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#2269382 - 05/01/14 12:20 AM Piano Tuning DIYers
Mark Cerisano, RPT Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/24/10
Posts: 1147
Loc: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Has anybody else noticed how DIYers tend to ask questions about tuning and repair, that have nothing to do with the actual tuning or repairing of pianos?

I really don't know how to explain it. I am not trying to belittle their efforts. On the contrary. While there are many methods out there that I feel can help someone learn piano tuning relatively easily, most of the time I find the difficulty I have is convincing some people of what they should be focussing on when they appear to be looking in a direction that is not leading them closer to tuning proficiency at all.

To me, the difficulty of actually explaining a particular method or technique is relatively easy in comparison; once a student makes a commitment to learn the right way, and trusts the teacher, the learning takes place quite easily.

It's like they are working and thinking in a vacuum, and feel some pride at having discovered some relationship or observed some way the piano is behaving, and think it has some importance, when there is none at all.

How can we explain the importance of respecting the work that technicians before them have done, and the problems they have encountered and solved? By respecting, I don't mean revering, I mean looking to those problems and solutions as a way to fast track their own progress, instead of reinventing the wheel.

I would like to hear from other technicians who have observed this and how they have managed to convince students to change the focus of their efforts and get them to look outside of themselves to discover what elements of piano tuning and repair are the more important to focus on, in order to become proficient at this skill in a more efficient manner.

I'm starting to think, you can't.
_________________________
Mark Cerisano, RPT
www.howtotunepianos.com

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#2269393 - 05/01/14 12:57 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
kpembrook Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/10
Posts: 1306
Loc: Michigan
Well, my direct experience is more with DIY technical repairs and rebuilding -- although I certainly have some experience with DIY tuning, as well.

I think you have identified some definite challenges faced by some DIY people. I think there are at least two components to the phenomenon -- 1) The "you don't know what you don't know" phenomenon, and 2) the delusion that all relevant knowledge is available on the internet -- perhaps primarily YouTube.

Part of it is personality related. A substantial subset of the DIY crowd are what I call the "shade-tree mechanics" and the professional engineers. Both of these groups have a successful track record of figuring things out and, as a result, have a level of confidence in their abilities that enables them to consider the DIY approach in the first place. It kind of goes with the territory -- if they didn't have some level of confidence, they would be less likely to consider the DIY option.

The downside is that a significant subset of those folk have difficulty realizing that in the practice of a craft, not all variables are immediately obvious -- or subject to figuring out by reverse engineering. These folk have difficulty realizing that there are other significant factors that they simply haven't realized or conceived of. For example, some folk attempt to re-use centerpins -- never realizing (nor having any basis to know) that centerpins come long and pointed and are then cut off after installation.

The weakness of the "all answers are on YouTube" mentality is that there is such a range of material -- from absolute garbage to the occasional brilliant presentation, and everything in between -- and beginners to a topic simply don't have the background to evaluate the valid from the bogus and to sort out which is which.

But, you are right that there needs to be a trust level of the student for the teacher -- and a belief on the student's part that the teacher knows more than the student. I've seen this in other areas, as well. For example, my wife is a violinist and I recall one advanced student that came to her near the end of the year. Anything my wife said to correct the student's technique was met with the student glancing at her parent and failing to cooperate. Recital time came fairly soon after and after all the students play then my wife does something. That year she played a couple of movements from a Bach partita -- technically demanding stuff. After seeing that, the student no longer questioned what she was being taught.

And I experience the same thing with some of the folk that contact me for help. Some just have to experience the validity of what I'm telling them for themselves.
_________________________
Keith Akins, RPT
USA Distributor for Isaac Cadenza hammers and Profundo Bass Strings
Supporting Piano Owners D-I-Y piano tuning and repair

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#2269396 - 05/01/14 01:04 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Mark Cerisano, RPT Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/24/10
Posts: 1147
Loc: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Very good points Keith. Thanks.
_________________________
Mark Cerisano, RPT
www.howtotunepianos.com

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#2269491 - 05/01/14 08:25 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Cinnamonbear Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/09/10
Posts: 3861
Loc: Rockford, IL
Originally Posted By: Mark Cerisano, RPT
[...] and feel some pride at having discovered some relationship or observed some way the piano is behaving, and think it has some importance, when there is none at all.[...]


Switch the word "pride" with "excitement," and the shading of the picture changes to reveal that aspect of the human spirit where curiosity accrues to the level of motivation--a personal "Eureka!" moment where the excitement is so great that one runs into the street shouting for joy, exuberantly seeking others with whom to celebrate the discovery. I remember how excited I was when I "heard" my first clean unison! More recently, I was just as excited when I discovered that tuning bass was not so much about "hearing" with my ears as it was about "feeling" with my whole body.

Some who are further along will see the "discoveries" of the inexperienced for what they are and say, "Isn't that cute?," and, rather than squelching that excitement, say, "Yes! And...," joining with them to bring them farther in and farther along.

It might be worth noting that when traditionalists and iconoclasts lock horns, sometimes the result is lasting innovation. A respect for that process can sometimes help a teacher moderate the exuberance of the neophyte "know-it-all," respecting his/her creativity while relating the fundamentals.

Of course, speaking in generalities is fraught with its own set of perils, so please understand that these comments can stand to be qualified in an infinite number of ways. wink

--Andy
_________________________
I may not be fast,
but at least I'm slow.

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#2269553 - 05/01/14 10:34 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
David Jenson Online   content
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/22/06
Posts: 2072
Loc: Maine
When I get a question from a DIYer about tuning that has nothing to do with tuning, (like what time of day is best for tuning a piano?) I tell them politely that the time of day has nothing to do with tuning and leave a pregnant silence. If the conversation is left at that the whole thing dies a much needed death.
_________________________
David L. Jenson
Tuning - Repairs - Refurbishing
Jenson's Piano Service
-----

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#2269554 - 05/01/14 10:34 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
BenP Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/16/12
Posts: 166
Loc: South Jersey
Originally Posted By: Mark Cerisano, RPT
Has anybody else noticed how DIYers tend to ask questions about tuning and repair, that have nothing to do with the actual tuning or repairing of pianos?


I think what you're describing here might be a manifestation of mechanical aptitude vs. musical understanding. Both are fundamentally important to working on pianos, and especially to tuning.

Someone whose greatest strength is mechanical aptitude and is interested in pianos for that reason, is probably more likely to zero in on mechanical problems and mechanical solutions. On the other hand, someone whose greatest strength is an understanding and love of music will notice musical things, but perhaps at the expense of mechanics in some cases.

These are also, of course, gross generalizations. Most have some combination of the two aptitudes. But I think it's important to stress to anyone learning the craft that both mechanical and musical aptitude are essential, and must be balanced.

As for getting people to realize that they don't know everything and need to trust their teacher . . . well, let us know if you ever get a solution for that! grin
_________________________
Ben Patterson
Part-time Piano Tech
Rural South Jersey

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#2269568 - 05/01/14 11:02 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: David Jenson]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7239
Loc: Rochester MN
Originally Posted By: David Jenson
When I get a question from a DIYer about tuning that has nothing to do with tuning, (like what time of day is best for tuning a piano?) I tell them politely that the time of day has nothing to do with tuning and leave a pregnant silence. If the conversation is left at that the whole thing dies a much needed death.

But the time zone becomes very important. You happen to live in ET Zone. That's important information.

crazy
_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

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#2269580 - 05/01/14 11:24 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Bill Bremmer RPT Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/21/02
Posts: 3191
Loc: Madison, WI USA
There are some DYIers that come to the realization that if it is to be at all, they have to learn how to do it themselves.
_________________________
Bill Bremmer RPT
Madison WI USA
www.billbremmer.com

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#2269587 - 05/01/14 11:35 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Emmery Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/02/08
Posts: 2356
Loc: Niagara Region, On. Canada
Mark, students who progress enough to go out in the field and start doing the work will actually learn quite fast what to concentrate on in order to move ahead. They would be out of business in short time if they didn't have that flexibility. As long as they keep their ears open to feedback, the clients will partially dictate what direction to go and how far to go.

Every country, with its geographical areas, culture, and levels of class/wealth dictates its own needs in the trade, just as much as the pianos themselves do. Maxymillyan in KZ would have very different situations and expectations for what he is doing compared to a technician working in downtown L.A. or N.Y. I remember my teacher in the mid 80's pointing out sections in Reblitz'z book and saying that even though its good to know, we will rarely run into pianos in our area that will require that fix...or the fact that its not warranted, or even, few customers will pay for it.

In regards to garnering respect towards techs, from those DIYers who are heck bent on reinventing the wheel....its not worth the effort to try and change this. Learn to recognize it quickly and leave it wide birth. Some people need to make their own mistakes in order to facilitate change/progress. Some of them will not recognize advancement even when they achieve it. As Kurt Vonnegut said, "Beware the man who works hard to learn something, learns it, and finds himself no wiser than before".


Edited by Emmery (05/01/14 11:36 AM)
_________________________
Piano Technician
George Brown College /85
Niagara Region

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#2269608 - 05/01/14 12:41 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Parks Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/05/14
Posts: 432
Loc: Northern CA
Have you ever played Battleship, by Milton Bradley? Learning something from scratch is like that: one guesses, and it's the misses that teach one just as much as the hits.
_________________________
Michael

"Genius is nothing more than an extraordinary capacity for patience."
Leonardo da Vinci

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#2269618 - 05/01/14 01:08 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Parks Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/05/14
Posts: 432
Loc: Northern CA
Here is a passage from Kontrtapunkt, by none other than Heinrich Schenker, on the subject of teaching.

“Nothing is more terrifying than a teacher who knows no more than the students are to know. Whoever wants to teach others may conceal the best of his knowledge, but must never be a dabbler.” More than to any other field, this maxim of Goethe’s applies to instruction in counterpoint.
It is high time at last to gain clarity about what the theory of counterpoint ought to accomplish. First of all, the teacher has to learn to distinguish between counterpoint and free composition and to justify the prescriptions and restrictions he provides, so as to be able to explain forthrightly to the student the apparent contradictions between the theory of counterpoint and one or another voice-leading procedure in (for example) Beethoven. Once and for all, the response – as fatuous as it is barbaric – with which many a teacher dismisses his inquisitive students must finally be abandoned: “Yes, when you are a Beethoven, you too may write that way.” Doesn’t the teacher realize how poorly such an answer serves as an explanation? Doesn’t he realize that the moral slap in the face he believes himself to have dispensed to his student is on the contrary, to a far greater degree, only a slap in his own face?
But for the fact that sheer lack of talent – because it really cannot be otherwise – unfortunately must enjoy full immunity forever, the teacher would have to be reprimanded for his impudence in giving the impression that Beethoven had composed poorly! No, it is a thousandfold lie: Beethoven never composed poorly, and has no need of indulgence from a teacher who is not able to hear. Despite such egregious arrogance, however, a few mitigating circumstances may be cited in defense of the teacher. For counterpoint, from its inception to the present, has been misunderstood as hardly any other field. The misconceptions that have accompanied its evolution can even be clearly distinguished both chronologically and substantively.
_________________________
Michael

"Genius is nothing more than an extraordinary capacity for patience."
Leonardo da Vinci

Top
#2269634 - 05/01/14 01:55 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Mark Cerisano, RPT Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/24/10
Posts: 1147
Loc: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Thanks for all the responses.
_________________________
Mark Cerisano, RPT
www.howtotunepianos.com

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#2269639 - 05/01/14 02:04 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Parks Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/05/14
Posts: 432
Loc: Northern CA
There was this article about stupid questions people ask on cruises and other tours. The most memorable were:

On a cruise passing by an island, a woman asked one of the sailors, "Does the water go all the way around the island?"

And

On a bus tour through a forest they passed a sign that read 'deer crossing.' A woman asked, "How do the deer know where to cross?"
_________________________
Michael

"Genius is nothing more than an extraordinary capacity for patience."
Leonardo da Vinci

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#2269657 - 05/01/14 02:51 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Rickster Online   content


Registered: 03/25/06
Posts: 8472
Loc: Georgia, USA
Well, as a DIYer tuner, I thought my tunings were not bad; until a real concert tech tuned my piano and showed me what a concert tuning was… suddenly, my “not bad” tunings became mediocre at best. On the other hand, mediocre is better than being out of tune. smile

I think the professional tuners here on Piano World simply want to be shown some respect from the DIYers. As far as the DIYer tuners here asking stupid, irrelevant questions, don’t we all at times? smile

So, here’s a stupid question for you real tuners… what kind of pocket PC do you use for your ET tuning software programs?

Rick
_________________________
Piano enthusiast and amateur musician: "Treat others the way you would like to be treated". Yamaha C7. YouTube Channel

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#2269665 - 05/01/14 03:05 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Rickster]
Chris Leslie Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/01/11
Posts: 592
Loc: Canberra, ACT, Australia
Originally Posted By: Rickster
Well, as a DIYer tuner, I thought my tunings were not bad; until a real concert tech tuned my piano and showed me what a concert tuning was… suddenly, my “not bad” tunings became mediocre at best. On the other hand, mediocre is better than being out of tune. smile

I think the professional tuners here on Piano World simply want to be shown some respect from the DIYers. As far as the DIYer tuners here asking stupid, irrelevant questions, don’t we all at times? smile

So, here’s a stupid question for you real tuners… what kind of pocket PC do you use for your ET tuning software programs?

Rick

What a stupid question! Real tuners don't need PCs cool
_________________________
Chris Leslie
Piano technician
http://www.chrisleslie.com.au

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#2269672 - 05/01/14 03:25 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Rickster Online   content


Registered: 03/25/06
Posts: 8472
Loc: Georgia, USA
Originally Posted By: Chris Leslie
What a stupid question! Real tuners don't need PCs cool

Well, you may be right...

However, the very well known, world renowned concert tech who tuned my piano used a pocket PC with the Reyburn Cybertuner tuning software.

In any event, never mind… just chalk it up as another stupid DIYer tuner question. I'll figure it out on my own... smile

Rick
_________________________
Piano enthusiast and amateur musician: "Treat others the way you would like to be treated". Yamaha C7. YouTube Channel

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#2269681 - 05/01/14 03:50 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Gadzar Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/15/06
Posts: 1650
Loc: Mexico City
Oh Chris! I know of several real piano tuners that use electronic aids: Jim Coleman (accutuner), Bill Bremmer (accutuner), Randy Potter (accutuner), Kent Swafford (Onlypure), Cy Shuster (verituner), Ron Koval (verituner and tunelab), etc...

I use verituner in a HP pocket PC, and now there is a version for iphone/ipod.
_________________________
Rafael Melo
Piano Technician
rafaelmelo@afinacionpianos.com.mx

Serving Mexico City and suburbs.

http://www.afinacionpianos.com.mx

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#2269687 - 05/01/14 03:59 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
S. Phillips Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/15/07
Posts: 265
Loc: Forte Farm, Lexington, KY
Since I'm the one who tuned Rick's piano, I feel I can jump in here and say a couple of things. I tuned aurally for 35 years before I got the ETD. Even when I'm using an ETD I still do aural tests with every note. I look at the ETD in a completely different way than a tuner who is trying to use one without the aural training.

I think the ETD in the hands of an experienced tuner is just a tool not the defining factor. I deviate from the ETD in my opinion frequently. So why use it? I tell people it's like a GPS. It tells you which direction to go but not what to do when you get there.

Tuning stability is 90 percent of good tuning and an ETD does not teach or coach that unless you count watching your unison fade quickly as you take your hammer off the pin if you haven't achieved stability. Stability allows you to build a tuning from the temperament section into the other sections of the piano.

BUT I tell students that when they start tuning that they won't hear what they need to hear until they have been tuning for 4-5 years. You just don't have a feel or sound in your ear as a goal until you have done this a lot. That explains the situation where novice tuners think their tuning sounds fine. It may sound fine to them but I can guarantee that their work would not stand up to the pounding by concert pianists or be acceptable to recording engineers or God forbid a concert violinist.

As for the time of day, I actually prefer to tune as early in the morning as possible and I don't listen to the music or the radio on the way to the hall. Of course this has nothing to do with the actual piano but more about my starting the day with my ears being a blank slate.

Just in case you didn't see my article in Piano Buyer, here is a sample of my tuning and voicing.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qeIEvCh5di8
_________________________
Sally Phillips
Piano Technician
One can always find something to improve.
2 Steinway Os, Steinway B & C, C. Bechstein A
Phillips Piano Tech
Contributor - Acoustic and Digital Piano Buyer
New Federal and State Ivory Regulations and Pianos
http://www.pianobuyer.com/articles/ivory.html

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#2269693 - 05/01/14 04:08 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Parks]
TimR Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/04
Posts: 3187
Loc: Virginia, USA
Originally Posted By: Parks


On a bus tour through a forest they passed a sign that read 'deer crossing.' A woman asked, "How do the deer know where to cross?"


And why do they put those signs where there have been so many accidents? That's the worst place to want the deer to cross.
_________________________
gotta go practice

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#2269700 - 05/01/14 04:23 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
SMHaley Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/06/13
Posts: 549
Loc: Seattle
A marvelous comparison of the uniqueness of two instruments worked on by the same individual. Thank you Sally!
_________________________
AA Music Arts 2001, BM 2005
Pipe Organ Builder
Practitioner of piano technology
Church Music Professional
Curator of instruments - Chancel Arts
Baldwin F 1960 (146256)
Zuckermann Flemish Single

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#2269721 - 05/01/14 05:05 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7239
Loc: Rochester MN
I just byed a new piana. I droped a qaurter between them black an white things and it wont play. Ken I fix it meself? I'm gud with dogs.

(Actually, I think Chris was kidding)
_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

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#2269753 - 05/01/14 06:15 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Minnesota Marty]
Chris Leslie Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/01/11
Posts: 592
Loc: Canberra, ACT, Australia
Originally Posted By: Minnesota Marty
I just byed a new piana. I droped a qaurter between them black an white things and it wont play. Ken I fix it meself? I'm gud with dogs.

(Actually, I think Chris was kidding)

Kidding? Real tuners use PCs, but they shouldn't need them.
_________________________
Chris Leslie
Piano technician
http://www.chrisleslie.com.au

Top
#2269767 - 05/01/14 07:04 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: TimR]
Parks Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/05/14
Posts: 432
Loc: Northern CA
Originally Posted By: TimR
Originally Posted By: Parks


On a bus tour through a forest they passed a sign that read 'deer crossing.' A woman asked, "How do the deer know where to cross?"


And why do they put those signs where there have been so many accidents? That's the worst place to want the deer to cross.


As a matter of fact, why do they need signs at all? Just give them an ETD and explain to them it's just like GPS.
_________________________
Michael

"Genius is nothing more than an extraordinary capacity for patience."
Leonardo da Vinci

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#2269787 - 05/01/14 08:11 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
BenP Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/16/12
Posts: 166
Loc: South Jersey
_________________________
Ben Patterson
Part-time Piano Tech
Rural South Jersey

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#2269836 - 05/01/14 09:07 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7239
Loc: Rochester MN
What's a good tuning program to load onto a GPS?
_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

Top
#2269913 - 05/01/14 11:03 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Chris Leslie]
David Jenson Online   content
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/22/06
Posts: 2072
Loc: Maine
Originally Posted By: Chris Leslie
Originally Posted By: Minnesota Marty
I just byed a new piana. I droped a qaurter between them black an white things and it wont play. Ken I fix it meself? I'm gud with dogs.

(Actually, I think Chris was kidding)

Kidding? Real tuners use PCs, but they shouldn't need them.

I once tried to tune a piano with a PC but it chipped the key fronts something awful and they are heavy!
_________________________
David L. Jenson
Tuning - Repairs - Refurbishing
Jenson's Piano Service
-----

Top
#2269929 - 05/01/14 11:57 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Gadzar Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/15/06
Posts: 1650
Loc: Mexico City
Use the mouse, not the cpu!
_________________________
Rafael Melo
Piano Technician
rafaelmelo@afinacionpianos.com.mx

Serving Mexico City and suburbs.

http://www.afinacionpianos.com.mx

Top
#2270014 - 05/02/14 04:42 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Jim Dunleavy Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/27/05
Posts: 228
Loc: The Original Washington (UK)
I'll just say this. My own DIY tunings with Tunelab are streets ahead of the last 2 'professional tuners' (obtained from small ads in the local paper) I paid to tune it.

But it's never sounded like it used to when my friend Richard (an experienced professional tuner) used to tune it before he sadly passed away many years ago.
_________________________
Jim (amateur musician and composer..and piano tinkerer).

Restoration Project Videos

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#2270017 - 05/02/14 04:53 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: S. Phillips]
Beemer Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/26/13
Posts: 116
Loc: Scotland
Originally Posted By: S. Phillips
Since I'm the one who tuned Rick's piano, I feel I can jump in here and say a couple of things. I tuned aurally for 35 years before I got the ETD. Even when I'm using an ETD I still do aural tests with every note. I look at the ETD in a completely different way than a tuner who is trying to use one without the aural training.

I think the ETD in the hands of an experienced tuner is just a tool not the defining factor. I deviate from the ETD in my opinion frequently. So why use it? I tell people it's like a GPS. It tells you which direction to go but not what to do when you get there.

Tuning stability is 90 percent of good tuning and an ETD does not teach or coach that unless you count watching your unison fade quickly as you take your hammer off the pin if you haven't achieved stability. Stability allows you to build a tuning from the temperament section into the other sections of the piano.

BUT I tell students that when they start tuning that they won't hear what they need to hear until they have been tuning for 4-5 years. You just don't have a feel or sound in your ear as a goal until you have done this a lot. That explains the situation where novice tuners think their tuning sounds fine. It may sound fine to them but I can guarantee that their work would not stand up to the pounding by concert pianists or be acceptable to recording engineers or God forbid a concert violinist.

As for the time of day, I actually prefer to tune as early in the morning as possible and I don't listen to the music or the radio on the way to the hall. Of course this has nothing to do with the actual piano but more about my starting the day with my ears being a blank slate.

Just in case you didn't see my article in Piano Buyer, here is a sample of my tuning and voicing.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qeIEvCh5di8





Sally,

I enjoyed your two videos. Just a suggestion though it would have been better if your sound engineer had turned off the automatic gain (and reverb?) when the voice mic was live.

Perhaps off topic in this thread but as it was an item of your second video I ask you this. How is sustain changed by hammer felt conditioning? Are all the partials not sounding with equal relative volume regardless of felt condition?

Ian (newbie tuning own piano)

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#2270023 - 05/02/14 06:21 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Chris Leslie]
A443 Offline
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Originally Posted By: Chris Leslie

What a stupid question! Real tuners don't need PCs cool


Real tuners need to be able to hear. Anyone seriously think that after 2-3 hours of heavy banging for a high level tuning, that a technician is able to hear subtleties in a tuning? That is non-sense: either mentally or physically, the ears fatigue.

I use earplugs, an ETD, and bang the piano into submission until it surrenders. ONLY then--with fresh ears--do I take out my earplugs make subtle adjustments as an aural tuner until the tuning is something truly very special. Tuning for stability, without an ETD, is unhealthy and dangerous!!!
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#2270035 - 05/02/14 07:24 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: A443]
kpembrook Offline
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Originally Posted By: A443
Originally Posted By: Chris Leslie

What a stupid question! Real tuners don't need PCs cool


Real tuners need to be able to hear. Is there anyone that seriously thinks that after 2-3 hours of heavy banging for a high level tuning, a technician is able to hear subtleties in a tuning? That is non-sense: either mentally or physically, the ears fatigue.

I use earplugs, an ETD, and bang the piano into submission until it surrenders. And only then, with fresh ears, do I take out my earplugs and make subtle adjustments until the tuning is truly something very special. Tuning for stability without an ETD is unhealthy and dangerous.


Well, I dunno . . . I've tuned 18 pianos in one day (didn't do any the next). That may be excessive and I wouldn't vouch for the quality of the last one or two beyond being adequate. But, 4,5,6 per day? Doesn't wear out my ears.

In my awareness the whole "ear fatigue" concept is not well supported from a scientific/biological standpoint. Eardrums continue to vibrate in response to the surrounding air and nerves continue to fire. It makes about as much sense to me as saying your eyes wear out after a few hours.

Of course, common sense must prevail. Ear plugs are a good thing and it would be a bad idea to try tuning a piano after running a planer or being by a jet engine without hearing protection. But in my experience in the broad spectrum of "normal" ear usage, fatigue is a non-issue.
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#2270052 - 05/02/14 08:04 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Beemer]
A443 Offline
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Originally Posted By: Beemer
Are all the partials not sounding with equal relative volume regardless of felt condition?


Beemer, the softer the hammers are, the longer the hammers will stay in contact with the strings. In the melodic section, for example, the frequencies are so fast that the hammer is ALSO acting as a damper: longer contact times dampen more of the higher partials, thus changing the overall spectrum and volume output.
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#2270068 - 05/02/14 08:30 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: kpembrook]
A443 Offline
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Originally Posted By: kpembrook
It makes about as much sense to me as saying your eyes wear out after a few hours.


LOL...that happens TOO! Ever been to Tokyo?!? After a few hours of exposure to so many crazy lights, I always feel like I am moments away from dropping into a light induced seizure!

In all seriousness, exposure to sound detail and/or many new sights will cause fatigue. Whether this is mental or physiological doesn't really matter that much to me--people experience/suffer from it all the time.
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#2270070 - 05/02/14 08:33 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
A443 Offline
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...and, BTW, 18 pianos in one day is crazy; perhaps it is time for an assistant! ;-)
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#2270084 - 05/02/14 09:10 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Olek Offline
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A443, do you beat the piano because it is faster ?

I wasdoing so more or less BUT The stronger the piano is played at tuning moment the less the high range partials are present

Indeed playing firmy is interesting. But I tend to replace with more often playing that provide enough energy.

I do not experiment any lowering then.

I find it very difficult to go from a high compromis tuning (ET obtained by computation) and a more sensitive tuning. The ETD install the tuning iin straight rails not leaving much leeway up or down.
In the end I can hear it as "" too perfect" because intervals are tempered too much (all) without a preference given to a more sparkling resonance but a smooth compromize all along.

It change slightly the way you listen in the end in my opinion.

It is for the better when you come from an approximative tuning but then to get back to some humanity, I believe other means can be used.

Pianist say things as "never was tuned so good" when a good tuner with VT ETD tune their piano . But that is so much evened that it sound a little like a perfect architecture, the brillancy seem to be the same everywhere so some adperities may be welcome.

Not to say it is lifeless but the tuning scheme layed on the piano is too much perceived (opposed to ttuning with the help of yhe instrument natural consonances.).

A huge security however with concert work indeed.

But for some reason the ETD is always late of the ear and force you to slox down and listen late in the tone.

Btw you did not mention +0+ in your lidt of unison.
A few tests I made showed me that it takes less than 30 seconds of play to a perfect 000 to switch to that shape naturally. (At a lesser level than if installed purposedly, but plucked strings show that clearly as may do an ETD if you try.

Ever experiment that way ?

Regards
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#2270100 - 05/02/14 09:54 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Rickster Online   content


Registered: 03/25/06
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Well, I still don't know exactly what kind of small pocket PC to get for my tuning program... my lap top is fine, but just big and bulky.

As far as my Yamaha C7 that Sally Phillips tuned for me over a year ago, the tuning is still fantastic and holding up well, even with my oldies rock-n-roll style pounding! All I've had to do is clean up a few wayward unisons on a few notes due to some temperature/humidity drifting.

Sally really knows her stuff, and she gave me a few lessons on setting the tuning pin and doing some action regulation. After she finished tuning my piano I played a little Jerry Lee Lewis style boogie-woogie and she said she has tuned for Jerry Lee Lewis before... as well as Jimmy Swaggart and Stevie Wonder and other big-name artist and music celebrities. I told Sally she made me feel like a celebrity! smile

My hat is off to you pros (particularly Sally Phillips) who really know what you are doing!

Now, what was that about a stupid DIYer question? smile

Rick
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#2270105 - 05/02/14 10:06 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Rickster]
BenP Offline
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Originally Posted By: Rickster
Well, I still don't know exactly what kind of small pocket PC to get for my tuning program... my lap top is fine, but just big and bulky.


I don't know what tuning program you're using, but I use Tunelab on a 10" Android tablet. Works great, and the tablet has 8-10 hours of battery life. You could use a smaller tablet too, which are pretty cheap these days. It doesn't need to be anything fancy, particularly if you're only using it for the tuning program.
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#2270106 - 05/02/14 10:06 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: S. Phillips]
Olek Offline
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Originally Posted By: S. Phillips
Since I'm the one who tuned Rick's piano, I feel I can jump in here and say a couple of things. I tuned aurally for 35 years before I got the ETD. Even when I'm using an ETD I still do aural tests with every note. I look at the ETD in a completely different way than a tuner who is trying to use one without the aural training.

I think the ETD in the hands of an experienced tuner is just a tool not the defining factor. I deviate from the ETD in my opinion frequently. So why use it? I tell people it's like a GPS. It tells you which direction to go but not what to do when you get there.

Tuning stability is 90 percent of good tuning and an ETD does not teach or coach that unless you count watching your unison fade quickly as you take your hammer off the pin if you haven't achieved stability. Stability allows you to build a tuning from the temperament section into the other sections of the piano.

BUT I tell students that when they start tuning that they won't hear what they need to hear until they have been tuning for 4-5 years. You just don't have a feel or sound in your ear as a goal until you have done this a lot. That explains the situation where novice tuners think their tuning sounds fine. It may sound fine to them but I can guarantee that their work would not stand up to the pounding by concert pianists or be acceptable to recording engineers or God forbid a concert violinist.

As for the time of day, I actually prefer to tune as early in the morning as possible and I don't listen to the music or the radio on the way to the hall. Of course this has nothing to do with the actual piano but more about my starting the day with my ears being a blank slate.

Just in case you didn't see my article in Piano Buyer, here is a sample of my tuning and voicing.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qeIEvCh5di8





Very good post, thanks for the link

I have to listen on better equipment , but the tonal difference between the 2 different pianos is very well perceived.

The NY model is brassy and immediately powerful as all impregnated hammers.Not sure the attack can be managed as much as with more "standard hammers" but I like the output, certainly not for any kind of music.

Dont you feel that using an ETD while making the usual aural tests (is less easy if the ETD recognize notes) is like walking on a tight rope but with a barrier left and right,perfectly secure.
But is not it making your tuning more neutral ?

Regards
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#2270116 - 05/02/14 10:21 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Johnkie Online   content
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Banging a piano into submission in the cause of stability is typical of an inexperienced tuner in my opinion. There is absolutely no need for this brutality if one is able to set a wrestpin, and much kinder to the poor customer that has to listen while the tuning is being done.
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#2270127 - 05/02/14 10:53 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Johnkie]
A443 Offline
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Originally Posted By: Johnkie
Banging a piano into submission in the cause of stability is typical of an inexperienced tuner in my opinion. There is absolutely no need for this brutality if one is able to set a wrest pin [...].


I couldn't disagree with you more!

For starters: what inexperienced technician naturally bangs on a piano like that?!? LOL...that was a ridiculous statement: no inexperienced technicians do that naturally! Every student I have ever worked with has had to be taught when and how much to bang to ensure stability--if you don't bang, and the pianist does, well...then, you are probably used to unisons slipping in a concert. At the very least, banging is insurance!

Besides, there are two issues at work: 1) setting the tuning pin, and 2) rendering the string segments to ensure they are equalised, and thus, remain stable with playing (i.e., playing the piano should not make it go out of tune; it often does, because the inexperienced technician doesn't take the time to render the string segments). But this all also depends on the design of the piano, and how much the tuning has moved, etc. However, once the tuning is there, and nothing renders down/up anymore, then there is no further reason to bang. Everything is relative...
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#2270146 - 05/02/14 11:39 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Olek Offline
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I use to bang but really much more than necessary, if I want to lower a string while making an extended temperament on center string, and my pin is set and well "loaded".

Even in that case, often I cannot have the string lowering even 0.2 ct, it just does not move, because of the strong springy balance at the pin.

What kind of tuning pin motion /stabilization technique do you use ?
I agree totally that if I would tune for an strong pianist, I would check my tuning with firm blows , just as an insurance.
But really nothing is supposed to move, because the tuning pin stress actually absorb the whip effect coming from the string, the pin bow a little and pull back everything in place.

when the tip is inserted on the pin, I am under the impression I cannot turn it any way up or down, and that the pin is very firm, not supple bu firm as some bend steel piece, that contains energy.

Whenever something have to move it comes from segments of wire after the bridge. I hope my numerous light blows when tuning give me control on that too (but anyway I thing=k we cannot really manage that, a part of the tension goes back the bridge, but the rest may tilt it a little, if the piano is raised much.

Allowing the piano to spread a lot of energy (sustain pedal) may assure that the string will not move more.

All the upper parts of wire and pin are under absolute control by the tuning lever.
I think that ETD are more or less lowering the amount of sensations you have, as you need to focus on visual plus the rest.I generally focus only on perceptions, and leave the ear at work in automatic mode (mostly focusing on amounts of consonances). That is very quiet in the end.
Ifind advantages in earplugs with pianos that have a short tone, to be played strong enough so the moment where the tone behaviour change in FFF playing is attained and tuned.

I do not find it necessary on good pianos.

Regards

BTW the listening mode that recognize the energy spread in octaves, (for instance) allows to tune the ideal octaves from A3 to A7 without entering in beat comparison mode. Straight octaves can be so precise then (when checks are done, they are right most often, so I almost stopped using them. But the octaves are really worked as unison then with all the listening to phase effects, to the power amount, the "straightness and firmness of the final result.
Changing the power of the played octave allow to build a more or less "energetic " octave then, (an octave can even saturate to itself too easily if too straight)




Edited by Olek (05/02/14 12:36 PM)
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#2270151 - 05/02/14 11:47 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Mark Cerisano, RPT Online   content
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Good topic for another thread: Good understanding of stability + soft blows = no ear plugs, fresh ears always, faster tunings, good stability, and no finger, hand, wrist, arm, shoulder, neck, ear pain.

This is how I tune. Six tunings a day does not tire me out, I could and have done more. No hearing loss in 15 years of full time tuning.

I use test blows on one or two notes to check my hammer technique, IF the piano is giving me trouble. Most of the time I don't use test blows. I passed the RPT exam without any test blows. It can be done. The secret is understanding friction and elastic deformation in the tuning pin / non speaking length system, as Isaac alluded to.


Edited by Mark Cerisano, RPT (05/02/14 11:50 AM)
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#2270152 - 05/02/14 11:50 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
A443 Offline
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Hi olek, I didn't put (+,0,+) because I hadn't ever considered that option! But, you are right: that is absolutely another option--especially when one considers the left string and the right pedal.

Re: ETDs and sounding too perfect/lifeless
Yes...I know exactly what you are talking about. If I'm really going all out, and want more resonance (ie humanity), I tend to readjust the octaves (and 12th) and decide on the unisons to even out the temperament. From there, I reset the Verituner for each note so that the other technicians that I work with (ie the ones that typically do all the heavy banging and rendering before I start my work) can do the same thing every-time. As you know, most concert technicians don't care about these details...it probably deserves a separate thread if you want to talk more. Or, maybe I'll fly through CDG next time so we can just chat in person. :-D
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#2270159 - 05/02/14 12:09 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: A443]
Olek Offline
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Originally Posted By: A443
Hi olek, I didn't put (+,0,+) because I hadn't ever considered that option! But, you are right: that is absolutely another option--especially when one considers the left string and the right pedal.

Re: ETDs and sounding too perfect/lifeless
Yes...I know exactly what you are talking about. If I'm really going all out, and want more resonance (ie humanity), I tend to readjust the octaves (and 12th) and decide on the unisons to even out the temperament. From there, I reset the Verituner for each note so that the other technicians that I work with (ie the ones that typically do all the heavy banging and rendering before I start my work) can do the same thing every-time. As you know, most concert technicians don't care about these details...it probably deserves a separate thread if you want to talk more. Or, maybe I'll fly through CDG next time so we can just chat in person. :-D


Thank you and thank you for the offer, ! absolutely (or I'll fly to Vienna !)

DO you have the time for some plucking tests with the ETD, muting other strings or no (unmuted strings change the pitch of the one plucked)?

From 000, I noticed that if the note is played for sometime less than 30 seconds, it automatically stabilize in that +0+ shape (could be -0- probably but it does not seem to happen naturally.

That sound logical to me that the strings HAVE to find their better balance and equilibrium and that it the external ones are well in phase the center one just will make a small step apart so anyone is happy sooner.

Now most strip 'muters' install that without thinking of it if they work the unison in 2 parts. If the unison is tuned 3 strings , now other options appears.

BTW I was surprised by the amount of possibilities with the basic -0+ that may tend to 00+ or the opposite, but yet while in the exercise of doing -0+ the management of the attack and after sound ratio is larger than I though, and the sound "bowl" (that deformed bowl that follows the initial decay , can be made more or less sparkling (contains more or less active partials)

A very interesting way to shape the tone, but it is a bit dangerous as we focus on such fine lietening mode that it can make us loose contact with the global tone once hear a little farther (particularly the "eraser effect "part of the -0+ I find dangerous. A dull unison can be obtained that way as well.

Regards




Edited by Olek (05/02/14 12:27 PM)
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#2270167 - 05/02/14 12:24 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: A443]
Olek Offline
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Originally Posted By: A443
If I'm really going all out, and want more resonance (ie humanity), I tend to readjust the octaves (and 12th) and decide on the unison to even out the temperament. :-D


Yep, the strongest resonance provided by the instrument is located there (more between 12-15 in my ear, than 8-12.

I appreciate that you understand what I mean, I herad some very well tuned instruments where the tuning system used was too present and perceived (by a tuner). Then the piano is really "forced in playing in tune" by that (acoustical or logical) construction, but its basis is very present. This is the case with tunings that push the compromising in slow beating intervals sometime. Or even with much enlarged tunings based on "pure 5 ths" (or pure something, for what is worth)

This is also the case with the "perfect ET tuning" we can produce today. That is absolutely neutral and so much balanced, the personality of the piano have to be strong.

Now all may depend of the instrument, some will not accept much "grease" from low beating intervals to be apparent, and they will sound nasal then.

Also the strength of the consonance is near the ET if the piano iH allows for that.if caught in the iH the tone can be much present and rich, but justness too much "expanded" to be easily used by singers for instance.

I guess our brains are much used to ET, and then if a certain consonance is used the intonation/justness is easy for others.
But a certain tension effect begins to be apparent harmonically and melodically speaking.
SO yes each new note tuned is a compromise, and add the tuner's ear natural flaws as a part of the final result. (I believe that with age tuners tend to have a more brilliant/clear tone as they want to hear the partials more, and they also reduce the size of octave as they are bored with the "artificial stretch" (something that begin in the "temperament octave" often).
Those 2 options together may well balance themselves so the end result is also good.


Edited by Olek (05/02/14 12:48 PM)
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#2270179 - 05/02/14 12:38 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Rickster Online   content


Registered: 03/25/06
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Loc: Georgia, USA
Originally Posted By: olek
SO yes each new note tuned is a compromise, and add the tuner's ear natural flaws as a part of the final result. (I believe that with age tuners tend to have a more brilliant/clear tone as they want to hear the partials more, and they also reduce the size of octave as they are bored with the "artificial stretch" (something that begin in the "temperament octave" often).
Those 2 options together may well balance themselves so the end result is also good.

This reminded me of something Sally Phillips told me... I commented on how good the octaves sounded on my piano when she tuned it; really clean and pure from top to bottom.

She said she did not add a lot of stretch to the octaves because they don't need it, especially with classical music.

She gave me a really good example to follow... I doubt I will ever achieve a tuning as good, but a worthy goal to have anyway. smile

Rick
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#2270191 - 05/02/14 12:58 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Johnkie]
David Jenson Online   content
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Originally Posted By: Johnkie
Banging a piano into submission in the cause of stability is typical of an inexperienced tuner in my opinion. There is absolutely no need for this brutality if one is able to set a wrestpin, and much kinder to the poor customer that has to listen while the tuning is being done.

+1
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#2270216 - 05/02/14 02:07 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Olek Offline
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That said, tuning very long pianos with heavy strings implies a certain amount of power input, as long as the job cannot be done "at he pin".
then it is different, and less input necessary IMO.

I noticed German tuners like to tune "firm"
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#2270217 - 05/02/14 02:11 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
A443 Offline
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Olek, of course I have time, especially when it comes to piano experiments and advancing the cause! I'm headed to German-land for concerts this weekend, but when I get back I'll think through more about what you've been suggesting with the unisons and try it out!

And yes, I balance out the 8/12/15...I think we probably do something similar...maybe...

It is so nice to chat with someone that is constantly thinking about how to improve things!!!
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#2270259 - 05/02/14 04:07 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: A443]
SMHaley Offline
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Registered: 05/06/13
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Loc: Seattle
Originally Posted By: A443
Originally Posted By: Chris Leslie

What a stupid question! Real tuners don't need PCs cool


Real tuners need to be able to hear. Anyone seriously think that after 2-3 hours of heavy banging for a high level tuning, that a technician is able to hear subtleties in a tuning? That is non-sense: either mentally or physically, the ears fatigue.

I use earplugs, an ETD, and bang the piano into submission until it surrenders. ONLY then--with fresh ears--do I take out my earplugs make subtle adjustments as an aural tuner until the tuning is something truly very special. Tuning for stability, without an ETD, is unhealthy and dangerous!!!


So how does one make ET (I'm presuming) "something truly very special?" Especially if one has spent so much time with the machine and earplugs "banging it in to submission." I believe if one doesn't start at the beginning by listening to the subtleties, they probably aren't going to gain much in the end. Of course I refer to this more in the sense of concert tuning than taking a tall vertical pile of mediocrity and doing a pitch raise and fine tuning. I also believe if one can't tune for stability without a machine the likelihood of doings so with diminishes (IMO).
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#2270264 - 05/02/14 04:14 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: A443]
SMHaley Offline
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Registered: 05/06/13
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Originally Posted By: A443
Originally Posted By: Johnkie
Banging a piano into submission in the cause of stability is typical of an inexperienced tuner in my opinion. There is absolutely no need for this brutality if one is able to set a wrest pin [...].


I couldn't disagree with you more!

For starters: what inexperienced technician naturally bangs on a piano like that?!? LOL...that was a ridiculous statement: no inexperienced technicians do that naturally! Every student I have ever worked with has had to be taught when and how much to bang to ensure stability--if you don't bang, and the pianist does, well...then, you are probably used to unisons slipping in a concert. At the very least, banging is insurance!

Besides, there are two issues at work: 1) setting the tuning pin, and 2) rendering the string segments to ensure they are equalised, and thus, remain stable with playing (i.e., playing the piano should not make it go out of tune; it often does, because the inexperienced technician doesn't take the time to render the string segments). But this all also depends on the design of the piano, and how much the tuning has moved, etc. However, once the tuning is there, and nothing renders down/up anymore, then there is no further reason to bang. Everything is relative...


It doesn't take much time even on the youtube to see amateurs banging the snot out of a note while wildly turning their cheap tuning hammer with the false assumption that you bang it in to stability. Certainly the ideal situation each time would be to sit at a quality instrument that doesn't move much and just finesse it to perfection for an hour or so. But for most, that isn't much of a reality, even with concert instruments.
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Baldwin F 1960 (146256)
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#2270317 - 05/02/14 05:55 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7434
Loc: France
Instruments tuned by the best tuners are settled in their tuning and donot ask so much work, "ideally".

Then instruments in homes , tuned yearly or 6 months, may need also relatively simple tuning if the job was done well precedent.

That mean you can directly tune in fine mode, most often , even a portion of the piano needs "rebuilding".

No surprise, the tone is a little wild, but many notes do not ask for the pin to be really moved, direct shimming does it.

PS, what I call shimming usually is moving the string an the tuning pin together without modifying the pin's implantation .

Then there is also the action of re installing the tension of the NSL that have raised because it passed in the speaking length.

And all the manipulations to balance(even out as many say) the NSL with the pin on one side, the speaking length on the other.

even medium grade instruments can be find in stability condition, but there is a series of tuning that installs that condition ideally when the piano is recent, but can be done later even with old strings.

One need to "lock the pin with the wire" to get there. I see no other way.

Not to be done on harpsichords or FortePianas, that need much more frequent tunings, as the dismounting of the pin "setting" is not something I feel the instruments like much (and is more work for the tuner) . SO harpsichords are not really "set" and fortePianas more lightly than what can be done.


Regards

I do not worry much about the poor videos of DIY, it is normal they do not have good samples to work from, the training is taking time for the trainee but for the instructor too, so it is not free, out of asking your tuner to show you how to correct an unison, so you can touch with a finger how difficult it is and correct a few ones if necessary , make them discrete anyway. I showed a few customers, none of them can do fine tuning. they can make unison less bad usually.



Edited by Olek (05/02/14 06:41 PM)
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#2270351 - 05/02/14 07:45 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: SMHaley]
David Jenson Online   content
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/22/06
Posts: 2072
Loc: Maine
Originally Posted By: SMHaley
... a tall vertical pile of mediocrity ...

Best description of many upright pianos that I've ever heard!
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Tuning - Repairs - Refurbishing
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#2270537 - 05/03/14 12:28 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: David Jenson]
SMHaley Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/06/13
Posts: 549
Loc: Seattle
Originally Posted By: David Jenson
Originally Posted By: SMHaley
... a tall vertical pile of mediocrity ...

Best description of many upright pianos that I've ever heard!


thumb
_________________________
AA Music Arts 2001, BM 2005
Pipe Organ Builder
Practitioner of piano technology
Church Music Professional
Curator of instruments - Chancel Arts
Baldwin F 1960 (146256)
Zuckermann Flemish Single

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#2270546 - 05/03/14 12:55 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7434
Loc: France
that is sad that you have so much short or bad sounding pianos.

I tend not to give up in front of some small pianos, and when they are voiced and tuned, at last some musicality can be expressed.

I use a CHAS style tuning anytime I need to tune a poorly sounding piano, but if it is just because of age, I voice a little before tuning so I have something to work with.

the amount of musicality a tuner can obtain from a short mediocre piano (Cheap Chinese for instance) is really surprising, not that I like them but it happened as a challenge, and make me think of how important our work is for the pianist .
_________________________
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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#2270573 - 05/03/14 02:09 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Mark Cerisano, RPT]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7239
Loc: Rochester MN
Are short mediocre pianos better than tall mediocre pianos?
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Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

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#2272106 - 05/06/14 11:10 PM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Minnesota Marty]
David Jenson Online   content
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/22/06
Posts: 2072
Loc: Maine
Originally Posted By: Minnesota Marty
Are short mediocre pianos better than tall mediocre pianos?

Short pianos 'got no reason to live ... smile
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David L. Jenson
Tuning - Repairs - Refurbishing
Jenson's Piano Service
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#2272126 - 05/07/14 12:07 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: Minnesota Marty]
SMHaley Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/06/13
Posts: 549
Loc: Seattle
Originally Posted By: Minnesota Marty
Are short mediocre pianos better than tall mediocre pianos?


I think where pianos are concerned mediocrity is more an existential state of being not directly related to stature.
_________________________
AA Music Arts 2001, BM 2005
Pipe Organ Builder
Practitioner of piano technology
Church Music Professional
Curator of instruments - Chancel Arts
Baldwin F 1960 (146256)
Zuckermann Flemish Single

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#2272132 - 05/07/14 12:18 AM Re: Piano Tuning DIYers [Re: David Jenson]
Mark Cerisano, RPT Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/24/10
Posts: 1147
Loc: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Originally Posted By: David Jenson
Originally Posted By: Minnesota Marty
Are short mediocre pianos better than tall mediocre pianos?

Short pianos 'got no reason to live ... smile


They got little strings
Little keys
Little hammers
Eaten by itty bitty fleas
They're too short to tune
And your back is bound to ache
And they got no room for
your hammer at the break

Short pianos 'got no reason
Short pianos 'got no reason
Short pianos 'got no reason to live
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www.howtotunepianos.com

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