extra detail ,for clarity .
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April 2019 to April 2020 .2 tunings done in that time and the latest tuning gave no trouble at all . All the levering to and fro had no bad effects . So that is a better test over a whole year . Hope the novel approach did not shock anyone .

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That's good news - especially on the Keyes hammer. Keep us updated please.

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