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Upstop rail felt replacement?

  • 1.  Upstop rail felt replacement?

    Registered Piano Technician
    Posted 21 days ago
    Hi all,

    I service a Steinway D for a concert hall which is in need of repair or replacement of the upstop rail felt. The problem is that the felt has rolled over in octave 4 allowing the dampers to jump up and hit the key hard upon return giving an objectionable kickback. The rest of the felt is in good shape and regulated nicely.

    I want to avoid removing the dampers to get at the upstop rail felt! They are regulated oh so nicely.

    Any ideas for 1. Replacing the felt without removing dampers? Or 2. Fixing the felt that is there?

    Is there a peel peel and stick felt I could use?

    Thanks in advance!
    Daniel

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    Daniel Achten
    Chattanooga TN
    423-760-2458
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  • 2.  RE: Upstop rail felt replacement?

    Registered Piano Technician
    Posted 20 days ago
    How about removing just the section of dampers where the felt needs to be replaced. Cut off what's there and replace with a new piece of felt, using CA glue to make it stick faster.

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    Willem "Wim" Blees, RPT
    Mililani, HI 96789
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  • 3.  RE: Upstop rail felt replacement?

    Registered Piano Technician
    Posted 20 days ago
    Hi Willem,

     Thanks for the feedback. That sounds like the best plan of action.

    It seems to me that some sort of peel and stick felt with strong adhesive and the right tools to reach through the damper wires would be a good solution for those situations where the whole up stop felt needs to be replaced. Ever heard of anything like that?

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    Daniel Achten
    Chattanooga TN
    423-760-2458
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  • 4.  RE: Upstop rail felt replacement?

    Registered Piano Technician
    Posted 20 days ago
    I've heard of peel and stick tape felt, but not the thickness and density required for an upstop rail.

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    Willem "Wim" Blees, RPT
    Mililani, HI 96789
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  • 5.  RE: Upstop rail felt replacement?

    Registered Piano Technician
    Posted 20 days ago
    Daniel,

    If you remove the screws from the blocks in which the damper tray end pins are housed, and then unscrew the upstop rail, you should be able to maneuver the upstop rail behind the tray and down onto the key bed.

    Alan

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    Alan Eder, RPT
    Herb Alpert School of Music
    California Institute of the Arts
    Valencia, CA
    661.904.6483
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  • 6.  RE: Upstop rail felt replacement?

    Registered Piano Technician
    Posted 20 days ago
    Great minds!!






  • 7.  RE: Upstop rail felt replacement?

    Registered Piano Technician
    Posted 20 days ago
    Daniel,

    It seems to me I remember removing the upstop rail screws so that the rail was loose from the belly rail. Then, I loosened the screws that fix the damper tray to the belly rail, so that damper tray was basically free and hanging by all the damper wires. I could sneak the upstop rail around behind the tray and not have to mess with the dampers, wires, etc. Replace the felt, reverse the process and you're back in business. You may have some damper regulation to do, but nothing like if you removed all the dampers.

    I hope someone chimes in with confirmation that this is indeed possible. It was a long time ago for me to do this.





  • 8.  RE: Upstop rail felt replacement?

    Registered Piano Technician
    Posted 20 days ago
    I contemplated removing the damper tray but concerned I would still have lots of damper regulating. But maybe less than I fear. I am going to experiment with that on my Baldwin R in my shop and see what happens.

    I think i will also try to find some strong double sided tape and experiment with sticking different felt in hard to reach places like the small piece that softens the jack return noise on a vertical.

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    Daniel Achten
    Chattanooga TN
    423-760-2458
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  • 9.  RE: Upstop rail felt replacement?

    Registered Piano Technician
    Posted 20 days ago
    Daniel, I've done what Alan and Richard prescribe. Once the tray is unscrewed, the whole assembly, hanging by the dampers, can be gently tilted forward a bit without bending the damper wires. This leaves enough room at the rear of the tray to back the unstop rail out. Once reassembled, I don't think you should have any damper regulation to do. I've done this on Steinways but am not sure if it will work on Baldwins. On pianos with separate rails as opposed to one long one, I have been able to remove the sections by taking out the first two dampers from each section. Probably loosening the damper tray would facilitate that also but I don't think I thought of it at the time.
    Threading the felt and tape behind the damper wires doesn't sound like it would work too well. Also if you remove it, the whole rail can be treated uniformly.

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    Steven Rosenthal
    Honolulu HI
    808-521-7129
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  • 10.  RE: Upstop rail felt replacement?

    Member
    Posted 20 days ago
    Adhesive tape will not be strong enough with the repeated impact over time.

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    Regards,

    Jon Page
    mailto:jonpage@comcast.net
    http://www.pianocapecod.com
    ------------------------------



  • 11.  RE: Upstop rail felt replacement?

    Registered Piano Technician
    Posted 20 days ago
    Alan ,
    I like your thinking on this 
    . Regulation will be unchanged .
    I was going to suggest cutting the upstop into separate pieces the working it out somehow , but your solution is better .
    PS The Boston chapter zoomed American Grand for our April meeting . Well received by our group !
    Tom Driscoll 





  • 12.  RE: Upstop rail felt replacement?

    Registered Piano Technician
    Posted 20 days ago
    Tom,

    I wish I could take credit for having come up with the idea about how to remove the upstop rail, but I can't. I read about that years ago on one of these very lists. If I could remember who posted it originally, I would have credited them in my first posting on the subject.

    Glad to hear that you and your chapter enjoyed American Grand. I will pass that along to Richard Davenport and the rest of the crew.

    Alan

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



  • 13.  RE: Upstop rail felt replacement?

    Registered Piano Technician
    Posted 20 days ago
    Not adding more info, but another confirmation that doing what Steve Alan and Richard describe is possible without having to regulate the dampers on a Steinway.

    Joe Wiencek
    NYC




  • 14.  RE: Upstop rail felt replacement?

    Registered Piano Technician
    Posted 20 days ago
    I have used the same technique several times to remove Steinway damper upstop rails and M&H. It helps to drop the pedal trap lever too so the pitman doesn't interfere.
    Ed

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    Edward McMorrow
    Edmonds WA
    425-299-3431
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