Author Topic: Backrail felt: how thick can you go?  (Read 141 times)

Offline bourniplus

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Backrail felt: how thick can you go?
« on: December 31, 2020, 08:34:39 PM »
Hey everyone, first, happy new year to all! I just received my MkI refurb kit from Vintage Vibe. While the Rhodes is apart I'm thinking of replacing the original backrail felt with new thicker one - or maybe a combination of red felt and green felt on top - in order to quiet the action.
Now, if I bring it up to a height similar to that of most acoustic pianos, that will reduce keydip and hammer travel significantly. So, I would have to shim the action rail accordingly, and the harp as well. Is there any other major problem I'm not thinking of? Am I going down a rabbit hole??

Online pianotuner steveo

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Re: Backrail felt: how thick can you go?
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2021, 10:17:04 AM »
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.
1960 Wurlitzer model 700 EP
1968 Gibson G101 Combo organ
1975 Rhodes Piano Bass
1979 Wurlitzer 206A EP
1980 Wurlitzer 270 Butterfly Grand
2004 Hammond XK3
2009 73A Rhodes Mark 7
2009 Korg SV-1 73
2017 Yamaha P255
2020 Kawai CA99
....and a few guitars...