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#1952761 - 09/01/12 08:42 PM Stanwood Touch Design question
Dktenor Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 09/01/12
Posts: 6
Can anyone tell me the pros and cons of the Stanwood Touch Design action?

I am looking to purchase a rebuilt high end grand piano and I have heard of this type of action but don't know much about it. One piano technician whom I trust has advised against it. I have seen a few comments suggesting that there may be some controversy surrounding this product.

I am a intermediate player who is returning to the piano after a long absence. I have never owned a grand piano but know what touch and tone I prefer.

Thanks for any input. (I dont want to stir up a hornets nest. )

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#1952802 - 09/01/12 11:12 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Dktenor]
beethoven986 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/20/09
Posts: 3320
There is no "Stanwood Touch Design action" in the same sense that there is a "Renner action" or "Steinway action," etc. The Stanwood method essentially optimizes the mass of the hammers (often referred to as strike weight) and the various leverages in the action to produce the desired touch response. The concept is sound, and whoever says otherwise is an idiot, IMO. However, it's a time consuming process, and therefore expensive.

An arguably more practical approach is to use the Fandrich-Rhodes "Weight Bench" method, which utilizes an action inertia calculator and micro-balancing software to predictably and quickly adjust the touch of a piano. The downside to this is that it being new technology, the vast majority of technicians are unaware of it, and fewer have access to the necessary equipment.
_________________________
B.Mus. Piano Performance 2009
M.Mus. Piano Performance & Literature 2011
PTG Associate Member
Certified Dampp-Chaser installer

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#1952854 - 09/02/12 04:16 AM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Dktenor]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7434
Loc: France
the 2 methods use the same concepts. only PTD provide a weighted hammer. hence sone hammers are lightened but others are made heavier.

a progressive curve of Strike weights can be felt and is sound tonally, but having lead inserted in the hammer wood make it have a different attack tone than without. what I check is the resonance of the shank and hammer assembly. I try to avoid spikes there .
The Weightbench is useful to work from a graph and weighting can be faster. But the more the weight is near balance pin the less precise the measure is because friction raise... good workeable zone a 50 mm from the edge of the key.
The most noticeable resistance and mass sensations are due to inertia vs acceleration. Weighting is an almost static process. What Stanwood finely analysed was the relation between Strike weight and action ratio. A huge improvement as no precise method existed to check hammer weight in case of hammer change or existing action.
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It is critical that you call your Senators and Representatives and ask them to cosponsor S. 2587 and H.R. 5052. Getting your legislators to cosponsor these bills


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#1952856 - 09/02/12 04:22 AM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Dktenor]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7434
Loc: France
Inertia calculator ? Yet sold ?
_________________________
It is critical that you call your Senators and Representatives and ask them to cosponsor S. 2587 and H.R. 5052. Getting your legislators to cosponsor these bills


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#1952858 - 09/02/12 04:23 AM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Dktenor]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7434
Loc: France
Inertia calculator ? Yet sold ?
_________________________
It is critical that you call your Senators and Representatives and ask them to cosponsor S. 2587 and H.R. 5052. Getting your legislators to cosponsor these bills


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#1952921 - 09/02/12 10:08 AM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Dktenor]
Jim Frazee Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/31/06
Posts: 392
Loc: Westchester County, New York
All the words in the world, all the formulas, etc. cannot compare to actually playing an instrument on which this has been done. If you can locate one near you, or if you can find a PTG chapter near you to tell you about a piano that has been done, go for it. I was shocked, amazed and highly covetous once I played one. Go for it! thumb
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PianoPerfection
Teacher, performer, technician
Westchester County, NY

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#1952958 - 09/02/12 11:27 AM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Jim Frazee]
TunerJeff Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/22/11
Posts: 459
Loc: Oregon Coast
The important thing here is that the Stanwood and Rhodes methods are both using the original action and parts...but carefully analyzing and adjusting them for maximum performance.

They are essentially finding the best possible performance from any given instrument. It's rather like having a race-car 'blueprinted' and fine tuned to the edge!

I would lean towards the Rhodes analysis, having attended seminars by both. John Rhodes and Darrel Fandrich are measuring not just the weight, but that actual inertia of the parts; how much energy is required to get them moving. A far more important factor in determining the feel of action performance than the 'leverage/mass' equations used by the Stanwood Method.

The Rhodes approach allows you to predict the 'feel' of the keys with some real precision. The Stanwood will provide an extremely even action (...all the weights/leverage are steamlined), but sometimes the end result is 'heavier' than the numbers you'd expect...because it does not compute the inertia of the parts. See? Rhodes measures the energy required to get things moving, while Stanwood is calculating mass/leverage.

I should point out that John Rhodes is in my Chapter...so I've seen what they are doing! It is amazing, and a step up in truly understanding action performance.

Either case; both offer tremendous improvement in the touch and feel of any fine instrument. Both are highly respected and both offer real improvements to control and eveness of performance.

Respectfully,
_________________________
Jeffrey T. Hickey, RPT
Oregon Coast Piano Services
TunerJeff440@aol.com

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#1952986 - 09/02/12 01:00 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Olek]
beethoven986 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/20/09
Posts: 3320
Originally Posted By: Kamin
Inertia calculator ? Yet sold ?


Yes. It's available as an update to the WB software. Contact Darrell Fandrich.
_________________________
B.Mus. Piano Performance 2009
M.Mus. Piano Performance & Literature 2011
PTG Associate Member
Certified Dampp-Chaser installer

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#1952994 - 09/02/12 01:36 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Jim Frazee]
sophial Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/11/05
Posts: 3455
Loc: US
Originally Posted By: Jim Frazee
All the words in the world, all the formulas, etc. cannot compare to actually playing an instrument on which this has been done. If you can locate one near you, or if you can find a PTG chapter near you to tell you about a piano that has been done, go for it. I was shocked, amazed and highly covetous once I played one. Go for it! thumb


Which one are you referring to? Stanwood or Rhodes?

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#1952998 - 09/02/12 01:43 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: sophial]
beethoven986 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/20/09
Posts: 3320
Originally Posted By: sophial
Originally Posted By: Jim Frazee
All the words in the world, all the formulas, etc. cannot compare to actually playing an instrument on which this has been done. If you can locate one near you, or if you can find a PTG chapter near you to tell you about a piano that has been done, go for it. I was shocked, amazed and highly covetous once I played one. Go for it! thumb


Which one are you referring to? Stanwood or Rhodes?


Well, it doesn't really matter. Playing an instrument that has had either modification is no guarantee that you will like the touch of that piano. With either method, you could design really light or really heavy touch (or somewhere in between), so if you don't like whatever touch was designed, you're not going to like it.
_________________________
B.Mus. Piano Performance 2009
M.Mus. Piano Performance & Literature 2011
PTG Associate Member
Certified Dampp-Chaser installer

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#1953021 - 09/02/12 02:45 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: TunerJeff]
jim ialeggio Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/03/05
Posts: 621
Loc: shirley, MA
Originally Posted By: TunerJeff

I would lean towards the Rhodes analysis, having attended seminars by both. John Rhodes and Darrel Fandrich are measuring not just the weight, but that actual inertia of the parts; how much energy is required to get them moving. A far more important factor in determining the feel of action performance than the 'leverage/mass' equations used by the Stanwood Method.

The Rhodes approach allows you to predict the 'feel' of the keys with some real precision. The Stanwood will provide an extremely even action (...all the weights/leverage are steamlined), but sometimes the end result is 'heavier' than the numbers you'd expect...because it does not compute the inertia of the parts. See? Rhodes measures the energy required to get things moving, while Stanwood is calculating mass/leverage.


I completely agree here, regarding Stanwood actions tending to the heavy side, or more precisely they seem to generally have more inertia built into them. That feel, though dead nuts even, steered me away from the Stanwood approach in all my action work, and I approach it rather from the optimized geometry side and hammer weight control side of things.

To be sure though, both of these protocols offer techs something that they have craved for years, that is the ability to quantify what the devil was going on in a problem action, or an action that was not satisfying the pianist.

One of my fears regarding the Rhodes/Fandrich is that the thing that bugs me about the Stanwood approach could happen to the Rhodes. That is, by defining a touch range as "Touch to die for", in the hands of techs in the field, the data will be used to tailor the action to some predicted ideal rather than helping a individual discover the touch that turns them on subjectively and individually.

Though the Stanwood in theory helps a competent tech achieve whatever touch they and their client have determined they want to shoot for, despite this fact, all of the Stanwood actions I've played were shooting at a particular feel, as Jeff said which ended up being on the heavy side. So the adjustability of at least the Stanwood seems to be undermined in practice. This could easily happen to the Rhodes/Fandrich.

Also ,to the OP, keep in mind tonal and belly issues often masquerade as action issues. Pianos which are not tonally responsive are quite often perceived as having action problems. However, amazingly the "action" issues go away when the belly/tone regulation side of the equation has been dealt with. So make sure your tech looks at the tonal part of the experience and addresses it before assuming action redesign is in order. I have played Stanwood actions, on old worn out bellys. The tonal experience was completely uncontrollable despite the action modifications...this because the tonal problem was ignored and assumed to be exclusively action related.

Jim Ialeggio


Edited by jim ialeggio (09/02/12 03:40 PM)
_________________________
Jim Ialeggio
www.grandpianosolutions.com
advanced soundboard and action redesigns
978 425-9026
Shirley Center, MA

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#1953034 - 09/02/12 03:21 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Dktenor]
Gene Nelson Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/10/04
Posts: 1471
Loc: Old Hangtown California
In regard to the first phase of the Stanwood design - an even strike weight progression - I have found that a quality new hammer set that is consistently machined, tapered and tails arced should give an even hammer strike weight within the Stanwood tolerence from note to note.

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#1953089 - 09/02/12 06:32 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: jim ialeggio]
kpembrook Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/10
Posts: 1307
Loc: Michigan
Originally Posted By: jim ialeggio
Originally Posted By: TunerJeff

I would lean towards the Rhodes analysis, having attended seminars by both. John Rhodes and Darrel Fandrich are measuring not just the weight, but that actual inertia of the parts; how much energy is required to get them moving. A far more important factor in determining the feel of action performance than the 'leverage/mass' equations used by the Stanwood Method.

The Rhodes approach allows you to predict the 'feel' of the keys with some real precision. The Stanwood will provide an extremely even action (...all the weights/leverage are steamlined), but sometimes the end result is 'heavier' than the numbers you'd expect...because it does not compute the inertia of the parts. See? Rhodes measures the energy required to get things moving, while Stanwood is calculating mass/leverage.


I completely agree here, regarding Stanwood actions tending to the heavy side, or more precisely they seem to generally have more inertia built into them. That feel, though dead nuts even, steered me away from the Stanwood approach in all my action work, and I approach it rather from the optimized geometry side and hammer weight control side of things.

To be sure though, both of these protocols offer techs something that they have craved for years, that is the ability to quantify what the devil was going on in a problem action, or an action that was not satisfying the pianist.

One of my fears regarding the Rhodes/Fandrich is that the thing that bugs me about the Stanwood approach could happen to the Rhodes. That is, by defining a touch range as "Touch to die for", in the hands of techs in the field, the data will be used to tailor the action to some predicted ideal rather than helping a individual discover the touch that turns them on subjectively and individually.

Though the Stanwood in theory helps a competent tech achieve whatever touch they and their client have determined they want to shoot for, despite this fact, all of the Stanwood actions I've played were shooting at a particular feel, as Jeff said which ended up being on the heavy side. So the adjustability of at least the Stanwood seems to be undermined in practice. This could easily happen to the Rhodes/Fandrich.

Also ,to the OP, keep in mind tonal and belly issues often masquerade as action issues. Pianos which are not tonally responsive are quite often perceived as having action problems. However, amazingly the "action" issues go away when the belly/tone regulation side of the equation has been dealt with. So make sure your tech looks at the tonal part of the experience and addresses it before assuming action redesign is in order. I have played Stanwood actions, on old worn out bellys. The tonal experience was completely uncontrollable despite the action modifications...this because the tonal problem was ignored and assumed to be exclusively action related.

Jim Ialeggio


The Rhodes/Fandrich is a better -- but still interim -- approach to touch design issues. Stanwood's patent -- and the assumptions that follow from it -- have been demonstrated to be scientifically invalid and in actual practice unable to provide accurate diagnosis nor reliable prediction of action "feel".
_________________________
Keith Akins, RPT
USA Distributor for Isaac Cadenza hammers and Profundo Bass Strings
Supporting Piano Owners D-I-Y piano tuning and repair

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#1953106 - 09/02/12 07:08 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Dktenor]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7434
Loc: France
@Gene. Yes weight progression can be nice from the start.
What is useful is to locate the SW range.
The bass hammers are generally thinner, on European pianos I heard you prefer them the same size than treble.
That should add some mass . Is it the case ?

Totally agree with Jim about geometry and. Other tonall issues.


Edited by Kamin (09/02/12 07:14 PM)
_________________________
It is critical that you call your Senators and Representatives and ask them to cosponsor S. 2587 and H.R. 5052. Getting your legislators to cosponsor these bills


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#1953130 - 09/02/12 09:02 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Dktenor]
Dale Fox Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/17/04
Posts: 1056
Loc: Nor California Sacramento area
Both systems have some validity. Consistent action work is still the most important factor though. If these protocols help some one achieve consistent results that is a good thing. However,neither system is more important than a thorough understanding of what makes an action function properly. They are,in the end, just another tool in the tool kit.

As Jim alludes to, the action is only as good as the rest of the piano allows it to be. (My interpretation, with apologies to Jim.)
_________________________
Dale Fox
Registered Piano Technician
Remanufacturing/Rebuilding

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#1953139 - 09/02/12 09:34 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: kpembrook]
ando Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/10
Posts: 3546
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Originally Posted By: kpembrook


The Rhodes/Fandrich is a better -- but still interim -- approach to touch design issues. Stanwood's patent -- and the assumptions that follow from it -- have been demonstrated to be scientifically invalid and in actual practice unable to provide accurate diagnosis nor reliable prediction of action "feel".


That's a pretty damning assessment, Keith. I've spoken to a few people who have played or own a Stanwood modified action and all are extremely satisfied with it. They say it improved the evenness and performance of their action no end. I don't think they were concerned about how the theory was expressed in any document or the completeness of the details, but rather the fact that their action had been adjusted for great evenness of response and that it was adjusted to suit their preferred weight. In the end, isn't that what counts?

Also, shouldn't you provide evidence of all this demonstration of invalidity, since you've stated it so forcefully? At least direct us toward a scientific breakdown of the failing you speak of. (ie. link to site or journal). Or your own explanation. Otherwise you really haven't actually said anything and what you've said is borderline slanderous.

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#1953156 - 09/02/12 10:33 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: kpembrook]
Ed Foote Online   blank
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 1126
Loc: Tennessee
>>The Rhodes/Fandrich is a better -- but still interim -- approach to touch design issues. Stanwood's patent -- and the assumptions that follow from it -- have been demonstrated to be scientifically invalid and in actual practice unable to provide accurate diagnosis nor reliable prediction of action "feel". <<

Greetings,
It seems someone (too many quotes, I don't know who said the above). doesn't totally understand what "feel" is. The feel of a piano is as dependent on the sound as the physical effort involved in pressing the key, ie. I can totally change the feel of a piano with voicing needles or lacquer;. This is because the "feel" is dependent on what the brain senses of the relationship between effort and result. Does the Rhodes/Fandrich approach measure the spectra? Does it measure the alteration of the sound with increasing force? Does it measure the tonal range of the hammer? If not, it isn't dealing with "feel", but rather the effort aspect, and that is only half of what determines "feel".

Pianists sense a piano's response as a result of what they are getting, aurally, for the effort required. A brilliant 58 gram action feels lighter than a dull 50 gram action. I don't think either of the two approaches deals with that.
Regards,


Edited by Ed Foote (09/02/12 10:33 PM)

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#1953157 - 09/02/12 10:37 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: ando]
kpembrook Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/10
Posts: 1307
Loc: Michigan
Originally Posted By: ando
Originally Posted By: kpembrook


The Rhodes/Fandrich is a better -- but still interim -- approach to touch design issues. Stanwood's patent -- and the assumptions that follow from it -- have been demonstrated to be scientifically invalid and in actual practice unable to provide accurate diagnosis nor reliable prediction of action "feel".


That's a pretty damning assessment, Keith. I've spoken to a few people who have played or own a Stanwood modified action and all are extremely satisfied with it. They say it improved the evenness and performance of their action no end. I don't think they were concerned about how the theory was expressed in any document or the completeness of the details, but rather the fact that their action had been adjusted for great evenness of response and that it was adjusted to suit their preferred weight. In the end, isn't that what counts?

Also, shouldn't you provide evidence of all this demonstration of invalidity, since you've stated it so forcefully? At least direct us toward a scientific breakdown of the failing you speak of. (ie. link to site or journal). Or your own explanation. Otherwise you really haven't actually said anything and what you've said is borderline slanderous.


It's a bold statement, but bold doesn't mean untrue. And please read each word carefully. I did not state that every piano on which the Stanwood approach has been used has resulted in a bad-playing piano.

For the first statement about scientific validity, reviewing a high school physics text would be one place to start. Or attend a Fandrich/Rhodes presentation. But I have additional assessments from a professional engineer in hand which will be published in due course.

The second statement is that it is not a reliable approach for either diagnostic or touch design purposes. That is because there are instances where people have followed the procedure to the letter and the piano feels weird and others where people have followed the same procedure and the piano feels fine. I am simply reporting the facts.
_________________________
Keith Akins, RPT
USA Distributor for Isaac Cadenza hammers and Profundo Bass Strings
Supporting Piano Owners D-I-Y piano tuning and repair

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#1953158 - 09/02/12 10:40 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Ed Foote]
kpembrook Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/10
Posts: 1307
Loc: Michigan
Quote:
Pianists sense a piano's response as a result of what they are getting, aurally, for the effort required. A brilliant 58 gram action feels lighter than a dull 50 gram action. I don't think either of the two approaches deals with that.
Regards,


You have correctly identified one of several significant factors that are not currently addressed by any current approach.
_________________________
Keith Akins, RPT
USA Distributor for Isaac Cadenza hammers and Profundo Bass Strings
Supporting Piano Owners D-I-Y piano tuning and repair

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#1953252 - 09/03/12 05:13 AM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Ed Foote]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7434
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: Ed Foote
>>The Rhodes/Fandrich is a better -- but still interim -- approach to touch design issues. Stanwood's patent -- and the assumptions that follow from it -- have been demonstrated to be scientifically invalid and in actual practice unable to provide accurate diagnosis nor reliable prediction of action "feel". <<

Greetings,
It seems someone (too many quotes, I don't know who said the above). doesn't totally understand what "feel" is. The feel of a piano is as dependent on the sound as the physical effort involved in pressing the key, ie. I can totally change the feel of a piano with voicing needles or lacquer;. This is because the "feel" is dependent on what the brain senses of the relationship between effort and result. Does the Rhodes/Fandrich approach measure the spectra? Does it measure the alteration of the sound with increasing force? Does it measure the tonal range of the hammer? If not, it isn't dealing with "feel", but rather the effort aspect, and that is only half of what determines "feel".

Pianists sense a piano's response as a result of what they are getting, aurally, for the effort required. A brilliant 58 gram action feels lighter than a dull 50 gram action. I don't think either of the two approaches deals with that.
Regards,


What you say is true but the mind simply make mix between the tactile sensations and what the ear is hearing..

tactile sensations seem to be weighted fo more or around 60% of what makes the "good quality piano"

But in the end the best touch will provide a better tone and a better comfort to the pianists.

we cannot see one side without the other.

in the middle of that is the real mass of parts, and the way the weight on one side isbalanced at the other

plus, more importantly the way the acceleration occur and how the differnt braking moments are felt (damper start, , letoff, hammer catch

The acceleration curve of a piano action is something that should be interesting to investigate as regulation and change of parts dilmension have an influence on that.

We are often talking of action ratio as if it was a fixed ratio. The differnce betwenn ratio at rest and at the moment the hammer leaves the jack can be as much as 30% and the way the breaking moments are felts differ depending of the "magic line" placement in the key stroke.

all that to provide in the end some of kinaesthesic mix to the pianist






Edited by Kamin (09/03/12 06:52 AM)
_________________________
It is critical that you call your Senators and Representatives and ask them to cosponsor S. 2587 and H.R. 5052. Getting your legislators to cosponsor these bills


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#1953266 - 09/03/12 06:50 AM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Dktenor]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7434
Loc: France
see for instance that the hammers at rest have a 16-18° inclination , so the mass of the hammer locates differenly depending of the hammer travel distance, hammer bore and rake angle, the mass of course is then higher with tall hammers (they are raére those days)

reduction in leverage at the roller level during stroke will depend of the roller size but also the height of the hammer center location in regard of the spread line.

I was told once that a Renner action that have a good mechanical setup, will react at each gram added, for instance, the hammer raise a hair with 48 g a little more with 49, 50 , etc.
In any case that shows how the "down weigh" is evolving during the stroke (which is expected, as we have a ratio change occuring)

A well balanced action will rise slowly and evenly under the exact weight, but that weight progression is certainly something we could examine and use.
_________________________
It is critical that you call your Senators and Representatives and ask them to cosponsor S. 2587 and H.R. 5052. Getting your legislators to cosponsor these bills


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#1953354 - 09/03/12 12:07 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Dktenor]
Dave B Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/01/11
Posts: 1946
Loc: Philadelphia area
All I can say is that I've played two actions with the adjustable system installed. Both tuned, voiced, and played very nicely. I didn't have the time or the inclination to change the settings so I don't know the extent of variations available. The Steinway "D" is one of the most responsive actions I've ever played.

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#1953417 - 09/03/12 02:03 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Dave B]
ando Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/10
Posts: 3546
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Originally Posted By: Dave B
All I can say is that I've played two actions with the adjustable system installed. Both tuned, voiced, and played very nicely. I didn't have the time or the inclination to change the settings so I don't know the extent of variations available. The Steinway "D" is one of the most responsive actions I've ever played.


Keep in mind that the Standwood adjustable action is not the same thing as the Standwood Touch Design modification. The adjustable action is much more expensive and offers the ability to change the weight of the action whenever you like, whereas an action that has been treated using the Stanwood Touch Design approach is one which has been measured, calculated and regulated to perform at its best - presumably with input from the customer as to what characteristics they are looking for.

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#1953613 - 09/03/12 11:36 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Dktenor]
Gene Nelson Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/10/04
Posts: 1471
Loc: Old Hangtown California
@Gene. Yes weight progression can be nice from the start.
What is useful is to locate the SW range.
The bass hammers are generally thinner, on European pianos I heard you prefer them the same size than treble.
That should add some mass . Is it the case ?
____________________________________________________________________________________
The only time that I can imagine a need to have thinner hammers in the bass than the tenor/treble is for spacing. When the hammers are bored to come close to or match the angle of the bass strings, spacing may become an issue but I don't angle much more than 6 - 8 degrees regardless of the string angle so there is no reason to have thinner hammers in the bass.
_________________________
RPT
PTG Member

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#1953653 - 09/04/12 02:31 AM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Dktenor]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7434
Loc: France
I would guess it is mostly for tone reasons, so the basses are not covering the mediums too easily.

it may also help with weight, avoiding too much lead in the basses.
_________________________
It is critical that you call your Senators and Representatives and ask them to cosponsor S. 2587 and H.R. 5052. Getting your legislators to cosponsor these bills


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#1953747 - 09/04/12 10:27 AM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: ando]
kpembrook Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/10
Posts: 1307
Loc: Michigan
Quote:
[The adjustable action is much more expensive and offers the ability to change the weight of the action whenever you like, whereas an action that has been treated using the Stanwood Touch Design approach is one which has been measured, calculated and regulated to perform at its best - presumably with input from the customer as to what characteristics they are looking for.


Specifically, the adjustable action offers variable inertial resistance and hammer velocity. May or may not be appropriate depending on other aspects that Stanwood system doesn't reveal. I'm aware of one that has received decidedly mixed reviews.

Measurements and calculations of Stanwood Touch Design are not reliable -- again, because of factors that are not measured or taken into account.
_________________________
Keith Akins, RPT
USA Distributor for Isaac Cadenza hammers and Profundo Bass Strings
Supporting Piano Owners D-I-Y piano tuning and repair

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#1953766 - 09/04/12 11:30 AM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Dktenor]
Ed Foote Online   blank
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 1126
Loc: Tennessee
Greetings,
David Stanwood woke us all up to a level of quantification that I wasn't aware of before, and I haven't seen an action yet that the application of even some of his ideas doesn't help, (even though I use a different approach, the instructor that taught both of us mistook my action for his when he played it).

What works for me is a pair of curves. One is the front weight of the keys, which, if not consistent, will cause inertial discrepancies during fast play that nothing else will correct. The other is the strike weight, which can vary a very slight amount if necessary, but in a perfect world would be as even as FW. However, the 88 individual ratios in the action must be consistent for these two curves to be mated in such a way that the response is even. This is where the quality of the parts enters into the fray, since in terms of even response, the consistency of the parts is a prime parameter.

What I have found is that the WNG action parts produce the most consistent set of ratios, key to key, I have ever seen. (I am not a dealer or agent for any brand of parts, and I have used them all of them over the decades). Their lack of variability makes building actions with them far more consistent, and it shows up in how closely the two curves can be left at their ideal consistency when the action is assembled. Get the right match and you get beauty. The imperviousness to humidity is a strong asset in the school environment, where keeping 130 pianos on budget is much easier without having to constantly re-space, travel, burn, or tighten the actions. That the pinning seems to be far more stable than the cloth is also a plus. This is another type of "performance" that has to be considered, too.
regards,

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#1953802 - 09/04/12 01:28 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: Dktenor]
Numerian Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 1075
I have an adjustable action STD and consider it the best investment I've made in the instrument. It gives me as responsive an action as any I've played on other grands, it's made my playing much better, and if I wish I can make the weight heavier or lighter on any note or range of notes by adjusting the magnets front and/or back. As a customer, it is irrelevant to me whether the measurements and calculations are accurate enough - the action and end result are proof enough that the system works.

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#1953816 - 09/04/12 02:05 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: kpembrook]
ando Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/10
Posts: 3546
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Originally Posted By: kpembrook
Quote:
[The adjustable action is much more expensive and offers the ability to change the weight of the action whenever you like, whereas an action that has been treated using the Stanwood Touch Design approach is one which has been measured, calculated and regulated to perform at its best - presumably with input from the customer as to what characteristics they are looking for.


Specifically, the adjustable action offers variable inertial resistance and hammer velocity. May or may not be appropriate depending on other aspects that Stanwood system doesn't reveal. I'm aware of one that has received decidedly mixed reviews.

Measurements and calculations of Stanwood Touch Design are not reliable -- again, because of factors that are not measured or taken into account.


It seems like you are after the piano equivalent of a Grand Unifying Theory in physics - and if you are, I applaud you for your ambition. But even though there is no GUT yet, it doesn't stop physics from advancing and producing very useful results. It might also be that Mr Stanwood is well aware of what is not in his theory but chooses to leave it out because he is working with what he considers to be the most important variables. I have no affiliation with Stanwood other than I've met people who swear by the work he did on their actions - and in particular the evenness and touch. If he were really leaving out such vital details, I fail to see how he could have produced such good results.

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#1953894 - 09/04/12 04:47 PM Re: Stanwood Touch Design question [Re: kpembrook]
Larry Buck Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/27/04
Posts: 2339
Loc: Lowell MA
Originally Posted By: kpembrook
Quote:
[The adjustable action is much more expensive and offers the ability to change the weight of the action whenever you like, whereas an action that has been treated using the Stanwood Touch Design approach is one which has been measured, calculated and regulated to perform at its best - presumably with input from the customer as to what characteristics they are looking for.


Specifically, the adjustable action offers variable inertial resistance and hammer velocity. May or may not be appropriate depending on other aspects that Stanwood system doesn't reveal. I'm aware of one that has received decidedly mixed reviews.

Measurements and calculations of Stanwood Touch Design are not reliable -- again, because of factors that are not measured or taken into account.



I believe Stanwood's measurements are very reliable.

The various technicians using the measurements make choices I disagree with.

But, the measurements themselves, reliable and useful. Again, depending on HOW you use them, determines the feel of the action.

Now, SALA changing the inertia of the action ?? I suspect, not at all. Changing the pianists leverage against it ... maybe. Velocity differences .. again totally dependent on the pianist.

Perhaps one of the engineers that post here can elaborate?
_________________________
Has Anyone Seen My Glasses ?

E. J. Buck & Sons
Lowell MA 01852
978 458 8688
www.ejbuckpiano.com
facebook.com/E. J. Buck & Sons Performances

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