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#2367113 - 12/30/14 07:28 AM Amateur tuning 1920s Mehlin baby grand--Where to start?
MaineGrammy Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/26/14
Posts: 0
Loc: Maine
My husband is a skilled DIYer. Years ago he read books and did all the plumbing and wiring on our Handyman's Dream Home--the electrician who checked it out afterwards invited him to become a partner. He reads books and fixes everything in the house & does both rough construction and fine cabinetry with skill... Just to let you know I'm not crazy to let him tackle the piano my grandparents gave my mother when she was a girl.

Its Serial # is 41889. According to the Blue Book of Pianos, 1920 started with 40000; 1933 started with 43600. The case resembles a sketch on Antique Piano Shop that's a Style #21 Modified Louis XV Violagrand. Ivory keys.

It's always been kept indoors (necessary to mention as we live in Maine; it's never lived in the barn or cellar) but rarely tuned, most recently in 2011. We heat with wood, so the air's very dry all winter and there's often a lot of humidity in the summer. The case was last refinished in 1962 and sunlight blasting in the bay window hasn't helped--but it's the innards we hope to improve.

I know its living arrangements mean it will keep floating out of tune. We just want to be able to play it without cringing so much.

Can anyone recommend 1) a good book for beginners and 2) where to start? (Oh, stop laughing!)

Piano & Music Accessories
#2367182 - 12/30/14 11:32 AM Re: Amateur tuning 1920s Mehlin baby grand--Where to start? [Re: MaineGrammy]
BDB Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 23179
Loc: Oakland
Might start by reading the Frequently Asked Questions area instead of posting there.
Semipro Tech

#2368408 - 01/02/15 09:23 AM Re: Amateur tuning 1920s Mehlin baby grand--Where to start? [Re: BDB]
MaineGrammy Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/26/14
Posts: 0
Loc: Maine
Thank you. I went to FAQs and found:
[+] Why should I register?
[+] Why do you ask for two email addresses?
[+] Does my browser have to be set to accept cookies?
[+] How do I log in?
[+] Help! I'm having trouble logging in!
[+] What is the title that appears beneath my Display Name in posts?
[+] What are these titles about?
[+] I forgot my password!
[+] How do I change my password?
[+] How do I add an image to my message?
[+] Is there a limit to the size of an image I can have in my signature?
[+] What are the rules of conduct for the forum?
[+] How do I edit my display preferences

and many similar topics.

I had earlier performed several searches and did not come up with any useful information. Thus, I selected a forum I hoped might be helpful, and posted my question.

I appreciate your reply, which lets me know not to expect any helpful information on this forum. I'll take my quest elsewhere.

Best wishes to everyone for 2015.

#2368421 - 01/02/15 10:27 AM Re: Amateur tuning 1920s Mehlin baby grand--Where to start? [Re: MaineGrammy]
bellspiano Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/04
Posts: 646
Loc: Boston, MA
Good morning! I think BDB meant the FAQ for the Tuner-Technicians Forum, not the FAQ for participating in all forums.

In any event, the books which helped me most when starting were W. B. White, _Theory and Practice_, A. A. Reblitz, _Piano Servicing_, and (this came out recently) M. Igrec, _Pianos Inside Out_. Your husband might be interested in checking out the Piano Technicians Guild ( www.ptg.org ) as well, either for names of nearby techs or for the possibility of guild meetings in your area.

Piano work turned out to be much more complicated -- and much more interesting -- than I expected when I started. I hope both of you have fun with it.
Dorrie Bell
retired piano technician
Boston, MA


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