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Messages - geronimo

how do you like your pre-amp setup? i bought the 'mclaren harmonic clarifier' from major key. i was wondering if you ever tried them both to compare. mine has 3 controllers. 1- process.2-lo contour.3- gain. it really adds dimension to my stage 73 piano.
don't the internal speakers cut out as soon as you plug something into the output jack? at least that's what my 200A did when i had one in the 70's. i now have a 145b and in spite of the earlier model & the tube amp inside there is little buzz. I'm using a general kitchen extension cord that fits it perfectly and if i get buzzing i simply turn the plug around. you are right about the DI box. i think the DI box turns the signal into low impedance and you get a much cleaner sound. the 145b, unlike the 200A,  has outputs on the back. 1)external speaker--2) record player or tape recorder. along with the output jack on the front, i have many output possibilities. the old dog has a better bark that the newer model also. i'm looking for a music rack for this model if anybody knows of one for sale.
Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / philicorda
October 23, 2007, 04:20:31 PM
what does your phillips philacorda sound like? i've never seen one in the flesh but i've read a lot about them & they are very rare in the states. do you run it thru a guitar amp or a leslie? got any pix? I have an english vox continental, hammond C3, rhodes mark 1, wurlitzer 145b, hohner pianet N,& a hohner clavinet ll. i run the vox & hammond thru a leslie 330 speaker.
Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / moving the harp
October 23, 2007, 12:28:08 PM
wouldn't you have to drill new screw holes? even if the move is a micro-inch, the screw holes woun't line up right?
Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / silicon spray
October 19, 2007, 06:34:30 PM
be very careful on how much spray you apply on the felts. too much spray results in the breaking down of the glue that holds the felts to the pedestal. you should lightly spray each felt. do not saturate the felt material with silicon spray. good luck. Geronimo.
Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / piano voicing
October 19, 2007, 06:08:16 PM
O.K. Steveo. the best thing to do is like you said, hands on inspection. I will call you when i'm ready. it will be soon, i hope. Geronimo.
Quote from: "pianotuner steveo"Geronimo-this isn't the double striking pr
problem......this is more of a timbre related thing than anything..

Steveo, there are some hammers that strike and if you press the key hard enough, the hammer & tine kind of fuse together or get in the way of each other and the note mutes immediately.  after I strike & i hold key down with a little pressure, the tine damps out or blanks out. like you're taking your fingers & pinching the tine -thereby muting the tine. I noticed that with all the other tines there is none of this & the tine is clear of any interference. in fact the problem hammer, when pressing the key & holding the key down, the hammer stands higher than the neighboring hammers. I removed some of the paper shims under the front key pin. this did the trick, but the key sits lower than the rest of the keys, making for a bad action consistency. Do you think maybe it's the sustain mechanism or the bridle straps or what? it seems to me that something is interfering or out of line with the tine. when i press all the other keys, no matter how hard i press down, there is good clearence. thanks, G.
this practice is not recommended because each section of the tine/hammer assembly has different degrees of hardness. depending on the tone bar & tine the hammer tip will have to be a hardness grade that will get the most tone & timbre out of the key. i tried to swap out some lower end & midsection tips to fit on the 'heavy traffic area' as it is called, and i found out the tips were too soft to get any bark out of the tine.
you wouldn't want them. they're all funky & glue-ridden. the top & bottom octaves are in perfect shape. anyway, when i get my new set i will send them to you if you want.
I bought a replacement set of 88's on eBay. it was a good buy. all of the keys were taped together according to numbers and runs or octaves.But my rhodes is a 73 key job. so i just tried to keep a run going as much as possible using the replacements. but like the man said, these keys were all made on a one-shot deal according to the particular piano run or something to that effect. you may get thin keys or fat keys or warped keys. what i did was after i changed what i could using 10 or 12 keys runs, I  picked & fitted each remaining key according to fit & action. there is one important thing you gotta remember in this process. don't judge the key fit until you fully insert the replacement along with its' neighbor keys. fit about 3 or 4 keys together & make sure each key is seated fully to the keybed. a lot of times i thought the key was way off in fit, but after i put the next & previous keys in & fully seated all of the keys, they all fell into place nicely. The key numbers were all over the place but who cares? as long as i get a decent action. if you see a set of replacement  keys, I recommend you buy them & forget about trying to mess with your funky keys. the same goes for your neoprene hammer tips,if you ever get into that problem. Just buy new ones. hope this helps you out.
Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / Rhodes Mod Kit
October 18, 2007, 07:01:25 PM
I agree w/ keysandslots. your are now playing a Rhodes electric piano. as a rule, I play my Rhodes with a particular type of music, like jazz, Funk, R&B, Fusion. I don't use it for rock or classical or music that requires a more delicate touch. you have to match the instrument with the music. I used to use my Rhodes Suitcase for everything cause it was all i could afford. I even used it for country music. enjoy your Rhodes for playing music the way it was designed for. also, you must be careful with that silicon lubricant. you should apply a light spray on the red pedestal felts & let it dry. do not over spray the silicone lube because it breaks down the glue on the felts and the next thing you know all the felts will slide off of the hammers.
Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / crooked tines
October 18, 2007, 06:39:49 PM
the rear screw, or the screw closest to you on the tine assembly is the horizontal adjustment. the front screw is for vertical adjustment. there is also a pickup nut that you loosen and slide the pickup closer or farther from the tine. with these adjustments you should be able to get the sound you want.
In my experience, the neoprene hammer tips make all the difference in that clanky problem, which i also have on my 1975 Rhodes Stage Piano. 1975 is the year Rhodes switched to all-plastic hammer action. I don't think new tines are the answer. as for myself, i'm going to order a brand new set of neoprene hammer tips from Major Key or Vintage Vibe. They are all neatly color-coded & specified.  the action and tone on my 1975 is so inconsistent that i'm sick of interchanging & adjusting & swapping parts. I replaced all the grommets & felt washers & red pedestal felts and I got my Rhodes to sound almost good. I bought a McLaren Harmonic Clarifier from Major Key which brings out a lot of dynamics. So, I might as well replace all of the hammer tips with new neoprene ones. I believe this will solve all of my clanking sounds & dead notes. regarding steveo's "double-striking" problem, check out the  section describing & treating this problem on this website. there is a whole chapter dedicated to "double-striking". it may be on another Fender Rhodes website, I forgot which one. I'll let you know as soon as i locate it.
this has got to be the prettiest rhodes i ever did see. R U gonna sell it? or keep it? stupid ? i know. just curious just in case. 8)
i'm still not nearly satisfied with my action. it needs a lot of tweaking and adjustments and mostly work with the bridle straps, i think. and this is so difficult and tedious for me to do and i would rather pay someone to bring her up to par. i did most of the heavy replacing of parts. now i need a tech to finish her off.  but there is no one in my area who can do this properly. i brought the rhodes to a music store last year to do the felt work and stuff and they didn't know what they were doing. i ended up undoing what they did & did it all over again myself after paying them $250. so by then i had $600 invested in the rhodes. i spent another $250 for the new parts i needed & the harmonic clarifier. that's ok tho because these pianos demand a high price when finished up. is that your white & red rhodes there? cool as hell! did you do the paint job yourself? how does it play? what year is it?
i've had the pleasure (and the pain) of restoring a similar rhodes mark I 73'stage piano. year of manufacture-1975. i found it in a music store 2 years ago gathering dust. so i tried it out and in spite of its' bad looks and crooked and spaced out keys, the tone on this thing was absolutely beautiful! i was immediately in love and i bought it for about $350.  the sound was a lot better than my 2 suitcase pianos I bought previously, one in 1973 & the other, the upgraded 1979 suitcase.  the action in the used stage was real sloppy and used up. i bought a whole set of used rhodes keys to pick & swap from eBay. these keys were from an 88' so i had some extra keys to match up. i replaced the keys that needed it & it was a difficult process because you not only have to pick them out, they have to seat properly on the pins. after swapping & changing keys for a month or so, i was satisfied. now i had to fix all the action. i replaced all the felts, grommets and a few tines and a few hammers and a lot of neoprene hammer tips. it came out quite nice and plays quite well and i still retained that original beautiful tone without ruining it. i also bought a "harmonic clarifier by McClarren, put out by Major Key. the Harmonic Clarifier added some great results and some new sounds. with 3 different knobs you can add "processing" "lo contour" and "gain". W :lol: ith a good solid  amp or pa this is all you need to make that clarifier sing. check it out on Major Key. it costs $125 and it's easy to install. regards, tom.
i've had 2 fender rhodes suitcase pianos- 1- a new 1973, which i didn't like because of the bad action. then i bought another suitcase- a new 1979 which had the sliders & the phaser vibrato and it played much better with the new plastic hammers, i guess.. it was ok.i played it for 10 years. recently i found an old beat up stage piano in a music store & when i played it, it sounded beautiful! in spite of the lost action work , and it needed a lot of work, the tone was amazing without any obvious work or additions done to it. so i bought it & fixed it up . i put all new felts & grommets and replaced a lot of hammer tips & i bought a whole set of 88 used keys i found on ebay. i swapped & changed many of the keys as i needed them and as they sounded & fitted. now i have a great sounding fender stage piano that is probably worth close to $1500 according to the prices I've been seeing on ebay. i don't have any pix yet but i will post some just as is a 1975 stage with the cross bar legs. also i bought a McClaren  harmonic Clarifier & installed it and the sound is now brighter & more varied. i love it. it seems to me that the stage models sound better & brighter than the suitcase models. this is probably because you can run the stage piano thru any amp or board you want whereas the suitcase, you have to play thru the fender amp that comes with it, for the most part. the only thing i miss from the suitcase model is that lovely phasing vibrato.
I noticed you have an XLR input on your beautiful 88. that XLR is there for a good purpose. It brings your instrument down to low impedance which is much more cleaner & controllable. they are best used with a powered mixer board, where you would also plug your other keyboards into, as well as mics, rhythm units. i use the XLR input with my rhodes, wurly & pianet N. they are great sounding & they cut out all the buzz & hum quite nicely. i'm not an expert but the XLR can also be used with the fender amp of your choice. I hope this helps with your sound. again, nice Rhodes Stage Piano.
Lately, I've been putting this real cute dancer on top, sitting cross-legged w/ slit-skirt, microphone, the works. I'll tell you it brings in the drinkers and the $$$. one should never put anything on top of a rounded rhodes top. pick up a flat, corrogated top. I hear they're real sturdy. but they look ugly.
a wurly & a clav on top of a rhodes? yes maybe physics will also come into play when the plastic top on the rhodes cracks in half. i wouldn't put nothin' on top of my rhodes except maybe a moog-rogue, which weighed a mere 12 lbs. or so. what can we do to persuade you that the rhodes is the electric piano to have. not the old fender rhodes, not the late 70's rhodes but the 75' ,74' stage rhodes. you play one of those & i'm sure you'll be converted or at least impressed. I had a brand new 79' suitcase back in 79' & it sounded so dull I got pissed. last year i picked up a junky looking 75' stage rhodes because when i played it in the store it just had a beautiful tone. inside that awful looking piano came out a sound that forced me to buy it right then & there. previously i had 2 suitcase's- a 72' &  a 79' & they both were dull. after fixing the junky stage piano up by installing new felts, some new neoprene hammer tips and some adjustment, then a McClellen Harmonic Clarifier- i got the nicest sounding stage rhodes this side of the picket line. of course i love my 145b wurlitzer which i also had to fix up just a little.
rocksnob, when are you gonna show us your fender contempo ? now that's what i call a rare bird, you lucky stiff! does it have that steel guitar type stand? I always wanted to hear one of those & play one & most of all own one. my next project is to procure a fender contempo & set it up next to my english vox continental and run them both thru a leslie speaker. I also have a 75' rhodes that i bought cheap & fixed up real nice, with new hammer tips, felts, bushings, and a BBE harmonic clarifier made by McClennan, beautiful sound! will send some pix as soon as i get a digital camera.
I always loved joe sample's rhodes work on michael frank's "the art of tea". every song has great rhodes playing by joe. I always wondered if he used a suitcase or a stage rhodes on that album.
isn't that wurly a bit heavy to be setting on the rhodes? I agree with most people here on both ep's. the rhodes does sound and act more like a real piano but dig the fact that the wurlitzers' insides is designed like a real piano. hammers, felts, dampers, etc. it's the only ep that duplicates a real piano action, i think. but the rhodes sounds more like a real piano but the action design is totally alien to any former piano action design. go figure. i have the pleasure of owning one of each & i use the wurly in most rock/pop songs and the rhodes for more espressive jazzy & ballad type stuff. ever try to play r&r with a rhodes? it ain't fun. but with a wurly it's got it going with r&r all the way. but you can't beat that sound of the rhodes' expressiveness & versatility. I recently installed a BBE Harmonic Clarifier on the rhodes & the sound is totally awesome. i have a 75' stage model that i fixed up real nice. I also have a 145b wurlitzer, the last of the wooden case pianos. it sounds better than the newer 200a model in my opinion. it's got more of a bark. i used to have a 200a & i have to say i like the older girl more- for the sound & for that classic wooden piano style. it just looks for regal sitting there with that fancy music rack!
check out Michael Frank's "the art of tea". Joe Sample plays the sweetest fender rhodes sounds i've ever heard. i think every tune on the album has the rhodes on it except a couple of grand piano tunes which are equally as good. that album turned me into a fender rhodes freak!
many people don't agree but yoko ono was actually the 5th beatle. all you have to do is look at all the photos of her in the studio with the fab four. she sang backup and played some drums when ringo had the flu. you can also see her on the ed sullivan show debuting the beatles in 1964.
this sounds like the classic worn out pedestal felts located on the far end of each key. they should all be replaced with the replacement felt kit & follow the instructions carefully. there is a little trick you have to do to make a bump on the end of each felt. i did a replacement felt job on mine & it not only got rid of all the clatter & click but the action got tighter & the tone got brighter. good luck!
how do you tell if the tine is dead or dying? will there be visible cracks or telltale colouring? i think i might have a couple of these guys because i tried everything but change the grommets on these particular keys. i replaced all the felts, w/ the little hump on the end, i adjusted the pickup back & forth, i tried the 2 adjusting screws on top of the tine. so i figure, it's got to be the tine, or the grommet ,which i still have to replace as soon as i get them. there seems to be a little trouble in paying & shipping those darn grommets. it's been 3 weeks since i ordered them. could the grommets be the cause of the deadness of the tone or the tines or both? i know i presented this problem earlier and i got some good responses but the subject came up again so i inquire once more. thanks for all the help. this board is great!
Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / grommets
January 21, 2006, 07:46:32 PM
how do you tell if your bridle strap is worn? is it slacked? I thought the bridle strap only operated the damper or sustain felt. how would this affect the actual sound? I played mine with & without the sustain pedal depressed and found no difference in the sound. but give it a try anyway, it's the last thing that I can think of doing. do you have a new neoprene hammer tip on the clunky key? I tried changing the hammer tip on mine, but i don't think it was a new one. i think it was taken off another old rhodes. but it didn't improve the sound. I hope you found the answer with the bridle strap.
I totally missed the terminology of "escapement". what does that mean? also, returning to my "clunking" problem, could the neoprene hammer tips be the culprit?
I bought a set of new felts & followed the instructions. I took all the old felts off the pedestal & cleaned them. I then put the new felts on the back of the hammers w/ the little hump on the end. I sprayed lightly the felt & replaced the keys. the action tightened up and played much better. before the added felts, the action was loose & sluggish. I should like to know if anyone ever replaced the grommets. does replacing the grommets improve the sound & action also? there are several 'clunky' keys on the mid section that the tone is diminished by a clunking action as the hammer hits the tine. I'm hoping that replacing the grommets is the answer. the old ones seem to be squashed and broken & i'm sure the integrity of the original grommets is compromised whether squashed or looking normal. I have a 75 stage rhodes 73'. when i bought it it looked a bit trashy and the keys were loose and spaced. but the sound...the sound of this piano made me take the chance to buy it & fix it up. it sounded beautiful in spite of its' age. so after fixing it up, it sounds & looks even better. i owned both the suitcase models 71 & 79 and the their sounds could not compare with the stage. even in its' original state of repair, the sound was most pleasing with a lot of bell and good bass and of course the midships sounded strong and nice. it was the action that needed work. i return to my original question- will new grommets make much difference? will new grommets reduce the clunk & non-sound of the affected keys? thanks for any input. tom.
what is the benefit, if any, of having a rhodes w/ wooden keys than plastic ones?
I disagree with billy preston playing a rhodes on Let it Be. altho he played rhodes on most of the songs on that album, let it be sounds like a wurlitzer. earlier than that, the beatles used extensively, the hohner pianet N on several songs, most notably "the night before".