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Sostenuto regulation (Newton Hunt)

----- Original Message -----
From: J Patrick Draine <>
To: Jon Ralinovsky <>
Cc: <>
Sent: Tuesday, February 06, 2001 6:18 PM
Subject: Re: Sostenuto regulation

 the damper stop rail had worked its way up too high, and without it
being in its proper place, the sostenuto & dampers were totally
messed up. Once it was lowered to proper specs the sostentuto worked


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Sostenuto regulation

----- Original Message -----
From: Newton Hunt <>
To: <>
Sent: Tuesday, February 06, 2001 8:22 PM
Subject: Re: Sostenuto regulation

Ok, I dug this out of my "sent" folder.

Look it over and if you have any further questions just write.

Check for excessive movement of the sos. blade in it's bushings.
Re-orient the cloth or replace it as needed.

The best procedure is:
1 Regulate the timing of the dampers.
        The tabs should be in a straight line horizontal and vertical.
2 Set damper lever block so pedal raises dampers to the same
height as
3 Set damper up stop rail so there is some up motion left for
dampers to prevent jamming.
4 Set the sostenuto blade so it is 45 degrees off horizontal
5 Set the height of the blade TIP to the height of the sostenuto
TIPs exactly.
6 Do this at each section end.
7 Check that there is no fore and aft slop in the keyblock
8 Work the sostenuto pedal several times to see if dampers flick
move upward.
9 If dampers do tap the sos. brackets so the blade is moved
toward the
10 Repeat until all dampers are not touched.
11 Check that the sos. raises the dampers just slightly higher
the keys. Stop block under the keybed.
12 Adjust the sos. lever stop accordingly.
13 Depress the sustain pedal the sos. pedal and see that all
are held up.
14 Tap the tops of the damper blocks to see if any fall through.
15 Move sos. brackets away from the keys until all are held

You will need pliers to bend the brackets, a small hammer to move the
brackets in and a drift to move them out, a means of determining sos.
tab height and compare it to the blade tip height (critical to
functioning) S&S has a tool for this but gave confusing instructions
so do it my way and it will work.

Have a nice weekend all.,


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Sostenuto regulation

----- Original Message -----
From: <A440A@AOL.COM>
To: <>
Sent: Wednesday, February 07, 2001 4:53 AM
Subject: Re: Sostenuto regulation

Keith says,
<<I fail to see how having
the damper stop rail too high would in any fashion mess up the dampers,
and/or the operation of the sostenuto system.>>

   If the underlevers are allowed unlimited upward travel, a strong blow can
send them over the top of the engaged sostenuto rod. This doesn't happpen
with the unsprung sos. tabs, but the later models will allow the underlever
tab to go above, and when it does, it stays up there!
Ed Foote RPTs

The easy test for this problem is to first engage the sostenudo pedal and
then, one by one, play each note hard. Also, if your damper pedal travel
is excessive/not limited and the upstop rail is too high, you can (at
least) jam the tabs against the knife, or flip them over... and there they

Conrad Hoffsommer -

Anything in parentheses can(not) be ignored.

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Burning in; Warped Shanks;

----- Original Message -----
From: Newton Hunt <>
To: <>
Sent: Wednesday, February 07, 2001 12:35 PM
Subject: Re: Warped Shanks

Hi Dick,

THe best tool I have found for this is a butane lighter with a long
extension for lighting grills or fireplaces. I use this for burning
both vertical and grand shanks.

The reason I prefer this method is because when you take the heat away
it cools quickly (everything including the shank) and you can judge
the amount of heat by watching the flame (low) and keep it moving up
and down. With blowers or heating elements it is hard to judge the
amount of heat and I have scorched other parts with them and not with
the flame.

Move the hammer forward and put the flame next to the shank and move
it up and down then twist the shank the way you wish it to go and then
take the flame away. COntinue to hold the hammer twisted for a few
more seconds then look at it. Heat again if needed. Be considerate
of the pinning and watch for other burning parts. It is easy to
scorch the hammer rail cloth so I move the hammer forward away from

If you need to warp a shank to raise or lower the hammer strike point
you can lift or press down the hammer at the strike point and heat the
shank. WOrks well.

As for sideways you could use a pair of damper pliers that will hold a
grand damper head with the jaws parallel and warp the shank as
described above but most spacing cAn be done by loosening the butt
screw and moving the hammer in the desired direction and tightening
the screw.

Just be careful and have your wits about you.


A point of note re the term "burning shanks"... in England I grew up with
the term "to cast a shank"... meaning to "turn" (as you would cast a sail).
It may be, depending on the dryness of the shank that you end up with odd
one or two having burn marks, but that is a result of the conditons, not the
direct intention of the exercise.

Brian Lawson, RPT
Johannesburg, South Africa


I use the hot air gun sold by the piano supply folks. I like it quite a bit. I had used flame in the past but......(you know there is a horror story there!) I did not like the charred shanks. The hot air gun get super hot in like two seconds and you can bend the shanks real easy (I usually use my fingers, but I also have a shank bender that I use sometimes. You can twist them real easy if you need to. And then just switch the little rascal to cold air and in about 4 seconds you can touch the gun end - it has cooled to warm. I now leave NO burn marks on shanks. I would have some harsh words for any tech that left the shanks on my new piano charred (that's just me though)!
Terry Farrell
Piano Tuning & Service
Tampa, Florida

If you wet the area you are heating there will be no burn marks. As you heat
the area, the moisture steams the wood and makes "casting the shanks" easier
particularly on delicate shanks or parts. Hope I used the phrase correctly,
it is quite a bit nicer than burning!
Dale Probst, RPT & Elizabeth Ward, RPT

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Adjustable Plate Screws

----- Original Message -----
From: <Yardarm103669107@AOL.COM>
To: <>
Sent: Wednesday, February 07, 2001 10:03 AM
Subject: Re: Adjustable Plate Screws

They are called cap screws, and are machine bolts used generally for high
pressure manifold connections, can be found at auto supply and machine parts
houses. I have been using 1/2"od thread, 7/8" cap x 1" long. The bolt comes
with a beveled head, so you'll have to have a machinist mill the caps to
about 40-50 thousandths so that the bolt will go flush to the soundboard.
There is a hex opening in the top for a 5/16" hex wrench, and you can get a
hex connector which will fit the sears brace. You need to prepare the hole in
the soundboard/rim by drilling/reaming out about 1/2" down to accomodate the
bolt; use a 7/16" bit so that the bolt will have something to bite. Once you
have the series of bolts around the rim, you can lay the plate on top of them
and work through the lag bolt holes to raise and lower the plate to your
heart's content. I have been using them for years. After you have the height
you want, then remove the plate and cut and glue dowel which will go in flush
to the top of the cap screw; then remove the cap screw. In many SW's the
dowel is almost flush to the soundboard, so don't be surprised if your cap
screws go all the way down. A better solution would be to grind the plate
bosses (see Nick Gravagne's class this summer) and give yourself more working
room above the soundboard. For instances where the plate sits higher, you can
get the same cap screws in longer sizes; adapt to the given needs.
Paul Revenko-Jones

  Jim Coleman will machine the lag bolt to fit under
the plate and above the board, the allen screw is just long enough for
the cap nut and the choice of allen screw is to fit in the diameter of
the plate hole.

You send him the height of the plate in the original configuration,
the diameter of the plate hole, the thickness of the plate and he will
make the whole thing to fit perfectly. To me that is worth the $10

Just drop the plate in, adjust the height of the plate to within a
gnats aspiration, adjust the height of the nose bolts and cap it all
off. Done.

Jim says you can take a nut off and raise or lower the plate even
after it is strung. Now _that_ scares me even though I have seen
Chris Robinson do something similar with the nose bolts.


Grey Market Yamaha

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Grey Market Yamaha

----- Original Message -----
From: jolly roger <>
To: <>
Sent: Wednesday, February 07, 2001 10:16 AM
Subject: Re: Grey Market

Hi Tony,
            Having spent time in the Yamaha factory, I can assure you that
they mfg 3 seasoned for destination pianos.
This is NOT a quality difference, but improvements for various geographical
climates and conditions.
North America pianos are dried down to a lower MC spec. Tropical pianos,
much higher MC and added features like insect repellents, plus composite
wood products are more widely used. Makes sense to try to make a better
piano for that destination. and the problems that the piano is going to face.
The question was asked in Japan. What about Florida vs Saskatchewan?
(Extremes of dryness, and high humidity) The answer was one grade for
North America.
The company strives to make the best product for a specific reason. And
their domination in the World market seems to have stemmed from making good
reliable pianos, with good service support all over the world.
Many of the grey market pianos that we have seen in this area, have been
exposed to the ravage's of extreme industrial pollution. Just breath the
diesel fumes on the Tokyo streets on a damp day, and you will soon
understand where some of the problems stem from.
Strings and action centres on these pianos showed problems that we never
see in domestic used pianos.
I purchased 3 grands and stored them for 12 months. All 3 had to be rebuilt
before they could be sold.
Trust me it was an expensive lesson.
In fairness when the pianos arrived, they were obviously maintained by
competant technicians. but the actions were worn out from heavy use. This I
expected. The small pressure ridges that were evident on reciept, soon
turned to significant cracks in winter.
Again not hearsay but personal experience.
I have no doubt that these pianos may stand up quite well in the higher
humidity regions of this continent.
But I will bet that there is some nasty suprises building up if you live in
the corn belt.
Yes, the sales departments are scrambling to stem the competition. And I
have no doubt there is a lot of grey truth thrown around on the sales floor.
It is quite possible that new Zealand has the same zonal spec as Japan.
That's good news for down under.
Nothing to worry about. In fact given your climate it's a probability.

In fairness to all I am a Yamaha and Baldwin piano dealer, but I don't
think my opinion is clouded.
My brain maybe.
See ya in Oct,

>> Brian, List,
>> This is not the case. When originally manufactured, these particular
>> Yamahas being discussed were just not designed to be marketed to certain
>> parts of the world.
>> Here is one of their web sites with relevant info:
>> click on - What About Purchasing A Used Yamaha Piano?
>> Keith McGavern
>> Registered Piano Technician
>> Oklahoma Chapter 731
>> Piano Technicians Guild
>> USA

There is an excellent post in the archives:

>Date: Fri, 04 Apr 1997 10:19:57 +0900
>From: "Garret E. Traylor" <>
>Subject: Re: Japanese Yamahas

concerning a grading system used to identify the condition of these pianos.
Really worth reading for those interested.

Keith McGavern
Registered Piano Technician
Oklahoma Chapter 731
Piano Technicians Guild

S&S "L" Damper felt

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S&S "L" Damper felt

----- Original Message -----
From: Paul <>
To: <>
Sent: Wednesday, February 07, 2001 9:09 PM
Subject: Re: S&S "L" Damper felt

David, John
I've installed several sets of ready cuts for Steinway from Schaff with good

Paul Chick
----- Original Message -----
From: David Ilvedson <>
To: <>
Sent: Sunday, February 04, 2001 12:24 PM
Subject: Re: S&S "L" Damper felt

> I just used installed ready cut for Steinways from Schaff and was
> David I.
> *********** REPLY SEPARATOR ***********
> On 2/4/01 at 10:32 AM John R Fortiner wrote:
> >Just wondering if any of you have had better experience with any one
> >"brand" of felt when redoing dampers for an S&S "L".

The only problem I've had with the Schaff sets is the thickness of the flats
not matching the thickness of the trichord splits creating a problem where
both are used on the same damper head (the flats have been to thick). You
can peel them, of course, but I've found the Tokiwa sets more consistent
that way and of very good quality.

David Love


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