As your Piano Tuner Wilmington DE , I frequently find that there is often confusion regarding piano voicing. This is a third blog post regarding that topic. Previously we explained the difference between voicing and piano tuning, and we discussed that voicing involves changing the shape and/or density of the hammers in order to make the piano tone either brighter or more mellow. The last post covered correction of the most common scenario, where some piano notes are louder than others. This post will cover the situation where much if not most of the piano tone is brighter than you would like.
The cause of the tone of the piano getting to be too bright is simply normal use. As hammers strike the piano strings, they get gradually compressed and hardened, causing the tone of the instrument to get too bright. An additional problem can also occur in this situation. The hammers not only get compressed, they get grooved by the piano strings. Each hammer is glued to a wooden shank. If that shank warps slightly with changes in temperature and humidity, some hammers will hit in the grooves and some will not. This will result in unevenness in volume and tone, when the notes hitting in the grooves get louder, and the ones missing them will get softer.
The correction for this situation, is called, “complete voicing.” The process starts with each hammer being filed by hand to remove the grooves, revealing a more resilient felt underneath the previous surface. Once this process is complete on the entire piano, the piano action is replaced in the piano and the tone is evaluated. Generally, all the notes will be softer and more mellow than before, but some notes will be slightly louder than others. The piano action is then removed, and the louder piano hammers will be slightly softened with a voicing tool, as described in the previous post. Once the tone is even and pleasing to the ear, the process is complete.
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