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#1990225 - 11/24/12 06:50 AM Keyboard shifts right
dedge Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 09/22/12
Posts: 3
Loc: UK
Hi. I hope this is the right place for this question. I inherited a baby grand (made by George Russell in London) which seems to have a fault. The lefthand pedal doesn't quieten the sound; instead it shifts the entire keyboard about an inch to the right but as far as I can tell it doesn't affect the sound at all.

Can anyone throw any light on what might be causing this, and how to fix it? Would be grateful for any clues !

Dedge

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#1990227 - 11/24/12 07:12 AM Re: Keyboard shifts right [Re: dedge]
Loren D Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 2546
Loc: PA
It's not broken. The pedal is doing what it should be doing (shifting the action to the right). By doing so, it causes the hammers to hit only 2 of the three strings that most of the notes have, thereby changing the tamber of the sound. It doesn't actually make it "softer," so much as it changes the overall tone to a mellower one.
_________________________
DiGiorgi Piano Service (1984-2013)
http://www.digiorgipiano.com

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#1990236 - 11/24/12 08:16 AM Re: Keyboard shifts right [Re: Loren D]
dedge Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 09/22/12
Posts: 3
Loc: UK
Thanks very much for the quick answer, Loren. As I'm sure was obvious, we know next to nothing about pianos! Can I ask another dumb question? We acquired another piano from my mother: this one 's soft pedal doesn't shift the keyboard to the right, but it's an upright. Are uprights different from baby grands in that respect?

Dedge

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#1990243 - 11/24/12 08:40 AM Re: Keyboard shifts right [Re: dedge]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7904
Loc: France
Yes , some really rare vertical pianos have a motion with the left pedal, the majority don't, the hammers are simply pushed nearer the strings when the pedal is engaged, hence less propulsion (less strong tone)

The UC (Una Corda, from the first fortepianas which had only 2 strings for a note) is changing really the tone, on a grand, but this is when the piano is tuned, regulated and voiced. with time the hammers harden and the difference in tone is then barely noticeable.
When the left pedal ins engaged the hammers hit the strings on a different surface than when played normally , so this surface can be softened, and the difference in tone is then huge.

To do so everything may be in good condition first, an overhaul on a recent grand piano can take 1-2 days and if no maintenance have been done, it may take longer and provide less good results.




Edited by Kamin (11/24/12 12:28 PM)
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#1990246 - 11/24/12 08:42 AM Re: Keyboard shifts right [Re: dedge]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7904
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: dedge
Hi. I hope this is the right place for this question. I inherited a baby grand (made by George Russell in London) which seems to have a fault. The lefthand pedal doesn't quieten the sound; instead it shifts the entire keyboard about an inch to the right but as far as I can tell it doesn't affect the sound at all.

Can anyone throw any light on what might be causing this, and how to fix it? Would be grateful for any clues !

Dedge


the motion of the keyboard may be 2-4 mm , not an inch the space relates to the space between 2 strings, it cannot be large.
_________________________
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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#1990270 - 11/24/12 10:09 AM Re: Keyboard shifts right [Re: dedge]
Loren D Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 2546
Loc: PA
Originally Posted By: dedge
Thanks very much for the quick answer, Loren. As I'm sure was obvious, we know next to nothing about pianos! Can I ask another dumb question? We acquired another piano from my mother: this one 's soft pedal doesn't shift the keyboard to the right, but it's an upright. Are uprights different from baby grands in that respect?

Dedge


No problem, Dedge! There are no "dumb" questions. smile You are correct, upright pianos are different. Instead of shifting the action, the soft pedal lifts the hammer rail, moving the hammers closer to the strings. In this position, they don't develop their full swing and momentum, and hit the strings with slightly less velocity.

The effect of the action shifting on a grand is a much more dramatic and noticeable difference in tone than on the upright design.

Enjoy the weekend!

-Loren
_________________________
DiGiorgi Piano Service (1984-2013)
http://www.digiorgipiano.com

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#1990300 - 11/24/12 12:14 PM Re: Keyboard shifts right [Re: dedge]
Gene Nelson Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/10/04
Posts: 1533
Loc: Old Hangtown California
Shifting to the right is normal as already pointed out. But moving an inch is too much and likely not possible.
Also, if you are not noticing a quieter sound: First have a tech adjust the travel properly, then listen again. Depending on how the pedal is used can make a big difference.
If there is still no change, have the tech voice the hammers for the shift position.
Adjusting and voicing the una-chorda is something that needs to be taylored to the individual.
_________________________
RPT
PTG Member

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#1990349 - 11/24/12 02:36 PM Re: Keyboard shifts right [Re: dedge]
dedge Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 09/22/12
Posts: 3
Loc: UK
Thanks again, Loren--and Kamin, and Gene. I learned a lot about pianos today!

I measured the shift. It seemed so big before, which is why I guessed around an inch. But in fact it's only about 4 mm, so not excessive from what you told me. That's good to know.

Thanks again.

Dedge


Edited by dedge (11/24/12 02:37 PM)

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