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Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / Re: Woven Damper Felts
« Last post by goldphinga on May 22, 2019, 03:34:20 PM »
Yep, these are not woven felts. They are standard felts that are grooved and glued to a red cloth layer as has been said. Woven felts were used on late MK2's and V's and did a much better job of stopping the tines, thought they do start to unravel over time.
Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / Re: Rhodes upper octave "scream"
« Last post by goldphinga on May 22, 2019, 03:32:41 PM »
What model of rhodes is this, and also what grommets did you use? Ive heard this chirping on MKV's which use the rubber standoffs- the lack of a second screw though good for sustain, makes the sound less stable in this area. So my thoughts are the grommets you've used may be too soft, and/or the springs are incorrect and possibly the screws are not mated well to the grommets used. Did you use VV grommets AND screws together? Or did you leave the old screws and put in new grommets? Its gonna be a process of elimination here. Also, as has been said, make sure the tine is tight to the tonebar and also that the screw and grommet is correctly seated in the tonebar too. When replacing the grommets and screws make sure that you seat the grommet in by hand so it mates correctly with the tonebar and centres into the spring nicely, THEN put the screw in- dont put them in together as you wont necessarily get the optimum alignment and seating which can cause the washers to vibrate and the tonebar assembly to not hold tight.
My advice would be to try softer tips in this area, (its not futile to change out tips at all!) Give some square 'white' tips a blast from VV which are softer than the standard graduated white tips and see if this improves things or alternatively, extend the yellow tips upwards into the white tip area and see if this helps.

Also, you can shave a little off the tip edge to remove the grooves and this will likely help too if you don't want to change out the tips. Also, changing out the grommets and screws in this area may well help- hardened grommets give a more pronounced attack. It may just be that changing the grooved tips for new white graduated tips will do the job too. But you are correct in as much as these tips and the woodcore tips do groove up quicker than other areas...
Parts, Service, Maintenance & Repairs / Re: Woven Damper Felts
« Last post by pnoboy on May 22, 2019, 11:35:21 AM »
These felts are not woven, though they are glued to a red cloth layer that is woven.  There is some debate as to which are better, flat damper felts or grooved damper felts.  The extent to which your hammers, pickups, and damper combs are aligned would surely be a factor.  If not well aligned, some tines may need to contact the felt dampers off center, which is likely not a good fit (literally and figuratively) to grooved felts.
The bass cut control does not muddy the sound.  However, Fender chose to use a 10k pot for the volume control, which does remove some of the sparkle from the sound.  A nice change can be made by changing the volume pot to a 50k audio taper, the bass pot to a 250k reverse-audio taper, and the capacitor to 10 nF.  These parts are usually in stock at Antique Electronics
Unfortunately that is the nature of the beast. As the tines get shorter a harder durometer is required to make them ring out (which is why the treble have maple core hammer tips)

Some have experimented with changing the transition with more of the mid range tips. Perhaps someone else who has attempted it can chime in but for me I like it and is a quintessential sound of the Rhodes on some recordings.
The Wurlitzer Electric Piano / Re: Bottom Capstan Screw
« Last post by funkylaundry on May 22, 2019, 05:17:40 AM »
What I usually do is I hold the hammer in place with a finger so it doesn't move and then I lightly press the key with my other hand and see how much the key moves before it's obstructed by the hammer. I don't actually measure it - I just make sure that each key has a "little bit of wiggle" before the hammer moves anywhere.
It’s not a Retrolinear issue. They did a great job.  It’s a a “Thelonius” issue.

My ears have always been partial to warm, soft tones. I just want to tame the clank or at least balance it out a little.


Any chance you could make a recording of it? Retrolinear has one of the best reputations in the restoration business. Without hearing it...I would not dream of making any recommendations.

What is your frame of reference for a Fender Rhodes? Most sampled or digital versions usually do not have the "character" that comes with electromechanical keyboards including the inherent noise of the upper registers from harder tips hitting shorter tines.

I just bought a refurbished Rhodes from Retrolinear. It’s a 1978 73 suitcase. The one thing that is bothering me with it is the graduated hammer tips.

Initially, I thought the problem was worn out tips. The notes start to clank abruptly at the B above middle C. I removed the lid and noticed that none of the tips had grooves in them until that B. Then I learned that the B (note 44 of 73) was a point where the tip hardness changed from 70 shore to 90 shore. I’m guessing that replacing the hammer tips (which Retrolinear strongly advised against) is futile. I thought the grooves were causing the clank but I’m now guessing the harder tips develop grooves more quickly.

The sound goes from nice, warm and round to percussive and clanky. I don’t like it. It’s abrasive to my ears. The lower and middle registers have great bark when pushed a little and sound perfect.

Anybody else run into this problem?

Any good solutions for this?

Thanks so much for your guidance and expertise.

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