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#3099335 03/29/21 12:05 PM
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Hi all — first post here, my apologies if this is not the right place for this question.

I have a Rösler Barcarola (made in Czechoslovokia) that appears to have a functional middle pedal. There is even a way to slide it to the left to lock it into place. However, nothing happens when I push the pedal.

I have removed the cover and I can see the pedal is *trying* to do something, but it seems the pedal is not aligned correctly or maybe missing a part. Any ideas?

Many thanks and warm greetings from Estonia.


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Yes, a part is missing. The piano apparently was originally equipped with a practice rail -- a rail with a felt curtain that would drop down between the hammers and the strings when the pedal was depressed, that would serve as a mute. Another name for this is the piano mute rail. If you google this latter term, you'll see images of a bunch of examples.


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First thing I removed from my piano —unless you live where you have to be very quiet, it’s a total waste—like drinking decaffinated coffee—--in addition you have to remove the rail if you want to tune without obstruction.

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Terrilyn, many people use the practice pedal when they need to practice a tedious sounding complicated pattern. For example scales, or any repetitive measure. It greatly cuts down on fatigue when the sound is muted.

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Originally Posted by Terrilyn
First thing I removed from my piano —unless you live where you have to be very quiet, it’s a total waste—like drinking decaffinated coffee—--in addition you have to remove the rail if you want to tune without obstruction.

Well I live in a small apartment, so the practice rail would probably be appreciated by my lower neighbors if it still worked smile

Interesting about it needing to be removed for tuning. The middle pedal used to slightly dampen the tone, but we had the piano tuned a few months ago and I guess the tuner forgot to put it back in place. It hasn't worked since then.

As you can see in the video, there is a sort of arm/clamp on the left side which moves up and down. I assume this held the felt strip in place. But wouldn't that presume a corresponding arm/clamp on the right side so that the felt curtain could be suspended between the two? This pedal only seems to activate the left side. There don't appear to be any mechanisms in place to support a similar arm on the right side. Still a bit confused....

Thanks for all the help so far!

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The holes in the side of the piano held the arm that held the muting felt. You can see the arc scratched in the finish where the end of the mute rail rubbed against it. You should see corresponding marks on the other side of the piano.


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This is quite a large mechanism to forget to put back in. I don't think the tuner would've missed it, and he wouldn't need to remove the mechanical mountings where the rail went. Definitely call him up, but it's something like this pedal. Different uprights have slightly different rails.

If it was missing the whole time, don't worry if you really want that feature, they sell retrofit kits for it which use a cable and plunger instead of the pedal.

Last edited by EinLudov; 03/29/21 04:21 PM.
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Thanks for all the responses! Very interesting and helpful. I would like to restore this pedal to its original glory, but I suppose the cable/plunger retrofit is probably more practical.

Thanks again.

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I would not bother with the cable and plunger when you have the pedal there. Just fasten the crossbar to the pedal rod. It just takes a U-shaped wire. A decent technician should be able to help you with it.


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Are you sure it isn’t a sostenuto pedal? My middle pedal is definitely a sostenuto and not a practice pedal. I used it to sustain certain notes instead of sustaining all of them.

If you don’t know what a sostenuto pedal is, I wouldn't bother fixing it.

Steve

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sostenuto

Last edited by Lakeviewsteve; 03/29/21 06:53 PM.

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Sostenuto pedals do not lock down like this one does.


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