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Topic Options
#2263947 - 04/19/14 05:08 AM On Temperament strip muting, and other things
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 665
I was in discussion via PM with a fellow tuner/technician earlier this week, about ETD tuning vs aural and temperament strips and unisons as you go. I explained that I have tried all of these, at different times for a period of time, and now am tossing back and forth as to what methods I would like to use.

My fellow tuner was clear in what he held to and why, and I found myself being convinced to a certain degree of his stance on the subjects. As I thought through what he has said I have come my own conclusions as to my own direction and stance on the matters discussed.

Why do I write what I am writing here on PW? Because it may help someone, or some fellow tuner/technicians.

The fellow tuner/technician that I had some dialogue with earlier this week via email, is a very knowledgeable, capable and aspiring craftsman, and I respect him for his knowledge and diligence in the piano technology trade, and wish him all the best. I certainly hope that I may have the opportunity to meet him some day.

I am aware that ETD's have there place in the tuning world. I am aware that there are different camps. There are aural only tuners, ETD only tuners, and then there are hybrid tuners (those who employ aural and ETD). To each, his own.

I enjoy tuning aurally, and I think that I am a good aural tuner too, maybe not the best but that is not a problem for me, I keep learning and striving by God's grace to better myself, my service and business.

I have also used an ETD for a period of two years solid, 2011 and 2012. so I have that experience too.

I tune a variety of pianos, in a variety of conditions, and one thing I have learned, is that each and every tuning has aspects about it that make it a different experience from the last, though there may be some aspects that remain the same.

There are pianos that are worthwhile tuning aurally, and others that are not. Those that are not will get the ETD. There are pianos/situations/circumstances that demand a high level of precision, and these demand one's all, this is where, for me, and ETD is invaluable.

With regards to temperament tuning for ET, I have tried a number of different systems over the years, and incorporate certain aspects of each system to make up my own. I do tune a 4ths and 5ths method every now and again too, learning the fascinating value of this approach to tuning. There is a level of precision and self correction that this approach brings to tuning the temperament, that if one applies oneself to learning and understanding it, allows one to tune an ET temperament, never mind any other UT, if one has the desire or knowledge of the aural instructions involved in that.

BTW, I am not against UT tuning. I will tune them if asked to, using an ETD for the temperament setting.

With regards to muting techniques, there are a few floating around out there.

I have used a number of them, and the various mutations (pun intended) of these systems.

With aural tuning I have used the single mute, the two mute, strip mute and temperament strip.

With ETD tuning, I have used the same muting techniques above.

What is important in tuning, and muting techniques is at least two things, efficiency and stability.

This brings me to something that Dan Levitan has said,

There are two basic priciples of efficient and accurate tuning,

1. First principle - Set each tuning pin only once
2. Second principle - Keep time not spent setting tuning pins to a minimum.

Dan Levitan, in an article he wrote in 1996, said the following, (please take note that this is for aural tuning),

"There is more to the question than the dichotomy between the speed of strip muting versus the accuracy of single mutes, for tunings done with a strip also have the potential for greater consistency.

Using a strip mute to put each note in a given register on a single string makes it much easier to adjust parallel intervals and correct inconsistencies. This gang approach to tuning appeals to many tuners for the same reason as does the gang approach to much other piano work, such as rebushing keys. We don't find it particularly useful to take an individual key, remove it's bushing, cut out a little rectangle of cloth, glue it in, and make sure it fits just right before we move on. Not only would this approach be less efficient than the usual one, it would make it impossible for us to achieve the level of consistency that comes from treating the keys as a group of like parts to which we apply the same consistent set of procedures.

This is the sort of consistency that, in piano work at least, is not foolish. In the temperament, especially, one often wants to increase consistency by returning to notes that have already been tuned and making minute adjustments. For this reason even many tuners who tune the rest of the piano with single mutes like to strip mute the temperament."

Dan goes on to speak about the most efficient strip muting method of making two passes and how to go about that.

Regards,
_________________________
Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2263950 - 04/19/14 06:12 AM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 665
I forgot an important point that my fellow piano tuner/technician, had to say with regards to muting when tuning with an ETD.

"You can either use a single mute and tune from left to right, or you can use two mutes and tune the center string first, then right, then left."

Though I agree with almost everything he has said in the above statement he made, I will say that if I am using a single mute, I will tune the right string in grands first, then center and then left. There is a slight variation of how to tune the left string. Does one tune the left string with all three strings open or to the center string only with the right string muted. To each, his own

In an upright, when using a single mute/paps wedge, I will tune the left string first and so on.
_________________________
Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2263994 - 04/19/14 09:32 AM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7904
Loc: France
Mark it makes a difference tuning from doublets or with the 3 strings together. On a good piano, 3strings allow more possibilities, and the tone is more lively, I find.

Still I would tune one string of the next note before finishing the unison, for stability reasons.
Strip muting gives a clean tone, then the unison are always of the same type.
About 1,5 Hz more, one need to deal with bridge settling if a strip mute is used. Direct unison do not ask for as much corrections. I think.
Regards


Edited by Olek (04/19/14 12:30 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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#2264018 - 04/19/14 10:22 AM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 665
Yes, Isaac, I know very well what your opinion is on the matter of muting methods and unisons, and I accept that, but it is one among several.

My main reason for posting what I have is, as I stated, to help someone who may need it.

I have spoken about the various options available and I have also posted some principles that lie behind tuning, which I think speak for themselves.

I will quote what another expert in piano technology has stated. I support what I am saying with well known experts to show the weight behind what I am saying, and to show the rationale behind these experts choices.

I think that what Dan Levitan has said, which I quoted in my first post is a reasonable, if not convincing case for the muting strip, if for the temperament only, and if tuning aurally, but acknowledge that it too is one of the opinions "out there".

David Love, who is now an ETD only tuner, wrote about a decade ago,

"When I was tuning aurally I found that the temperament strip (literally used for the temperament) was best. Since temperaments vary slightly on different pianos, using a single, or more commonly, a four mute method, which I tried, just ended up with to many redos of notes already tuned.

Since I tuned a two octave temperament, at least in part, I found that stripping A2, C#3, F3 - A4, worked the best. That allowed for minor adjustments to the temperament octave without have to retune entire unisons. After those unisons were pulled in, a two mute unisons as you go method worked best for me."
_________________________
Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2264041 - 04/19/14 11:15 AM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Cerisano, RPT Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/24/10
Posts: 1421
Loc: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Hi Mark,

I appreciate your personal approach perspective, emphasizing "each to his own" preference.

I do want to make one observation. Dan Levitan compares the mute strip to batch work in piano repair and regulation. I agree that batch work in piano repair and regulation saves a lot of time.

However, it is my experience that Double String Unison, which uses one mute to mute one string, allows me to tune faster, more accurately, and with more stable unison when I'm finished, compared to using the mute strip. That's just my experience. Just because I have this experience, doesn't mean other people would have the same experience.

I do agree with Dan that the pin should be set in as few motions as possible. For me, DSU provides that.

I recently recorded myself tuning some octaves during a regular tuning. Using a golf analogy, where the first move of the string to final pitch is analogous to the drive off the tee, I recorded nine notes using octaves, and after aural confirmations, was able to get a few holes in one and some birdies using Beat Matching. I rate DSU with Beat Matching technique being a par 3 per note; one drive with beat matching, and two putts using shimming.

I thought you might like to hear about it and try it out, seeing that you are open to other techniques. This is used by only a few technicians and there is no systematic explanation of how it works or how to use it, as far as I know. But, like any technique, as you so insightfully write, they each have a variety of results with different technicians.

Best Regards,
_________________________
Mark Cerisano, RPT
www.howtotunepianos.com

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#2264047 - 04/19/14 11:41 AM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 665
Thanks Mark for your post and willingness to help, but I would appreciate it if you would keep your DSU technique and videos to your threads on the matter.

I do not have a problem with you posting your opinion on the matter here on my posts, but please do not use my threads as a springboard for self promotion, is all I kindly ask.

Thank you.

Regards,
_________________________
Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2264055 - 04/19/14 12:01 PM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 665
Originally Posted By: Mark Cerisano, RPT
However, it is my experience that Double String Unison, which uses one mute to mute one string, allows me to tune faster, more accurately, and with more stable unison when I'm finished, compared to using the mute strip. That's just my experience. Just because I have this experience, doesn't mean other people would have the same experience.


This is the famous "Strong Arm" approach to why this technique is so called superior to others, which I find interesting and amusing, as all the other experts that I have read on temperament strip muting seem to think that it is the DSU tuning technique that has areas of weakness and therefore have chosen the technique they use.

It is a controversy, but maybe, let's try to not fight over it, and give the proponents of their systems a say on their opinions instead of trying to blow them out of the water. Then some may be able to formulate their own opinions without being beaten into submission.

I have heard both sides for a long time, just re-read what Dan and David have had to say (from experience), who I think have many more years of experience in tuning than you and I put together (at least I think).

Anyway, depending on what takes place I may not post again on this thread.

Thank you,

Best regards,
_________________________
Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2264063 - 04/19/14 12:27 PM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7904
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: Mark Davis
Yes, Isaac, I know very well what your opinion is on the matter of muting methods and unisons, and I accept that, but it is one among several.

My main reason for posting what I have is, as I stated, to help someone who may need it.

I have spoken about the various options available and I have also posted some principles that lie behind tuning, which I think speak for themselves.

I will quote what another expert in piano technology has stated. I support what I am saying with well known experts to show the weight behind what I am saying, and to show the rationale behind these experts choices.

I think that what Dan Levitan has said, which I quoted in my first post is a reasonable, if not convincing case for the muting strip, if for the temperament only, and if tuning aurally, but acknowledge that it too is one of the opinions "out there".

David Love, who is now an ETD only tuner, wrote about a decade ago,

"When I was tuning aurally I found that the temperament strip (literally used for the temperament) was best. Since temperaments vary slightly on different pianos, using a single, or more commonly, a four mute method, which I tried, just ended up with to many redos of notes already tuned.

Since I tuned a two octave temperament, at least in part, I found that stripping A2, C#3, F3 - A4, worked the best. That allowed for minor adjustments to the temperament octave without have to retune entire unisons. After those unisons were pulled in, a two mute unisons as you go method worked best for me."


I am sorry but I did not understood ypour inquiry, I thought you where asking for opinions or ideas about muting and unison prctice.

I use and have used both of the most common ways, in the end I did not know what to say about. Sorry if this was out of the OP.
_________________________
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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#2264065 - 04/19/14 12:34 PM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
adamp88 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/24/09
Posts: 177
Loc: Omaha, NE
I'm confused as to why you seem to be taking offense to other people offering their opinions on the topic, Mark. This is a discussion forum, is it not?
_________________________
Adam Schulte-Bukowinski, RPT
ASB Piano Service
Omaha, NE

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#2264068 - 04/19/14 12:39 PM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7904
Loc: France
WHat can be verified is that a fully tuned unison does not give the same activity than a single string. SO the eveness obtained with strip^muting can be at the expense of something (that I hardly can define at the moment).

Possibly strip muting (an easy way if the piano was not tuned correctly before) is better for some more policed type of piano, while tuning with full unison gives more liberty to the tuner.

Beats are somehow mysterious if we hear them as an activity level at large and not a simple partial match.
That may for instance give very lively and active major thirds that when analyzed have slower beats than one believe at first.

On the other hand, strip muting allow to keep the final tone vs the first central string consistent, in my opinion. the unison deconstruction is really something that can be done conscientiously then, more easily than than using the 3 strings.

Steinway consider the unison have to be tuned since the temperament, for their instruments.I did not make difference between both, methods for a long time , now I do.

Tuning means being at the service of the piano, so that is may be why the instrument is allowed to be more "present" in our listening, if we use fully tuned unison.

The point that is generally ovelooked is that intervals speed vary during the sustained time, for whatever reason. That variation is certainly modified by the 3 strings unison (made smaller, or accelerated ? )

That point should be of some concern, when we talk of "precision".


Edited by Olek (04/19/14 12:44 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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#2264074 - 04/19/14 12:50 PM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
prout Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/14/13
Posts: 850
Originally Posted By: Mark Davis
I forgot an important point that my fellow piano tuner/technician, had to say with regards to muting when tuning with an ETD.

"You can either use a single mute and tune from left to right, or you can use two mutes and tune the center string first, then right, then left."

Though I agree with almost everything he has said in the above statement he made, I will say that if I am using a single mute, I will tune the right string in grands first, then center and then left. There is a slight variation of how to tune the left string. Does one tune the left string with all three strings open or to the center string only with the right string muted. To each, his own

In an upright, when using a single mute/paps wedge, I will tune the left string first and so on.

You mention in your first post that what you wrote may help someone. I would qualify as a someone.

With regard to tuning unisons, I find, when dealing with false beats, I need to tune the third string with the others unmuted, in order to find the null beat or, at least, the best compromise.

cheers

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#2264086 - 04/19/14 01:14 PM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 665
Originally Posted By: adamp88
I'm confused as to why you seem to be taking offense to other people offering their opinions on the topic, Mark. This is a discussion forum, is it not?


No need to be confused Adam!

I have stated that I do not mind Mark.C posting, and have only asked that he not use the thread as a promotion/springboard for his teaching business as this just brings an element into the threads that I think is not healthy.

Yes, it is a discussion forum.

Do you have any valuable input on muting techniques to offer for us to consider and to discuss?


Edited by Mark Davis (04/19/14 01:19 PM)
Edit Reason: minor correction
_________________________
Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2264093 - 04/19/14 01:37 PM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Eric Gloo Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/28/01
Posts: 1253
Loc: Richfield Springs, New York
Originally Posted By: Mark Davis
I have stated that I do not mind Mark.C posting, and have only asked that he not use the thread as a promotion/springboard for his teaching business as this just brings an element into the threads that I think is not healthy.


I find this thread interesting, not unhealthy...except for the part telling people what they can and can not post.
_________________________
Eric Gloo
Piano Technician
Certified Dampp-Chaser Installer
Richfield Springs, New York

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#2264098 - 04/19/14 01:49 PM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 665
Well, my apologies to all those that are offended with me telling Mark what he can and cannot post.

My apologies to Mark too!

It is just that one would think that the DSU technique has had at least a thorough hearing here on PW that I was trying to get the other side of the muting story out to have it's day.

But to all those who are offended, please rest assured that you are more than welcome to post what you like, hopefully on topic though.
_________________________
Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2264128 - 04/19/14 03:18 PM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Gerry Johnston Online   content
Full Member

Registered: 04/12/13
Posts: 106
Loc: Haverhill, MA
There are plenty of examples out there of excellent technicians who use either approach - strip muting vs. unisons as you go. In consideration of this it is pointless to argue that one way is better than the other.

I've been an aural tuner for about 37 years and have limited experience with an ETD. Therefore, I'll limit my comments on muting methods to aural tuning. Both methods have strengths and weaknesses. Good tuners learn to make the best use of strengths and find methods to compensate for the weaknesses.

The big advantage to strip muting is that the entire piano is tuned on one string per note. This makes checking (and double checking) and making corrections easier. The big disadvantage is that unisons are not tuned until last. If the pitch of any note(s) has drifted during the unison tuning it will not be caught, if at all, until later. Technicians using this approach need to be extra careful in performing a final check on the entire tuning when they are done.

Unisons as you go has the advantage of allowing the tuner to hear the piano as the pianist will hear it. Since all previously tuned unisons will be used for testing as you go along, any discrepancies will (or should be) caught and corrected long before the tuning has been completed. Once a note is properly tuned it is "done" and should not move from there. The obvious disadvantage is that, when an error is found, it may be necessary to retune three strings instead of one.

Dan Levitan has discussed a hybrid technique in which the piano is strip muted, but unisons are tuned in sections, thereby reducing the likelihood of errors accumulating.

For novice tuners my advice would be to strip mute at first. It will be easier to tune temperament and octaves. Later on try unisons as you go. But, don't just try it once or twice. Make yourself work this way for several months. It can take that long to get used to a particular method of tuning.

To paraphrase, "...methods don't tune pianos, people tune pianos". Again, in the hands of an experienced and skilled tuner either approach can produce excellent results.

For what it is worth, my own approach is to use a felt strip for setting the temperament octave, tune the unisons and then "tweak" anything in the temperament that needs additional correction. The balance of the piano is then tuned unisons as you go. NOT saying this method is superior - just that it seems to work best for me.
_________________________
Gerry Johnston, Registered Piano Technician
Haverhill, MA
(978) 372-2250
www.gjpianotuner.com

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#2264210 - 04/19/14 05:34 PM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Gerry Johnston]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 665
Thanks Gerry.

I think you have summed it up well. What you say is the way I understand it too.
_________________________
Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2264314 - 04/19/14 09:30 PM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Cerisano, RPT Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/24/10
Posts: 1421
Loc: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Originally Posted By: Mark Davis
Thanks Mark for your post and willingness to help, but I would appreciate it if you would keep your DSU technique and videos to your threads on the matter.

I do not have a problem with you posting your opinion on the matter here on my posts, but please do not use my threads as a springboard for self promotion, is all I kindly ask.

Thank you.

Regards,




Let me get straight to the point then.

You are wrong to assume that, just because Dan Levitan says strip muting is akin to batch work, that it's true.

But maybe I misunderstood your position.
_________________________
Mark Cerisano, RPT
www.howtotunepianos.com

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#2264319 - 04/19/14 09:39 PM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Cerisano, RPT Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/24/10
Posts: 1421
Loc: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Hi Mark,

Please reread my post with more willingness to be impartial and not jump to any preconceived "strong arming" on my part. Kindly,

Originally Posted By: Mark Cerisano, RPT
However, it is my experience that Double String Unison, which uses one mute to mute one string, allows me to tune faster, more accurately, and with more stable unison when I'm finished, compared to using the mute strip. That's just my experience. Just because I have this experience, doesn't mean other people would have the same experience.


It is not blanketedly "superior to others".
I am not trying to "blow them out of the water" or "beat [them] into submission".

But I think everyone else reading this can see this clearly.

All the best,
_________________________
Mark Cerisano, RPT
www.howtotunepianos.com

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#2264657 - 04/20/14 05:49 PM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
adamp88 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/24/09
Posts: 177
Loc: Omaha, NE
I learned tuning via strip muting the entire piano. Starting out, I found it easier to hear/isolate beats that way. In some cases I still find it quicker than single mute, though those cases are usually pianos where the best tuning still won't sound all that great (spinets/old neglected consoles, etc). About a year ago I moved to stripping the temperament octave and doing the rest single mute/unisons as I go. I started out leaving the temperament strip in and doing those unisons last, but have recently started pulling in those unisons before moving on to the rest of the piano. I'm not sure whether I'll adapt that as my final method or go back to leaving those unisons to the end.

As Gerry said, there are many gifted tuners who use each of these methods, so it's really a matter of finding what works for you.
_________________________
Adam Schulte-Bukowinski, RPT
ASB Piano Service
Omaha, NE

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#2264812 - 04/21/14 01:52 AM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 665
Originally Posted By: Mark Cerisano, RPT
Originally Posted By: Mark Davis
Thanks Mark for your post and willingness to help, but I would appreciate it if you would keep your DSU technique and videos to your threads on the matter.

I do not have a problem with you posting your opinion on the matter here on my posts, but please do not use my threads as a springboard for self promotion, is all I kindly ask.

Thank you.

Regards,




Let me get straight to the point then.

You are wrong to assume that, just because Dan Levitan says strip muting is akin to batch work, that it's true.

But maybe I misunderstood your position.


Mark,

There is more to Dan's article and argument for muting the temperament than the batch work example he gave. I just posted a small part of Dan's article, and I am not going to post anymore either. I think that the post I made which quotes what David Love says is also revealing to the weakness of the DSU technique.

I know and understand your preference, and respect that you use it and find it to be helpful, but I do not want to know or understand anymore about it, right now, though if you feel you need to say something about it here, feel free to do so.

Thank you.

Regards,


Edited by Mark Davis (04/21/14 04:19 AM)
Edit Reason: minor necessary correction
_________________________
Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2264815 - 04/21/14 02:07 AM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 665
Originally Posted By: Mark Cerisano, RPT
It is not blanketedly "superior to others".
I am not trying to "blow them out of the water" or "beat [them] into submission".


My apologies Mark, the above statement was actually not made to or about you, as such. The context was that this type of behaviour can and does happen on PW, which I myself have been apart of in times past. It was not directly pointed at you. I hope you can see and accept what I am saying.
_________________________
Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2264818 - 04/21/14 02:29 AM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 665
Originally Posted By: adamp88
I learned tuning via strip muting the entire piano. Starting out, I found it easier to hear/isolate beats that way. In some cases I still find it quicker than single mute, though those cases are usually pianos where the best tuning still won't sound all that great (spinets/old neglected consoles, etc). About a year ago I moved to stripping the temperament octave and doing the rest single mute/unisons as I go. I started out leaving the temperament strip in and doing those unisons last, but have recently started pulling in those unisons before moving on to the rest of the piano. I'm not sure whether I'll adapt that as my final method or go back to leaving those unisons to the end.

As Gerry said, there are many gifted tuners who use each of these methods, so it's really a matter of finding what works for you.


Thank you Adam.

Many of the pianos I tune, need pitch adjusting and tuning. I have a repeat client base whose pianos do not need that much tuning work, mainly touch up work, and then it is a paps wedge or single mute or two mute tuning for me. So there is a time and place where the temperament strip is not needed, but for the pianos that need more than just a tuning, I like to use the temperament strip.

All of the best to you.

Regards,
_________________________
Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2264819 - 04/21/14 02:36 AM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 665
Now on to other things,

I recently found a really nice video, though short, of a hammer technique that is very similar to what I have been using more and more over the last two years or so.

I mainly use the smooth pull method for pitch adjusting now, though at one stage it was my main and only technique for tuning.

The following video shows a method of impacting that I employ.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oTXnKvUzI0A


Edited by Mark Davis (04/21/14 04:39 AM)
Edit Reason: minor necessary correction
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Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2264844 - 04/21/14 06:04 AM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7904
Loc: France
hello, about that last video that is the technique used for pianos yet "tuned"

"tuned" meaning "slowpullized" in my case.

some seem to call that impact because the springness of the pin allows it to move the tiniest motion, without disturbing its originl posture, and the small ticks perceived are as impacts.

but for me it works because of the original loading of the pin.

lateral posture is the best to free the pin, while if doing so more at 13:00 the pin can be braked a little more producing eventually smaller motions.

At some point, that method is so useful that I used it for complete tunings, but discovered that this is not ideal for the block. (a colleague told me also this was considered "beginner's technique" as it remind the feel of the pin flexibility every time it moves, it can be somehow secure)

I see it as a "shimming" method.

P.S. on the video, the tuner just forget to raise the dampers while inserting the mute. Not a good exemple to others.
A definitive no no on all horizontal layered dampers felt(and by extension a good habit)

Regards


Edited by Olek (04/21/14 06:24 AM)
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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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#2264852 - 04/21/14 07:05 AM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 665
Thanks Isaac

I agree with what you say about depressing the pedal before inserting the strip, and I always do this, and you are right to remind of this on the forum.

Yes, you may see it as a shimming method. This is why impacting is such an excellent technique.

With regards to impact methods, impact is impact, is impact is impact.

Depending on how far an interval is out, the impacting will be greater or lesser in intensity.

I understand that one may use the impact method as a final technique after slow pulling, but it is not slow pulling. It is impact. Others, though I cannot speak for them as such, may use this technique right from the start/out of the box, as I do. It is impacting! Yes or No?

Regards,
_________________________
Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2264861 - 04/21/14 08:05 AM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Cerisano, RPT Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/24/10
Posts: 1421
Loc: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Thank you Mark,

Your post to me was very kind. I really appreciated reading it.

Best Regards,
_________________________
Mark Cerisano, RPT
www.howtotunepianos.com

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#2264867 - 04/21/14 08:33 AM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7904
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: Mark Davis
Thanks Isaac

I agree with what you say about depressing the pedal before inserting the strip, and I always do this, and you are right to remind of this on the forum.

Yes, you may see it as a shimming method. This is why impacting is such an excellent technique.

With regards to impact methods, impact is impact, is impact is impact.



Depending on how far an interval is out, the impacting will be greater or lesser in intensity.

I understand that one may use the impact method as a final technique after slow pulling, but it is not slow pulling. It is impact. Others, though I cannot speak for them as such, may use this technique right from the start/out of the box, as I do. It is impacting! Yes or No?

Regards,


Thank your Mark, yes I mean we can call that (small) impacting.

As you may know it will only work at the moment the pin is stressed enough, is makes the same a slow pull but fast, so before using it I want to be sure of the posture of the pin.

There is a small leeway in pin's posture, adding more or less strenght in the NSL, but I feel about an "optimum setting" and once that one is installed, I try not to disturb it.

I do so by keeping contact with the bottom of the pin at all times. You may have seen in the video I posted lately, that I use a slow pull for a small motion of the pin. I say then that I know the pin have moved but I am unsure how much.
If I would have used the small impacts "shimming" method I would have been more certain (even if in the demonstration I had judged correctly how much to overload)

What is not very good for the block, tending to ovalize the upper part of the hole, is to use impact with a too pronounced waving motion, particularly if the pin is manipulated with some pressure toward the tail of the grand to have some reserve of tension to add in the NSL at the end.

Tuning regularely that way (without using much the strenght of the torqued pin) is something pianos do not like if repeated again and again, I can witness that.

On the opposite light "impacts" ("ticks" ) on a pin that is torqued a little on itself, does not change the tightness.
I can use a very tight pin, impact it lightly, and find the pin in the same exact torque.

In all those techniques, the most important one is to know how to evaluate the NSL higher tension band and how the pin is keeping that tension in place.

When I simply put my lever on a new pin, I know immediately, by the way the pin is reactive , if I need to make some tuning manipulations before really tuning. Even the tone of the tip engaging on the tuning pin is particular. The correctly tense pin is very reactive and tight at the same time.

Lowering (unloading") the pin is then not necessary, and the string can be directly tuned in fine adjustments mode.
(It can be by "jumps" or by "massage")

It is however sometime necessary to really unload and do the whole raise in torque from scratch, hopefully, not so often.

Impact is nice in the sense it allow the whole NSL and speaking length to move as a whole. If one is used to the slow pull tightness sensations he can recognize that soon in impacting.

But the control on pin posture is less precise in many blocks.

I like impacting for raising pitch if there is a lot of friction and I would need a lot of over pulling before the string moves. In that case I would not impact above pitch, but generally low of it and hopefully the wire have lost some friction and can be manipulated more easily then.

ON most pianos it is possible to raise and get in the ballpark of the wanted pitch, then cheat a little on pin torque or posture to get stability.

I try to work just a hair more precisely, considering the whole ensemble NSL pin and pinblock as active elements that need to produce opposite forces.

AT phase level, I believe that phase orientation can be manipulated without moving the bottom of the pin, most of the time, as we are helped by the process at work for that. Better go in definitive location immediately if possible, hence the interest of having a sort of mental map of the unison tuned.


Best regards







Edited by Olek (04/21/14 08:54 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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#2264878 - 04/21/14 09:07 AM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 665
Yes, I have seen your latest video. Thank you, it is helpful.

As I said, I have been using the impact method more so than the slow pull, over the last two years.

I will make a qualifier and say that there are pianos that I feel more comfortable using the slow pull method only, some, the impact method only, and others, the way you show in the your latest video, a combination of both.

As I have stated earlier, I tune many different makes of grands and uprights in varying conditions, and so this necessitates a flexibility with regards to hammer technique.

Best regards,
_________________________
Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2264887 - 04/21/14 09:28 AM Re: On Temperament strip muting, and other things [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 665
Originally Posted By: Mark Cerisano, RPT
Thank you Mark,

Your post to me was very kind. I really appreciated reading it.

Best Regards,


Thank you for accepting my apology and for believing me Mark.
_________________________
Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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