We offer tuning, all repairs, cleaning and purchase consulting. Mike is a PTG registered piano technician for 20+ years, certified by the Randy Potter school. We also highly recommend and install Dampp-Chaser Piano Life Saver climate control systems.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Why does piano´s pitch change?Piano strings change pitch for to primary reasons: the initial stretching and settling of strings when the piano is new, and soundboard movement due to humidity variation. In the case of new pianos, the pitch drops quickly for the first couple of years as the new strings stretch and wood part settle. It´s very important to maintain any new piano at the proper pitch during this period, so the string tension and piano structure can reach and stable equilibrium. (Most piano manufacturers recommend three to four tuning the first year, ad at least two per year after that). Aside from this initial settling, climate change is the main cause of pitch change. That´s because the piano´s main acoustical structure -- the soundboard --is made of wood. While wooden soundboards produce a wonderful sound, they also react constantly to climate changes. As the relative humidity goes up, the soundboard swells, increasing its crowned shape and stretching the piano´s strings to a higher pitch. Then during dry times the soundboard flattens out, lowering tension on the strings and causing the pitch to drop. The drop in the dry season tend to exceed the rise during humid times, so the net result is a drop in pitch each year that the piano isn´t serviced
How far from standard pitch must a piano be before a pitch raise is necessary?Just when a pitch raise or lowering is necessary depends upon how accurate the final tuning must be, and the size and quality of the piano. Any net change in a piano’s string tension during tuning will distort the final result and reduce stability. Realistically, a pitch difference of a few percent can usually be accommodated successfully during tuning. For average situations, when a piano’s pitched instruments, a pitch correction procedure is necessary before tuning. Whenever exact pitch level is critical, such as in concert or recording instruments, any pitch deviation must be corrected before tuning.
How long does a pitch raise take?A pitch raise is essentially a special tuning procedure designed to leave the piano approximately in tune. For moderate pitch corrections the procedures takes about the same time as tuning, or less. Extreme pitch changes may require to separate pitch adjustments. The pitch adjustment and subsequent tuning may be done in one visit order tuning may be scheduled for a short time later depending upon how far the pitch had to be changed. In genera,l the longer the piano has gone without regular service, the more tuning will be required to reestablish tuning stability. Like your car, your piano is a mayor investment which deserves regular servicing to keep it working well and preserves it value. Most importantly, the well-maintained piano sounds better, play better, and gives you and your family a wealth of musical pleasure. The preceding article is reprint of technical Bulletin #1 published by the Piano Technical Guild, Inc. It is provided on the internet as a service to piano owners. Piano Technicians Guild is an international organization of piano technicians, Registered Piano Technicians (RPTs) are those members of PTG who have passed a series of examinations on the maintenance, repair, and tuning of pianos.
Won’t tuning restore my piano’s pitch to A-440?If a piano has gone without tuning for an extended period, its pitch may have dropped far below A-440. This means that each of its approximately 220 strings needs to be tightened considerably, adding tremendous additional tension to the piano’ structure. The problem is that as each string is tightened, the additional load causes the pitch of previously adjusted strings to change. Thus it is impossible to make a substantial change in pitch and end up with a fine, accurate tuning in one step. Instead a process called “pitch raising” must first be done, in which all strings are raised to their correct average tension levels. (Likewise, when a piano’s pitch is higher than standard, a pitch lowering procedure must be done to reduce string tensions to approximately correct levels.) Only then can the piano be accurately tuned. In other words, accurate tuning is only possible when all strings are so close to their proper tension that only small further changes are needed during tuning. These small changes then do not disturb the tuning of other strings.
Pitch Correction up to +/- 100 Cents (fine tuning included) ………………………......$225
Pitch Correction over 100 Cents (fine tuning included) …………………………..........$310
Pneumatic Player Pianos (not including Pitch Correction) ……………………….........$160
"Birdcage” Pianos (late 1800's damper design) -(not including Pitch Correction) ......$160First Tuning (pitch work if needed is additional) ...........................................................$140
Price above do not include State tax.