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Hi there! I bought a new Kawai K-500 at the end of 2019. When I release the sustain pedal even a tiny bit, the sustain sound abruptly stops. I’m not ruling out technique completely, as I’m a relative beginner, but I actually suspect it might be the pedal, but I’m not sure. My question is, can a pedal be adjusted? For example, can it be adjusted to require release closer to halfway before sustain abruptly stops?

I also have a question about escapement. My teacher has asked me to lift only halfway on the keys and press down again (for a more legato effect) but I can’t do that. I have to lift almost all the way up in order to press down again. Is this what they call escapement and can I get it adjusted? Also, is the “more legato effect” called “finger pedalling”?

Thanks.

Last edited by WeakLeftHand; 07/05/21 08:41 PM.

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The point at which the dampers lift on an upright piano is adjustable by adjusting the nut on the bolt that goes from the pedal to the lever that pushes the rod that lifts the damper, so you can adjust that yourself. There may be a problem if the dampers are not lifting uniformly. If that is the case, a technician should be able to fix that.

The answer to your escapement question is that difference between most upright actions and most properly regulated grand actions is that you cannot expect a note to repeat reliably if you do not lift the key all the way up. Of course, the kicker is that there are a lot of grand pianos that are not regulated properly, so teachers should be aware of these things if that is what they are teaching.


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Thanks for your advice! I really appreciate it!


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Quote
I also have a question about escapement. My teacher has asked me to lift only halfway on the keys and press down again (for a more legato effect) but I can’t do that. I have to lift almost all the way up in order to press down again.
This seems to be confusing legato playing with note repetition. Legato playing refers to connecting the start of the tone of the next note(s) to the release of the current note(s) so that there is no gap. The new note generally was not already just pkayed so there is no release of it, halfway or otherwise. You may want to clarify with the teacher what is intended. Perhaps the comment refers to playing note 1 then note 2 then back to note 1?

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What BDB says about grand vs vertical is quite accurate. It is rare to find a vertical piano action that will reliably repeat without allowing the key to come almost all the way back to rest position. (Some are more problematic than others).

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