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Topics - james

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1
Who is responsible for this new product?

http://www.ebay.com/itm/181800486867

2
So in my quest to fix B above middle C, I succeeded in re-gluing the felt to the hammer with contact cement, which seems to have done the job. But the hammer is still hanging way too low!  After swapping parts around to determine the cause, I discovered that the pedestal block for that particular key is 1/16" shorter than the others.  Has anybody else run across this?  I'm 99% sure the keybed is 100% original, so this would have been a manufacturing defect.

3
Since Vintage Vibe isn't selling them anymore, I went looking for replacement key caps on my own. I bought a set of white ones that theoretically fit any acoustic piano, but they're off by as much as 1/8" in certain places that you can't easily resize. Does anybody have a reliable source where I can get ones that fit better?

4
So I decided not to remove the felts from the hammers on my '77 Stage, considering that the felts are very clean along with everything else inside this piano. There's one note, however, where the felt had peeled halfway off and I needed to remove it. The question is, what kind of glue is the best choice for gluing it back on?

5
Does anybody have a remedy for this one aside from removing the harp bracket?

6
Amps, Effects & Recording Techniques / Phase 90 distortion
« on: January 08, 2015, 07:10:50 PM »
Is it normal to get distortion from the MXR Phase 90 when you're playing harmonically complex chords? This is the first time I've ever had the chance to use one, and the results seem pretty dirty...

7
Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / key pedestal lube
« on: December 29, 2014, 03:55:45 PM »
What are the best choices for lubricating the key pedestal felts these days?  I have a 12-year-old can of ACE Hardware silicon spray that's being retired.

8
I need to take the key pedestal felts off of the hammers in this early '77 Rhodes.  How are people removing them without leaving the sticky residue on the hammer?

9
Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / dead key diagnostics
« on: November 28, 2014, 06:39:25 PM »
I've got a B above middle C that is clunking like it needs a new tine, but I'm not really convinced that's the problem.  The symptoms:

* tuning spring is adjusted to be in the center of the tine as opposed to the end (this is also the case with some of its neighbors)
* the note sustains at a low to medium volume but clangs or just goes dead when played harder
* the hammer is resting 1/4" below the other hammers in the piano

This is an early '77 piano with the felts on the underside of the plastic hammers.  Any ideas?

10
Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / removing tines from tonebars
« on: November 07, 2014, 12:26:55 PM »
Does anybody have a reliable method of removing the tine from the tonebar without completely stripping the head of the machine screw, which was machined on tight at the factory?

11
What's everybody's favorite way to get a dead tine off of the tonebar?  We're talking about the original that was machined on at the factory.  I usually put it in a vise and do my best to crank it off with a 5/16" wrench, but sometimes that ends up stripping the head of the hex screw...

12
Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / 1974 Suitcase 88 pickup rail
« on: July 19, 2014, 05:45:00 PM »
Can anybody explain what the extra wiring is at the end of the pickup rail?

13
The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Staining or Dyeing Tolex
« on: June 21, 2010, 06:45:24 PM »
Before I attempt this myself, has anybody succeed in using a dye or stain on good tolex that is already glued on the piano cabinet?  The dye solution would need to be something that doesn't cause the glue to peel off or the vinyl to melt in the process, so I'm guessing a water-based stain is about the only thing that would work.  I'm sure I'll be spending a while at the art store looking for this, but there are a lot of other crazies on here, so I thought I'd ask around...   :shock:

14
Check it. A photo of Alicia Keys' uncomfortable-looking producer surrounded by the "vintage collection". The sparkletop Piano Bass has the harp cover on wrong...must've got it on Ebay...

Plus it's on top of the "rare ARP Electr[on]ic Piano", a.k.a. the infamous and hated Rhodes Electronic Piano Model 3363.  If that thing is the future sound of R&B, maybe we should stop hating it so much and buy them cheap on Ebay! :twisted:

15
FAQ / How Many Fender Rhodes Pianos Were Built?
« on: May 15, 2010, 01:44:41 AM »
Harold Rhodes estimated that 250,000 pianos (a quarter of a million) were built during the lifetime of production at CBS from 1965 to 1984.  Regarding specific models and eras, all that can be said is that as popularity grew throughout the 1970's, so did demand for the pianos.  We have a better idea of how many of the more obscure models were made, such as the Rhodes Mark IV (one prototype) or the Fender Rhodes Executone (Kenneth Manning states that his is one of 11 total).  As we build the Serial Number Registry here at the Rhodes Super Site, we hope to gain more insight into how many pianos still exist today, which is perhaps the better question to be asking.

16
For Sale / Flat-Top & Round-Top Harp Covers (73-Key)
« on: March 19, 2010, 01:36:57 AM »
I have 2 harp covers for 73-key pianos standing in the corner of my apartment, currently not in use and in need of homes:

* a Speakeasy Flat-Top (no longer in production) that fits both Mark I's and Mark II's, in which I have already punched holes for the "Seventy-Three" logo

* a Mark I Round-Top that is in the middle of a red sparkle customization (paint necessary to complete the project is included, of course)

At this point I am simply taking offers from anybody willing to pickup in Santa Cruz, CA.  Email me at james@fenderrhodes.com if you're interested.

17
FAQ / What Was The Original Dealer/List Price For A Fender Rhodes?
« on: September 21, 2009, 12:17:12 AM »
I'm compiling Fender/CBS price lists as they come up and posting my findings by year under this topic for anybody who is interested.  The final list price for a new Mark V Stage 73 was $1095 USD, which is (interestingly enough) what many people are paying for a used Rhodes in prime condition these days.

1967

Fender Musical Instruments Price List October 1967
prices in USD
**** price not listed

$895 73 Key Piano, 6-Octave, with Legs and Sustaining Pedal, and Amp (Two Pieces)
$**** 49 Key Piano, with Legs and Sustaining Pedal, and Amp (Two Pieces)
$390 Piano Bass, 3-Octave
$**** Celeste, 4-Octave

$59.50 Stand for Piano Bass and Celeste
$31 Cover for 73 Key Piano
$9 Cover for Piano Bass

1968

Fender Musical Instruments Price List July 1968
prices in USD

$895 73 Key Piano, 6-Octave, with Legs and Sustaining Pedal, and Amp (Two Pieces)
$390 Piano Bass, 3-Octave

$795 Contempo Organ, Portable, 5-Octave, with Pedal and Legs, Hinged Case and Leg Bag
$895 Starmaster Organ, Portable, 5-Octave, with Pedal, Stand and Carrying Case

$59.50 Stand for Piano Bass
$31 Cover for 73 Key Piano
$9 Cover for Piano Bass
$10 Cover for Contempo Organ

1973

Fender Suggested Retail Price List p. 7
prices in USD

$1280 Suitcase Piano Set, 88 Key
$1125 Suitcase Piano Set, 73 Key
$500 Suitcase Piano Bottom (amp only)

$870 Mark I Stage Piano, 88 Key
$720 Mark I Stage Piano, 73 Key

$430 Piano Bass, 32 Key
$65 Piano Bass Custom Stand

$795 Super Satellite Power Speakers (complete system)
$375 Super Satellite Master Unit
$350 Super Satellite Slave Unit
$175 Super Satellite Preamp

The price list I received has dealer notes that indicate a raise in prices of around $15 to $20 at some point, but there is no indication as to when that happened.  Every piano and amp also had a custom vinyl cover available that could be ordered from the factory, at a cost ranging from $20 to $40.  Additionally, hard cases with casters were available for the pianos and amps, priced around $100 for the Suitcase & Stage Pianos and $70 for the Satellite Amps.

1977

Rhodes Keyboard Instruments
Suggested Retail Price List Effective June 4, 1977
prices in USD

Keyboards

$1545 Suitcase Piano Set, 88 Key
$1375 Suitcase Piano Set, 73 Key
$1095 Mark I Stage Piano, 88 Key
$925 Mark I Stage Piano, 73 Key
$525 Piano Bass, 32 Key

Amplifiers

$975 Super Satellite Power Speaker Set (For Mark I Stage 73 or 88 Key)
$445 Super Satellite Master Unit
$415 Super Satellite Slave Unit
$180 Super Satellite Pre-Amp

Note: This was the last production year for the Super Satellites, which would be replaced with the Janus I System in 1978.

Accessories

$52 Suitcase Piano, 88 Key, Cover Set
$29 Suitcase Piano Top, 88 Key, Cover
$46 Suitcase Piano, 73 Key, Cover Set
$23 Suitcase Piano Top, 73 Key, Cover
$23 Suitcase Piano Bottom Cover (88 or 73 Key)
$29 Mark I Stage Piano, 88 Key, Cover
$23 Mark I Stage Piano, 73 Key, Cover
$19 Super Satellite Master or Slave Unit Cover
$14 Piano Bass Cover
$110 Piano Bass Stand

1978

Rhodes Keyboard Instruments
Suggested Retail Price List Effective December 17, 1977
prices in USD

Keyboards

$1595 Suitcase Piano Set, 88 Key
$1425 Suitcase Piano Set, 73 Key
$1145 Mark I Stage Piano, 88 Key
$975 Mark I Stage Piano, 73 Key
$550 Piano Bass, 32 Key

Janus I Keyboard Amplification System

$625 Janus I Power Amp Enclosure w/ Power Cord and 15' 5-Pin Preamp Cable
$110 Janus I Preamp/Nameboard Assembly, 73 Key
$115 Janus I Preamp/Nameboard Assembly, 88 Key

$1335 Janus I Keyboard Amplification System, 73 Key (includes 2 Amps w/ Power Cords, Preamp/Nameboard Assembly w/ 15' 5-Pin Preamp Cable and 35' Interconnect Cable)
$735 Janus I Keyboard Amplification System, 73 Key (includes 1 Amp w/ Power Cord, 15' 5-Pin Preamp Cable and Preamp/Nameboard Assembly)
$1340 Janus I Keyboard Amplification System, 88 Key (includes 2 Amps w/ Power Cords, Preamp/Nameboard Assembly w/ 15' 5-Pin Preamp Cable and 35' Interconnect Cable)
$740 Janus I Keyboard Amplification System, 88 Key (includes 1 Amp w/ Power Cord, 15' 5-Pin Preamp Cable and Preamp/Nameboard Assembly)

Accessories

$54 Suitcase Piano, 88 Key, Cover Set
$30 Suitcase Piano Top, 88 Key, Cover
$48 Suitcase Piano, 73 Key, Cover Set
$24 Suitcase Piano Top, 73 Key, Cover
$24 Suitcase Piano Bottom Cover (88 or 73 Key)
$30 Mark I Stage Piano, 88 Key, Cover
$24 Mark I Stage Piano, 73 Key, Cover
$14.50 Piano Bass Cover
$140 Piano Bass Stand note: still available :D
$15 Janus I 35' Interconnect Cable
$29.50 Janus I Power Amp Enclosure Cover
$33.75 Converter Kit I (100 Watt Enclosure with 80 Watt Keyboard)
$123.75 Converter Kit II (80 Watt Enclosure with 100 Watt Keyboard)

1985

The only model available was the Mark V Stage 73 at a list price of $1095 USD, not including the 450 lb.-capacity Peterson stand. The Mark V with stand was $1195, and the stand itself could be purchased alone for $150.

1987

The Mark V Stage 73 is sent to the back page of the price list, still tagged at $1095, and the stand is marked separately at $100.

19
Buying / Original 1969 Stage Piano Service Manual
« on: July 16, 2009, 12:49:31 PM »
I'm in the process of acquiring the 1969 Stage Piano (i.e. original wood hammer) schematics & service manual for the Super Site, listed on Ebay right now:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=300330672270

If anybody wants to send a PayPal donation to the cause, I'd truly appreciate it...I doubt that it will sell for $25.99!!!

20
FAQ / "Fender Rhodes" vs. "Rhodes"
« on: June 04, 2009, 07:16:36 PM »
Much confusion surrounds the name badges on pianos with the "Fender Rhodes" logo versus those with the "Rhodes" logo, with discussions and debates arising over their use in both determining age, value, tone and playability. To dispel, many myths, here are the facts:

1. The "Fender Rhodes" logo was changed to simply "Rhodes" in 1975 for marketing purposes.

2. A "Rhodes" is not Pre-CBS.

I have to head out the door...more to come shortly!

21
Buying / 1967 Fender Price List
« on: May 11, 2009, 03:08:46 PM »
After a small shipping fiasco it finally showed up....

73-Key Piano w/ Amp & Sustain Pedal   $895 (cover available for $31)
49-Key Piano w/ Amp & Sustain Pedal   (no price shown)
Piano Bass, 3-Octave                  $390 (cover available for $9)
Celeste, 4-Octave                     (no price shown)
Stand for Piano Bass & Celeste        $59.50

22
The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Yahoo! Mail Stalker
« on: April 19, 2009, 11:52:42 PM »
This woman has been stalking me from my Yahoo! mailbox for practically a year now, and this video shows a vague map of her location...can anyone identify her whereabouts so I can call the police?

http://www.fenderrhodes.com/img/users/james/st.html

23
The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Facebook
« on: March 29, 2009, 01:06:24 PM »
Facebook keeps implying that this woman is looking for me...is she looking for any of you too, or is it just me???


24
It arrived today, and I heard the Korg M1's choir of angels sounding as I opened it. The guy wasn't kidding about it being near mint: the spine wasn't broken (I took care of that when I scanned it) and there were only a few finger-dents in what otherwise felt like new paper. So here are some Web-rez scans for everybody...Ben, I've got the 2400 dpi ones ready for you too!








25
Other Keyboards & Software Synths / Yamaha Motif Review
« on: March 24, 2009, 03:20:53 PM »
After seeing the Five Peace Band last night, I think Yamaha needs a new ad slogan:

Even Chick Corea can't make the Motif sound like a real Rhodes.

He was able to get the 80's Elektric Band sounds out of it perfectly, but the Rhodes tone was just plain wrong, empty, devoid of emotion. I found myself waiting for him to head back over to the acoustic piano. That's where he's doing his best playing on this tour!

26
Classic & Modern Fender Rhodes Artists / Chick & The Five Peace Band
« on: February 27, 2009, 03:09:31 PM »
I've been looking at videos and pics of the tour so far, and Chick is using the Motif for all of the Rhodes-type sounds when he's looking for them. Since he's been overseas, I'm still wondering if the Mark V will be along for the ride when he gets to the US. Does anybody know what the plan is? I'm having trouble waiting for March 23rd.... :D

BTW, it's obvious that Chick's Facebook account is being run by somebody else here in the US considering how many "friends" he adds throughout the day. There are a lot of drummers on my list who I've added via musician friends of mine who actually know them (Steve Gadd, Jerry Marotta). You get the sense that they're using it like normal people, even if their friend-base is in the thousands. So what's the deal, Chick? You never reply to my messages...you're never online so I can chat and catch up...what happened to us? We were so close, and now we're so far! All of this touring has torn us apart, and now you've got somebody pretending to be you? :cry:

27
FAQ / How Old Is My Rhodes? What Year Was It Made?
« on: January 12, 2009, 10:27:29 PM »
We don't have much data on the serial numbers, but you can still determine the production year by looking inside the piano. There are two 4-digit date codes, one on the pickup rail and one on the tonebar rail. The code on the pickup rail is located on the right-hand side, beneath the part number. The first two digits indicate the week of the year, and the last two indicate the year (e.g. 0978 = 09th week of 1978, sometime in early March). This is the week the pickup rail was completed, which was normally 1 to 4 months prior to the day the piano was finished. This code is the best indicator of the piano's age.



In cases where the pickup rail code is unreadable, you can also look for the finish date code on the lower right-hand side of the tonebar rail. From 1965 to 1973, this also followed the week/year convention mentioned above. Sometime in 1974, the code was switched to week/year/day, where 1581 is interpreted as 15th week, 1978, 1st day of the work week (Monday). When 1980 arrived, the year digit started over at 0, so 1501 would be 15th week, 1980, 1st day of the work week.



As a point of reference, here's an overview of the different models and their production years:

* "Sparkle Top" Fender Rhodes (1965-1969)
* Fender Rhodes Mark I (1969-1975)
* Rhodes Mark I (1975-1979)
* Rhodes Mark II with wood keys (1979-1980)
* Rhodes Mark III EK-10 & Rhodes 54 (1980)
* Rhodes Mark II with plastic keys (1981-1983)
* Rhodes Mark V (1984)

28
FAQ / How Do I Get Output From A Piano Without The Suitcase Amp?
« on: January 12, 2009, 09:50:36 PM »
It is very common for pianos that were updated with the Super Satellite speaker package to be sold without them these days, or for the Suitcase Piano top to be missing its bottom and placed on a heavy-duty keyboard stand instead.  Since both of these pianos used a 5-pin DIN or XLR-style cable to connect with the original amplifier, the question almost always arises: how am I supposed to connect this thing to a regular amp???

The good news is that the Super Satellite system included a pair of 1/4" outputs as well:



As did the later Janus I system:



The original design was for Accessory 1 & 2 to be an effects loop, with #1 being "send" and #2 being "return".  Since #1 (the top jack) is "send", it is wired straight to the pickups and has an output level similar to an electric guitar with zero amplification.  Accessory #1 is functionally the same as the 1/4" out on any guitar or bass.

So in order to get the correct signal from the piano, you will want to use one of these:
    a) guitar or bass amp
    b) tube preamp
    c) mic input on a mixer
    d) mic input on a keyboard amp

In the case that you have a Suitcase Piano top without the Accessory jacks, you will need to remove the plastic top and use the output from the RCA jack at the left end of the pickup chain.  The cable you find inside can be unplugged easily without damaging anything, then you can connect an RCA male-to-whatever cable of your own in order to get output to an amp or mixer.  Again, it's the same as a passive guitar output.  You'll need some sort of preamp along the way to boost the signal no matter what.

29
The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Stage Piano Cross Brace Functionality
« on: November 25, 2008, 01:44:10 PM »
I've always wondered what people's opinions were regarding using the Stage Piano's cross braces on the legs when you actually have them...do they make any difference in stability?  What I'm talking about is the "wobble" factor you get while playing when you've got the 4 legs for support and nothing else, which is what most people wind up with when buying a Rhodes these days since either the braces or the complete leg set are typically lost.  I only owned one Stage 73 with the braces and never tried them (at the time I used a stand instead of the leg set), so I don't have a point of comparison besides the Suitcase's amp base, which tends to be rock solid.  What do you guys think?  Are the braces worth it?

30
For Sale / Rhodes in South Texas
« on: October 27, 2008, 10:38:18 AM »
I got an email from a guy in South Texas (Harlingen, near the border) this morning saying that he has a Fender Rhodes 73 that he wants "to go to someone who will appreciate it", i.e. for free. So if anybody out there is serious about driving and picking the piano up from him, let me know and I'll put the two of you in touch.

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