Author Topic: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar  (Read 9436 times)

Offline Tehu

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Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« on: June 12, 2015, 07:11:38 AM »
Hi, I just buy my second Rhodes piano as a restoration project (My first being a nice Rhodes Mark I 88 Suitcase 1977). A pretty rought Rhodes Mark II 73 from 1981 payed not that much. There's a significant amount of rust on the tines, and the tuning springs are stuck in that rust (I see other topics, but I don't if anyone see this amount of rust?)
I would like to know if there's a good product that can eliminate the majority of the rust, I can do the rest by hand.
I don't want a perfect Rhodes, just to be in tune and this will be my experimentation Rhodes to test different setup, no recording or live playing. surprisingly, the wood parts aren't affected.
here are some picture :


Look pretty good from the outside, no cleaning done yet


Sooo rusty, this been sitting in a wet basement, maybe condensation under the plastic cover.


Tuning spring stuck in rust

Thanks for further help!

Téhu



Rhodes Mark 1 Suitcase 88 1977, Wurlitzer 200a, Columbia Elepian 713, Yamaha CP60M, Nord Electro 2 61, Korg MS20mini, Arturia Minibrute, Sequential Prophet 2002, Akai MPC2500, NI Maschine MKI&MK2, Ibanez UE-405

Offline Tehu

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2015, 08:47:17 AM »
I just tried Glass Bead, really effective, and we can now see the damage on the tine!!



Rhodes Mark 1 Suitcase 88 1977, Wurlitzer 200a, Columbia Elepian 713, Yamaha CP60M, Nord Electro 2 61, Korg MS20mini, Arturia Minibrute, Sequential Prophet 2002, Akai MPC2500, NI Maschine MKI&MK2, Ibanez UE-405

Offline David Aubke

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2015, 09:11:06 AM »
Glass bead blasting is probably a little better, but I would use the brass wire wheel on my bench grinder for that mess.

Actually, I'd probably replace them. That's way more rust than I've ever seen on a tine and the resultant pitting looks like a deal-breaker to me. I've left a few lightly pitted tines installed without any obvious trouble - they sounded OK and didn't break while I still had the piano. But those look pretty bad.
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Offline JanneI

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #3 on: June 12, 2015, 09:16:13 AM »
Here's a pic from my project. I used dremel and scotch brite wheels to clean the tines. Good luck with those, I'd be interesting to hear if you got those cleaned and working!

Offline Tehu

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #4 on: June 12, 2015, 09:50:28 AM »
Thanks for the reply, i'll try to Glass shot every tines/tonebars, and yes, i'll post audio demo.
I know these tines will be fragile, but i'm not an heavy player, in 7 years, I only broke 1 tine on the 4 pianos I owned.

Right now, almost every tines is like that, except the extreme bass. All the pickups works (Lucky me) and with the rust, its waaay out of tune, and the harmonics are detunes too.

The touch is light and the wood is OK.
Rhodes Mark 1 Suitcase 88 1977, Wurlitzer 200a, Columbia Elepian 713, Yamaha CP60M, Nord Electro 2 61, Korg MS20mini, Arturia Minibrute, Sequential Prophet 2002, Akai MPC2500, NI Maschine MKI&MK2, Ibanez UE-405

Offline Tehu

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #5 on: June 12, 2015, 12:54:00 PM »
Before and after glass shot :

Rhodes Mark 1 Suitcase 88 1977, Wurlitzer 200a, Columbia Elepian 713, Yamaha CP60M, Nord Electro 2 61, Korg MS20mini, Arturia Minibrute, Sequential Prophet 2002, Akai MPC2500, NI Maschine MKI&MK2, Ibanez UE-405

Offline Ben Bove

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #6 on: June 12, 2015, 04:18:51 PM »
I have come across a piano that had the tines as rusty as this.  What happens is that the tines do start breaking, even on regular playing.  The tines break where the structural integrity is weakest and the most metal has corroded away, because the tines flex on strikes.  Predominantly in the middle "heavy traffic" area.

Before you invest way too much tine into cleaning up all the tines on the piano, if you're keeping it to play - play the piano for a month or so and see if tines start breaking.

The old rusty piano I'm speaking of, broke about 6 tines in a month.
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Offline The Real MC

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #7 on: June 12, 2015, 06:34:50 PM »
Surface rust can be removed, but this rust has permeated to the internal cavities of the metal where it is impossible to remove.  I'm afraid they are beyond salvaging.

Offline goldphinga

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #8 on: June 13, 2015, 01:17:59 AM »
Yep. Unfortunately the rust has eaten the tines away. There's no way they will ever sound good or a their best. The pitting is so severe that the oscillation of the tines is bound to be affected as well as sustain and clarity. I think you're honestly best selling the good parts from the piano and not wasting any more time on this one. It's going to end up being totally uneconomical to repair- ie a set of new tines is going to be way more than the piano is worth. Sorry.  :-[
« Last Edit: June 13, 2015, 02:49:42 AM by goldphinga »

Offline Peter Hayes

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #9 on: June 13, 2015, 08:47:01 AM »
Every now and again I see a full harp (with pickups, tines and tone bars) for sale on Ebay. If the rest of the piano does not have excessive water damage, this could be a fix.
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Offline squarebubble

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Offline Tehu

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #11 on: June 15, 2015, 08:36:48 AM »
Thanks for your replies!!

I don't want to invest that much cash on this, but I have time and good motivation!
Parting out this Rhodes isn't an option for me, i don't wan't to do that, this is a very complete piano and I don't wan't to make money over it, i'm just a Rhodes lover i think!

I'll continu my process, last week end I cleaned the bottom case, scrubbed the guide pins (That was badly rusted), changed the tine/tonebars hardware, cleaned all the keys. This week i'll be blasting all the tines/tonebars (It's free, I make this a my job) and after that, this will be the ultimate test.

My only concern is that the tuning springs can't move, I have to find a product that could remove the rust between the tine and tuning spring.

Thanks also for the ebay link, but i'm in canada and I can't see the auction.

Last question, is there a structural utility of the ''Crossbrace'' on the harp between the tines/tonebars and pickup section? I remove the 2, and I don't see any structural weakness. Maybe this is when we move the piano?

Here's picture of the process :






Rhodes Mark 1 Suitcase 88 1977, Wurlitzer 200a, Columbia Elepian 713, Yamaha CP60M, Nord Electro 2 61, Korg MS20mini, Arturia Minibrute, Sequential Prophet 2002, Akai MPC2500, NI Maschine MKI&MK2, Ibanez UE-405

Offline laberge

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #12 on: June 15, 2015, 06:15:22 PM »
Thanks also for the ebay link, but i'm in canada and I can't see the auction.

Last question, is there a structural utility of the ''Crossbrace'' on the harp between the tines/tonebars and pickup section? I remove the 2, and I don't see any structural weakness. Maybe this is when we move the piano?

As everyone has said, you're going to need to replace those tonebars. They will break when you stretch tune them.

The harp braces/harp brackets are very important apparently as I did not get any with my piano when I bought them but threads here have mentioned they will change the sound of the harp if not installed.

http://ep-forum.com/smf/index.php?topic=2759
http://ep-forum.com/smf/index.php?topic=1211

Honestly if you're in Canada, part the piano out, test the demand on craigslist or put the parts on ebay. If you got the piano for cheap, you'll easily make your money back in a few months time. Sell any part for less than VV prices and it'll go.


Offline Tehu

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #13 on: June 16, 2015, 07:01:51 AM »
Thanks for the reply!

I perfectly aware that the tines gonna break one time or another, but i take this as a test bench, to test different setting. Parting out isn't an option, in Montreal there's not a big demand for part, this one stay on craigslist for months whitout any big interrest, and parts are sold really cheap! I think people are watching for full working piano.. and Ebay, i don't want to ship anything.

Thanks for the info for the harp bracket, I blasted them and reinstalled.

I'll continu with my process, yesterday I installed half of the tonebars/tines with new hardware, I've been able to ''derust'' the tuning springs, then I kind of ''tune it'' and it play! Some bass note are oscillating very strangly as mentionned, its was foreseeable. I'm surprised that this piano is ''playable'' without any big part remplacement! Here some picture of the weird tuning, spring are waaaay to far across the tine and it make less substain (I was expecting that)







Now i'm thinking about shifting the tines 1 or 2 semi-tone lower, to be able to raise the spring a little bit.
As i say, I'm not working on a ''working Rhodes'', i'm bench testing things!

Thanks!

 

Rhodes Mark 1 Suitcase 88 1977, Wurlitzer 200a, Columbia Elepian 713, Yamaha CP60M, Nord Electro 2 61, Korg MS20mini, Arturia Minibrute, Sequential Prophet 2002, Akai MPC2500, NI Maschine MKI&MK2, Ibanez UE-405

Offline David Aubke

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #14 on: June 16, 2015, 07:44:11 AM »
Do you know if all of your pickups are working? Curious because the ones with white tape are notorious for not holding up under adverse conditions.
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Offline Tehu

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #15 on: June 16, 2015, 10:03:13 AM »
Luckily, the majority of the pickups works, maybe 1 or 2 with less volumes
I don't know why everybody say that the ''White tape'' pickups have tendency of breaking more often then the other (clear tape), its my second Rhodes with white tape, never had trouble with them.

This is a particular exemple of really rusty hardware, but i don't know why, the pickups wires don't seems so affected by the overall rust, i must say that they are pretty clean (pickup wire), but the pickup tips are so corroded, non-sens!

Rhodes Mark 1 Suitcase 88 1977, Wurlitzer 200a, Columbia Elepian 713, Yamaha CP60M, Nord Electro 2 61, Korg MS20mini, Arturia Minibrute, Sequential Prophet 2002, Akai MPC2500, NI Maschine MKI&MK2, Ibanez UE-405

Offline Tehu

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #16 on: June 17, 2015, 07:53:48 AM »
Yesterday I installed the 30 last tonebars/tines, tuned them and I finally could play this thing!
It sound better than expected, but had a lot of issues.. this will increase my skills level for shure!

Here some issues I have, and I know that the problem is probably 95% due to the bad corrosion on the tines
-5 or 6 bass tines are oscillating (kind of tremolo), I tried to adjust the distance between the tine and the pickups to minimize as possible the trouble
-Tines sound more dull on the middle/upper register
-Less substain on higher notes (I always struggle on these)

The middle register is pretty good, but the overall keyboard have a lack of sustain compared to my other Rhodes. 2 dead pickups, 1 broken tine.. its not bad!
Btw, i didn't removed the rust on the pickup, it will be my next step.

Do you think that rust on pickup affect the sound?





Rhodes Mark 1 Suitcase 88 1977, Wurlitzer 200a, Columbia Elepian 713, Yamaha CP60M, Nord Electro 2 61, Korg MS20mini, Arturia Minibrute, Sequential Prophet 2002, Akai MPC2500, NI Maschine MKI&MK2, Ibanez UE-405

Offline David Aubke

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #17 on: June 17, 2015, 08:34:55 AM »
You might check your strikeline. A bad strikeline will play havoc with your sustain.

http://www.fenderrhodes.com/org/manual/ch4.html#4-5

Wildly oscillating tines can often be tamed with Vintage Vibe's Tine Stabilizers. Or you could try the way they did it at the factory and install two springs for the escapement screw. The Tine Stabilizer includes a stiffer grommet that can handle the additional pressure.

http://www.vintagevibe.com/products/fender-rhodes-custom-tine-stabilizers?variant=899480295
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Offline Tehu

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #18 on: June 17, 2015, 09:06:14 AM »
Thanks David,

originally, this Rhodes had two springs on lower tonebars, I didn't put double back, but if you tells me that could help out the tine oscillation, i'll try it for shure! Thanks!!

My hammer tips are badly worn on the middle/upper register, i'm sure changing them will help. I got a set in order right now!

This restoration makes me want to add the miracle mod on my Suitcase 88 from 1977, i really like the light touch of the later piano!

Thanks a lot for this help!

Rhodes Mark 1 Suitcase 88 1977, Wurlitzer 200a, Columbia Elepian 713, Yamaha CP60M, Nord Electro 2 61, Korg MS20mini, Arturia Minibrute, Sequential Prophet 2002, Akai MPC2500, NI Maschine MKI&MK2, Ibanez UE-405

Offline David Aubke

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #19 on: June 17, 2015, 09:12:20 AM »
The Miracle Mod is not commonly installed on late-model pianos such as your 1981. By then Rhodes had finally figured out how to shape their key pedestals. I think I've read where others were unhappy with their late-model action because they felt the factory bump was misplaced so there may be room for improvement.
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Offline Tehu

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #20 on: June 17, 2015, 10:27:06 AM »
yes, its not the miracle mod, its factory bump on key pedestals!

Personnally, i really like the feel, and strangly its very different from my first Rhodes i had 6 years ago (MKI from 1980, maybe MKII with MKI hardware) that has the bump, but the feeling was heavy!
Rhodes Mark 1 Suitcase 88 1977, Wurlitzer 200a, Columbia Elepian 713, Yamaha CP60M, Nord Electro 2 61, Korg MS20mini, Arturia Minibrute, Sequential Prophet 2002, Akai MPC2500, NI Maschine MKI&MK2, Ibanez UE-405

Offline Tehu

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #21 on: June 17, 2015, 10:48:11 AM »
Here's a little video to show you how it sounds! (Don't look at my playing, i'm not a really good keyboard player)
You can hear some of the bass oscillating!

I just had it ajusted pretty quick, still works to do!

Rhodes Mark 1 Suitcase 88 1977, Wurlitzer 200a, Columbia Elepian 713, Yamaha CP60M, Nord Electro 2 61, Korg MS20mini, Arturia Minibrute, Sequential Prophet 2002, Akai MPC2500, NI Maschine MKI&MK2, Ibanez UE-405

Offline camaro guy

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #22 on: June 17, 2015, 11:11:53 AM »
That doesn't sound bad at all.  Nice work!  I like the chord progression, too.  When I first saw those tines, I thought "No way."  But they sound pretty decent.  I wonder about whether they'll snap off at some point, but until that day comes, play it!

Offline Tehu

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #23 on: June 17, 2015, 01:02:27 PM »
Thanks!

I'm also surprised about the sound of the tines, do you see the position of the tuning spring across the tine? Weird positionning, because in the original position, i was getting almost 2-3 semi-tone lower the target note

That's exactly what i'm gonna do, play it until tine breaks! I have to find a crazy deal on tines, i don't have big budget for this piano!

Xavier
Rhodes Mark 1 Suitcase 88 1977, Wurlitzer 200a, Columbia Elepian 713, Yamaha CP60M, Nord Electro 2 61, Korg MS20mini, Arturia Minibrute, Sequential Prophet 2002, Akai MPC2500, NI Maschine MKI&MK2, Ibanez UE-405

Offline David Aubke

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #24 on: June 17, 2015, 01:29:54 PM »
If you're interested, here are my experiences with both the VV Tine Stabilizers and double escapement springs.

Tine Stabilizers
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UMNzEs6EAsI

Double escapement springs
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-kR96lp46fw
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Offline Tehu

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #25 on: June 17, 2015, 02:16:07 PM »
Wow, that exactly what the tine do, and i got some that touch the other too!
Thanks a lot for your video

Xavier
Rhodes Mark 1 Suitcase 88 1977, Wurlitzer 200a, Columbia Elepian 713, Yamaha CP60M, Nord Electro 2 61, Korg MS20mini, Arturia Minibrute, Sequential Prophet 2002, Akai MPC2500, NI Maschine MKI&MK2, Ibanez UE-405

Offline Tehu

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #26 on: June 25, 2015, 07:44:53 AM »
Hi, just to keep you posted.
The restoration is still happening, here what I did last week :

-Finished blasting all the tines/tonebars
-Changed all the wood screw/washer that hold the tonebars
-Changed all the grommets (Mcmaster style)
-Revoicing/tuning
-Remake the Electronic
-Sustain pedal test (work great, very smooth and easy)

I'm very surprised with the sound, its pretty good!
Now, i have less than 10 tines that still had problems (vibrating strangely, less sustain..)

next step, as soon as i receive them, i'll change all hammer tips, the majority of the mid/upper register is very badly damaged. I also make a custom faceplate sticker that will be printed soon, to replace imitate the ''MARK II'' design, but more personal.

I play it trough my suitcase preamp (early 1977) then trough a Ibanez UE-405 (the stereo chorus is just amazing)






Rhodes Mark 1 Suitcase 88 1977, Wurlitzer 200a, Columbia Elepian 713, Yamaha CP60M, Nord Electro 2 61, Korg MS20mini, Arturia Minibrute, Sequential Prophet 2002, Akai MPC2500, NI Maschine MKI&MK2, Ibanez UE-405

Offline Jtrunzo7743

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #27 on: April 18, 2017, 10:51:37 PM »
How did you end up getting those rusted tuning springs loose? I have the same problem here on a Rhodes Bass

Offline pnoboy

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #28 on: April 19, 2017, 06:36:39 AM »
An acid etch can be very helpful in removing rust.  Hydrochloric acid, sold in US hardware stores as muriatic acid, works well.  Dilute it, proceed with caution (rubber gloves, and especially eye protection), and do it outside, as fumes are generated.  It can sure beat hours of mechanical work.

Offline adcbicycle

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Re: Rhodes MKII 1981 Really Rusty Tines/Tonebar
« Reply #29 on: April 19, 2017, 09:25:16 AM »
I followed some other advice of using an ultrasonic cleaner on my tarnished tines. It did work a bit, but I was underwhelmed with the results. Hand scrubbing with scotchbrite was a much more effective solution.