hosted on condor3913
 Mechanical Music Digest  Archives
You Are Not Logged In Login/Get New Account
Please Log In. Accounts are free!
Logged In users are granted additional features including a more current version of the Archives and a simplified process for submitting articles.
Home Archives Calendar Gallery Store Links Info

End-of-Summer Fundraising Drive In Progress. Please visit our home page to see this and other announcements:     Thank you. --Jody

MMD > Archives > June 1999 > 1999.06.18 > 07Prev  Next

Polishing Old Ivory Keys
By Gary Rasmussen

John McClure asked about polishing ivories.  I don't necessarily know
the "proper" way to do it but I have done it and was been pleased with
the results.  The last one I did was the Steck Duo Art that is in my
living room.  When I received it to rebuild, the ivories were in fairly
good condition (only a few chips) but they were GROSSLY blotchy yellow.

To get the ivories back to white, I sanded them down, starting with a
medium-fine coarseness, to get through the yellow.  To keep them flat,
I placed the sheet of sandpaper on a piece of thick glass, the sanded
each key individually by moving the key over the sandpaper.

I worked my way through finer and finer sand paper until I got to the
300 to 600 grit range, then I polished them on a jewelers polishing
wheel.  It was a cloth type wheel, about 6" in diameter and 1" thick.
I used several grits of jewelers polishing material, again working my
way down to the finest level.  The main problem I had was to make sure
the corners of the ivories, especially the sharp notch, didn't wear
down more than the rest of the ivory, causing it to not be flat.

I found this process to be extremely time consuming.  I could have
replaced the ivories with plastic in a fraction of the time I spend on
the ivories.  But, if I did that, I wouldn't have a nice set of
ivories on my piano today!

Gary Rasmussen

(Message sent Fri 18 Jun 1999, 20:58:10 GMT, from time zone GMT-0400.)

Key Words in Subject:  Ivory, Keys, Old, Polishing

Home    Archives    Calendar    Gallery    Store    Links    Info   

Enter text below to search the MMD Website with Google

CONTACT FORM: Click HERE to write to the editor, or to post a message about Mechanical Musical Instruments to the MMD

Unless otherwise noted, all opinions are those of the individual authors and may not represent those of the editors. Compilation copyright 1995-2023 by Jody Kravitz.

Please read our Republication Policy before copying information from or creating links to this web site.

Click HERE to contact the webmaster regarding problems with the website.

Please support publication of the MMD by donating online

Please Support Publication of the MMD with your Generous Donation

Pay via PayPal

No PayPal account required

Translate This Page