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#606204 - 02/24/08 01:32 PM Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
ilikechopin Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/28/07
Posts: 18
Hi, the piano has two years old, and after first sanding on middle and middle-high section, I have the piano wich sound like an harp, and with no attack, the strike point position it's correct, and the hammers seem however hard !
Before of sanding the sound of this piano it's bright and with a lot of attack !
someone can help me to resolve this problem ?

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#606205 - 02/24/08 01:41 PM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
Ron Alexander Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/17/03
Posts: 1292
Loc: North Carolina
Are you a piano technician?
_________________________
-----------------
Ron Alexander
Piano Tuner-Technician

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#606206 - 02/24/08 02:49 PM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
ilikechopin Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/28/07
Posts: 18
No, but I have experience, I had tune and regulate many grand piano without problem, this is my first hammer sanding ! ( but the piano it's mine )
Can you help me ?

p.s. I know that tuning a piano it's an art, and require many years of experience, but for me it's only an hobby, and a passion.

Thanks for help, and sorry for my bad Engish but I don't speak it !

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#606207 - 02/24/08 03:23 PM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
tds Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/30/06
Posts: 446
Loc: Bastrop, Texas
 Quote:
Originally posted by ilikechopin:
No, but I have experience, I had tune and regulate many grand piano without problem, this is my first hammer sanding ! ( but the piano it's mine )
Can you help me ?

p.s. I know that tuning a piano it's an art, and require many years of experience, but for me it's only an hobby, and a passion.

Thanks for help, and sorry for my bad Engish but I don't speak it ! [/b]
Your English is apparently much better than your hammer filing. ;\)

You're right that tuning requires many years of hard work. Proper voicing of hammers takes even longer. Some of us who have been in the business for 25+ years still struggle with voicing. It's easy to make a good set of hammers sound worse. It's much harder to make a worn set of hammers sound better.

You may have to call in someone who isn't a hobbyist and who knows how to file hammers and voice a grand piano. If you're lucky, you may not have caused any permanent damage. But if you've worked on your own instrument and have caused damage, I wouldn't count on Yamaha providing any warranty service for your piano.

Just some friendly advice - you might want to re-think the wisdom of working on a piano which is under warranty, especially since you don't appear to be very experienced in voicing.

After all, there is a big difference between having 20 years experience and having one year's experience repeated 19 times.
_________________________
Stay tuned.

Tom Seay, Recovering Piano Technician
Bastrop, Texas

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#606208 - 02/24/08 04:15 PM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
ilikechopin Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/28/07
Posts: 18
Ok Tom, only a question, it's possible wich this sound depend of a flat or incorrect strike point ?
However I don't voice the hammer, only sanding !
Thanks again !

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#606209 - 02/24/08 06:02 PM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
tds Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/30/06
Posts: 446
Loc: Bastrop, Texas
It's impossible to tell without actually seeing and hearing the piano. That's why you really need to hire a technician who is experienced in voicing to diagnose what's going on.

Good luck.
_________________________
Stay tuned.

Tom Seay, Recovering Piano Technician
Bastrop, Texas

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#606210 - 02/24/08 09:40 PM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
Keith Roberts Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/04/04
Posts: 1984
Loc: Murphys, Ca
Yamahas don't usually need sanding. Sanding or shaping as I prefer to call it only exposes the under layers of felt which are harder than the original top. Needling should have been done first. Rarely do you have to remove string grooves in a Yamaha.

Sanding is voicing. Anything you do to a hammer that changes its tone is voicing. Unfortunatly you did the wrong thing.
_________________________
Keith Roberts
Associate, PTG
Keith's Piano Service
Hathaway Pines,Ca

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#606211 - 03/01/08 02:05 AM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
Bruckner Fan Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/12/07
Posts: 30
Loc: Canada
Hi ilikechopin,

Can you post some pictures of the hammers, taken from the side, top, and ends, to help us see if the sanding work was accurate or poor?

I am guessing that the sanding work has caused very uneven hammer to string mating.
_________________________
Registered Piano Technician with the Piano Technicians Guild

In Canada it's not "A-440",
It's "440, Eh?"

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#606212 - 03/01/08 02:07 AM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
Bruckner Fan Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/12/07
Posts: 30
Loc: Canada
Hi again,

Has the action been correctly repositioned in the piano?

Why did you sand the hammers after 2 years?

-Matt
_________________________
Registered Piano Technician with the Piano Technicians Guild

In Canada it's not "A-440",
It's "440, Eh?"

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#606213 - 03/01/08 04:26 PM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
ilikechopin Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/28/07
Posts: 18
as soon as possible I post a picture of hammer, however the action it's correctly in the piano, and the hammer it's perfect on the three string !

I sanding the hammer after 2 years for lighting the action, now I have a Downweight of 55 - 50g and upweight of about 25 - 20 g now the action it's perfect for me, and work wonderful, a very very good repetition and the touch it's perfect.

However I suppose that the problem it's only the strike point too soft because at medium and ff blow the sound it's good ( however with attack too soft) and in p and pp blow the sound it's too soft and with no attack !

Thanks to all for help, and sorry for my bad english !

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#606214 - 03/01/08 08:31 PM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
ilikechopin Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/28/07
Posts: 18
Ok, This is a photo of one hammer !



Thanks again !

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#606215 - 03/01/08 10:11 PM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
Rickster Online   content


Registered: 03/25/06
Posts: 8493
Loc: Georgia, USA
Hi ilikechopin,

Your hammer filing job looks pretty decent to me; of course I’m not a trained and experienced tech; I'm just a piano tech student.

Quite frankly, as others have mentioned in your thread, I think your filing job is sufficient but you need to align the hammers to the strings, AKA (also known as) check for open strings, AKA mating the hammers to the strings.

I filed the hammers on my grand piano and it improved the tone to an extent; however, some of the notes still sounded harsh. Upon further inspection, I found about 15 or 20 notes that needed mating/aligning. I adjusted the hammer filing on those notes and it made a vast improvement.

Since your grand piano is so nice and new, why don’t you just hire a competent piano tech to help you solve the problem? Also, you could get him/her to show you the proper way to mate the hammer to the strings. You’d be getting your piano voicing back to par and get a lesson on hammer voicing all at the same time.

Hope this helps.

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

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#606216 - 03/01/08 10:40 PM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
asd123321 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/26/05
Posts: 689
Maybe in a little while, the hammer surface will harden up

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#606217 - 03/02/08 12:18 AM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
Bruckner Fan Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/12/07
Posts: 30
Loc: Canada
Yes, what Rickster says, your filing job seems pretty good, from what we can see in the picture, now its time to check for open strings - is the hammer hitting each of the three strings at EXACTLY the same time?

If I understand you correctly, did you mean that you filed/sanded the hammers to make them lighter? How much felt did you remove? Did you raise the hammer line at all after sanding?

Sometimes, after sanding, the fluff on the hammers gives a duller tone, till it compacts down or wears off, then the tone colour of the new felt layer you sanded to comes through.
_________________________
Registered Piano Technician with the Piano Technicians Guild

In Canada it's not "A-440",
It's "440, Eh?"

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#606218 - 03/02/08 06:09 AM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
ilikechopin Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/28/07
Posts: 18
Hi to all, today it's a nice day !
I have recheked with more patience for the open string, and surprise !!
(it's seem the problem it's very very stupid) the 1st or the 3rd string is open \:\)
As soon as possible I will try to correct this and post the result.
Thanks to all for help me !

However yes, I filed the hammers to make them lighter ! I don't have remove a lot of felt ... and yes, I have raise the hammer line !

I don't call the tech, because in my area, all the techs are a piano killer, I prefer to resolve the problem by myself.

Thanks again !

As soon I resolve for this problem, I can post also an mp3.

P.s Can you suggest a way to allign the hammer to all three string ?

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#606219 - 03/02/08 09:22 AM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
Rickster Online   content


Registered: 03/25/06
Posts: 8493
Loc: Georgia, USA
Hi ilikechopin,

This may be the blind leading the blind here( \:D ), but this is what I would do if I were you; go back and document the exact notes that need mating/aligning to the strings to get a perfectly parallel hammer-string blow. You can use a pencil to draw a line on the hammer face where the strings are touching the hammers so you know that is where you need to remove additional felt. Also, while you are at it, make sure the hammers are perpendicular (centered) to the strings as well. You do this by loosening the hammer flange screw and shifting the hammer assembly to the right or left and then retightening the screw.

Next, after you have mated the hammers to the strings, you need to regulate your hammer to string blow distance; if you raised the string line, you need to raise the hammers to compensate. If I am not mistaken, the hammer blow distance should be about 1 & 3/4 inches (not sure how that converts to CM’s). You do this by turning the capstans on the back ends of the keys.

If you don’t trust the piano tech’s in your area, then you will need do some research and reading and be willing to take risk if you do it yourself. Best-case scenario, if you get it right you’ve improved your piano and learned something in the process; worse case scenario, if you screw something up you can call a qualified tech to fix it. If you don’t trust the tech’s in your area, then you’re on your own \:D .

Best of luck,

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

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#606220 - 03/02/08 10:58 AM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
Keith Roberts Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/04/04
Posts: 1984
Loc: Murphys, Ca
Yea, that looks like a Yamaha hammer that was already bright and is now down to the harder layers of felt. I don't like your shaping job. It is like the large end of the egg. It should be like the small end. The ENTIRE hammer needs to be shaped. If you just round off the end to remove the string grooves you have a much flatter surface striking the strings. Now you have a hard and flat surface. Not good for tonal quality. Very rarely do you want to file Yamaha hammers if they are bright. Steam, alcohol or needles.

Mating the hammer to the strings will cleanup the sound of the unison but not change the essential tonal qualities of the note. (i.e. the partial structure).

Yamaha puts a nice hammer on their CF series that is very similar in density to a cold pressed Ronson wurzen felt hammer. What you are experiencing is factory blahs and need to replace the hammers. Don't think of it as a factory flub though, think of it as taking that new Corvette in and having it made into a real race ready car with a new computer chip, better tires and shocks, maybe a stabilizer bar. Just like your piano, the original stuff is one dimensional. With the new stuff it glides effortlesly when going slow but comes on with ferocity and power when wanted, yet under control.

Yamhas are one of the nicest sounding pianos with a set of Ronson hammers. Yamaha could do this to their cheaper lines but then the upper end wouldn't sell.
_________________________
Keith Roberts
Associate, PTG
Keith's Piano Service
Hathaway Pines,Ca

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#606221 - 03/02/08 09:37 PM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
ilikechopin Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/28/07
Posts: 18
Thanks for reply !

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#606222 - 03/02/08 10:03 PM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
BDB Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21450
Loc: Oakland
The way you align the hammers to the strings is to use a hook to pull the hammer shank gently up to the string, and then pluck each of the strings. Strings which are muted are high, and need to be sanded a bit more. You can write down which side is high on a piece of paper for several notes, so you are not pulling the action so much. When the hammer is mated, all three strings will be muted equally. Use a finer grit sandpaper, and there will be less fuzz to muddy the sound.

Just relax, take your time and do it right, and the piano should be fine. As you do it, note the sound of each note, to get an idea of what improperly mated strings sound like. It is part of the learning experience.
_________________________
Semipro Tech

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#606223 - 03/02/08 10:52 PM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
Keith Roberts Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/04/04
Posts: 1984
Loc: Murphys, Ca
Sorry, in review I don't see that you have a Yamaha. In fact you haven't even told us what piano, which really makes anything we say wrong. I must have crossed up my posts.

Come on guys point this stuff out to me. What are those hammers on? No underfelt at note #36 so probably is Asian?
_________________________
Keith Roberts
Associate, PTG
Keith's Piano Service
Hathaway Pines,Ca

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#606224 - 03/02/08 10:54 PM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
Keith Roberts Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/04/04
Posts: 1984
Loc: Murphys, Ca
Oh, in the title..... \:o I just woke up from a Sunday nap......
_________________________
Keith Roberts
Associate, PTG
Keith's Piano Service
Hathaway Pines,Ca

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#606225 - 03/03/08 03:49 PM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
ilikechopin Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/28/07
Posts: 18
Sorry for confusion, The piano it's a yamaha baby grand (gc1) made in Japan but probably the hammer and other parts probably are asian!
The hammer don't have underfelt and I don't like it.
However as soon as I have time I realign the hammers to the strings and post the result !

P.s. Partial Structure of sound it's Ok, the insufficent attack and a little soft sound at pp and p it's due to hammers wich don't fit the three string !

Thanks again !

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#606226 - 03/04/08 12:25 AM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
Supply Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/11/06
Posts: 3919
Loc: Vancouver Island, BC, Canada
 Quote:
Originally posted by ilikechopin:
Sorry for confusion, The piano it's a yamaha baby grand (gc1) made in Japan but probably the hammer and other parts probably are asian!
The hammer don't have underfelt and I don't like it.....
I can't help but loving this kind of stuff... The piano is made in Japan but the parts are probably Asian! Who wooda thunk?

As for hammers with or without underfelt, just a gentle reminder that some of the finest pianos in the world didn't have underfelt on their hammers. It is not a case of underfelt = good, no underfelt = bad.
Extra, extra - read all about it (in the Archives!)
_________________________
Jurgen Goering
Piano Forte Supply
www.pianofortesupply.com

Piattino Caster Cups distributor

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#606227 - 03/04/08 09:40 AM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
UprightTooner Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/21/07
Posts: 839
Loc: North-East US
I think this Topic was intended for entertainment...
_________________________
Part-time tuner

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#606228 - 03/04/08 10:04 AM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
Gadzar Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/15/06
Posts: 1719
Loc: Mexico City
I have never filed a set of hammers in a playable piano. I've only shaped used hammers for practice.

But I am curious: is it realy done like this? I mean, filing hammers to make the action lighter?

I've read about leading keys, adjusting spring tensions,or magnetic fileds in Petrofs, but never about filing hammers.

I thought hammers have to be filed or shaped only when the striking point becomes a striking flat surface.

I believed the weight of the hammer has much to do with tone and power of the sound and not with the lightness of the action.
_________________________
Rafael Melo
Piano Technician
rafaelmelo@afinacionpianos.com.mx

Serving Mexico City and suburbs.

http://www.afinacionpianos.com.mx

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#606229 - 03/04/08 10:22 AM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
Keith Roberts Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/04/04
Posts: 1984
Loc: Murphys, Ca
In reality, the amount of felt removed will only be about .3 gram to .1. that lightens the DW by 1 gram or less. If the bass hammers are overly large you might get a little more.

Hey, Upright, where do you think the entertainment industry gets their material???? Besides our government? Nothing is stranger than real life.
_________________________
Keith Roberts
Associate, PTG
Keith's Piano Service
Hathaway Pines,Ca

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#606230 - 03/04/08 11:37 AM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
Gadzar Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/15/06
Posts: 1719
Loc: Mexico City
Keith, how do you usually adjust the weight of the action on a grand?
_________________________
Rafael Melo
Piano Technician
rafaelmelo@afinacionpianos.com.mx

Serving Mexico City and suburbs.

http://www.afinacionpianos.com.mx

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#606231 - 03/04/08 01:25 PM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
ilikechopin Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/28/07
Posts: 18
Ok, thanks for help but, stop here...
Bye ! I resolve this problem by myself, ok ?
Thanks !
Bye

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#606232 - 03/04/08 01:52 PM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
UprightTooner Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/21/07
Posts: 839
Loc: North-East US
"Who was that masked man?"
_________________________
Part-time tuner

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#606233 - 03/06/08 02:57 AM Re: Problem with yamaha small grand after 1st sanding of hammer !
Bruckner Fan Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/12/07
Posts: 30
Loc: Canada
Generally speaking I think you are correct, Gadzar. If one were to gather up the felt "filings" and weigh them in grams, and divide that by 88, you would end up with an extremely insignificant amount of weight removed from each hammer.

The action feeling "lighter" as a result of filing is because the sound is brighter and usualy cleaner (if good filing practise is used), therefore less effort is needed to produce the same volume as before filing.

Supply: well said as far as the availability of high quality hammers with NO underfelt. Of course!
And Yamaha does have both underfelted, and non-underfelted hammers, depends on the model.
_________________________
Registered Piano Technician with the Piano Technicians Guild

In Canada it's not "A-440",
It's "440, Eh?"

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