Author Topic: Strange pedstal mod - should I change?  (Read 3237 times)

Offline BenH

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Strange pedstal mod - should I change?
« on: May 28, 2010, 10:37:14 PM »
Firstly its my first post here, and thanks to everyone for making this forum such an invaluable resource!

Each and every key pedestal has been cut down at the back half, does anyone know anything about this mod? It would be a big job to putty them all up again, not sure if its worth it..



Cheers,
Ben

Offline jim

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Strange pedstal mod - should I change?
« Reply #1 on: May 28, 2010, 11:57:31 PM »
dang.

how did it feel to play?

i reckon to fix it might be easier to cut the whole pedestal off and replace it maybe?

but you'd want it to be perfectly level on top. mmm, ergh.

Offline jim

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Strange pedstal mod - should I change?
« Reply #2 on: May 28, 2010, 11:59:04 PM »
i'd be worried about the condition of the underside of your hammers too.

Offline Rob A

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Strange pedstal mod - should I change?
« Reply #3 on: May 29, 2010, 08:55:43 AM »
That's a really amazing picture though. Are you a photographer?

Offline Tim Hodges

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Strange pedstal mod - should I change?
« Reply #4 on: May 29, 2010, 04:29:44 PM »
Quote from: "Rob A"
That's a really amazing picture though. Are you a photographer?


One thing you always need to remember Rob, use the macro lense. It makes anything small or near look awesome.

T
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Offline Rob A

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Strange pedstal mod - should I change?
« Reply #5 on: May 29, 2010, 06:01:31 PM »
Yeah, and depth of field with the aperture and all. But I really like the background too. That picture tells as much as most posts and then some--we don't even have to ask what his intentions are cause the parts laid out in the background there let you know he's got it all apart for a full refurb.

Sorry for the digression here, I just liked the pic.

Offline Tim Hodges

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Strange pedstal mod - should I change?
« Reply #6 on: May 29, 2010, 07:10:02 PM »
Quote from: "Rob A"
That picture tells as much as most posts and then some--we don't even have to ask what his intentions are cause the parts laid out in the background there let you know he's got it all apart for a full refurb.

Sorry for the digression here, I just liked the pic.


I see what you mean :-) oh and congratulations on reaching over a 1000 posts.

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Offline BenH

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Strange pedstal mod - should I change?
« Reply #7 on: May 29, 2010, 10:49:15 PM »
Quote from: "jim"
dang.

how did it feel to play?

i reckon to fix it might be easier to cut the whole pedestal off and replace it maybe?

but you'd want it to be perfectly level on top. mmm, ergh.


Thanks for the replies everyone.
Jim, the action was pretty bad. I've ordered the full restoration kit from vintage vibe so maybe I'll try rebuilding one pedestal and comparing with a cut down one.

At this stage everything is in such worn out condition its hard to say whats making the action bad - maybe its the bushings, maybe its the pedestal felts, maybe its the cut down pedestals. I guess I'll find out!

Rob, no not a photographer haha thanks though!

Cheers,
Ben

Offline jim

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Strange pedstal mod - should I change?
« Reply #8 on: May 30, 2010, 07:57:27 PM »
i'd say without a doubt it's the pedestals.

step one; fix the pedestals.

restoration kits will not help until after this is done.

Offline BenH

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Strange pedstal mod - should I change?
« Reply #9 on: May 31, 2010, 09:30:47 PM »
Quote from: "jim"
i'd say without a doubt it's the pedestals.

step one; fix the pedestals.

restoration kits will not help until after this is done.


Ah dang that really sucks. I think you're right though: the smaller surface area seems to be causing a lot of bounce in the hammers

Well I have access to a laser cutter at uni so I should be able to fabricate the new pedestal blocks fairly easily.
But this really just made my restoration a lot more work!

Some questions:
1. What sort of wood should I use?
2. What should I use to cut the existing ones off? A saw/knife etc?

Thanks
Ben

Offline Rob A

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« Reply #10 on: May 31, 2010, 10:40:39 PM »
1. I think basswood is the original material for the keys.The grain in the pedestals makes me think of maple, but I'm not positive. It seems like a hardwood like maple would perform better. There are a number of hard maple parts in a Rhodes (keybed parts).

2. I'd be very tempted to build a jig that held the key in a fixed position so you could use a router to trim away the unwanted material. It could be very repeatable and quick with the right setup, and you could get a glue-ready edge. You wouldn't need to take the whole pedestal off from the looks of the photo. I'd probably also build a jig to glue the parts together consistently.

You mention having a shop--I've always wanted to try PTFE or UHMW pedestals (lower friction is generally considered an improvement). You have a golden opportunity in disguise here. I have no idea how to attach the plastic parts to the wood, but I'd say there's no real reason to insist on pedestals being wood. And the material may well be cheaper than maple for you.

Offline jim

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Strange pedstal mod - should I change?
« Reply #11 on: June 01, 2010, 01:23:05 AM »
oh yeah Jig sounds genuis!


can i ask where you got this rhodes?

Offline BenH

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Strange pedstal mod - should I change?
« Reply #12 on: June 01, 2010, 07:48:04 AM »
Quote from: "Rob A"
build a jig


Would this have to consist of anything more than a simple clamp?

Quote from: "jim"
can i ask where you got this rhodes?


It was recently on eBay. A guy in sydney had it in storage and didn't know if it worked. He said he had originally bought it at a garage sale!

Offline Rob A

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« Reply #13 on: June 01, 2010, 05:21:50 PM »
I was envisioning a surface (plywood scrap) with a hole in it through which you stick the pedestal, and a fence of some type that you clamp the key to to make sure it's registered accurately. But whatever works, really.

Offline jim

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Strange pedstal mod - should I change?
« Reply #14 on: June 03, 2010, 01:05:52 AM »
ha I bidded on that thing!

i had another idea while nearly asleep the other night,
perhaps you could remove the felt and add a kind of thin shim sized piece of something over what's left of the key pedestal and glue it, the maybe fill the triangle space that is created with filler?

it would be an instant flat surface.

then shim the same thickness under your hammer rail and everything is back to normal.

Offline BenH

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« Reply #15 on: June 03, 2010, 04:36:57 AM »
Quote from: "jim"
ha I bidded on that thing!

i had another idea while nearly asleep the other night,
perhaps you could remove the felt and add a kind of thin shim sized piece of something over what's left of the key pedestal and glue it, the maybe fill the triangle space that is created with filler?

it would be an instant flat surface.

then shim the same thickness under your hammer rail and everything is back to normal.


Hmm that could be a more simple approach, then i'd just need to sand the sides which would require less precision...

I follow everything except "then shim the same thickness under your hammer rail" - can you explain what this means? What is the hammer rail?
Keep in mind I'm looking at installing the miracle mod (bump mod) as well.
Thanks Jim!

Ben

Offline jim

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Strange pedstal mod - should I change?
« Reply #16 on: June 03, 2010, 07:53:47 PM »
the hammer rail is the rail of aluminium that all your hammers and dampers are screwed onto.

It's a piano out of the case job,

don't know if your piano is out of the case, but if not, to get it out,
there are four screws underneath your piano that hold it in. two on the left and two on the right big at the back and smaller at the front.
undo these,
then you can lift the piano out by grabbing the aluminium blocks that hold the harp on. ( alot easier/lighter with the harp off)

to get to the hammer rail, remove the harp, the sustain rail,  unscrew the dampers,

then you should see five big screws along the rail. unscrew these being aware that underneath the piano they bits they are screwed into may drop out.

then you need to unscrew the big blocks at each end that the harp sits on. Each has two nuts, like a man.

it is between this rail and the blocks that shims have been put many times on many a rhodes. Yours may even already have shims.

the height of the hammer rail effects action greatly, and if you're doing a bump mod it will effect it even greter-er. As the hammer needs to be sitting in the right place for the mod to feel good.

that mod will definitely make the piano easier to play, but when done wrong can take away the sensitivity of touch.

Offline BenH

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Strange pedstal mod - should I change?
« Reply #17 on: June 03, 2010, 09:39:22 PM »
Cool, so basically if I'm raising the pedestal by 1mm i need to raise the hammers by 1mm. Makes sense!

One last strange thing about the action is that the balance and guide rail felts were shimmed way up - about 15-20mm in total height.
I took all of that out so now I've just got the white felts and green felts. Is that correct for the right height?
How high should my keys sit above the balance and guide rails?

Thanks,
Ben

Offline jim

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Strange pedstal mod - should I change?
« Reply #18 on: June 04, 2010, 02:47:25 AM »
wowzers that's high, what were they shimmed with?

do you mean like,metal washers around each pin or something?

there are supposed to be very thin paper or cardboard washers which level the keys, it's good to leave them in place cause it's a hell of a job leveling keys.

but yeah if it's like, metal washers or something, that's not right, you should just have the felt and some paper or maybe thin carboard washers.

Offline BenH

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« Reply #19 on: June 04, 2010, 10:52:00 PM »
Quote from: "jim"
wowzers that's high, what were they shimmed with?


The guide rail had these additional weird felts put in (seemed like bits of carpet or something?) as well as a strip of cardboard along the whole rail.
The balance rail had several cardboard and paper shims under each felt adding about 10mm..

I'm just disappointed someone has gone to all this trouble without knowing what they were even doing!

Anyway, I'll hopefully start work on the pedestals soon - keep you all posted!

Offline jim

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Strange pedstal mod - should I change?
« Reply #20 on: June 04, 2010, 11:23:44 PM »
wow I wanna pick this person's brain!
then do everything opposite!