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Messages - pianotuner steveo

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Contact cement- clean up excess with mineral spirits. Mineral spirits will not craze or melt the plastic.

The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Re: Found inside vintage keys
« on: Yesterday at 08:20:47 AM »
Dead mice, car keys, a diamond ring, and a (ripped) Honus Wagner baseball card...

The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: Bottom Capstan Screw
« on: May 07, 2019, 09:36:13 AM »
It does not have to be perfect as long as it is close, and there is a little lost motion. If it's too high, the hammer/whip assembly will start to rise up. If that happens, back the capstan down again until there is a tiny gap between the tip of the jack and the whip felt. If it's too tight, the jack won't always return to it's starting position again.

This normally doesn't need much adjustment unless someone has messed with it. The other capstan (letoff adjustment) is far more critical.

Sounds like you found it! Great to know for future reference.

Have you inspected the bottom side of each PCB looking for cold solder joints and shorts? Flaky traces? Is that diode either open or shorted? I don't know if that diode will work, but I do remember using those in audio boards when I was a bench tech (25 yrs ago)

Most of the time, those crackling noises are other debris or condensation on the reeds,but it sounds like you've ruled that out...

The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Re: Suitcase to Stage Conversion
« on: April 29, 2019, 08:20:27 AM »
No, it is not stereo without the suitcase bottom. The amp is stereo and the vibrato moves the signal back and forth between the channels, but the harp itself is mono.

The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Re: '79 Suitcase Randomly Turns Off
« on: April 23, 2019, 04:56:08 PM »
Any progress yet?

.......Unless they are fried.

The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: "Flower head" screws replacement
« on: April 17, 2019, 04:29:46 PM »
No offense, but that is an awful lot of money for 8 screws, washers and nuts.  I personally would use hardware store screws.

The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Re: '79 Suitcase Randomly Turns Off
« on: April 14, 2019, 12:37:38 PM »
The first place I would look after unplugging from the wall is starting at the power cord socket then work your way inward. It may be a colder solder joint on a power transistor.

The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: "Flower head" screws replacement
« on: April 14, 2019, 12:35:01 PM »
I would take one to a local hardware store and find cheap replacements that are the same size.

The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Re: '79 Suitcase Randomly Turns Off
« on: April 13, 2019, 04:01:33 PM »
It sounds like you have poor connnection(s) somewhere in the power section.Intermittently shutting off isn't a short, it is an open circuit. Shorts can burn out parts, blow fuses, trip breakers and in worst cases, cause fires. Open circuits are like turning off a switch. Since it seems to work when it works, this may not be that difficult to fix. What are your soldering skills? Newbie? intermediate? Expert?

It could be bad parts, but always look for the free and easy solutions first, such as bad connections in the power circuit, and bad solder connections. Unplugged, of course.

A video would be very helpful. Your harp may need shimming, but again, a video would be helpful.

The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Re: Hammer tip replacement/pickups
« on: April 07, 2019, 07:34:41 AM »
Have you tried very carefully heating the base of the stubborn tips with a hairdryer? You may need to keep the pliers in one hand and the hairdryer in the other. Just be careful not to warp or melt the hammers.

The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: wurli 200A crackle
« on: April 07, 2019, 07:31:29 AM »
Also, you may have another issue. If you have to hit some notes real hard to get any volume, then those hammers may be letting off way too early. In this case, you won't get much or any volume out of those keys with a light touch. This is a common problem with Wurlitzers that haven't been properly serviced in a long time.
There is a reliable seller on eBay for this tool that doesn't require a minimum order for shipping. 8)

The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: wurli 200A crackle
« on: April 07, 2019, 07:12:16 AM »
Hold a blank white card under the suspected reeds, and hold a bright flashlight below the card.  You may need to prop up some dampers to see better. You can also try holding the flashlight from above if you have trouble seeing the alignment.
You can also raise the dampers, and play suspected notes with power on, if they are shorting, you will see sparks.

Also, remember your tuning for those reeds will change if you loosen them and straighten them. There is a small amount of wiggle room from front to back. Sliding the reed towards the front of the piano will raise the pitch, towards the back will lower it. Not a lot, but enough to fine tune.

The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: wurli 200A crackle
« on: April 06, 2019, 09:22:14 AM »
Yes, it is either that or reed(s) are slightly shorting out the pickup when hit hard. (Not aligned perfectly straight) I almost think that is more likely,because debris can cause crackle even when not playing. Do NOT file the space around the reed to prevent this, it will make that reed too quiet.

Condensation can also cause this noise, I.E. moving a Wurlitzer in cold weather and turning it on right away will make the same noise until it warms up.

Omg, yes that is a good deal, even if you have to buy a replacement amp. Just remember this model is not light- at least 150 lbs. not recommended for gigging!

I'm not sure what you mean about blowing up your amp.. 4 ohm speakers would be a little louder than 16 ohm speakers. Speakers aren't going to fry your amp,unless the speakers themselves are fried and left connected to an amp that is on. It is not necessary to add resistors to these Mustang speakers, but you could if you wanted to. They appear to be able to handle the 12 or so watts without adding any.
 Most if not all headphones are 32 ohms, this is to keep the volume and bass from blowing out the tiny speakers, and to maybe protect your ears a little. Magnet size doesn't make them louder, it means the voice coil is larger (theoretically) which means they would be able to handle higher power than a speaker with a small magnet and small voice coil.

There are some 4 x 8 car speakers on eBay right now. The closest one to a Wurlitzer speaker is a single, used, 16ohm speaker for $25, but there is also a pair of 8 ohm ( I think) Mustang car speakers for $36 with free shipping. These Mustang speakers are brand new, and I believe they are currently in production.
When talking about low powered amps, any speaker from 4-16 ohms should be fine. The 4 ohm may sound louder than the 16, but as long as they can safely handle about 12 watts , they should be fine. You can always add a small resistor in series with the + terminal if you wish. Fitting them into the cabinet may or may not be a challenge.

They are out there...

I remember those Radio Shack speakers. I worked for Tandy for over 9 years. Too bad they are gone, but I saw that coming back in the '90's. I left to go full time with pianos 1 year before they closed my service center.
Anyway, I don't remember wiring them in series, I seem to remember just adding a small resistor to each one. It wouldn't have mattered much without the resistor, the Amps were pretty low power output. (10-12watts I think)

I'm sure you could find car speakers for far less than $140. Remember, the frequency response does not need to be 20-20khz.... 50-10khz should be more than enough to reproduce the sound well.

I think anything below$1200 would be a good deal these days. I would never pay $6500 for any Wurlitzers

Or, you could replace the harp...

What is all thread? I've never heard of it

I have no idea- condition is everything. I paid around $700-$750 for mine. Are you saying you are in Europe?

It's pretty close to that spot, on the bottom. There is also a trim control (200A) You have to try both jacks to see which signal is better for what you are using it with. Sometimes the aux out is too hot. Of course you would use the volume control as a trim pot for the headphone out.
I have no way to post pictures on here, plus my 200A is in the attic at the moment.

The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Re: How to save a bad tine?
« on: March 16, 2019, 05:09:21 PM »
That sounds right...

The only concern I have with leaving vintage keys plugged in all the time, (and modern digital too) are power surges. Especially during storms.
I always unplug my keyboards when not in use. My sister lost her digital piano to a power surge last year and has to buy a new one.

I agree 1000%
Don't replace parts that are working fine. Replacing jack springs ( a whole set) would be a royal pain in the arse!

The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: 140 keytop replacement
« on: March 10, 2019, 08:35:29 AM »
Yes, you are better off sending them to someone with experience. You can buy new sets to put on yourself, but they are generic, and are usually wider and slightly longer than you need. Sanding them down to fit properly can be difficult to do, (to look professional) if you don't own the proper equipment. The amount of money you would need to spend on tools may be close to or more than what you would pay someone who does it all the time.

On the other hand, if you are becoming a professional technician, and you want to do this for other people in the future, you can try to DIY, but the first time I did it did not come out great.(I was only about 19 or 20 back then)

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