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Hello all! Hope all you are having a great day!

I am checking an used Yamaha baby grand G2 in late 1980s or early 1990s. Here is a recording of its sounds. There are some noise when the key is pressed. Usually what's reason? How fixable is the issue? And roughly how costly is it?



I will find a piano technician to check it in person. However, it's also great to get some hints from crowd wisdom :-) Thanks all!

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Welcome to Piano World!

The video was short, but I turned the volume up on my PC speakers and listened intently several times. The tone of the notes didn't sound too bad, and not way out of tune, although the unisons could certainly used some "cleaning up".

As to the noise you mentioned, I did hear a "key noise" that I'm not used to hearing. In fact, it almost sounded similar to the key noise you'd hear on a digital piano, while playing the piano with the power not turned on. Kind of a thud or bumping sound.

A qualified tech could probably narrow it down for you, and it could be as simple as needing a good regulation and some lubrication.

The thing about subtle key noises, is that you don't often hear them when playing the piano normally; they only seem to manifest themselves when pecking at the individual keys, like you did in the video.

I'm sure you will get more comments from the pros here.

Good luck!

Rick


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Thanks Rick for the reply! The piano has been mostly unused and surely un-tuned for years. So I am expecting that a tuning is necessary.

I tried a few different Yahama pianos, and this one has the loudest key noise. So I posted it here and wanna some additional ears to make sure it's not a horrible issue :-) Thanks!

Originally Posted by Rickster
Welcome to Piano World!

The video was short, but I turned the volume up on my PC speakers and listened intently several times. The tone of the notes didn't sound too bad, and not way out of tune, although the unisons could certainly used some "cleaning up".

As to the noise you mentioned, I did hear a "key noise" that I'm not used to hearing. In fact, it almost sounded similar to the key noise you'd hear on a digital piano, while playing the piano with the power not turned on. Kind of a thud or bumping sound.

A qualified tech could probably narrow it down for you, and it could be as simple as needing a good regulation and some lubrication.

The thing about subtle key noises, is that you don't often hear them when playing the piano normally; they only seem to manifest themselves when pecking at the individual keys, like you did in the video.

I'm sure you will get more comments from the pros here.

Good luck!

Rick

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Hi Sheng123, welcome to PW!

My piano has somewhat that sound when playing staccato. Quieter though, I think itโ€™s more normal.

I would guess some regulation would help-as Rickster said.
It is fixable though!
Not sure how much regulation costs, just wait for the others to reply!

I hope you get a good piano ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

Last edited by probably blue; 05/17/22 06:26 PM.
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Originally Posted by probably blue
Hi Sheng123, welcome to PW!

My piano has somewhat that sound when playing staccato. Quieter though, I think itโ€™s more normal.

I would guess some regulation would help-as Rickster said.
It is fixable though!
Not sure how much regulation costs, just wait for the others to reply!

I hope you get a good piano ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

Thanks for your input :-)

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I suggest you take off the fall and see if it still does it.
Nick


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If it's not a low fallboard, here are a couple of other things to check:

1. The key upstop rail- the long, skinny piece of wood lying across the keys just behind the fronts. Those nuts often loosen up.
2. The hammer rest rail (if this piano has one, can't remember). One of the things I do on every grand with a hammer rest rail (as opposed to individual cushions like a Steinway) is to poke a long, thin flat blade screwdriver down between the strings and check the nuts. More often than not, at least one needs to be tightened. If the slot is at just the wrong angle, you may have to pull the action. Very common source of noise.

If the piano was regulated and the keys set a little too high, they can rebound against exposed wood at the back of the fallboard (ask me how I know that...). But since the average home-use grand has never seen a regulation, it's less likely. I'm betting on the hammer rest rail if it has one. Other possibilities are loose hammer flange screws or loose center pins, but I rarely see them that loose on a Yamaha. Maybe on a Sammick though, if they're not seized...

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Sorry, one other possibility: loose hammer heads. Not extremely likely with a Yamaha of this age, but it is possible.

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It sounds like the noise comes when the key comes back UP vs when it bottoms, but it's really hard to tell at the speed you were playing and with such a short sample. Can you make another playing at about 1/3 the speed you were playing? Could help us help you.


Andrew Kraus, Pianist
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Originally Posted by Seeker
It sounds like the noise comes when the key comes back UP vs when it bottoms, but it's really hard to tell at the speed you were playing and with such a short sample. Can you make another playing at about 1/3 the speed you were playing? Could help us help you.
Originally Posted by Rickster
Welcome to Piano World!

The video was short, but I turned the volume up on my PC speakers and listened intently several times. The tone of the notes didn't sound too bad, and not way out of tune, although the unisons could certainly used some "cleaning up".

As to the noise you mentioned, I did hear a "key noise" that I'm not used to hearing. In fact, it almost sounded similar to the key noise you'd hear on a digital piano, while playing the piano with the power not turned on. Kind of a thud or bumping sound.

A qualified tech could probably narrow it down for you, and it could be as simple as needing a good regulation and some lubrication.

The thing about subtle key noises, is that you don't often hear them when playing the piano normally; they only seem to manifest themselves when pecking at the individual keys, like you did in the video.

I'm sure you will get more comments from the pros here.

Good luck!

Rick

I uploaded a long version here


Unfortunately I cannot access the piano now to play it slowly. Instead, I edited the video to be slow.... here is the slow version of the same video if it helps


Thanks!

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Pretty sure Scott nailed it. Either loose hammer "rest" rail or loose key upstop rail. Neither is a big deal. However it indicates that the piano has been sitting around unused and unserviced for a long time...probably.

Peter Grey Piano Doctor


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Originally Posted by P W Grey
Pretty sure Scott nailed it. Either loose hammer "rest" rail or loose key upstop rail. Neither is a big deal. However it indicates that the piano has been sitting around unused and unserviced for a long time...probably.

Peter Grey Piano Doctor

Thanks Peter for taking a look! You are absolutely correct about the usage and maintenance. It's unused and unserviced for quite a while

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I cannot hear exactly what noises you are talking about, but clicks tend to come from poorly glued hammers or cracked center pin joints. Rattles come from loose rails, which can be key stop, damper stop, let-off button rails (not on Yamahas and other pianos without those rails) or hammer rails. Knocks come from poor bedding of the keyframe, which is probably the most difficult thing to fix. But there are always other causes, like junk that has fallen into the action.


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Adding to BDB's most recent post to the OP, could it be hard knuckles?
To me, the action sounds like it's really dried out, like there's no cushion in it.
Could any of that be helped with a ProFelt treatment of the front rail and center pin bushings of the keysticks?
...and, if dryness is an issue, we'd certainly want to check the bridge pins, torque on the tuning pins, sound board for cracks?.
Where and under what conditions was this instrument stored?
Don't know what your (OP) budget is, but this instrument seems like it's at the point where some fairly expensive and extensive work would have to be done to make it "whole" again. As it sits, I'm hoping you've got a "great deal" on the pricing.
Not to rain on your parade, just my opinion.


Andrew Kraus, Pianist
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The only knuckles that make noise in my experience are knuckles that have gotten wet and the leather dried hard.


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Thanks Semipro and Andrew for the input! I will chat with my technician to make sure we do not miss any horrible issues.

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Sheng, have you actually taken off the fall yet? Start simple before worrying about the sophisticated stuff.
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The key point in the OP is to find a technician. It would be much better to find one who needs no advice from this forum.


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If you see what I mean ...

Last edited by Withindale; 05/22/22 10:18 AM. Reason: Duplicate removed.

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I listened to the slower recording; most notes have noise and few seem quieter. I'd eliminate a few things:

-it's not hard knuckles (which is very unlikely anyway).
-It's not loose hammers (too consistent and unlikely so many would be loose).
-It's not key bedding (we'd probably hear that with loud playing, not medium blows).

Here are my current theories:
1.Garden-variety return noise from old felt throughout the action. I very often hear customers complain about return noise and I have to explain that, yes, you're hearing the sum of all that worn felt. Actions get noisy over time. Some people expect absolute quiet. Older pianos are rarely quiet--they have whooshing dampers, pedal thumps, false beating, non-matching bicords, weird resonances, screeching overtones, you name it. The wippens come down and hit the capstans, the keys hit the back rail cloth, etc.

2. Take a look at how high the hammers are above their cushions at rest. Are they a few millimeters higher (a shanks's thickness), or just above? If they are actually contacting the cushions at rest, it's possible they are striking the wippens as they come back down. If the hammer hits a repetition height adjustment screw it will click. Hammer shanks flex more than you'd think. I often come across older pianos with very low hammers. Never overly high hammers unless someone came along and raised them for some reason, like not enough aftertouch (much easier and cheaper to raise the hammers a bit if the keys are slightly low--raising the keys takes hours of labor).

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