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#2029915 - 02/09/13 02:01 PM Anyone opinion on 'touch' action on Weber W114 or W121?
Ezra Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/15/06
Posts: 66
Loc: New York
Hi. Anyone with experience on the 'touch weight' of the Weber W114? Planning on buying one for my 7 yr son and wanted something that was not light/soft touch; rather want something medium. Thoughts??

My other comparison point was a Knabe 118 which had a slightly too-heavy touch (for those who had been following my storyline. Thank you to all!!)

Thank you.

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#2029972 - 02/09/13 04:28 PM Re: Anyone opinion on 'touch' action on Weber W114 or W121? [Re: Ezra]
Cy Shuster, RPT Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/18/05
Posts: 3448
Loc: Albuquerque, NM
Stack some nickels, and measure! A nickel is about 5 grams. Be sure to push down the damper pedal before measuring.

Touchweight doesn't vary all that much on new pianos at least 44" tall (110 cm). But another dimension is the geometric leverage, or action ratio, which is primarily governed by the length of the keys. Piano keys can vary from 8" or 9" (spinet) to 24" for a concert grand. The fulcrum (balance point) therefore varies a lot. If you're playing right next to the fallboard, your finger can be only an inch or two from the fulcrum. A common recommendation is to make sure the keys are at least 12" long overall (which you'd have to measure inside the case).

Anyway, the touch on almost any new piano will be acceptable and consistent from note to note. The biggest obstacle to young learners is pianos more than 30 years old with worn-out, uneven actions.

Either piano would be a great choice.

--Cy--
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Albuquerque, New Mexico

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#2030188 - 02/10/13 12:27 AM Re: Anyone opinion on 'touch' action on Weber W114 or W121? [Re: Cy Shuster, RPT]
Del Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/04/03
Posts: 5306
Loc: Olympia, Washington
Originally Posted By: Cy Shuster, RPT
Touchweight doesn't vary all that much on new pianos at least 44" tall (110 cm). But another dimension is the geometric leverage, or action ratio, which is primarily governed by the length of the keys. Piano keys can vary from 8" or 9" (spinet) to 24" for a concert grand. The fulcrum (balance point) therefore varies a lot. If you're playing right next to the fallboard, your finger can be only an inch or two from the fulcrum. A common recommendation is to make sure the keys are at least 12" long overall (which you'd have to measure inside the case).

Anyway, the touch on almost any new piano will be acceptable and consistent from note to note. The biggest obstacle to young learners is pianos more than 30 years old with worn-out, uneven actions.

I don't know if the piano you are looking at has the old or new key ratio. There is not a lot of difference. Both are back0-weighted to increase the touch weight somewhat. (Without this the touch weight of vertical actions can be some light and repetition can be unreliable.)

The front lever arm is fairly short on these pianos (as it is on most pianos of this size); something around 10" if memory serves. Possibly a little shorter, depending on the model. This is always a trade off between cabinet style and the amount of room it is going to take up. Most people buying small pianos are buying them, at least in part, because they are small. And one of the compromises made is in the key length. To be sure the keys could be made longer but then the keyboard would extend further out from the main piano body and would give the piano a front-heavy look.

Usually the rotational mass of the action components is low enough that inertia is not a significant problem to overcome.

As with grands the general advice is to get the largest piano you can consistent with budget and room d├ęcor considerations. The bass tone quality of the larger piano will be better as will the overall timbral balance.

ddf
_________________________
Delwin D Fandrich
Piano Research, Design & Manufacturing Consultant
ddfandrich@gmail.com
(To contact me privately please use this e-mail address.)

Stupidity is a rare condition, ignorance is a common choice. --Anon

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#2030213 - 02/10/13 01:41 AM Re: Anyone opinion on 'touch' action on Weber W114 or W121? [Re: Ezra]
Supply Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/11/06
Posts: 3919
Loc: Vancouver Island, BC, Canada
The perceived heaviness of the Knabe could be something that is changeable. A new piano will experience changes in the first year of its life, as action felts compress to their final dimensions. This can cause dampers to lift earlier in the keystroke, which makes the touch a lot heavier. Damper timing then needs to be re-adjusted. This will happen whether the piano is played in a home or if it simply sits in the show room for a while. Talk to the dealer about your concerns.
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Piano Forte Supply
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