Tag Archives: Piano Tuning

My Piano has been Water Damaged

Piano Exposure to Water/Moisture

Exposure to or immersion in water can without a doubt be very damaging to a piano. Even the exposure to intense changes in temperature and humidity for a few days in unoccupied homes and buildings can create extended instability in a piano that will need several tuning’s. Regulation of the piano action will be required to make certain suitable performance.
What if the Piano is in water above the cabinet?
Pianos that have been in water that has gotten to the height of the case or even greater will in all likelihood be damaged beyond repair and will need to be restored and almost certainly be replaced. Direct exposure of the case, soundboard, strings, and action to water can frequently cause major glue failure of integral structural elements.
The rim and keybed of the piano are perhaps the most critical factors in determining the seriousness of current and long term damage. The glued lamination’s of the rim can be weakened by exposure to water and can not efficiently be repaired. Damage by water will not necessarily manifest itself right away. It may possibly take up to a year for the effects of glue failure and wood deterioration to become completely evident.
Even the solidity of a fantastic piano such as a Baldwin, Yamaha, or a Kawai’s rim can not overcome the all-natural forces that occur when wood is exposed directly to water. The strings in a piano can have a combined tension of over twenty tons. Failure of the glue in the rims lamination’s seriously compromises the capability of the rim to sustain these forces.
This type of damage is not normally sustained in small floods where the water reaches a foot or so, however in a fire the water used to put a fire out is a double whammy because, in the case of a Grand Piano, the water will certainly soak the upper parts of the piano. Second,the piano will also at least sustain smoke and heat damage.
Shallow Water Exposure

In Grand Pianos that have been sitting in a few inches of water, but where the water has not reached the level of the case, are not necessarily ruined beyond repair, however, the effects of dampness still can and usually will take their toll on all of the piano elements and even these pianos would best be replaced rather than repaired.
Continuous exposure to excessive humidity can cause rust to form on many of the metal parts in a piano which include strings, tuning pins, hardware, action parts, and the cast iron plate that supports the tons of tension exerted by the strings.

Most people can not even envision a cast iron plate cracking, Even so I really was present one day when a plate did break. Needless to say, that instrument was ruined.
The soundboard will also be exposed to severe climatic situations that will result in extreme expansion and contraction of the spruce that soundboards in pianos are made from. The glue joints and wood grain of the soundboard can be totally damaged by this movement and As a result will call for replacement of the soundboard. The only way to ensure proper long-term integrity of the instrument is replacement of these parts.
The finish of the piano can also be damaged by extreme moisture. The wood under the finish will move in the same method as the soundboard referred to above. Cracking, checking, and other finish defects will likely result from this and thus necessitate refinishing of all furniture components of the instrument.
A thorough examination of the piano is the only way to determine the extent of the damage. A great question to ask the piano technician before hiring him, is if they have ever done work for insurance agencies.
Exposure to or immersion in water can indeed be very damaging to a piano. Even the exposure to extreme changes in temperature and humidity for a few days in unoccupied homes and buildings can create extended instability in a piano that will require numerous tuning’s. The rim and keybed of the piano are perhaps the most critical elements in determining the severity of present and long term damage. Even the solidity of a great piano such as a Baldwin, Yamaha, or a Kawai’s rim can not overcome the natural forces that occur when wood is exposed directly to water. The finish of the piano can also be damaged by excessive moisture.

Reshaping piano hammers

Okay folks it’s time will be able to write a write-up concerning piano hammers and the way they customize the tone of your piano. Way during the 1800s piano hammers were made with rabbit hair and alpaca hair and numerous various things. The results were much softer hammer it had not been nearly so harsh.

In our newer piano hammers they may be exclusively built and engrossed in pressed wool. When piano hammers created using wool get older, they generally tend for being hard and very brash, which requires these phones be needled and re- voiced to be able to bring the mellow tone to the piano.

In grand and vertical pianos, after heavy playing for several years the piano hammers get damaged from the hardness as well as the sounds become very harsh. More serious over the years piano hammers will also get  grooves within the crown with the hammer. These grooves get caught involving the strings and begin to mute a few of the tone.

Not just would be the sounds harsh but uneven  as well. Should you open the lid for your piano, and look lower you can observe the grooves inside the piano hammers. The grooves from playing the piano that show up, should not be allowed to become deep.Experience piano technicians understand how to reshape, lessen and re-voice a hammer which includes deep grooves inside. This won’t be made by somebody who has not been taught to reshape piano hammers.

The procedure that follows will explain how reshaping hammers  is done. Starting on top of the hammer about the hammers shoulder, filing in the downward motion you adopt off layers of felt until there aren’t any longer any deep grooves remaining. The contour with the hammer should stay as soon as the felt is taken off since it was ahead of your beginning. While filing the hammer it should be noted that one attention needs to be given to filing the hammer evenly so that it will strike all the strings in the note after completed. I have seen a lot of people try and reshape hammers more often than once. That is not recommended while there is not usually enough felt left for the hammer to achieve this procedure more than once. At that point in the piano’s life, it is better to entirely replace the piano hammers.


Piano Tuning and Voicing

Repairing or Rebuilding your piano could be an extremely difficult question to respond to . For the most part, piano restoration can be performed at a number of levels depending  on the customers budget as well as the things that ultimately need repair. It is usually very important of mine on the grade of the piano in the beginning. Say for example a Piano that cost  $1000.00 if it was new would hardly be worth putting an equal amount of cash from the piano to take it returning to the standard if it was new.

For instance, we view MANY older pianos come through our studio when a basic interior cleaning, action regulation, tuning and voicing is all that is required to bring back the piano to some wonderful playing and sounding condition. These facilities can run between $300 to $3000 based on the extent from the repair work. If the piano was originally a $5000.00 piano that could possibly be worth performing it. For the contrary when the piano was only a $2000 piano when new, likelihood is that it would not be worth the rebuild

Sometimes such as basic interior rebuilding which includes, restringing, damper work, hammer replacement, regulation, tuning and voicing, the ranges between $2500 and $5000. This sort of rebuilding is often utilized on lesser quality pianos, to put them into satisfactory condition, without going way beyond the value of the piano when it is complete.

The typical interior restorations we percieve for vintage Steinway and Sons pianos, from say 1900 up to the more current production models, typically range in the $8000 to $12,000. These pianos will generally need and receive new pinblocks, soundboard repairs, bridge repinning, new  action parts, capo and agraffe work, keytop replacement or ivory repair, key repairs, damper action replacements, and thorough regulation and voicing.

A premier-end, full-blown interior restoration of a early (pre-1900), or especially worn-out Steinway piano can reach well over $20,000 to $30,000. Beyond the typical Steinway piano restoration above, these pianos will include: new soundboards with new bridge caps, new keyset duplication, keyframe rebuilding, rim reconstruction and repair, complete new damper systems, and more extensive voicing and regulation work.

Still, this restoration, although expensive, is in no way an improved bargain than the purchase of a new hand-made, high-end quality piano. Most start at $35,000 for that smallest of baby grands and reach upwards of $125,000 for concert grands and art-case style cabinetry!

Exactly what does it cost to refinish my piano?

Piano refinishing costs will vary based on the size, color, texture and quality of the finish being applied. From the smallest upright piano with basic finish applied, prices will become at $1500 and go up to around $3500.

Typical mid-sized parlor grands, in a basic ebony-satin finish, with hardware plating an incident repairs, generally cost between $3500 and $5000. Because pianos grow, or finishes become more exotic (including high-gloss, or ornate carvings throughout), pricing is generally between $5000 and $9000. Every piano is unique and has to be evaluated individually in order to accurately estimate a refinishing cost.