Author Topic: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...  (Read 4029 times)

Offline goldphinga

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Here goes:

1. Mk2 Flat top lids (they were available from VV but no longer?)
2. Black faceplates for Mk2's and later Janus Rhodes pianos
3. Post '75 octave damper arm modules

Anything else?

Offline voltergeist

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #1 on: August 12, 2014, 08:37:04 AM »
88 harp covers
Restored or Overhauled: '65 A-model Sparkletop, '78 Suitcase 73, early-'75 Satellite 88, '81 MkII Stage 73, two '77 Mk1 Stage 73's, '74 Mk1 Stage 73
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Offline Olav

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #2 on: August 12, 2014, 08:59:08 AM »
  - 3/8" hard-wood shims that go over the aluminium harp supports. The mdf material usually disintegrates and makes the  harp slightly unleveled. I guess a lot of people don't have access to a proper table saw etc..

- Plastic bushings that mount the suitcase pedal to the wood supports, inside the amp cabinet. The damper rail bushings are smaller in diameter.

- The cheek block screw that goes under the name rail. It's a wood screw with threads halfway up. I guess the demand for these aren't to great but it's pretty hard to find them here in Norway at least.
« Last Edit: August 12, 2014, 09:03:35 AM by Olav »

Offline Ben Bove

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #3 on: August 12, 2014, 01:07:31 PM »
It's hard because you want to make parts you know you can actually sell as a vendor, some of them are hard to come by because I'm sure the demand is low.  But, in a small run it would be great to see:

1960s style and early 1970s style rear hinges
The 2 guide cups that go in the top of the suitcase amp cabinet to lock the piano into place, "door pulls"
Plastic bushing for the sustain rod that comes out of the top of the suitcase amp cabinet
Pack of multiple-sized shims, different thicknesses
Square rubber stand-off grommets for tonebar screw in upper register of Mark II and Mark V pianos
Spool of matching white tape to cover Mark 1 pickups in Mark II pianos
tonebar springs for 1960s square tonebars
tonebar screw felts for 1960s square tonebars
Mark V replacement hammers
Mark V butterfly latches for lid and pinch-clamps for harp cover
Grouped hammer flanges separate from the actual hammer combs
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Offline Olav

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #4 on: August 12, 2014, 01:39:20 PM »
Regarding the suitcase amp cabinet guide cups: I recently tolexed my amp and tried out two of the sustain guide cups. Had to tap them with a rubber mallet but they fitted like a glove.

Offline Ben Bove

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #5 on: August 12, 2014, 01:55:43 PM »
I know what you mean... the hole isn't a huge deal but you see the wood through it for those people that don't like that.  I guess you can always flat-black the wood to show less.
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Offline voltergeist

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #6 on: August 12, 2014, 02:17:11 PM »
1960s style and early 1970s style rear hinges

Those early 70's hinges are pure junk.  They are not worth leaving on the piano, much less reproducing, imo.  They're weak, undersized, and ridiculously easy to bend out of shape.  They work perfectly for throwing in the garbage, though.
Restored or Overhauled: '65 A-model Sparkletop, '78 Suitcase 73, early-'75 Satellite 88, '81 MkII Stage 73, two '77 Mk1 Stage 73's, '74 Mk1 Stage 73
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Offline Olav

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #7 on: August 12, 2014, 02:19:42 PM »
Were there originally a plastic bushing for the hole where the suitcase sustain rod pulls out of the amp cabinet? I noticed my old tolex had torn pretty bad around that hole... On top of the amp cabinet that is..
« Last Edit: August 13, 2014, 02:45:36 AM by Olav »

Offline Ben Bove

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #8 on: August 12, 2014, 04:48:51 PM »
Yes the hinges are definitely not as sturdy as the later model.  However, the later 70s-model hinges that are currently available - where the middle screw is higher and the hinge is more triangular in height rather than a flat rectangle... they do not fit on a silvertop lid.  As the lid rounds out at the top, the top of the hinge just out in the air because it's too big.  There used to be straight rectangular hinges that worked better.
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Offline voltergeist

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #9 on: August 13, 2014, 12:39:57 PM »
Yes the hinges are definitely not as sturdy as the later model.  However, the later 70s-model hinges that are currently available - where the middle screw is higher and the hinge is more triangular in height rather than a flat rectangle... they do not fit on a silvertop lid.  As the lid rounds out at the top, the top of the hinge just out in the air because it's too big.  There used to be straight rectangular hinges that worked better.

The late Mk1 hinges will fit on a sparkletop.  I put them on mine.  I think I lowered them a bit to keep the top of the triangle from protruding. 

I can understand keeping the original blade types on a sparkletop (which aren't actually hinges, anyway), though I chose not to do so myself.  On an early Mk1, however, I can see no reason at all to keep that type of hinge.  Keeping those early Mk1 hinges seems foolish to me, and most likely based on irrationally giving vintage purism greater weight than practicality, safety of the instrument, and common sense.  I consider it malpractice to restore an early Mk1 and keep those hinges.  They have no redeeming value.
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Offline Ben Bove

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #10 on: August 13, 2014, 01:14:43 PM »
That's interesting... I'd have to look at my silvertop lid.  I just remember not being able to get them low enough without the top sticking out, but I'm sure you know yours worked.  Not sure where the dimensional problem on mine is then - in the hinge version I have or the lid.

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Offline Student Rhodes

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #11 on: August 13, 2014, 03:27:23 PM »
Keeping those early Mk1 hinges seems foolish to me, and most likely based on irrationally giving vintage purism greater weight than practicality, safety of the instrument, and common sense.  I consider it malpractice to restore an early Mk1 and keep those hinges.  They have no redeeming value.

Well, that's one opinion...

If you got a hold of a very nice condtion pre-'76 Rhodes, would you replace the hinges straight away?  I sure wouldn't.  I can understand putting the later, more stout hinges on an original condition piano, as they do have better function.  However, I find them to be rather ugly, and aesthetically little better than a door hinge.   

Some people prefer having original equipment on a vintage piece of gear.  As a guitarist, I certainly do, even when "better" replacement parts are available.  For example, the Danelectro guitar bridge.  Crude, and in some ways an intonation compromise, but anything other than that piece gets into Frankenstein territory, and takes away from the charm of a vintage piece. 

But if I were going through the trouble of "restoring" a piano, I'd prefer to keep as much original as possible.   Because such a piano, in my world, would be the "set it and forget it" type.  I wouldn't play out with it.  That's what worn, but well serviced pianos are for.

Also coming from the car world, I see this more as a matter of restoring vs. customizing, or hot rodding.   All cool, just different.

 




Offline The Real MC

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #12 on: August 14, 2014, 12:29:29 AM »
I also put later hinges on my sparkletop.  Some may holler about vintage authenticity, but I didn't like those early hinges either.  They actually slipped off.  That's a major problem when you're carting the thing by the handles on the lid.  I don't trust 'em.

I'd like to see the square tonebars like those in sparkletops.  They really have a unique timbre, whether using Raymac or Torrington tines.

Offline voltergeist

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #13 on: August 14, 2014, 10:15:19 AM »
Keeping those early Mk1 hinges seems foolish to me, and most likely based on irrationally giving vintage purism greater weight than practicality, safety of the instrument, and common sense.  I consider it malpractice to restore an early Mk1 and keep those hinges.  They have no redeeming value.

Well, that's one opinion...

If you got a hold of a very nice condtion pre-'76 Rhodes, would you replace the hinges straight away?  I sure wouldn't.  I can understand putting the later, more stout hinges on an original condition piano, as they do have better function.  However, I find them to be rather ugly, and aesthetically little better than a door hinge.   

Some people prefer having original equipment on a vintage piece of gear.  As a guitarist, I certainly do, even when "better" replacement parts are available.  For example, the Danelectro guitar bridge.  Crude, and in some ways an intonation compromise, but anything other than that piece gets into Frankenstein territory, and takes away from the charm of a vintage piece. 

But if I were going through the trouble of "restoring" a piano, I'd prefer to keep as much original as possible.   Because such a piano, in my world, would be the "set it and forget it" type.  I wouldn't play out with it.  That's what worn, but well serviced pianos are for.

Also coming from the car world, I see this more as a matter of restoring vs. customizing, or hot rodding.   All cool, just different.

That the hinges should be replaced is an opinion.  That the early Mk1 hinges cannot perform their basic function without being damaged is a fact.  They're stamped in such a way that there's a gap behind the plate, so you can't even tighten them down without damaging them.  I've never seen an early Mk1 hinge that wasn't bent up on the case side.  In the past, I've fixed them up, and they just get bent up again.  A part that cannot perform its basic function is junk, and the early Mk1 hinges are junk.

There is no guitar equivalent, because guitars are not their own case.  The hinges do not affect sound in any way.  The hinges are a purely functional/practical component (with some aesthetic effect).  They are a functional component that cannot perform their only function.

Yes, any piano with those hinges I do for myself I would (and have) change out the hinges straight away, without hesitation.  I build for two people; myself and the person who will own it in 30 years.  No way am I going to leave a part on there that I know will fail immediately even if I fix it.  Some people may look at those original Mk1 hinges and think 'oooh, original!'.  I look at them and see a woefully inadequate piece of crap that can't do its job.  I would not go through the trouble of restoring a piano and leave doomed-to-fail junk on it.  We've had 40 years to find the weaknesses in the piano and figure out better solutions. 

Leaving the original hinges on because it doesn't leave the house anyway is like leaving a transmission that flakes out in 4th gear in a restored car because you only drive it in town anyway.

The 'restoration' vs. 'customization' argument is bunk.  You can customize without restoring, you can restore without customizing, you can restore and customize, etc.  And where does one draw the line?  The repro Tolex isn't an exact match to the original, so if you re-Tolex, is it then a 'customization' by definition?  As far as I'm concerned, restoration means restoring to returning the instrument to optimal appearance and function.  If one customizes in the course of a restoration, it does not negate it as a restoration.  It would probably make more sense to use modifiers, like 'factory original restoration' and 'custom restoration'. 

I'm currently in the final stages of restoring a '55 Bel Air 2 door hardtop, and though much is original, it has 4 wheel disc brakes and power steering.  Why?  Because 4 wheel drums and no power steering sucks.  Just like a crappy hinge that gets bent when you try to use them sucks. 

But, as always in the end, to each his own.
Restored or Overhauled: '65 A-model Sparkletop, '78 Suitcase 73, early-'75 Satellite 88, '81 MkII Stage 73, two '77 Mk1 Stage 73's, '74 Mk1 Stage 73
In Progress: 1 '78 Suitcase (2nd one), '70 KMC - Customized w/ Peterson 4x12, '77 Wurli 270

Offline freekey

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #14 on: August 14, 2014, 11:00:56 PM »
Quality metal logo reproductions
True mk1 mirrored name rail reproductions

Olav, I found hardwood shims at Rockler. I had to sand them down a tad but they work great.
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Offline voltergeist

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #15 on: August 15, 2014, 08:56:30 AM »
Quality metal logo reproductions
True mk1 mirrored name rail reproductions

I definately second that.  Metal logo repros would be awesome.

Mk1 mirrored name rails would be sweet, too.

Good call, Freekey.
Restored or Overhauled: '65 A-model Sparkletop, '78 Suitcase 73, early-'75 Satellite 88, '81 MkII Stage 73, two '77 Mk1 Stage 73's, '74 Mk1 Stage 73
In Progress: 1 '78 Suitcase (2nd one), '70 KMC - Customized w/ Peterson 4x12, '77 Wurli 270

Offline Student Rhodes

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #16 on: August 15, 2014, 09:11:40 AM »

That the hinges should be replaced is an opinion.  That the early Mk1 hinges cannot perform their basic function without being damaged is a fact.  They're stamped in such a way that there's a gap behind the plate, so you can't even tighten them down without damaging them.  [/quote]

In my case, as few times as I have to take the lid on and off, this issue seems like a simple fix.  A small metal plate with a couple of properly placed holes tucked under the stamped hinge in it could do the trick.  In a pinch, some washers would do.

But as you say, "to each his own."

Offline Olav

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #17 on: August 15, 2014, 09:11:51 AM »
Olav, I found hardwood shims at Rockler. I had to sand them down a tad but they work great.


Thanks! I'll check'em out!



I messed up the quoting.. Is it possible to delete posts?
« Last Edit: August 15, 2014, 09:18:43 AM by Olav »

Offline Olav

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #18 on: August 15, 2014, 09:15:28 AM »

Olav, I found hardwood shims at Rockler. I had to sand them down a tad but they work great.

Thanks! I'll check'em out!

Offline Tine-E

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #19 on: August 15, 2014, 11:02:46 PM »
"Quality metal logo reproductions
True mk1 mirrored name rail reproductions

Olav, I found hardwood shims at Rockler. I had to sand them down a tad but they work great."

I've used those sticks that are given at the paint section (for stirring paint in cans) of Home Depot or Lowe's and they can be sanded down. They work!

Offline Max Brink

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #20 on: August 18, 2014, 12:19:16 PM »
Quote
Square rubber stand-off grommets for tonebar screw in upper register of Mark II and Mark V pianos

If you're looking for these I have two or three in good condition that I saved... I drill a second tone bar screw in these sections so that voicing adjustments can be made with more accuracy like the earlier models. If anyone needs one just name a fair price and I'll drop them in the mail.


I feel the number one thing that there needs to be is square hammer tips for pre-75 pianos that sound like the square tips of the vintage pianos. The current tapered tips from both VV and CAE just don't work great on pre-75 pianos. There are far too many additional adjustments necessary (escapement, strike line, lowering damper arms...) that make the replacement too intrusive in my opinion. It obviously can be done, and both have a balanced sound when isolated from a piano with the original square tips but when played side by side with the square tips the squares win every time I have ever showcased them. The square tips have a unique sound that is lost when replaced with the tips that are currently available.

...It's surprising to me that the tapered tips were the first ones developed by both CAE and VV, as well as the ones that I used from Major Key a decade ago, were all tapered like the post '75 pianos... Why has there never been a proper square tip developed when the square tip era of the Rhodes' production has the sound that most people associate as the quintessential Rhodes tone?
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Offline Student Rhodes

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #21 on: August 18, 2014, 12:51:13 PM »
Quote
Why has there never been a proper square tip developed when the square tip era of the Rhodes' production has the sound that most people associate as the quintessential Rhodes tone?

I imagine they just figured there are more post 75 style pianos out there?
Did the switch to the tapered tip happen with the change to all plastic hammers, or were there pianos with all plastic hammers and square tips until they used up the supply?

Offline Max Brink

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #22 on: August 18, 2014, 12:56:09 PM »
That sounds reasonable. I also figure there is the common practice of rotating the tips 180 degrees to extende their useful life which you cannot do with the tapered tips.

I've seen the square tips through early '76 but most '76 pianos have the tapered tips.
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Offline JVC (Mark V)

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #23 on: August 18, 2014, 02:39:12 PM »
Mark V replacement hammers
Mark V butterfly latches for lid and pinch-clamps for harp cover
Grouped hammer flanges separate from the actual hammer combs
I'd like to see them available too, especially Mark V replacement hammers.

Offline Ben Bove

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Re: Rhodes parts we'd like to see available that currently aren't...
« Reply #24 on: August 20, 2014, 11:26:21 AM »
Yeah square tips did go through at least '75 with plastic hammers - again a possible using up of old stock, but the initial switch to all plastic hammers still saw the square tips
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