New Estonia - Metallic Buzz - Dampers the Cause??

Posted by: Carol I.

New Estonia - Metallic Buzz - Dampers the Cause?? - 08/19/07 12:34 AM

I’ve had my new Estonia L-190 for seven months and I play it every day. I take very good care of it; I have a Dampp-Chaser and an undercover, and I’m having it tuned every couple of months.

But something weird has developed quite suddenly . . . when I strike any key in the bottom half of the keyboard, there’s a brief metallic buzz after the damper falls into place. It’s worse on some notes than others, but I can hear it on every note, approximately from the G above middle C down to the bottom of the keyboard.

My tech was here this morning and spent a long time trying to identify the problem, but without success. On his recommendation I’m going to contact another tech, but meanwhile does anyone have any ideas about what the problem could be?

Thanks in advance for any suggestions you can offer --

Carol
Posted by: Bob

Re: New Estonia - Metallic Buzz - Dampers the Cause?? - 08/19/07 12:58 AM

Perhaps the hammer rest rail is loose in the bass - this is a common occurance. The rest rail is supported by 4 or 5 round nuts. Loose nuts will produce a short buzz when the hammer shank hits it as you let up on the key
Posted by: Randy Karasik, Colorado, USA

Re: New Estonia - Metallic Buzz - Dampers the Cause?? - 08/19/07 01:04 AM

Yep ... it sounds like the hammer rest rail. If the buzz ONLY occurs when the hammer drops, that's the most likely culprit.

Sometimes I can reach between the strings and tighten the round slotted nuts without pulling the action.

But if those nuts are loose, the lower ones may be at the incorrect height anyway.

It's best to pull the action, set the proper height for the rest rail and then tighten down all of the nuts.

It's about a 5 minute repair.
Posted by: Carol I.

Re: New Estonia - Metallic Buzz - Dampers the Cause?? - 08/19/07 01:44 PM

Thanks so much for the quick replies! I've sent a note to my tech passing along your comments, and he's going to come over on Saturday to have a look at the hammer rest rail.

Can you think of anything else he should check, if this turns out not to be the cause?

He had suspected that the buzz we were hearing was high harmonics in the bass strings ringing through the dampers, so he had been thinking that it was something with the dampers. As I mentioned above, I can hear the noise to some extent on every bass note, and it developed suddenly -- so hopefully these two clues narrow down the possible causes.

Thanks again --

Carol
Posted by: Supply

Re: New Estonia - Metallic Buzz - Dampers the Cause?? - 08/20/07 03:49 AM

When I am investigating things like this at the piano, I try to isolate different potential factors and problem sources to find the problem through a process of elimination.

For example, I would press a felted wooden slat on the strings to mute them, then play the offending notes. This could take the damper felts out of the equation, as well as making the noise stand out more, if indeed it is coming from something like the hammer rest rail. Let's hope it is simply the rest rail - that is an easy fix.

In case it has not been done before, this is a good time to tighten all action screws.
Posted by: Carol I.

Re: New Estonia - Metallic Buzz - Dampers the Cause?? - 08/20/07 11:42 PM

Jurgen, thanks for the ideas, which I've forwarded to my tech . . . I'm really an amateur at this but I think I'm coming around to his view that it has do with the dampers, because when I press on the damper after sharply striking a note, the buzz stops immediately. (He'd already discovered this.)

Does this eliminate a loose hammer rest rail from the possible causes?

And if so, how could it be that the dampers are not working well on such a new piano? My tech checked their movement and position and they appeared to be perfect.

Carol