By Craig Brougher
|Michael Concordia asked how to fix a bridge in an old upright player piano. I downloaded this reply to him, then found the same question in the Digest, so I'll just post it here, too. Let me say that building bridges from scratch isn't easy for a novice, so I am endorsing the following method for several reasons. The repair I suggest has never failed to work, and to be as good or better than the original bridge, and also, if you want to get the new bridge exactly like the old one, start this way, first, then pull out the pins again and make your rubbing. Now here is what I sent Michael:
Yeah. Don't take it off. Fix it in the piano. It's easy. It's permanent, and it never fails to work, and best of all, it's just as good, if not better than a new one. Here's how you do it:
1. Get yourself some epoxy that dries brittle, like the stuff used
to fix chips in concrete floors, Devcon 5 Minute epoxy will work,
or Sherwin Williams clear epoxy, etc.
2. Pull the pins, about 5-10 at a time.
3. Smush some epoxy deep down into the crack and replace the pins.
Work your way up the bridge this way.
4.Clean off any bulges in the epoxy level as you go. You will hump
up the epoxy as you press the pins back down. Liquid epoxy works
better because it flows flat.
5. Once you start, keep going until you finish, and don't put any
pressure on the pins for 24 hours, epoxy or not.
The reason this is such a fine and easy way of doing it is, it restores the original pattern which might be a bit ambiguous were you to try to duplicate the bridge instead. The reason is, the pins' holes are not completely gone, They will reorient themselves as soon as they slip into the bottoms of their holes which were not torn out. If you still want a new bridge, pull the pins after restoring the old bridge and you will have a perfect pattern to go by.
(Message sent Tue 5 Nov 1996, 14:50:05 GMT, from time zone GMT.)