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#2121128 - 07/21/13 04:46 PM New piano's first tuning
Cassiesmom Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/27/12
Posts: 56
Loc: Mid Atlantic, US.
Hey Folks,

I had my brand new piano (Kawai K-5) delivered nearly 4 months ago, and happily feel I made the right purchase smile . However, between my work schedule and other issues/commitments, I am just now getting around to calling the dealer tomorrow to schedule the first tuning. There are other service issues that need to be addressed as well-for example, I have a few keys that sound dull--no ringing of the note..- and some double striking-to the point that it affects the feel/touch etc-(more noticeable when using the sustain pedal and trying to play softly). This has been going on for most of the time I've had it.- My question is, could I have done any damage by playing (especially FORTE) the last 4 months with it in that condition or is it easily remedied?.

In addition, I have noticed that with the change in temp/humidity that the sound and condition varies somewhat, but reading posts on this site, it seems like that, at least, is fairly normal.

Thanks ,
Cassiesmom

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#2121135 - 07/21/13 04:53 PM Re: New piano's first tuning [Re: Cassiesmom]
Monica K. Offline

Platinum Supporter until Dec 31 2012


Registered: 08/10/05
Posts: 17815
Loc: Lexington, Kentucky
You won't have caused any permanent damage, Cassiesmom, but it is good to tune a new piano 4 times the first year and then twice a year after that.

You may want to summarize the other issues you'd like addressed besides tuning for the dealer when you schedule the tuning, so he/she can make sure to schedule enough time for the call.
_________________________
Mason & Hamlin A -- 91997
My YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/pianomonica

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#2121152 - 07/21/13 05:17 PM Re: New piano's first tuning [Re: Cassiesmom]
Michael_99 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/28/12
Posts: 935
Loc: Canada Alberta
Cassiesmom, I have read your post, here:

I had my brand new piano (Kawai K-5) delivered nearly 4 months ago, and happily feel I made the right purchase smile . However, between my work schedule and other issues/commitments, I am just now getting around to calling the dealer tomorrow to schedule the first tuning. There are other service issues that need to be addressed as well-for example, I have a few keys that sound dull--no ringing of the note..- and some double striking-to the point that it affects the feel/touch etc-(more noticeable when using the sustain pedal and trying to play softly). This has been going on for most of the time I've had it.- My question is, could I have done any damage by playing (especially FORTE) the last 4 months with it in that condition or is it easily remedied?.

In addition, I have noticed that with the change in temp/humidity that the sound and condition varies somewhat, but reading posts on this site, it seems like that, at least, is fairly normal.

_________________________________________________

I know nothing about tuning except it should be done once a year. However, playing FORTE as you describe it, is costly in so many ways. If you run a car at high speed, it be hard on the engine and the vehicle as a whole. Playing FORTE as you describe it, is hard on the hands/arms/wrists and the body as a whole because of the extra energy to do it, hard on the hammers, maybe even the strings and everything else on the piano. But if you have the bucks, and can afford it - cool. My view is that there is never ever a reason the play FORTE, unless someone is paying you BIG bucks to do it or you are doing it for an audience of billions.

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#2121242 - 07/21/13 08:30 PM Re: New piano's first tuning [Re: Cassiesmom]
Anne H Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/02/13
Posts: 153
Loc: New Orleans
Temperature and humidity can make a big difference sound and vibration for a piano. I live in a hot and very humid environment and I really struggle with this in regards to my piano. Most people around here do more tunings per year to deal with it and many use dehumidifiers by their pianos.
_________________________
Works in Progress:
Rachmaninoff: Prelude Op 23 No 4
Howls Moving Castle
Faure - Nocturne Op 36/4


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#2121273 - 07/21/13 10:34 PM Re: New piano's first tuning [Re: Cassiesmom]
Andy Platt Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/28/10
Posts: 2423
Loc: Virginia, USA
Your piano will sound brilliant and new again once you get it tuned. At least my K3 did!

The last time the tuner adjusted some things to account for the hammers bedding down a bit and the repetition being a little off - leading to the double-striking you talked about. Very easy and he didn't charge me - hopefully it will be that simple for you.
_________________________
  • Schumann - Ende vom Lied, Opus 12.8
  • Haydn - Sonata in Gm, Hob. XVI/44

Kawai K3

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#2121276 - 07/21/13 10:44 PM Re: New piano's first tuning [Re: Anne H]
Cassiesmom Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/27/12
Posts: 56
Loc: Mid Atlantic, US.
Thanks for the responses folks!

Monica K .--thanks for the reassurances---..and I do plan to have the next tunings be more timely. I will definitely let the tech know all the issues when I call... thanks for that tip !

Anne H. - I'm struggling w/ the humidity too. I do have a dehumidifier, but after a short time it gives off heat, which, in my small space is counter productive to running the A/C - I usually only use it for short periods of time like after taking showers or cooking.. The humidity has seemed to run between 54 and 61 ish ..i guess not ideal--but still..thank goodness for the A/C.

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#2121370 - 07/22/13 04:34 AM Re: New piano's first tuning [Re: Cassiesmom]
Tubbie0075 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/17/10
Posts: 544
Because of moving to a new house, I now dedicate a bedroom as a music room. Surprisingly I didn't have to do anything to adjust the acoustic of the room given its relatively smaller space.

The good thing about having the piano in a room is the ease of managing its temperature and humidity. I bought a portable dehumidifier unit that store up to 6 litre of water. I also got a hygrometer/thermometer to monitor the room humidity and temperature. Each day, I turn the dehumidifier on for an hour or 2 while I practice until the hygrometer points to between 40 and 50. I turn central heating on until the thermometer points to between 20 to 25 degree celsius. My piano has stayed in tune for a lot longer than it has before when I was living in an apartment and had the piano in the living room.

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#2121507 - 07/22/13 12:56 PM Re: New piano's first tuning [Re: Cassiesmom]
Piano RX Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/09/13
Posts: 146
Originally Posted By: Cassiesmom
Thanks for the responses folks!

Monica K .--thanks for the reassurances---..and I do plan to have the next tunings be more timely. I will definitely let the tech know all the issues when I call... thanks for that tip !

Anne H. - I'm struggling w/ the humidity too. I do have a dehumidifier, but after a short time it gives off heat, which, in my small space is counter productive to running the A/C - I usually only use it for short periods of time like after taking showers or cooking.. The humidity has seemed to run between 54 and 61 ish ..i guess not ideal--but still..thank goodness for the A/C.


I am currently piano shopping and have done some investigation reagarding proper RH so I can prepare for a stable environment. I contacted Steinway & Sons directly and they replied that the "optimum" RH for their pianos is 50% so you are not too far off with 54. They tell me that small, gradual changes are not really bad but it is the significant excursions from 50% that are harmful. Large swings,either way, of 10 points or more, could be a problem, especially if they are sudden. I guess pianos, like us, thrive on stability.

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#2121511 - 07/22/13 01:07 PM Re: New piano's first tuning [Re: Tubbie0075]
Piano RX Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/09/13
Posts: 146
Originally Posted By: Tubbie0075


Each day, I turn the dehumidifier on for an hour or 2 while I practice until the hygrometer points to between 40 and 50.


Have you checked the RH 12 hours after you shut down the dehumidifier? You indicated that the RH is higher then drops to 40 -50. Steinway says that 50% is ideal but you can be a bit higher or lower with no ill effects providing the RH remains fairly stable. It's the changes, especially sudden, that are not good. If you're seeing a significat rise during the off hours you may want to reconsider your current plan. If your RH goes from 45, lets say, and then wanders up to 55 by the next practice session, then back to 45 again, according to Steinway, not me, you could be doing more harm than good. Just a thought.

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#2122244 - 07/24/13 10:08 AM Re: New piano's first tuning [Re: Cassiesmom]
Chopinlover49 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/11
Posts: 641
As indicated here by others, tuning a new piano is not a once a year situation. The strings are still stretching/settling. After the first year, it all depends on the piano and its environment. Most pianos need to be tuned twice a year. Once after the heat comes on in the fall, and once in the spring after the air conditioning comes on. But, every situation is different. Your ear and your tuner can determine if the piano needs tuning. It also depends on your playing practices. Some pro musicians need their instruments tuned a lot more often. Have you read anything about damp-chaser humidity systems? I have one and it does wonders to protect the piano and keep the tuning longer. Good luck with your new piano. I hope you have many years of enjoyment with it!

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#2122273 - 07/24/13 11:40 AM Re: New piano's first tuning [Re: Cassiesmom]
peterws Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/21/12
Posts: 3868
Loc: Northern England.
I just read thro` these . . . Oh, I`m in love with the ugliest digital piano ever . . .
_________________________
"I'm playing all the right notes � but not necessarily in the right order." Eric Morecambe

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