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Hi there,

long time since my last post and the reason is, that I needed to lube all the action centers in my Wurlitzer because it was a gummy mess.

I had this Wurly serviced many years ago by a very reputable tech and after I got it back it was all glitchy from tons and tons of silicone. Fast forward a couple of years in a very dry environment (at least in the winter time, 20% humidity sometimes) and many keys would not come back up. The action centers of the whips very completely dry, yet gummy.

So i ordered some Protek CLP and tore apart the whole action and lubed all centers with CLP which worked nicely. Almost all wooden parts had this gummy/gooey feel to them from the prior dosing with silicone by the tech.

So one thing come to my attention after re-setting the action, the upper most b note has a very strong metallic ping when the hammer hits the reed.

As far as I can see, the hammer does not hit the reed rail itself, but just the reed.  Stopping the hammer short before hitting the reed gets of course rid of the metallic ping. Is this a sign of a reed failing? The reed sustains nicely and sounds healthy. It is just this very loud mechanical ping that is quite annoying. The neighbor reeds all sound fine and do not show this phenomenon. Maybe the hammer needs a little tweak so that it strikes the reed some place else? Yet the sound is full and it seems the hammer hits the reed at the right spot.

Any ideas? I need to find a replacement reed in my stash, but maybe someone else already encountered such mechanical pinging noise and have an easy fix or answer.

Best Regards and many thanks for any help regaridng this issue.


The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Redoing a professionals job 206A
« on: March 12, 2017, 09:43:35 AM »
Hi there,

so a long time ago I bought this 206A which I brought back to life and went the extra mile to get it really right. Played and sounded nice. But there was always this thought in my head that I am not a pro and so a pro might do even more magic to my Wurly.

Fast forward to some years ago, I took the piano to a pro and he did some work on it. When it came back it, was not what I had expected, it was good, but not magic. Also the action was set up way different from what I had done and not to my liking. So the Wurly went into hybernation/no use. Today I opened the Wurly up again and for the first time took a look at what had been done inside.

There was NO lost motion whatsoever. As a result the hammer butts were all across the place, not lying in a line on the rail. I readjusted the lost motion and the action started to feel better. Then I adjusted let-off and now have the notes playing more evenly for my touch.

Two notes (second octave B and B flat) sound dull. No bark on them as opposed to the adjacent notes. So I wonder if I should have a look at strike line for these two notes or try to adjust the sound via voicing, i.e. bending up or down the pickup.

Second question would be: if one adjusts the pickup, which direction to bend for more bark? Right now the pickup is horizontal to the reeds. Btw the notes are right where the bass section ends and the thinner pickup begins.

Any help is more than welcome!



For Sale / Sold
« on: August 23, 2013, 11:45:38 AM »

Hi gang,

as known, I was able to fix the clicking sound in a late MK2 preamp (with knobs, no sliders for the EQ). That was one of the LDRs not working. Oddly enough the Tremolo stops working when setting the Rate very low (say below 4 on the dial).

I swapped almost all the resistors and ICs around the Oscillator section (U1A and U1B), R15 is pending to be changed to new 47k.

Could the MPS14 be the culprit? A bad 100k Rev Audio pot of the Speed control? Any help? Attached you will find the schemo.

One sidenote:

I tried the MK2 preamp next to my MK1 slider preamp on my beloved MK1 piano. Interesting to note how different the two preamps sound. Where the MK1 preamp has a very organic depth and a lot of treble, the MK2 is a bit more silky. The overall volume of the MK2 is extremely dependent on the Treble knob setting. The bass and Treble dials do not at all interact. Very independent to my ears. Sounds a bit like a MK2 even with the MK1 (1974) Piano. Maybe thats psychoacoustics?

Thanks in advance,

For Sale / Refinished (candy apple red) Rhodes MK1 Lid Europe
« on: May 05, 2013, 10:17:09 AM »

for sale is a Lid from a Rhodes MK1 (1975) refinished in Candy Apple Red (Nitro Lacquer).

good condition, some minor scratches here and there
inside has some glue marks from previous owner that glued aluminum foil on inside ( :o)
comes with SeventyThree Logo, Logo needs to be glued to lid, no "plate nuts"

155 EUR incl. shipping to Europe. Situated in Germany.


The fix was replacing one faulty LDR.

This is a VTL5C3/2 and in Europe you can get it here:

I also had to replace the corresponding 1k resistor.

Before that I replaced all caps and the ICs and those were not the culprit, albeit the preamp has less noise now.

Hope this helps somebody!


So I got myself a MKII Suitcase preamp for my MKII. Some corrosion here and there and it works, but:

I get a very nasty ticking sound when activating the tremolo. There seems to be quite some DC on the output. I figured it must be a cap somewhere but before replacing all of them I wonder if I should start with the PS electrolytics C20 C19 (it does not hum though) or with C14 the decoupling cap after U3 or C25 or C26 (on the inputs of U5 and U6).

It seems that the ticking is isolated to one side. So maybe the LDR is defective? Since these LDRs are of the 5 pin type, where do I get a replacement if necessary, I seem not to be able to find a part number for that.

Any help is highly appreciated!



The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Which one to keep? Mk1 MK2 keep both?
« on: November 29, 2012, 12:01:38 PM »
Hi gang!

need your input on a rather 1st world problem.

I have a very nice MK1 that I completely refurbished, made in 1975, thus it has half wood/half plastic hammers and a mix of old style tines and Schaller ones (from the factory me thinks). I redid:

miracle mod, new key bushing felts, new damper felts, replated tonebars, retolex, grommets, turned around the hammer tips, the whole enchilada

and a nice MK2 from 1980 with pristine hammer tips + damper felts, new grommets, Tolex original but in pristine condition, even has the original music sheet holder and legs bag

I managed to get a Janus Preamp for the MK1 and am awaiting a preamp for the MK2 (knob version, no sliders).

Since I do not have the space to have both Rhodes pianos set up to be played at once, and since I really need a Kawai ES7 for piano sounds, I am pondering whether or not to let go one of the pianos.

The Mk1 has the sharp edge keys, but a fantastic action due to the new key bushings and barks a tiny bit more due to the hammers. The MK2 feels alos great, a tad more key flutter and a bit more side-to side motion since the key bushings are not completely new.

Here you can find a short recording of both pianos through the Janus preamp with identical settings. Recorded into a Focusrite interface, no post effects, tremolo from the Janus. When playing harded I do not hear too much of a difference. The difference is the bell like tonality when playing soft. Please forgive my amateurish playing!

I will not yet tell you when the MK1 or the MK2 are playing in the recording. Would love to see you guys take a guess! The name of the wav file does not correspond to the sequence of recording.

What would you guys do? Sell one and always miss that one? Sell none and keep on in storage? Since I have a spare black MK1 lid and the Stage rail for the MK1 I could keep the MK2 and either put on the MK1 Janus rail with lid, or the MK2 lid with corresponding MK2 preamp rail.



Hi there,

I am looking either for a MK2 Suitcase Preamp with sliders or all pots version. Or just the black Faceplate for a Haigler/Janus preamp.

Thanks in advance,


Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / 1980 MK2 with huge escapement
« on: October 10, 2012, 02:29:44 PM »
Hi gang,

so I pulled the trigger on a 1980s Mk2 (9th week 1980). After a good cleaning the piano is cosmetically in great condition (replaced the corners, handles and logo, but the rest is in great condition). No rust on tines, Damper felts are fine.

Playing this thing is really tiresome and I have extreme problems getting it voiced. I installed new VV screws and grommets for the tonebars and had to fix 1 note with low sustain using a thicker spring in the higher register.

Tonight I measured the escapement on the bass side and low and behold it is 13 mm on the lowest bass note. The tonebars are all set to 3/8 inch using the tonebar adjustment screw.

How come the escapement is so much off from what the manual says? On the bass side it should be 6.35mm - 9.52 mm.

The factory installed shim is 3.9 mm. So even if I would shave off the complete shim, I would get to min 9.1 mm.

When the Rhodes arrived it had the tonebar escapement screws set even higher than 3/8 inch, I would say 12 - 13 mm. Thus the piano must have left the factory with a whopping 17 mm escapement.

Key dip is 10.6 mm.

So what do I do next? Shave of the shims?

Any ideas why this piano has this much escapement?

Thanks in advance,



there was a thread in 2008 discussing sustain problems with ne grommets+screws, but I want to bring this up again and find out if more people do have this problem?

I recently bought a MK2 from early 1980. Played nicely upon arrival, great sustain, but the grommets were seriously squished on some tonebars and the side-to-side motion was bad, some tonebars even touched each other resulting in ringing sound. But nice sustain on the higher notes.

So I ordered a VV grommet+srew kit from a dealer here in Europe. After installing new grommets from note #73 down to #58 I found that the sustain on at least four notes was almost completely gone with the new grommets. I btw. also set the escapement to 3/8" (width of a tineblock) at the same time. (Btw: at least ten screws from the VV kit have a much smaller shoulder so that the grommets do not fit as tightly. I figure this is done to adress notes where you get loss of sustain with overly tight grommets.)

Putting back in the old screws and grommets got the sustain back on two notes, or putting in the VV screws with the smaller shoulder. Raising the escapement a bit helped on another note and touching the tonebarscrews with a screwdriver or blocking the tonebar to the rail with a tineblock (screwing down the tonebar while the 3/8" tineblock of a broken tine is placed at the end to set escapement).

I really do not know what to do now. Find old grommets that are not to squished and install them in these notes?

Not all the old grommets were hardened, some look surprisingly good.

Do I only exchange the old grommets showing serious deterioration and leave the rest alone?

Any ideas welcome!



Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / Choking and Center Damper Pin
« on: September 09, 2012, 02:48:14 PM »
Hi gang,

just wanted to share an anecdotal story. I had my tonebars replated and cleaned the pickups using an pencil eraser (blue side), so after reassembling everything (and grinding the odd tines wich had uneven ends) I tuned and revoiced the whole piano.

I had some trouble with C4, which would choke on repeated hammer blows. I tried resetting the escapement on this note, tried everything I know and figured it had something to do with the bridal (bridle) strap. When fully depressing the key of C4 the damper arm would not go down as far as the dampers of the adjacent notes, the tension in the damper was not as stiff as in the other notes. I thought about replacing that bridal strap but figured I try resetting the overall tension of the dampers using the center damper pin. And low and behold backing of the screw a bit solved the problem. The dampers now go down evenly with the keys being depressed.

So you might check this as well if you fight with some choking notes on your piano. Btw: whilst disassembling the piano for a clean up since the tonebars were at the platers shop I managed to find out that my hammer rail was produced on February 6h, 1975.

I attached some pics of the harpframe and tonebars before and after replating. This really pays off if you are a visual guy.

I have a slightly "pulley key" #63 which did not bother me before but bother me now. Does anyone have a spare key #63 (B below C5) from a 1975 Rhodes?



Buying / Deleted
« on: August 17, 2012, 09:45:18 AM »


and this

Great sounding and looking Rhodes pianos. b3legene, if you are a member here, can you tell us a bit about your Rhodes pianos? Did you have somebody refinish the lids (the burgundy red one looks fantastic). Did you do that yourself?



The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Setting Let-off Wurlitzer
« on: August 06, 2012, 03:48:00 PM »
Hi gang,

my Wurlitzer 200A (chopped 206A) is really playing nice, but tonight I felt that I might need to tackle let-off again. Some days ago I did my final pass on leveling the keys and setting lost motion.

I have a very small amount of lost-motion on my Piano, the keys can be depressed only a tiny bit before the hammer moves. It is hard to measure the lost motion, but I guess it is approx. 0.8 -0.6 mm.

Concerning let-off:

some notes (3rd F, F#, G, G# and A) are a bit louder and do have a faster attack, so I guess I need to adjust the let-off distance on these. Do you guys go strictly by feeling/sound or do you acutally measure the let-off distance. If so, how do you measure it, since the hammer falls back very easily even when slowly depressing the key. It seems almost impossible to keep the hammer in the up position to measure the distance between hammer tip and underside of reed. Of course it is very tough to get your ruler inside and to sight down correctly.

So I wonder how this is actually down correctly.

Any help welcome.


The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Dating my Wurly
« on: August 02, 2012, 03:59:29 PM »

I had to replace the fallback felts for the fly on two hammers today (clicking sound when the hammer falls back) and took the time to finally look for some hints to figure out the date of my Wurlitzer 206A (chopped).

Serial-#: 114 794 L

On the Volume pot I could read:


I tried to figure out the date of the manufacturing of the pot, but could not really make the numbers compute (the numbers on guitar volume pots do seem to be different).

Can anybody help me out? Are those numbers any indication of the age? I do not have the original transformer since I imported a 115V into Europe and replaced the transformer (which is now of course gone), but I have a shabby pic of the transformer.

On the transformer it says:

208 716 or 298 716 or 203 716 and EIA606-737

Btw: I installed VV speakers and even got some original style screws from Morelocks back in the day. So that is why this 206A has the correct speaker screws. In the attached pic the legs were still missing.

Thanks for any hints and help!


The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Wurlitzer Soft Case + Gig Bag
« on: July 31, 2012, 02:28:21 AM »
Hi there,

I need a gig bag for my Wurlitzer 200A. I used to own a road-case (custom made), but it was heavy as hell and it took up quite some space for storing.

So I stumbled over this Wurlitzer Soft-Case + Gig Bag that is offered by Ken Rich Soundservices:

Does anybody have any experience with the bag? Any caveats?



The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Different keycaps over the years
« on: July 27, 2012, 05:20:48 PM »
HI there,

I wonder if there is a thread or page somewhere on the net that shows the different keycap styles used over the years and maybe a timeline of changes?

I know of:

1. fully-skirted pre 1974,
2. the two piece (with yellowed front most of the time and shiny white top) keycaps of somewhere between 1974 and 1975 and the sharp edged black keycaps
3. some 1975 MK1s do seem to have one piece keycaps (slightly thicker and more rounded) with matte/non-shiny black keys (ebony style sort of)
4. 1976 and on up to the last MK2s with the rounded Wurlitzer style keycaps?

My MK1 has the two-piece white / sharp edged black keys and has a 44xxx serial number (do not have the number at hand).

Unfortunately those key caps I do not like at all due to the sharp edges and cheap feel of the black keys and the tendency of the white keys to get hair-cracks.

Does anyone else have a specific taste in keycaps? I mean, this is the direct interface between player and Rhodes and should be of high importance to the player. Or am I just to sensitive?

I indeed plan on getting either a different Rhodes (later 70s style) or to get the keycaps replaced (I do have some slight cracks in the white keys, so I have an excuse ;-) really a lame excuse ;-) ;-)



Hi there, hopefully somebody can help me with my question:

I wonder if the namerail of a late 70s MK1 is interchangeable with the namerail of a MK2 from the 1980/1981?

Specifically: can I put a 70s Suitcase namerail with the slider controls onto a MK2 with a flattop hood?

Thanks in advance for any help on this!



Hi gang,

after messing with the original dampers in my MKI Rhodes (1974 or early 1975) I still am not fully happy with dampening or the action. I have new felts on the dampers but the dampers do seem wobbly even after straigthening them and restoring proper geometry of the arms.

Oddly enough the two highest octaves of my 73 have the later damper assembly (multi dampers). These do work much better and thus the higher notes do have a better action and tone!

I wonder if anyone has tried the VV repro single arm dampers? In the video they seem to work quite nicely?

Since there are already two multi damper assemblies in my Rhodes I wonder if I could simply try to get some of those and install them? Any experience with that from anyone here?

Thanks in advance for any help!


Hi there,

I finally got hold of a set of legs for my 206A (chopped) and bought some leg plates via

I am a bit clueless on where the leg plates need to be exactly attached to the bottom of the case. I have a low quality pic of the underside of a Wurlitzer 200, but the pic is taken from an angle and thus skewed.

I would be more than thankful if somebody could be so kind as to give me the measurments of the leg plates position or a least a clue on how to go about this.

Lets say we look at on of the leg plates on the rear of the piano.

The plates are triangles. One screw hole (I will denote this as hole #1) points to the corner of the case in the rear, the other two holes have a specific distance to the back egde of the case and the side edge. I hope I can get this across so someone might understand me, given that english is not my native language  :shock:  :oops:

Any help is greatly appreciated!

Thanks in advance,


Hi there,

I am looking for 5 tonebar sustain clips and a single tine for note #18.

Can anybody help me out for a fair price?



Preamps, Modifications & Upgrades / Backcheck Mod from Vintagevibe
« on: August 08, 2009, 11:15:13 AM »
Yesterday I received the Vintagevibe Backcheck Mod via "TasteundTechnik" (thanks Jens!) and today I swiftly installed it.

The 73 Kit comes with three spare Backchecks (very nice and thoughtful of the VV guys).

Installation was a breeze, albeit I had to change the geometry of the backchecks to fit my 1974 piano. The backcheck on the left is my modded one, the one on the right side as they come from Vintagevibe.

The backchecks work very nicely. The feel of the keyboard has changed but to the better. Much more better. No more bouncing hammers, nicer articulation.

One will find some need to tweack the backchecks to make up for keys that do not come back up all the way, but that is just a matter of some minutes.


I can wholeheartly put my thumbs up for this product.



SO I had this C1 note that was dull had no sustain and double-strikes, no matter what I did. Raising or lowering the escapment did not help. After swapping in the adjacent tonebar and still having the same problems, I figured it must be something with the hammer.

First I checked whether the hammer did move sidewards indicating a loose hammer flange. But that was ok. Then I finally noticed, that the wooden part of the hammer was tilted towards the pickups resulting in a different strike line than the other hammers.

I pulled out the hammer in question and it seems, that the wooden part had been misaligned from the factory. Ever so slightly, but it did have a profound effect. See pics for that.

Vintagevibe shows how to fix problems like this with all plastic hammers by applying some heat, but in my case the only fix was to either replace the hammer or to repair it.

I tried to cut away the glue with a sharpie and then to pull out the wooden hammer. Unfortunately there is a pin coming from the plastic butt part inserting in the wooden hammer and that pin (6.1 mm diameter) of course broke of. So I had to redrill the holes and install a replacement pin (6.5 mm) made out of aluminum. After glueing the hammer worked as it is supposed to do. No more dull tine sound and double strikes.

And whilst I was at it, I removed one more layer of the black cardboard shims on the bass side which resulted in a much better feel and sound.



The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Rhodes MK1 (new with pics!)
« on: February 15, 2009, 04:04:33 PM »
Hi Liste,

I finally got myself a Rhodes again. I had a MKII some ten years ago that I bought for cheap and completely rebuilt and then a nice MK1 Fender Rhodes that I sold as well (talk about being silly here).

So after some years without a Rhodes the bug bit me again and I had to buy yet another Rhodes.

It is a Mk1 73 that is in dire need of some major rehaul.

I started off with refluffing the keybushings and making sure the sidewards movement of the keys is at it's minimum (I need to turn some bushing pins for that).

I did not find a date stamp on the harp so I hope somebody here can help me find out the age of my Rhodes? There is a stamp on key number 8 (pics will follow soon): 3280 or 3-2801. Serial is: 44700

This piano has single dampers on the bass side and damper modules on the higher notes (after middle C), wooden/plastic hammers and all wooden keys.

Next up is a complete rebuild of the harp and I need to retolex the piano.

Thanks in advance,


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