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Brass Pedal Bent and Repaired

  • 1.  Brass Pedal Bent and Repaired

    Registered Piano Technician
    Posted 15 days ago
    Occasionally I have to repair or replace a pedal.  Sometimes it's broken and I have to have it welded/brazed.  I don't do metal repairs, so I have been using a local welding shop.  Yesterday, I had a bent pedal to fix asap, so I went to my welding shop, expecting and asking him to heat it up and straighten it if possible.  It's a solid brass pedal from a Daiwoo 6 foot grand.  It was to be played by a local artist on Sunday, so I only had a few days to get it done.  Getting parts for a Daiwoo is out of the question, and I had to get it straightened asap.  When I disassembled the pedal box, it looked a lot like a Samick inside.
    Anyway, the guy says, "I'll do what you want, but I don't think heating it is a good idea.  I think I can straighten it".  I told him, "You're the expert, which is why I'm here and not doing it myself".  So, he put it in a hydraulic press and carefully pressed down and it straightened out and did not crack.  No heat.  He explained that if he were to heat it, the alloy would be ruined and it would break.  If I had used a hammer, it would have broken.  Slowly pressing it was the key.  Not too much, of course.  It wasn't bent that much, maybe 1/4" at the end.  He didn't want to bend it  any further.  Good enough is.  He said the shock wave of hitting it with a hammer would have broken it.  I know about as much about metallurgy as my dog, but this guy seemed to know what he was talking about.  He said he learned stuff like this in the army.  This particular pedal design uses an axle, a wide piece of felt bushing cloth, and a metal clamping block held by a screw.  The pedal itself is very thin in the middle where it clamps to the axle, which is I guess why it bent in the first place.  Sorry, no photos.  Other pedals I've seen are very thick front to back, with a fluted pin pressed in to form the pivot point, which would be much harder to bend and more likely to break than this one.
    I just wanted to pass along the experience if anyone is thinking to straighten a bent solid brass pedal, or any piece of brass.  I"m sure there are many of you who are familiar with working brass, so feel free to comment.
    Thanks very much.
    Paul McCloud

    Paul McCloud, RPT
    Accutone Piano Service

  • 2.  RE: Brass Pedal Bent and Repaired

    Posted 14 days ago
    good information to had. the high school here had a young chang grand with a bent sustain pedal - i ended up getting a new one and i believe all 3 pedals came as a set attached to the pedal box bottom cover. no way would it respond to attempts to straighten it by vise , beating it etc. i still have the bent pedal and the other two horns in my shop . this is a good tip for the next time since the current supply shortages is making life difficult. most of the broken pedals i have  fixed where damaged in moves where the pedal got hung up on a step or dolly. the pedals where broken usually at the back where they went into the mouse door. probably would have been weldable but i was fortunate to get new sets. one yamaha studio had odd shaped pedal but yamaha actually had the exact set. the high school pedal was damaged by a band member standing on the pedal. now there is a performance lock on the piano with keys in the office, custodian and chorus teacher .

    James Kelly
    Owner- Fur Elise Piano Service
    Pawleys Island SC

  • 3.  RE: Brass Pedal Bent and Repaired

    Registered Piano Technician
    Posted 14 days ago
    I have had pedals welded in the past. They always broke again. More recently, I encountered a Yamaha where the sustain pedal was bent upwards about an inch. I'm guessing that there was something under that pedal when movers set the piano down and the weight of the piano was enough to bend the pedal. The pedal was part brass with a steel insert. I was able to bend it back to original specs by placing in a vise and using a 4 foot pipe for leverage. A bit of a grunt - but it worked.

    Randy Prentice
    Tucson AZ