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MMD > Archives > April 1997 > 1997.04.06 > 11Prev  Next

60's Vintage Aeolians and Auto-Sustain
By John A. Tuttle

Hello Everyone,  As alluded to by Don Teach yesterday, the Hardman Duo
and other Aeolian players came from the factory *without* auto-sustain
mechanisms.  As Don said, adding an auto-sustain is a relatively simple
procedure.  The pneumatic mechanism that can be used to accomplish the
task is also available from APSCO and Schaff (and perhaps other retailers
that I don't use, like the one in California).

It should be added, however, that all these mechanisms must be modified
to some extent so that they provide the power (or lift) needed to
adequately operate the sustain pedal.  This is typically accomplished by
creating a lever which is attached to the moving board of the mechanism.

Further, since the amount of work needed varies from piano to piano,
some degree of experimentation is necessary to render a smartly oper-
ating auto-sustain.  There are, of course, mathematical equations and
operational tests which can be performed that will give a builder the
information necessary to produce a device that works extremely well the
first time.  These equations can be found in Craig Brougher's book, "The
Orchestrion Builder's Manual and Pneumatics Handbook", on pages 50 & 51.

Lastly, hardware must be manufactured to position (or mount) the
mechanism in the most advantageous and accessible location.

The bottom line is:  while it is relatively easy in principal, it can
be very involved in practice.

Musically, John A. Tuttle

John A. Tuttle "Self-Playing Pianos"
407 19th Avenue             Pri E-Mail:
Bricktown, NJ 08724      Secondary
"We Keep Your Music Rolling"     Authorized QRS Music Roll Dealer

(Message sent Sun 6 Apr 1997, 18:10:19 GMT, from time zone GMT-0400.)

Key Words in Subject:  60's, Aeolians, Auto-Sustain, Vintage

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