Pianotech

Subject: Coil lifter suggestions

1.  Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 19 days ago
I need a new coil lifter. I don't lever coils off the plate, as it mucks up the new plate finish, and bends lifter fingers. Rather, I lift coils only on pins with reduced tension and slacked coils, pulling up on the tool.

I'm not happy with my current tool which is Pianotek's wooden handled one, but every attempt I've made to improve the tool comes up short as well. My biggest complaints are:

1-The "fingers" are too wide, so they mostly don't pull the coil equally, around the pin. This means, at least the way I use it, I often tighten and loosen the pin a number of times before the coil is adequately brought up on the entire circumference of the pin...a time wasting and tiring process.
2-The "fingers" often are held down on one side by an adjacent string from another pin, again requiring more tries to sneak things around obstructions.
3-on many pianos, clearances are so tight between pins that the tool is difficult to maneuver into place.

Some folks use a string hook, but I have not been able to come up with a way, with a hook, to bring up the entire coil. In theory a hook would be great, if I could figure out a technique to lift the whole coil.

Any more efficient approaches to this process/tool than I am mentioning here?   Other tools?

------------------------------
Jim Ialeggio
grandpianosolutions.com
Shirley, MA
978 425-9026
------------------------------


2.  RE: Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 19 days ago
I find that the usual coil lifters from the supply houses have fingers that are too fat, and need to be ground down to the tips are pointed and much thinner. Of course it weakens them, but you're going to use it with low tension anyway so it won't matter. I know nothing about metallurgy, so maybe there's a way to make them stronger.
There used to be a tool used with a slide hammer, but I never used one. Maybe still available somewhere. It could be used at tension. I heard from some local tech that it would put a nick in the wire and later it would break, so I lost interest in that tool.
I have a lifter with one broken finger, which I discovered wasn't as much of a problem as I imagined. The right finger broke, so I was able to use it by putting the handle away from me so that the one finger was directly under the string as it enters the coiled area. This area is the critical lifting place, so no need for the other side. I have a new tool also, but I hadn't had time to grind it. I couldn't use it, so that's when I tried the broken one.
Good luck.
Paul McCloud
San Diego

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I need a new coil lifter. I don't lever coils off the plate, as it mucks up the new plate finish, and bends lifter fingers. Rather, I lift coils only on pins with reduced tension and slacked coils, pulling up on the tool.

I'm not happy with my current tool which is Pianotek's wooden handled one, but every attempt I've made to improve the tool comes up short as well. My biggest complaints are:

1-The "fingers" are too wide, so they mostly don't pull the coil equally, around the pin. This means, at least the way I use it, I often tighten and loosen the pin a number of times before the coil is adequately brought up on the entire circumference of the pin...a time wasting and tiring process.
2-The "fingers" often are held down on one side by an adjacent string from another pin, again requiring more tries to sneak things around obstructions.
3-on many pianos, clearances are so tight between pins that the tool is difficult to maneuver into place.

Some folks use a string hook, but I have not been able to come up with a way, with a hook, to bring up the entire coil. In theory a hook would be great, if I could figure out a technique to lift the whole coil.

Any more efficient approaches to this process/tool than I am mentioning here? Other tools?

------------------------------
Jim Ialeggio
grandpianosolutions.com
Shirley, MA
978 425-9026





3.  RE: Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 19 days ago
Reading this post with interest. However, until new revelation I’ll continue to reduce tension on coil, glue buck skin on bottom of lifter to protect the scarring of the plate and either pull up or press down on lifter to tighten coil.

Sent from my iPhone




4.  RE: Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 19 days ago
Still using my Itoshin Co. coil  lifter that I bought in 1982!   https://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&sl=ja&u=http://www.itoshin.co.jp/&prev=search

------------------------------
Martin Snow
Boston MA
617-543-1030
------------------------------



5.  RE: Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 19 days ago
Paul wrote:
"There used to be a tool used with a slide hammer, but I never used one. Maybe still available somewhere. It could be used at tension. I heard from some local tech that it would put a nick in the wire and later it would break, so I lost interest in that tool."

I have used an impact coil lifter for several decades, on dozens of re-stringings. It is a very useful tool. I do NOT recommend using it with the string at full tension. If the tool is in good condition and is used properly, no worries. If, however, it is used at full tension or with an imperfection at the business end, yes, bad things can happen.

Alan

------------------------------
Alan Eder, RPT
Herb Alpert School of Music
California Institute of the Arts
Valencia, CA
661.904.6483
------------------------------



6.  RE: Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 19 days ago
I have a good one, which I think I bought at a convention, but I don't remember who sold it. Yeah, lots of help.

It's easy enough to push up a coil with a smallish screwdriver held at a diagonal angle. I have one which is old and the metal is not terribly well tempered, so it has gradually been mashed smooth and doesn't mar the wire. It can reach in when a coil lifter can't find clearance.

------------------------------
Susan Kline
Philomath, Oregon
------------------------------



7.  RE: Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 19 days ago
In tight places I too have used an old screw driver as a fulcrum to lift coils while resting it on adjacent tuning pins as leverage.

Sent from my iPhone




8.  RE: Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 19 days ago
IMHO It's poor technique to tighten a coil under full tension. I just use a homemade wire lifter, hold wire up until tension holds. Then i use an impact coiler if needed. Most of the time it's not needed, but it's an extremely useful tool. I've had mine for decades so i don't remember where i got it. Neither of these two tools touch the plate.
-Chris
#caveman

------------------------------
I have a piano in my Nuclear Fallout Shelter, and my competitors don't. How silly is that?

chernobieffpiano.com
865-986-7720
------------------------------



9.  RE: Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 19 days ago
I'm a fan of the impact coil lifeter. Got it from Pianotek if I remember correctly. Just inspect it carefully, you may find you want to polish off some birds before using it.

Havent had a ny experiance with it personally but I believe Jurgen sells a pair of coil lifting pliers.

------------------------------
Phil Stewart, RPT
609-774-7571
www.njpianoservice.com
------------------------------



10.  RE: Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 18 days ago
  |   view attached
Just blew the dust off for some stringing a SsL.





11.  RE: Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 17 days ago
I'm curious about your string hook technique. This should be a good way to do this with very easy access to any pin. I talked to Randy at Pacific Piano yesterday, and this string hook technique is his "go to" for this task as well. My experience has(had?) been that as I pull up on the string, just in front of the pin while raising tension just enough to hold the coil, the bottom coil at the opposite side of the coil may not raise up adequately.

Coiling the wire on the pin neatly before insertion is obviously important. I have good technique on this aspect. However, as I think about this, I do often over coil a little in my attempt to have as little pin turning as possible. When the coil is overturned before insertion, I have to pull a little wire off the coil, and my nice neat coil looses its precision. Maybe my inability at string lifting to get a clean coil has more to do with occasional over coiling than anything else, as tiding up a poorly made coil is much harder than tiding up an already clean coil.

Also, I assume with your technique, as the coil is lifted too high at first, that the final step of tapping down the coils has been omitted from your pic of tools for the job...correct?

------------------------------
Jim Ialeggio
grandpianosolutions.com
Shirley, MA
978 425-9026
------------------------------



12.  RE: Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 17 days ago
I polished off a bird last Thursday.

Bob Anderson
Tucson, AZ




13.  RE: Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 17 days ago
Jim,

Do you "lift coils as you go", meaning every 2 or 4 pins you switch tools, lift and tighten, then go back to cooling and pounding, etc.?

OR

Do you coil and pound everything, and then go back to "lift and tighten"?

"Lift as you go" (although slower) allows virtually uninhibited access to one side of each pin, thus almost any old lifter will work well.

Method two (though it can be significantly faster on install) is where you can get really crowded in the tenor section and need special tooling or technique.

Which one are you?

Pwg

------------------------------
Peter Grey
Stratham NH
603-686-2395
pianodoctor57@gmail.com
------------------------------



14.  RE: Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 17 days ago
<Which one are you?

I've done both...trying to gain efficiency.

However, owing to the difficulty hitting pin torque values I think are reasonable,and not too tight on initially pounding in,  I find efficiency of simply bringing the coil and tension up once, goes south. This, since I pound shy of the final height to allow for final adjusting of the pin heights, the final minor pounding can blow coils south, and often tighten the torque to the point where I choose to  go back and exercise pins. Exercising the pins, means,  re-snuging up coils until I'm satisfied with the tuner friendliness of the torque.  This going back and adjusting the torque, sometimes repeatedly, blows efficiency way out the window for me and requires repeated snugging up the coils.

All in all, because of the difficulty of hitting preferred torques at the full insertion of the pin, this repetitive coil setting, pin height adjusting is a highly inefficient process. I'd love to tidy the process up, but recalcitrant initial torque frustrates attempts to achieve improved efficiency.



------------------------------
Jim Ialeggio
grandpianosolutions.com
Shirley, MA
978 425-9026
------------------------------



15.  RE: Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 17 days ago
Jim,
Maybe you could reduce that recalcitrant torque frustration by using a shorter pin.
-chris





16.  RE: Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 16 days ago
<Maybe you could reduce that recalcitrant torque frustration by using a shorter pin.

That's right. Short in my view is better given most plates, since the top 10mm or so, of the hole is the real important part. However, I just went to order 2-1/4 x 2/0 blued Diamond pins from Pianotek, and they were backordered, probably for a couple of months. Why...very few people order them...figures. Steinway is the only other US distributor of Diamond pins and their shortest pin is 2-3/8.

I am going back to a Nossaman style block after experimenting with Bolduc, WNG, and Delignit blocks. In the Nossaman style 10mm Delignit veneer/cheap rotary cut multiply maple block, the Delignit veneer requires a larger diameter bit than the multiply would require on its own. This means, the bottom of the hole, the multiply part, is more of a stabilizer rather than an aggressive gripping force. The Delignit does the important work, but only for 10mm worth of high friction.

------------------------------
Jim Ialeggio
grandpianosolutions.com
Shirley, MA
978 425-9026
------------------------------



17.  RE: Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 16 days ago
I bought an impact lifter after another tech suggested it, but I've found it mostly useless. For one thing, it doesn't fit if the pins are close together. And those sharp points get easily bent or just broken off.

I have a long, skinny flat-bladed screw driver into which I've dremeled a v-shaped notch, mostly for the purpose of pushing springs back into position. The advantage of having the notch has also helped in using it for lifting coils. The notch allows me to get the blade to "wrap" a little more around the curve of the pin (as opposed to touching on the tangent), thus allowing more surface area of the coil to be lifted. It's my most-used screwdriver, and it's a Husky from HD with an 8-inch shaft and 3/16 tip.

I've had no luck with hooks.

------------------------------
Scott Cole
Talent OR
541-601-9033
------------------------------



18.  RE: Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 16 days ago
Scott,
I don't get how you use it...pic?

------------------------------
Jim Ialeggio
grandpianosolutions.com
Shirley, MA
978 425-9026
------------------------------



19.  RE: Coil lifter suggestions

Posted 15 days ago
Scott,
I'm not picturing how your handmade coil lifter is any different than a commercial one. A picture would be nice to see.
I have had my impact tool for decades, so i believe you were just using yours incorrectly.  Admittedly, I take my time stringing a piano and I start from the break, mostly because i'm right handed. I use the hook as I bring the coil just to the point "it holds". I'm lifting as high as i can, by the time it holds, it is high on the opposite side. Very rarely am I using the impact tool to lift(ratchet) up. But, am 99.9% of the time gently tapping down on the high side to level it out.  This way it should last forever.   As far as having no room between the pins. I get the coils as perfect as I can while there IS room. Once coil looks good, I tap pin until the string is parallel to the Frame, check coil again, and move on to the next.
-chris
#caveman

------------------------------
I have a piano in my Nuclear Fallout Shelter, and my competitors don't. How silly is that?

chernobieffpiano.com
865-986-7720
------------------------------