Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 2 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

SEARCH
the Forums & Piano World

This custom search works much better than the built in one and allows searching older posts.
(ad 125) Sweetwater - Digital Keyboards & Other Gear
Digital Pianos at Sweetwater
(ad) Pianoteq
Latest Pianoteq add-on instrument: U4 upright piano
(ad) Pearl River
Pearl River Pianos
(ad) P B Guide
Acoustic & Digital Piano Guide
PianoSupplies.com (150)
Piano Accessories Music Related Gifts Piano Tuning Equipment Piano Moving Equipment
We now offer Gift Certificates in our online store!
(ad) Estonia Piano
Estonia Piano
Quick Links to Useful Stuff
Our Classified Ads
Find Piano Professionals-

*Piano Dealers - Piano Stores
*Piano Tuners
*Piano Teachers
*Piano Movers
*Piano Restorations
*Piano Manufacturers
*Organs

Quick Links:
*Advertise On Piano World
*Free Piano Newsletter
*Online Piano Recitals
*Piano Recitals Index
*Piano Accessories
* Buying a Piano
*Buying A Acoustic Piano
*Buying a Digital Piano
*Pianos for Sale
*Sell Your Piano
*How Old is My Piano?
*Piano Books
*Piano Art, Pictures, & Posters
*Directory/Site Map
*Contest
*Links
*Virtual Piano
*Music Word Search
*Piano Screen Saver
*Piano Videos
*Virtual Piano Chords
Topic Options
#1976460 - 10/20/12 09:29 PM Lifter elbow replacement (full set)
jmw Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/12/10
Posts: 78
Loc: Girard, KS,
I've been asked to estimate the cost to replace a full set of lifter elbows. I have done a few at a time before, but never the whole piano. Anyone care to share a "conservative" time estimate for such a job?
Thanks very much,
John
_________________________
Music teacher and beginning Tuner

Top
(ad PTG 568) Win a Year Journal Subscription
PTG 57th Annual Convention - Atlanta
#1976462 - 10/20/12 09:34 PM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: jmw]
Loren D Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 2546
Loc: PA
I usually estimate around 3-4 hours total.
_________________________
DiGiorgi Piano Service (1984-2013)
http://www.digiorgipiano.com

Top
#1976488 - 10/20/12 10:42 PM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: jmw]
That Guy Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/07/11
Posts: 390
Loc: Lincoln, NE
Yeah, I'd say closer to 4 hours. One thing to keep in mind is that it's literally a pain in the neck so it might be a good idea to take little breaks, unless maybe you're really short wink Good luck.
_________________________
Scott Kerns
"That Tuning Guy"
Lincoln, NE
www.thattuningguy.com

Top
#1976539 - 10/21/12 12:24 AM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: That Guy]
kpembrook Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/10
Posts: 1293
Loc: Michigan
Originally Posted By: That Guy
Yeah, I'd say closer to 4 hours. One thing to keep in mind is that it's literally a pain in the neck so it might be a good idea to take little breaks, unless maybe you're really short wink Good luck.


Why is it a pain in the neck? Do you actually attempt to do the work with the action in the piano?
_________________________
Keith Akins, RPT
USA Distributor for Isaac Cadenza hammers and Profundo Bass Strings
Supporting Piano Owners D-I-Y piano tuning and repair

Top
#1976592 - 10/21/12 03:10 AM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: kpembrook]
Loren D Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 2546
Loc: PA
Originally Posted By: kpembrook
Originally Posted By: That Guy
Yeah, I'd say closer to 4 hours. One thing to keep in mind is that it's literally a pain in the neck so it might be a good idea to take little breaks, unless maybe you're really short wink Good luck.


Why is it a pain in the neck? Do you actually attempt to do the work with the action in the piano?


I've replaced them with the action in the piano. Sitting on the floor, it's not so bad. Usually though I pull the action and take it to the shop. The most time consuming part is spinning the new elbows on and adjusting the lifters when done.
_________________________
DiGiorgi Piano Service (1984-2013)
http://www.digiorgipiano.com

Top
#1976687 - 10/21/12 11:04 AM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: Loren D]
kpembrook Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/10
Posts: 1293
Loc: Michigan
Originally Posted By: Loren D
[ The most time consuming part is spinning the new elbows on and adjusting the lifters when done.


Spinning elbows on??
The torch procedure is much quicker and more accurate...

For this you need to keep the lifters in order.

1) Put a vise-grip right against the remnant of elbow and clamp in place on the wire.
2) Crunch off the remaining bits of elbow so the wire is clean. (Easy to do with a pliers while you are holding the vise-grip in the other hand)
3) Insert the threaded tip of the wire into a torch flame and get it hot. (Maybe 3-5 seconds -- you'll get the feel of it)
4)Remove the wire from the flame and immediately press on an elbow all the way up to the vise-grip which will serve as a stop.

Presto! All Done! Now the elbows are permanently on and accurately located exactly where the old elbow was -- thus minimizing the lost-motion adjustment.
_________________________
Keith Akins, RPT
USA Distributor for Isaac Cadenza hammers and Profundo Bass Strings
Supporting Piano Owners D-I-Y piano tuning and repair

Top
#1976724 - 10/21/12 12:37 PM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: jmw]
Loren D Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 2546
Loc: PA
I'd rather not deform/melt the inside of the elbow with the heat.
_________________________
DiGiorgi Piano Service (1984-2013)
http://www.digiorgipiano.com

Top
#1976756 - 10/21/12 02:16 PM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: Loren D]
kpembrook Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/10
Posts: 1293
Loc: Michigan
Originally Posted By: Loren D
I'd rather not deform/melt the inside of the elbow with the heat.


Why? Is there any demonstrable negative factor such as affecting durability or replaceablilty? This practice has been done for over 40 years, at least. I remember my dad doing it. And it is still possible to unscrew the elbow. The only thing I can see that screwing the things on is the opportunity to get carpal tunnel . . .
_________________________
Keith Akins, RPT
USA Distributor for Isaac Cadenza hammers and Profundo Bass Strings
Supporting Piano Owners D-I-Y piano tuning and repair

Top
#1976858 - 10/21/12 07:47 PM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: kpembrook]
Ryan Hassell Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/07/09
Posts: 428
Loc: Farmington, MO
Originally Posted By: kpembrook
Originally Posted By: Loren D
[ The most time consuming part is spinning the new elbows on and adjusting the lifters when done.


Spinning elbows on??
The torch procedure is much quicker and more accurate...

For this you need to keep the lifters in order.

1) Put a vise-grip right against the remnant of elbow and clamp in place on the wire.
2) Crunch off the remaining bits of elbow so the wire is clean. (Easy to do with a pliers while you are holding the vise-grip in the other hand)
3) Insert the threaded tip of the wire into a torch flame and get it hot. (Maybe 3-5 seconds -- you'll get the feel of it)
4)Remove the wire from the flame and immediately press on an elbow all the way up to the vise-grip which will serve as a stop.

Presto! All Done! Now the elbows are permanently on and accurately located exactly where the old elbow was -- thus minimizing the lost-motion adjustment.


That's genius! I am definitely going to remember this the next time I have to do a set of elbow! Thanks for sharing!!
_________________________
Ryan G. Hassell
Hassell's Piano Tuning
Farmington, MO
www.hassellspianotuning.com
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Hassells-Piano-Tuning/163155880804
ryanhassell@hotmail.com

Top
#1977309 - 10/22/12 10:45 PM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: Ryan Hassell]
Steven Bolstridge Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/13/05
Posts: 197
Loc: Fitzgerald ,GA
I take the lifter wires to my shop and after cleaning them up I clamp them, one by one, in a vise. Then I use a modified back check remover in my drill and screw them on. Very quick and easy. Seems to me that melting them in would make them more difficult to regulate, but maybe not; I've never tried it.
_________________________
piano tuner/technician

Top
#1977324 - 10/22/12 11:16 PM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: jmw]
Bob Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/01/01
Posts: 3833
You regulate by turning the wood capstan on top, not by turning the elbow. There would be no reason that I can see to remove the replaced elbow during whatever short life span the repaired piano has left.

I've said this before - the reason the action is removed during an elbow job is to tighten loose screws, fix bad pinning, file the hammers, align to strings, regulate, replace broken strings, clean under the keys, and do what ever else the piano needs. These pianos always need more than just the elbow replacement. I price that kind of thing into the elbow job.
_________________________
www.PianoTunerOrlando.com






Top
#1977464 - 10/23/12 07:39 AM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: Steven Bolstridge]
Loren D Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 2546
Loc: PA
Originally Posted By: Steven Bolstridge
I take the lifter wires to my shop and after cleaning them up I clamp them, one by one, in a vise. Then I use a modified back check remover in my drill and screw them on. Very quick and easy. Seems to me that melting them in would make them more difficult to regulate, but maybe not; I've never tried it.


Well, regulating is done by regulating the lifter buttons, but still, I just don't see the need to melt and/or deform brand new parts. I use a variable speed drill also, and it goes very quick, and doesn't leave a trail of melted plastic or scorched lifter wires.

Yes, the argument of "so what?" could be made, but I still think doing the job in a way that preserves the integrity of all the parts is the better approach.
_________________________
DiGiorgi Piano Service (1984-2013)
http://www.digiorgipiano.com

Top
#1977493 - 10/23/12 09:18 AM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: jmw]
jmw Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/12/10
Posts: 78
Loc: Girard, KS,
Great discussion! Thanks so much for your thoughts and ideas. I would never have thought of the torch idea- I won't try it right now, but maybe later on my garage piano. I'll have to bid the job a little longer than your estimates just because I'm still pretty new to the field and need to go slower so I don't make mistakes.

A couple mentioned using a drill to spin the lifters on- what do you use to grab the lifter?

Thanks again,
jw
_________________________
Music teacher and beginning Tuner

Top
#1977506 - 10/23/12 09:41 AM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: Loren D]
kpembrook Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/10
Posts: 1293
Loc: Michigan
Quote:
and doesn't leave a trail of melted plastic or scorched lifter wires.

Yes, the argument of "so what?" could be made, but I still think doing the job in a way that preserves the integrity of all the parts is the better approach.


Isn't this leaping to conclusions based on a lack of experience?

This has been standard practice by many technicians for decades. There are no "scorched wires" and the integrity of the parts is fully maintained. The approach is unsurpassed in locating the elbow exactly where the old one was. The elbow can still be unscrewed if necessary. I am unaware of any lack of "integrity of the parts". You have to look really close even to discern that this approach has been used.

Whether anyone wishes to use the procedure or not is a personal choice. However, would it not be better to criticize a technique if you had actually tried it -- or at least observed a job where it had been done?
_________________________
Keith Akins, RPT
USA Distributor for Isaac Cadenza hammers and Profundo Bass Strings
Supporting Piano Owners D-I-Y piano tuning and repair

Top
#1977508 - 10/23/12 09:49 AM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: kpembrook]
jmw Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/12/10
Posts: 78
Loc: Girard, KS,
Keith, could I get the nearly the same effect by using the vise grips and screwing the new lifter all the way up to the grips? Even if I had a torch, my wife would disown me if tried to us fire in the garage!
Thanks again,
jw
_________________________
Music teacher and beginning Tuner

Top
#1977515 - 10/23/12 09:59 AM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: jmw]
kpembrook Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/10
Posts: 1293
Loc: Michigan
Originally Posted By: jmw
Keith, could I get the nearly the same effect by using the vise grips and screwing the new lifter all the way up to the grips? Even if I had a torch, my wife would disown me if tried to us fire in the garage!
Thanks again,
jw


I would think so.
_________________________
Keith Akins, RPT
USA Distributor for Isaac Cadenza hammers and Profundo Bass Strings
Supporting Piano Owners D-I-Y piano tuning and repair

Top
#1977536 - 10/23/12 10:59 AM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: kpembrook]
Steven Bolstridge Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/13/05
Posts: 197
Loc: Fitzgerald ,GA
Thanks for the great post, Bob. Duh, of course the final regulation is done from the top.( it was late) And you are right about the overall condition of the piano. Many of these actions have flanges that are made from the same plastic and crack if over tightened. I'm gonna try the melting thing when I get another one of these jobs, which I hope I never do. I'll try it on a spare first though, to see if it can be unscrewed after it hardens.


Edited by Steven Bolstridge (10/23/12 11:00 AM)
_________________________
piano tuner/technician

Top
#1977702 - 10/23/12 07:43 PM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: kpembrook]
Loren D Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 2546
Loc: PA
Originally Posted By: kpembrook
Quote:
and doesn't leave a trail of melted plastic or scorched lifter wires.

Yes, the argument of "so what?" could be made, but I still think doing the job in a way that preserves the integrity of all the parts is the better approach.


Isn't this leaping to conclusions based on a lack of experience?

This has been standard practice by many technicians for decades. There are no "scorched wires" and the integrity of the parts is fully maintained. The approach is unsurpassed in locating the elbow exactly where the old one was. The elbow can still be unscrewed if necessary. I am unaware of any lack of "integrity of the parts". You have to look really close even to discern that this approach has been used.

Whether anyone wishes to use the procedure or not is a personal choice. However, would it not be better to criticize a technique if you had actually tried it -- or at least observed a job where it had been done?


Fair points, sure enough. To each his own, I guess. smile One thing, though...on the times where the job is done at the customer's house, I definitely wouldn't want to fire up a torch in his/her living room.
_________________________
DiGiorgi Piano Service (1984-2013)
http://www.digiorgipiano.com

Top
#1977759 - 10/23/12 09:55 PM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: jmw]
Dave B Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/01/11
Posts: 1890
Loc: Philadelphia area
I wonder what happened to all the Lester spinets I've replaced elbows on? They all seem to have faded away somewhere.

Top
#1977760 - 10/23/12 10:05 PM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: Loren D]
kpembrook Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/10
Posts: 1293
Loc: Michigan
Quote:
Fair points, sure enough. To each his own, I guess. One thing, though...on the times where the job is done at the customer's house, I definitely wouldn't want to fire up a torch in his/her living room.


Yes! This is definitely an in-shop approach.
_________________________
Keith Akins, RPT
USA Distributor for Isaac Cadenza hammers and Profundo Bass Strings
Supporting Piano Owners D-I-Y piano tuning and repair

Top
#1981530 - 11/01/12 09:18 PM Re: Lifter elbow replacement (full set) [Re: kpembrook]
showard Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/10/05
Posts: 122
Loc: Hortonville, Wisconsin
I've always done this job in the customers home and can generally get the elbows replaced, the dust vacuumed out from under the keys, the lost motion adjusted and the piano tuned in a little over 4 hours. I guess you have to determine how far the customer is away to determine if it's worth taking the action back to your shop.
_________________________
Steve Howard
Piano Technician
Owner of Howard Piano Industries
www.howardpianoindustries.com

Top

Moderator:  Piano World 
What's Hot!!
> Robin Spielberg Playing in Maine! <
-------------------
75,000 Members and Growing!
-------------------
HOW TO POST PICTURES on the Piano Forums
-------------------
Sharing is Caring!
About the Buttons
-------------------
Forums Rules & Help
-------------------
ADVERTISE
on Piano World

The world's most popular piano web site.
Ad (Seiler/Knabe)
Knabe Pianos
(ad) HAILUN Pianos
Hailun Pianos - Click for More
Sheet Music
(PW is an affiliate)
Sheet Music Plus Featured Sale
(125ad) Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
(ad) Lindeblad Piano
Lindeblad Piano Restoration
Who's Online
83 registered (a-z0-9, AndrewJCW, AZNpiano, 19 invisible), 1282 Guests and 19 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Stats
75473 Members
42 Forums
156050 Topics
2291480 Posts

Max Online: 15252 @ 03/21/10 11:39 PM
New Topics - Multiple Forums
My fingers know what my brain has forgotten
by PatrickBl
Yesterday at 08:30 PM
Fully-Rebuilt Pianos Versus New Pianos
by Paul678
Yesterday at 08:12 PM
How do you identify the melody on a sheet of music?
by Alex1
Yesterday at 07:38 PM
Fugue in b Minor
by Ritzycat
Yesterday at 05:34 PM
Missing Pedal rods for Bramburg (1890-ish?)
by Paul678
Yesterday at 04:22 PM
(ads by Google)

Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
| Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World | Donate | Link to Us | Classifieds |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter | Press Room |


copyright 1997 - 2014 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission