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Messages - pianotuner steveo

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The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: 146b Hot Resistors
« on: January 05, 2021, 05:46:24 AM »
Yes, it is normal. Don't touch 'em!

Yes, you are going down a rabbit hole. Never put 2 layers of felt here. Reducing the dip that much will make the action feel choked/heavy, then raising the rail creates more issues that need to be dealt with.(key height, hammer stroke, escapement,damper issues)
Just use ONE layer of back rail cloth. The secret to reducing the noise is to NOT PUT GLUE directly under the part where the keysticks actually touch the felt. Only put glue (lengthwise,across the keyboard) on 1/2 of the felt where there is a gap between the felt and the keysticks. As wood glue hardens, it may cause a clicking noise when the keys fall back to their rest position.

It's not so much the thickness that reduces noise, but the softness of the felt.

The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: Dampers and Reed Bar Ringing Noise
« on: December 24, 2020, 07:36:45 PM »
Interesting. Let us know how you make out after changing those. At this point it doesn't sound like it's the dampers themselves.

The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: Dampers and Reed Bar Ringing Noise
« on: December 22, 2020, 06:22:22 PM »
No, don't add rubber washers. Could it be a broken ground wire?
It sounds almost like a bad cap too...or maybe a bad soldier connection?

The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Re: MkII Plastic Balance Rail Punchings
« on: December 22, 2020, 06:18:54 PM »
All front rail punching s are larger than balance rail punchings, but you may need to cut them since balance rail pins are so close together.

The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Re: MkII Plastic Balance Rail Punchings
« on: December 19, 2020, 04:10:04 PM »
I don't know that answer, but I do know that Schaff does not sell to the general public.

The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: Dampers and Reed Bar Ringing Noise
« on: December 18, 2020, 06:06:07 PM »
You can try depressing the pedal and holding it down, then gently squeeze the offending dampers with some needle nose pliers - this will close the 'v' shape then it will open again when you let go. This may help. The felt gets hard from age/dust/dirt, and sometimes this softens them enough to help.

Turn the power off so that you don't short the reed bar with the pliers.

The next step is about as easy, but try this first.

Try it on a few of the worst offenders first.

When gluing the rail felt, only glue 1/2 way. You do not want glue on the back half of the felt where the keys actually rest. This is to cut down on noise. Only glue the front half of the felt.

7/16" key dip feels better to the touch than 3/8". It makes the touch seem a little lighter. It is not absolutely necessary to even out the hammer line at rest. The hammers are not bent. Replacing them will not change this. It could be uneven felt on the pedestals.(or hammer cams)

Not sure what you mean by using the tine butt to measure key dip. Key dip is a key/key bed issue.

The tines have no real correlation to key dip. (Unless they are waaay out of whack- IE escapement super low)

The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: 2 Questions about Wurlitzer 206
« on: December 08, 2020, 06:57:16 AM »
In other words, if you buy a replacement 140/200/200A sustain pedal, it will work just fine on this piano. Only some early models such as the 112 used a different pedal.

 If you kept the pedal parts from the case bottom, they can either be made into a free standing (ugly) pedal with a few parts added, or you can sell the parts and put that money towards a pre made replacement. You can't just connect the old parts the way they are and have it work. You need the coupling piece that connects to the outer cable sheath and of course a base for the pedal.

I just want to add to my previous post- a grand piano action is far more similar than an ep action, but again, the parts are just way too large. A Wurlitzer or Rhodes hammer are a fraction of the size of an acoustic piano hammer. And a whip in a Wurlitzer is a fraction of the size of an acoustic piano whip (aka whippen)

The other thing is, ep hammers swing up and away from the keyboard. Grand piano hammers swing towards the keyboard. That makes the dampers farther away, so the cabinet needs to be larger (deeper) than an EP cabinet.

Acoustic piano hammers are way too large to be used in an ep.
You can't use upright parts in the manner you are talking about. It's just not possible.

The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: Low volume and no vibrato on model 206
« on: November 16, 2020, 05:39:21 PM »
I don't remember how to do it, I've only done it once and I believe it was a 206A...

Anyone else know what's going on?

The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: Low volume and no vibrato on model 206
« on: November 15, 2020, 05:24:17 PM »
Did you buy a vibrato kit or just a knob and pot? The 206 models do not have vibrato built in.

That's just about the craziest thing I've ever heard. I use some of those square foam interlocking pads for my keyboard in my basement to keep the dampness of the floor away. I wonder if something like that would be enough?

I'm not an electrical expert, but as you know, the voltage is more than double in the UK, so, that is a big factor. I was there once and at least 2 of the step down voltage adapters that my wife bought didn't work at all. I'm sure others will chime in, but I'm not sure what people have done in the past. Is there a more expensive, higher quality step down adapter available? I would look for one with an output voltage of 110-115v, not 120v if that is even possible.

Also, Ive seen resistors charred/ burnt, but I've never seen one melt...

Have you asked Grandma if you can buy it from her??

The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: Another 120 Oddity
« on: September 05, 2020, 05:50:18 PM »
And remove the death cap!!

The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Re: What's Wrong With My Rhodes?
« on: August 31, 2020, 06:31:34 AM »
I've never heard of Rhodes pickups making this noise. If you can solder, just try resoldering  the ground wire(s) for the pickups. You may want to ask VV if they've ever heard of an issue like this with their preamp.

Magnets and melodies: most Wurlitzer actions mainly need the Letoff adjusted. It's rare for other things needing adjustment unless mice were in it or someone that didn't know what they were doing messed with the action.
Just get the tool on eBay and learn how to do it yourself. It's much cheaper than hiring someone.

Who knows, maybe you will become a tech! That is pretty much how I started. My first Wurlitzer was almost unplayable when I bought it, and my first acoustic piano wouldn't stay in tune so
I took it upon myself to learn how to fix them!

Being a member of the PTG, I know a lot of piano techs, and as far as I know, I'm the only one within 100 miles or so that will touch them. Most piano guys refer to them as junk, or don't even know what they are. One of my friends (a tech) has offered me one for free, but it's been stored in a barn for years. I'm afraid to even see what's been living in it, but someday, I will look. (It's far away) it's either a 700 or a 720, he isn't sure.

Why would a piano guy refer you to an organ guy for the action? The action is basically a miniature grand piano action with some differences. Look for a different piano tuner. I'm the only one in my area that works on Wurlitzers, but not much call around here anymore. There should be someone near you that can do it.

There is not a lot of high end in a Wurlitzer.  The highest C is less than 3000 hz.
You may be able to bring out a little more bark with EQ and effects, but again, it has a lot to do with the reeds themselves. The 200A series(including 206A) uses thicker reeds than the 140s and non A 200s.

Also, NEVER file the hammer tips in a Wurlitzer. They are too small. Acoustic piano voicing involves filing and needling hammers. Never do this to a Wurlitzer, however.

The earlier non A 200's have better "bark"
There was recently a thread about this.

Hey congrats, and welcome to the forum. Tuning a Wurlitzer is not fun. To lower the pitch, first you can try adjusting the reed a little- if you loosen the mounting bolt, then slide the reed away from the bolt end, you may be able to drop the pitch enough. If not, solder needs to be carefully added to the solder pyramid. Be sure the reed does not short out against the sides of the pickup.

Early Letoff: if you do not own the Letoff tool, there is a guy on eBay that sells the best one available. ;D
The lower capstans that touch the keys will not help you, the upper capstans that cause the jacks to trip are the adjustments for Letoff. Yes, raising them towards the reeds will help. Only turn them a little at a time, it's easy to overcompensate. Middle E and F usually need help to turn them with long needle nose pliers.

I have no experience with replacing the electronics, but everyone who has done it seems to be happy with the results.

The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Re: Parts and repair
« on: August 23, 2020, 06:13:52 AM »
The price of screws has gone way up the last couple of years. You may get a few for a buck these days, but not a box full. Do you have any least 1 that you can bring to a store to match up?

The Fender Rhodes Electric Piano / Re: Manzarek's "Riders" iso track
« on: August 17, 2020, 06:12:23 PM »
If you look at the pics with the outtakes you can see it is definitely a stage piano. In at least one picture you can see the Wurlitzer that he used on a couple of tracks. (Queen of the Highway, I think?) and at least one track "Eye of the Storm" on Other Voices (post Morrison)

The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: Need Help Diagnosing a 200A
« on: August 11, 2020, 06:13:05 PM »
No! Do not replace the cap with wire! That is bad. If the cap shorts out, that's virtually the same thing as putting in a piece of wire. Just remove it. It is likely far easier in the long run to buy the kit from VV. Make sure you install electrolytic capacitors according to the correct polarity.

Someone was throwing out a 200A? Wow. I found a 120 waiting for trash pickup once, but never a 200A!

Yes, I rescued the 120. I'm kicking myself for not keeping it though.

The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: Wurlitzer 700 help
« on: August 11, 2020, 07:26:48 AM »
@ jam88, I think those wooden spacers were added by a previous owner. I've only seen the black rubber insulators/spacers on these early models. The later models have the whiteish plastic spacers.

Can anyone else that has seen /owns these early pianos chime in? Are your spacers black rubber?

Note to any newbies: Never replace these spacers with metal washers or you can short out your reed bar.

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