Tips for Piano Tuning Stability
In this article we are going to deal with a subject called stability in piano tuning. This concept refers to how stable the piano tuning is after you or the piano tuner has made it. How long the piano tuning remains stable without major modifications. One of the most common complaints of those who own a piano is that the tuning does not last. They are not stable, but the piano gradually becomes out of tune.
To try to solve this question we will analyze factors that influence the stability of the tuning of a piano. We have divided these factors into two large groups.
The primary factors – The secondary factors
The most important factors to take into account are obviously the primary factors and these are.
The periodicity of the piano tuning and the skill of the tuning technician.
Frequency Of Piano Tuning
When we speak of periodicity in tuning we are referring to how many times a year. Or how often they tune the piano in question. The strings of any piano have a great inertia. That is to say that they always want to return to the resting position. Like they were in for the longest time. This is due to the great tension that these strings have. To the fact that they are made of steel. And also because they are much thicker than the strings of any other instrument.
By this we mean that if you own a piano that has not been tuned for, say, two years. And you decide to tune it today, the strings would undoubtedly tend by inertia to the previous state of equilibrium.
Twice a year is best to tune a piano. But a number of studies that we have carried out and that have been deepened in the book.
“Tuning Pianos: A Philosophical-Musical Essay”.
We have come to the conclusion that in order for a piano to have true stability.
Of course, it is no longer possible for us to hire a professional piano tuner it would be expensive. It is for this reason that we consider it extremely necessary for anyone who owns a piano. And uses it periodically to be able to tune his own instrument. As in fact he does, for example anyone who owns a guitar.
Ability Of The Piano Tuning Technician
The second primary factor affecting piano tuning is the skill of the technician performing the tuning. Basically these skills are related to two issues in tuning. One is the tuning key technique, and by this we mean the skills of the technician or person tuning the piano. To manipulate the tuning key and through them the tuning pegs, and thus perform the tuning of the piano.
Many technicians who work in the piano tuning market unfortunately do not have adequate technical training in this aspect, and have very poor tuning key techniques that do not make the tuning stable from the point of view of pin stability. In the professional piano tuning courses offered by the Escuela de Tecnología Pianística de Buenos Aires. There is a section where the management and implementation of the tuning key techniques are taught. So that the tuning stability is the best possible.
Equalizing The Piano Strings
The second question in relation to the skill of the piano tuner is the equalization of the string after tuning the piano. It is obvious that every piano string is of considerable length and also has various points of friction. It is at those points where it costs for the tension added or removed to the string. When tuning it to be equalized and evenly distributed throughout the entire length of the string. A good tuning key technique is achieved by string equalization. But with what we call key tuning beats differentiated from the beats of listening to the tuning.
Variations In Humidity To Which The Piano Is Subjected
As for the secondary factors that affect the stability of the tuning. The third is related to the climatic variations to which the piano is subjected. Basically, it is the variation in ambient humidity that has the greatest influence; it is worth noting that it is the variation itself that can modify the stability of the tuning. By this we mean that this factor will not affect so much those pianos that are in permanently wet or dry climates. It is seasonal variation that greatly affects tuning.
The widely recommended solution for moisture control in pianos is the Damp-Chaser moisture control system. This is specially designed to control the humidity inside the piano,s. Generating a microclimate inside the same instrument keeping the humidity at 42% in a constant way, independently of the environmental humidity. The implementation of these equipments has given excellent results to such an extent that we can say that only in those pianos that have it installed the climatic variation is no longer an influential factor in the stability of its tuning.
Condition Of The Piano In Terms Of Maintenance
The state of the piano is the fourth secondary factor to take into account with respect to the stability of the tuning of this instrument. By this we mean the state of the pegbox, whether its pegs are firm in it or not, and the state of the strings. A piano that has a weak pegbox or that its pegs are incorrectly fastened. This can influence the tone of the piano and eventually cause a drop in pitch in pitch.
Finally, the fifth secondary factor is the care, maintenance and services provided to the piano. The tuning of a piano in poor condition and abandoned will not be the same as that of a piano in poor condition which. However, is regularly maintained to improve it and, over time, improve the stability of the tuning. In short, in order to achieve stability in the tuning of a piano it is essential to take into account two main factors: the periodicity of the tuning (which must be once a month) and the skill of the technician; as a solution to this we recommend that you do not leave this task in the hands of just anyone but that you tune your own piano yourself, thus ensuring excellence in the stability of the tuning of your instrument.