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PTJ 79-99 CD/ recent issues? (Kent Swafford)

----- Original Message -----
From: Kent Swafford <>
To: <>
Sent: Sunday, March 04, 2001 11:25 AM
Subject: Re: PTJ 79-99 CD/ recent issues?

on 3/4/01 7:57 AM, J Patrick Draine at wrote:

> A few years ago it was planned that beyond the 20 year span put on
> the CD, more recent issues would be available on the web to
> subscribers to the CD. Are there any plans for that?
> For several years I've been getting a monthly journal (AppleWorks
> Journal) via PDF download, at a lower cost than having a hard copy
> sent to me.
> Kent, Carol, et al, what do you think?
> Patrick Draine

Since we have taken the plunge into making the past Journals available in
electronic format, it is a natural assumption that this will continue. Steps
_are_ being taken to make electronic distribution of more Journals possible.

First, we have been assured that all Journals since January 2000, that is,
all the Journals that come after the Journals that are included on the CD,
will be saved at headquarters in electronic form. This means that future
electronic Journals will not have to be scanned from hard copy as all the
Journals were for the CD's. This ability to _directly_ create electronic
versions of the Journal will allow future electronic Journals to be both
better quality _and_ more compact than the CD Journals.

Second, this might be an appropriate time to mention that PTG is in the
process of moving from Andy Rudoff's server to its own internet
service provider. The new server (no, I don't know exactly when it will be
online, but the move should be almost imperceptible to users) will make
possible a number of new things, most noticeably an expansion of the
"Members-only" area, and a PTG online store at which users will be able to
purchase products directly online, and perhaps register for conventions and
pay membership dues as well. It has been assumed by all involved that some
products available online would be downloadable ones including Journal
items, but the details to be worked out are many.

Thanks for giving me the opportunity to speak of these exciting things. :)

Kent Swafford

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pedal extender URL

----- Original Message -----
From: Tom Cole <>
To: <>
Sent: Sunday, March 04, 2001 5:23 PM
Subject: Re: pedal extender

It might be easier to type in and
scroll to the bottom.

I know someone whose child has outgrown their GRK-type pedal extender
and wants to sell it. Excellent condition. Low mileage. Attractive
price. Financing available. ;-)

Email me if you're interested.

Tom Cole

> Tom Driscoll wrote:
> link to grk for pedal extender
> Name: GRK Manufacturing.url
> GRK Manufacturing.url

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Why Orchestra Pitch Increases (Stan Ryberg)

----- Original Message -----
From: <JStan40@AOL.COM>
To: <>
Sent: Sunday, March 04, 2001 7:58 PM
Subject: Re: pianotech-digest V2001 #288
> IMO, it has more to do with pitch, that there is an innate tendency for
> musicians (with absolute pitch) to want "brighter" (meaning higher
> pitches), that sharper is preferable to flat or on pitch (poor musicians
> play flat), and the only hope we have of keeping the 440 standard
> (besides piano technicians) is the inflexibility of wind instruments to
> accommodate an ever-rising standard. Any day now I expect orchestra rage
> to manifest in the form of trombones launching rockets into the violin
> section during the 1812 Overture. BwaaAAAAHH!
> Tom Cole
Gentlepersons of the List,

Tom has the basics of this ongoing argument (even within orchestras) nailed
down very neatly. A Viennese violinist with whom I worked for a number of
years explained it this way: violins, particularly, are subject to stresses
which eventually cause the wood to deaden a bit....that is, to become less
flexible and to vibrate less, thus deadening the tone. The response of
players to this.....rather than giving the poor instrument a rest for a to raise the pitch, thus creating that brightness again. This,
however, leads to eventual deadening, and the cycle repeats. Mind you, this
is just one theory, but it makes a certain amount of sense (cents?).

And us trombone players are not really the ones who will rebel first--we do
have a slide, after all, and can cope with nearly anything--it will be the
clarinets who will arrive with blowguns and curare-tipped darts!!!!!!!

The answer? I haven't a clue.......but it is bothersome particularly in
summer festivals where players come from orchestras who play at different
pitch levels, and the woodwind players are constantly fighting for their own.
 Oh, and Joe Goss......MANY tuba players have had to have their instruments
cut in order to reach the pitch. Mouthpiece design changes over the years
have actually lowered the pitch of older instruments in many cases!
(Trombones and trumpets, too.)

Regards, all!

Stan Ryberg
Barrington IL

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Why Orchestra Pitch Increases (David Renaud)

----- Original Message -----
From: David Renaud <>
To: <>
Sent: Monday, March 05, 2001 12:02 AM
Subject: Re: Pitch and brightness

Perhaps I may offer some experience with this creepy pitch problem.
I am a woodwind player, Clarinets as major, saxes and flutes as minor.
I have played pops concerts with a national orchestra,
and much freelance pit work, the odd pick up orchestra.

I can not explain the science, but I can offer my personal experience
that higher pitch is brighter. I have recordings of the Berlin orchestra
at A448, and some others at A435. This is a big spread.

The Bb clarinet is noticeably brighter then the A clarinet in tone.
The spread of A435 to A448 is a good part of that semitone.
In fact, a German clarinetist must buy an instrument with holes
bored out differently. Making such a change by exchanging for just a
short barrel would throw all the scales intonation way off.

Also when I use a 65 mm barrel(1mm short) and voice the clarinet
tone up to A442(Montreal symphony is always 442; on their
auditions they advertise its requirement for the audition) I end
up brighter.

My hypothesis as to why orchestras push the pitch is simple.

We have built larger and larger halls,
with less and less wood, and more cushy seats and rug
that suck up sound. It requires a very bright sound to project
into a room of 3000 without amplification. In fact some of the
older bass player I know often complain about how bright
the are asked to play compared with 30 years ago.

Timbre has evolved. Pitch is only one of the techniques
to achieve a strong core to the sound that is bright enough to carry.
Once the sound gets out a couple hundred feet it sounds much more mellow.

We don't get our best recording orchestras performing in
nice church halls and concert halls that hold only 300-500 people
with dozens of different reflective surfaces, shapes and contours.
Halls are so large, if there is too much reflection, the delay is too
great. They are massive, and often fall into two categories.
One...they are dead, or two.... they sound like a gymnasium because
the delay is so great.

So again I say. Rising pitch is only one technique orchestras are using
to deal with the problem. Equipment(mouthpieces, instruments)
& performance technique also have evolved to the same end.

This is not a new problem. I think a wind or string players
pursuit of the perfect tone is somewhat obsessive at this level of
performance. The in thing/equipment/mouthpiece/bow/technique,
goes in cycles. Perhaps one day it will swing the other way,
Perhaps one day all the clarinetist will be promoting double
embouchure again in order to get a "darker" tone. It is so
competitive for these job positions that everyone tends to follow
whoever is at the top of the food chain in order to meet expectations
and get a job. So a minority of musicians tend to set the trend.

                                           David Renaud

"Robert A. Anderson" wrote:

> The story I have read more than once is that the rise in orchestral
> pitch in the 19th century was due to brass instruments. In the quest for
> a "brighter" sound, instruments were made to give increasingly higher
> pitches. This phenomenon was largely responsible for the standardization
> of pitch. I may have read this in Helmholtz. I seem to remember that he
> (or probably Ellis, in one of the appendices) notes the pitch of various
> orchestras and manufactures, and that it rose to about 468, maybe in the
> 1860s or '70s. Perhaps someone better informed can tell whether or not
> that's accurate. I have never understood why a higher pitched brass
> instrument would sound "brighter", though. The explanation about the
> violins deadening under stress sounds plausible, at least. Anyway,
> Mozart's A was in the 430s, which is a long way from the 460s. So that's
> a much larger spread than 440 to 444. But the change happened
> gradually. Maybe the "brightness" was a psychological
> (psycho-acoustic?) phenomenon. What do you brass players have to say?
> Bob Anderson
> Tucson, AZ

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Yamaha U2 (Mark Wisner)

----- Original Message -----
From: Mark Wisner <>
To: <>
Sent: Monday, March 05, 2001 11:04 AM
Subject: Re: Yamaha U2

The U2 model was never sold new here in the USA, so this is a "gray-market" piano.
For the USA market, we sold several models of upright pianos that had only two pedals. Although Yamaha grands for all markets now have three pedals we have never sold a grand here in the USA with only two pedals.

"Did Yamaha have to discontinue the model after Bono filed a copyright infringement lawsuit?"

Nah.....Yamaha named the U2 after the spy plane, problem!

Mark Wisner
Piano Service
Yamaha Corporation

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Pin Block Thickness (Rob Goodale, Newton, Dale Erwin)

----- Original Message -----
From: Robert Goodale <>
To: <>
Sent: Monday, March 05, 2001 12:01 PM
Subject: Re: Pinbock thickness

Get the right size. Sometimes you can cheat a little if it is a little
thin, say 3/16 at the absolute most and preferably less in most
circumstances. In some isolated cases this can be somewhat of an
advantage if the piano lacks down bearing and you want to try correcting
this somewhat by slightly lowering the plate. As a side bar, however, be
aware that doing this can also reduce the keybed clearance so that the
action won't slide into the piano because the drop screws will run into
the block.

Even a slight difference can be pretty substantial. One significant
reason, (particularly a whopping 1/2 inch), is that your tuning pins in
all likelihood will be too long and stick out through the bottom of the
block. Then you have to use shorter pins to compensate. This might seem
like it isn't a big deal but now you really are starting to change the way
the piano was designed. Since the idea of "restoration" is to make the
piano like it was when new, you really have passed the threshold of
"restoration. Doing a rebuild job requires many hours of hard work.
After going through the 98% effort of rebuilding everything else
correctly, go the tiny 2% and do it right. It is no big deal to order a
new block. You can use the 1-1/2 block on another piano.

Rob Goodale, RPT
Las Vegas, NV

David Renaud wrote:

> A Knabe grand pinblock originally 1 3/4" thick.
> Sits on the shelf, with wood shims(thin), elevating the
> block/plate, to the proper level. Block ends are into the rim about 1/2
> inch.
> The distance from the plate to the bottom of the flange is only 1 1/2
> inches.
> So what is so stop me from using a 1 1/2" block and shimming
> the shelf the extra 1/4". It is screwed/glued down to the shelf away.
> If it is important to use a 1 3/4" block, why is it important?
> I ask as I have the 1 1/2" block material in stock, not 1 3/4"
> I am only considering if this may be an option,
> consulting with several experts that know better,
> including this list.
> Thank You
> Dave Renaud

A thinner block will yield less pin / block contact area. Pi*D*H
where D=diameter and H=height. Consider the total amount of contact
area of the pin in the regular block and the amount in the thinner
block. Bear in mind you will have to use 1/2" shorter pins. Now
figure the % difference.

Other than that, as long as you have the plate height set right, there
will be little difference.


The original pins were only 2 1/4 inches with
only 1"3/8ths of pin actually in the block.

Open faced block inserts through top of plate(router job and fussy
, so no extra pin height required to clear the plate.
So if I use the same size pin I am safe with a 1"1/2 inch block.
The only concern so far assume problems with cheating on
pins depth but this is not the case. I can go with original size pins.

I thought a potential problem would be reducing contact with the
flange but the distance from the top of the block to the bottom
of the flange is 1 1/2 inches.

I'm not sure why they went with such a thick block except that
they had insert cut outs into the plate, and wanted extra, so ordered
thick stuff. But they did not take advantage of the depth with longer


Newton Hunt wrote:

> A thinner block will yield less pin / block contact area. Pi*D*H
> where D=diameter and H=height. Consider the total amount of contact
> area of the pin in the regular block and the amount in the thinner
> block. Bear in mind you will have to use 1/2" shorter pins. Now
> figure the % difference.
> Other than that, as long as you have the plate height set right, there
> will be little difference.
> Newton
  Hi David,

   Sounds like you've answered your own questions and the ones I was asking
as well. Sounds like you have plenty of safety factor with original pin
length. I'VE ALSO DONE THESE uuuggghhhh. Drilled and plugged with buduc
plugs in a 1873 stwy style 2. The results were just like a new block and
whole lot easier than fitting the compound flange fit and dealing with all
that mortise garbage. Who knows why the extra thickness. In this case it's
not needed and I can see no down side. You didn't say how big or old this
beast is.

    Nice analysis. Good luck
    Dale Erwin

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Polyester Finish Repair URL (Glen Grafton)

----- Original Message -----
From: Glenn Grafton <>
To: <>
Sent: Monday, March 05, 2001 12:55 PM
Subject: Re: Polyester Repair

>Good Day, all! Can anyone direct me to a Journal article about
>polyester finish repair? I have search the CD-ROM and find only ads
>from Schaff. Has an article about this repair appeared since 1999,
>maybe? I have never done this repair before, and am wondering about
>the wisdom of diving into it on a customer's piano without prior
>experience. Thanks, Patrick Poulson, RPT

If this is a one shot repair, I would recommend you refer the repair
to someone else with prior experience with polyester experience. You
don't want to practice on your first polyester repair on a customers
piano in their house though.

It's sort of like when we get a customer who comes in looking to buy
a tuning hammer and some mutes so they can tune their own piano.

If you're interested in making this a regular part of your services
you'll need the right materials, tools and go through a learning
curve, as with most things.

We've used polyester materials from Allied National Industries in the
past with good results. We still use their buffing wheels (both a
course one and a fine one). The Koning materials are better. They're
available from Web Phillips (see:

To do it right you need to go out and buy a buffing machine with the
proper rpm, which you can get at an auto body supply store that
caters to the body shops (you won't find them at Home Depot, Sears,
Glenn Grafton
Grafton Piano & Organ Co.
1081 County Line Rd.
Souderton PA 18964

The box said "Requires Windows 95, or better." So I bought a Macintosh.

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Dryburgh Glue phone number

1-800-GLU-EALL works just fine. Ed told me (when I called the number)
that his phones have been in and out all day, from the (minor) storm
we have had so far.

Try it again.

Newton (CA advocate)

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Rebuilding Costs (Roger Jolly)

Hi Joe,
           A good quality rebuild job will start in our shop from $13,000
Cnd add $2000 for a new pinblock if required, And $5000 for a new
soundboard if required.
We rescale the bass strings and bridge cap on this model to ensure bichord
string lengths are identical.
This model I will only pay up to $3000. Rebuilt and refinished we sell them
for $25,0000.
The piano can be an exceptional instrument, IF it is well rebuilt.
I live in Saskatchewan, Phone# 306-665-0213. Call if you need detailed advice.
Regards roger

At 04:56 PM 3/5/01 -0600, you wrote:
>I would appreciate any response regarding a Heinzman Grand(5' 5") from 1912.
>It is in need of major overhaul and is not playable right now. I will need
>new keys/hammers/strings/etc. The overall construction is very solid and
>the frame, plate and the sound board have no visible flaws. Any amount of
>woodwork is mostly cosmetic rather than structural.
>How does one go about assessing the value of this piano when it is in this
>What is the fair market value of this piano if it is reconditioning and
>rebuilt properly?
> Joe
>March 5, 2001

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