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#630649 - 10/31/01 08:59 PM Cracked Soundboard
sonlyjoy Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/31/01
Posts: 5
Loc: Chicago
Is it possible for a cracked soundboard to be repaired? If so, what should be expected as to sound and performance? Thanks.

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#630650 - 10/31/01 09:21 PM Re: Cracked Soundboard
Bob Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/01/01
Posts: 4177
Cracked soundboards are repaired all the time, usually when the piano is rebuilt. Some guys fill the crack with spruce. Some fill it with epoxy, some route out the wood either side of the crack and fill that with spruce. The results vary. Some sound good, some not so good. The repair is almost always visible. It is important to dry out the soundboard BEFORE repairing any cracks. This makes the cracks as wide as they can get. Failure to dry the board will result in the repair cracking again at the first very dry season. Filling cracks on a dry board will also help increase the crown on the board, and make for a better tone. Flat boards don't vibrate too well. Soundboards with many cracks, and/or no crown may be too damaged to ever sound good again. These should be replaced (if the value of the piano justifies it).
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#630651 - 11/01/01 10:49 AM Re: Cracked Soundboard
sonlyjoy Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/31/01
Posts: 5
Loc: Chicago
Thank you for your comments. Can you offer any guidelines as to what type of piano problems would indicate that the soundboard is not functioning properly?

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#630652 - 11/01/01 06:28 PM Re: Cracked Soundboard
Bob Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/01/01
Posts: 4177
There is no easy way for a layman to check a soundboard. It takes a practised eye and ear. Obvious things like cracks can be seen, but the tone quality and condition of hammers, regulation, strings,bridges, ribs, bearing, etc. all have to be considered. Really dead bass strings and collapsed board can sound similar.
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#630653 - 11/01/01 06:37 PM Re: Cracked Soundboard
sonlyjoy Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/31/01
Posts: 5
Loc: Chicago
Thanks. I'll work with my local technician on the other quirks I'm discovering, but I feel a whole lot better knowing a repaired soundboard isn't the end of the world. I've had many sleepless nights over this. Thanks for your advice! Joy

P.S. My bass strings are newly replaced and wonderful, BTW. No problem there.

[ November 01, 2001: Message edited by: sonlyjoy ]

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