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Topics - goldphinga

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Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / MKV Hammer Tips
« on: January 26, 2019, 09:35:53 AM »
Hey guys. Im currently working on a MKV, only the 2nd Ive worked on as they are very rare here in the UK. The original tips were very grooved so I couldnt keep them. Anyway, I installed a VV graduated tip set which I generally use for all post 75 pianos and they work great on every piano Ive used them in. However, the MKV is a different beast. The woodcore sounds great, the second hardest tips sound good (if a little duller than expected) and the other ranges (red, green, yellow) sound great yet with a lot more overtone and less deep bass. (Thats my observation anyway).

I'd love to get any insight or tips on the ranges and type of tips you use to get an even tone across the board. When you're renovating a MKV what are you using?

Any info much appreciated. Not much out there regarding replacing tips on a V and whats the best way to go. Im going to experiment myself this week and will report back but thought Id ask anyway.


Hi folks- Im looking for a black rocker switch for the A/B pickup selector on a Hohner Clavinet/Pianet DUO. Ideally the black rocker button and the switch that goes underneath it. Please PM me if you have one for sale! Many thanks, Dan

For Sale / WTB- Complete Rhodes 73 Harp
« on: October 07, 2015, 06:17:10 AM »
If anyone knows of a complete 73 Rhodes harp thats going for sale, (either late mk1 or mk2 would be preferable) please get in touch. Complete with all tines/pickups/tone bars would be great. Thanks.

So just been servicing a late (1979) mk1 and I have a 1980 mk2. Both have the haigler preamps in. Intriguingly, on the same piano when swapping the rails, the sound is very different. The late mk1 pre has considerably more gain, warmer/fuller midrange and general depth, whilst the mk2 has less overall gain and sounds much more scooped in the mids.

Now- i did have my mk2 preamp modded but just the switch and the vibrato intensity pot were changed to stop the trem bleeding into the audio path, i don't see how this would have such a radical bearing on the sonics if at all?

You can see that the mk2 pre has some different components ( the mk2 is the one with the orange caps in and the mk1 has blue)


Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / Wood=tone?
« on: July 13, 2015, 02:47:01 PM »
So how much bearing on sustain/tone does the amount of wood have on the tone of a Rhodes? For example the wood in the harp, keybed, the older wooden hammers, older wooden support blocks? Some say the wooden hammers/support blocks make for a better sound though I've heard and worked on some pretty incredible sounding metal frame Rhodes'.

SO-The rhodes tine/tonebar combo is essentially de-coupled from the wood, but does it have any bearing on the sound and quality of tone/sustain? If you were to remove all the wood from the harp for example, and mount all the tines and pickups in carbon fibre, would the tone radically alter? That's the kinda thing I want to discuss...

Thoughts please!

Can anyone shed any light on these later preamps installed in the later MK2's? Is it the same circuitry/preamp as the Haigler preamp with eq sliders?

Thanks 8)

So i have a 1978 FR7710 cab without the matching piano top and i've been running stereo synths into the power amp input. However, i want to be able to then get that signal out of the cab at line level. The pre amp outs don't allow this- is there a way to mod the circuit to get a feed out of the cab to send to an audio interface for recording. I know you cant use the headphone out due to the wrong impedance i think? Also theres no way to make a lead to run into the 5 pin preamp in socket?



EDIT- my tech has found a solution :)

On a stage 73 how much should a pickup read on the multimeter when connected in situe as normal? I know when out of the piano they read between 160-190 ohms...


The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / 54 vs 73 weight observations
« on: January 02, 2015, 11:28:07 AM »
Whilst I had a 1980 54 in for service, I weighed it without the lid on (harp lid on) just out of curiosity and it weighed exactly 5 stones which is 70lbs. My 1980 stage weighs 91lbs without its transport lid. So yes, thats 20lbs difference in weight between a 73 and 54.

Just wanted to note this down for the group as it may be useful in some way!

I also noted that the 54 doesnt have the front or back pieces on the harp frame which also helps reduce weight, nor does it have a centre screw plate underneath for leg braces.

The output still says input too!

Happy new year!  :P

The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Rhodes 54- upside down leg flanges?
« on: December 27, 2014, 05:11:05 AM »
Can anyone confirm how their leg flanges are fitted on their Rhodes 54? The one I have in has the collars that legs screw into pointing outwards and not sunken into the case bottom as on stage 73's and 88's. Is this standard or not? Many thanks.

The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Were Rhodes harps over engineered?
« on: December 16, 2014, 04:05:10 PM » harps really need all that wood and heavy steel framing?
Vintage vibe pianos remove most of the wood and frame, so the answer is surely no!
It clearly doesn't affect tone as listen to th vv pianos...

What are your thoughts?

A lot of weight is tied up in those harps.

Is it worth modifying harps in this case to save weight?


The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / MKV Hammer tip ranges
« on: December 10, 2014, 08:38:46 AM »
Hi guys, I'm trying to build up a detailed picture of the MKV mainly out of curiosity and what makes it tick and one thing I'm still not sure of is the factory hammer tip types and ranges.

I think the hard whites were extended down a few notes, perhaps to G above middle C but not sure. Are all the other ranges the same as say a MK2 and were they the same type of tips in terms of height and shape etc?

Any insight much appreciated as always!

The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Mark V action/feel compared to Mk2
« on: December 07, 2014, 04:05:08 PM »
I've been thinking about the improvements made to the Rhodes action in the Mk V and as I've not had the chance to play a V extensively, how those changes such as the longer hammer throw impact on the action/feel. I'd be interested to hear from those that have spent a lot of time playing well setup V models and how they describe the action/feel compared to a mk2 (and 1).

For example- does the longer hammer throw mean that the action isn't as fast as a mk2 as the key and consequently the hammer has to travel further to reach the tine?

Does the Mkv action require more initial force due to the increased damper tension needed to stop notes effectively or do the more rigid damper arms negate the need for extra tension and thus the new dampers don't affect the feel of the action?

Is there more initial resistance/less sensitivity when pressing a key and is that more than on a well set mk2 with shorter hammer throw?

And anything else you want up add!

Great stuff! Thanks all.

I started a thread a year or so back about Modding Rhodes For Weight Saving and though there were some great responses and lots of insight, nobody had really dared to try any mods or re-casing apart from the 'swiss cheese' dude!

Has anyone had the balls to do it yet? Has anyone taken the rhodes out of the wooden case and built it into a flight case to make it lighter? Has anyone cut down their harp or tried to remove weight internally?

Very interested to hear from anyone that's done this and if you have, please include some pics and inof on materials/weight saving so we can all see the handiwork!

Cheers all. D

Here goes:

1. Mk2 Flat top lids (they were available from VV but no longer?)
2. Black faceplates for Mk2's and later Janus Rhodes pianos
3. Post '75 octave damper arm modules

Anything else?

Just had to say, I love my 4980 MK2 Janus panel Stage. Everything seems to be spot on with it! Super fast but controllable action (wooden keybed), beautiful sounding tines with long sustain, plays and sounds amazingly. Anyone else have a wooden keyed MK2 and want to express their love for it...?! 8) These wooden key MK2's are a far cry from the plastic action models which I avoid like the plague...

Just got myself a full set of new VV screws, grommets and washers for my 1980 Janus Mk2 Stage. So far so good with the installation though the screws have thicker threads and some of the screws ( about 10 out of 73) are nigh on impossible to get into the original tonebar mounting holes. It's likely due to the inconsistency of the hole drilling in the Rhodes factory methinks...

Has anyone else encountered this and how do you get around this? Should i attempt to widen the mounting holes and if so how to do it without making the holes too wide...?

Thanks guys

Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / MKV Keys Vs MK2 Keys
« on: July 10, 2014, 08:22:24 AM »
Been thinking if keys from a MK2 would work in a MKV, are the key dimensions the same or different? Would the pins line up and the pedestals with the hammers? Interested to know! Anyone?

Has anyone ever tried this? Was thinking the other day it would be great to have a peterson or janus preamp in a mkv and instead of cutting up a MkV rail, what if you could drop in a Mk1 or Mk2 rail instead? Would there be gaps around it or would it be a good fit? In fact whilst on the subject, could you drop an entire Mk1 or Mk2 keybed/action into MkV case as is? Interested to get some thoughts!

Has anyone fitted handles on the front of their mk1 or mk2 much as was done on the Mkv (under the keys when looking at the Rhodes front on)?  If so is it easy to do and what fittings do you need so the handles don't pull off. Would make it much easier to pick up on my own with front mounted handles!

Firstly, just wanted to ask anybody thats used the current vintage vibe tines what era they best compare to sound wise?

What is also concerning me is that you can't really have a one size fits all tine in, as much as how can you put one of these tines into a post '75 piano if they sound like a pre '75 tine?

So! How are people getting a consistent mix of tone in their pianos if tine eras are getting mixed up and old tines and new tines don't sound alike?

Insight and thoughts much appreciated 8)

I'd like to get a new spare set of octave strip dampers for my Rhodes but it seems nobody makes the modular strips. VV make single dampers but not octave strips, so only the earlier pianos are catered for leaving those of us with later pianos stuck with using used damper strips if our dampers are shot.

If someone at VV is reading this, are you intending to make the octave strips? There'd be a lot of people wanting them i think. I know Speakeasy made them for a while, but not sure if they were any good and they no longer list them on their shop.

Thanks y'all!  8)

Are there any stereo amps out there that could take two channel outs from a rhodes in order to get panning going on on stage? Something like a suitcase amp but smaller? But not a Janus stack as theyre too hard to find. Maybe something new and more portable?

Just wondering if you can still get curved aluminum extrusion thats the same or similar to that used on the MKV? I have MKV case but its missing the lid and want to build a new cover...thanks peeps!

For Sale / WTB: Rhodes MKV Transport Lid
« on: December 07, 2013, 01:10:55 PM »
Hey, if anyone has one of these lying about please PM me. Its not the harp cover but the bit that clips onto the piano for transportation and that stores the sustain pedal. Many thanks!

Buying / Wtb: empty mkv case (tray/abs cover/transport lid)
« on: August 05, 2013, 08:47:32 AM »
Looking for an empty plastic/extrusion mkv case. Please let me know if you have one for sale.

I've seen a few mk2's with windows cut out of the Alu harp supports. Anyone know if this was standard on some pianos and if so do you think it was for weight saving? An Alu support weighs 2lbs so there's maybe 2lbs to lose off the overall weight only doing this- any ideas?

Here's a couple of pics:

Check this out...

1min 6 secs is the 1st glimpse...then at 1:27 another nice shot.
Its not a 73 and its not a standard MKV as the Rhodes badge is to the right like the Dynamic 88
in google image search...

The link:

Looks like the MKV88? ie the Dynamic 88!!
Sitting on top of the Rhodes is a Fairlight CMI IIX which has a 73 note keyboard
but huge end panels either side that would make it longer than a MKV73
just for would be about the same length as a Rhodes 88...

So was Herbie testing the prototype?? Mike Peterson said it was a one off
so this must have been it and maybe Herbie still has it?

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