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#3093949 03/16/21 02:46 PM
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After browsing almost 700 posts in PW to improve my knowledge of pianos I realized that perhaps after a good prepaparation by an expert technician, the best second less expensive factor useful to improve the sound of a piano is the replacement of the hammers, then the strings and finally the soundboard.

For example, suppose we substitute the hammers of a Kawai GL series piano (I will get a GL-30 in the next two months) with a series of Renner hammers, how much this can change the sound?

Guido


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I think you are better off buying a piano with a sound that you like.


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Originally Posted by Learux
I think you are better off buying a piano with a sound that you like.
Agreed, but I think the OP is asking hypothetically (or at least I hope).

The hammers could not only change the sound by quite a bit, but it matters who puts the hammers in, as well.


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Originally Posted by Learux
I think you are better off buying a piano with a sound that you like.
Positively.

It would be foolhardy to buy a new piano with the idea of upgrading it with different hammers.Trying to predict what the piano will sound like by replacing its hammers is very hard unless one could hear the same piano with the different hammers. Since almost no one replaces the hammers on a new piano this is highly unlikely. Replacing old, worn out hammers with almost any kind of hammers will obviously make the piano sound better.

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How important are hammers?

I've played pianos that didn't have hammers before. While they were ok for practicing scales, they were less useful as concert instruments due to the fact that the audience couldn't hear the strings. Having said that, a significant advantage that pianos without hammers have is that you don't need strings or a soundboard either, which is a tremendous cost advantage over conventional pianos.

To repeat a common adage here on PW, no one can decide this for you. Play a variety of pianos with and without hammers and decide for yourself. If the piano that speaks to you is one without hammers, I say go for it!

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^^LOL. I like it.

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Beautiful, I love it.

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My question was about replacing worn out hammers.

I wonder what would be the impact of choosing a set of hammers different from the original.

I read so many positive comments on Renner hammers so I was wondering how these hammers could change the sound.

As a side question I am asking if somebody know if the hammers of Kawai GL series are made by Kawai or another producer.

By the way, how long could last a set of hammers with regular use (three hours a day)?


"I tell my piano things" that I don’t have to tell everyone.
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Frederic Chopin (revisited)
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My question was about replacing worn out hammers.

I wonder what would be the impact of choosing a set of hammers different from the original.

I read so many positive comments on Renner hammers so I was wondering how these hammers could change the sound.

As a side question I am asking if somebody know if the hammers of Kawai GL series are made by Kawai or another producer.

By the way, how long could last a set of hammers with regular use (three hours a day)?


"I tell my piano things" that I don’t have to tell everyone.
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Originally Posted by Guido, Roma - Italy
My question was about replacing worn out hammers. I wonder what would be the impact of choosing a set of hammers different from the original.

Well, if you replaced the worn out hammers with hammers that weren't different from the originals, wouldn't you still have the same worn out hammers? Replacing the hammers with the same ones seems a bit silly. Just saying.

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Replacing old hammers with ones different from the usual hammers used for that make of piano could definitely change the tone from how the piano sounded when new. The problem is how to choose the hammers. The person choosing a different hammer has to be very familiar with the sound of the hammer, and the tech has to be able to understand what kind of sound you want. This is not so easy because describing tone accurately is very difficult. And, as far as I know, each hammer manufacturer make many kinds of hammers, i.e. there is not just one kind of Renner hammer.

The ideal situation would be if you could hear an example of your piano make that already has the kind of hammer you are considering or at least another piano with the same kind of hammer you are considering.

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Originally Posted by Sonepica
Originally Posted by Guido, Roma - Italy
My question was about replacing worn out hammers. I wonder what would be the impact of choosing a set of hammers different from the original.

Well, if you replaced the worn out hammers with hammers that weren't different from the originals, wouldn't you still have the same worn out hammers? Replacing the hammers with the same ones seems a bit silly. Just saying.

Dear Sonepica,

You made me laugh, sorry for my English, I actually meant not to use the ‘same’ hammers, but the same model or type of hammers, of course.

smile

Guido


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Well I have heard of Yamaha pianos receiving different hammers to make the sound more mellow.Surely there would need to be significant voicing done after /before ,the hammers are replaced.So one would factor in the expense for this work to be done by a suitably qualified technician.

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Originally Posted by Guido, Roma - Italy
My question was about replacing worn out hammers.

I wonder what would be the impact of choosing a set of hammers different from the original.

I read so many positive comments on Renner hammers so I was wondering how these hammers could change the sound.

As a side question I am asking if somebody know if the hammers of Kawai GL series are made by Kawai or another producer.

By the way, how long could last a set of hammers with regular use (three hours a day)?

Q1 - It would sound different, but it would be difficult to predict how it would sound or whether you would prefer it to the original.
Q2. Kawai make their own hammers for the GL.
Q3. Why do you ask how long the hammers would last? Are you worried that for 3 hours a day playing an entry level series grand might not really be suitable or are you concerned that they might last too long so delaying how quickly you get to play around with replacement hammers?

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Well I do not think it is an entry level grand.Sure it's not a GX ,
then we have had someone who bought a Kawai GX2 and did not like it, even though she chose the instrument in the store. Sure it is unusual for this to happen. The GL series are very well made .From what I know Guido is thinking more about enhancing the tone of his new Kawai GL 30. These pianos have the same action as the GX series.

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Changing hammer might impact the action feel because different hammers might weigh differently.


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Originally Posted by Lady Bird
Well I do not think it is an entry level grand.Sure it's not a GX ,
then we have had someone who bought a Kawai GX2 and did not like it, even though she chose the instrument in the store. Sure it is unusual for this to happen. The GL series are very well made .From what I know Guido is thinking more about enhancing the tone of his new Kawai GL 30. These pianos have the same action as the GX series.

The GLs actually *are* Kawai's entry level series for grands.

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Originally Posted by Harpuia
Changing hammer might impact the action feel because different hammers might weigh differently.
Guido
It would be best to post this thread in the Piano Technicians forum if you are serious about doing this. Kawai does have the Mill action which is somewhat different to Yamaha for example.

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Originally Posted by Lady Bird
Originally Posted by Harpuia
Changing hammer might impact the action feel because different hammers might weigh differently.
Guido
It would be best to post this thread in the Piano Technicians forum if you are serious about doing this. Kawai does have the Mill action which is somewhat different to Yamaha for example.

Thank you Lady Bird, I will post the questions in the Technicians forum, I am just curious, I’ll be waiting for my GL-30 for the next two months (hopefully earlier), I have to kill the waiting time, but I thought my questions were interesting indeed.

What is the less expensive route to improve the sound of a ten year old piano?

From my experience with a digital piano (a Yamaha CVP 307) I’ve learnt that the best way to improve a piano performance is improving the pianist smile

So I accept that for the next ten years my GL-30 will be more than enough for my technical abilities... however, who knows, perhaps I’ll be so good and the hammers so worn out that I could decide to change the hammers instead of my piano. It would be less expensive don’t you think?


"I tell my piano things" that I don’t have to tell everyone.
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Originally Posted by Harpuia
Changing hammer might impact the action feel because different hammers might weigh differently.

One of the nice things of Kawai is that it uses the Millennium 3 action also for the premium series that I suppose have better hammers. Therefore, it should not be a problem to use higher quality hammers, especially if they are already used by the premium series that use the Millennium 3 action. Don’t you think?

Guido


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Frederic Chopin (revisited)
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