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MMD > Archives > November 1999 > 1999.11.02 > 10Prev  Next

Educate the Public About Restorations
By John A. Tuttle

Hi All,  I've followed the thread about restoration with great
interest.  All of the responses thus far have been echoes of previous
threads.  The simple fact is, it's not our job to be the "Player Piano
Police".  But our job must include being honest.

Over a year ago I started on a series of web pages that are aimed at
teaching people how to test various parts of a player mechanism.  To
date, I have pages on the air motor, the lower section and the stack.
I also have pages about regulating the air motor governor, the purpose
of the various controls and a myriad of pages about basic principles,
tubing and rebuilding procedures.

The feedback from visitors has been overwhelmingly positive.  People
are learning and utilizing the information to make informed purchases.
And although I agree that a check list would be a helpful addition to
the MMD Archives, it may not be very practical.  Here's why.

First, the buyer has to know all the terminologies.  And with as much
disagreement as there is even in this group with regards to terminol-
ogies, how's a novice to learn?  At the very least, a Glossary of Terms
would also be required.

Second, suppose the rebuilder really does change all the soft materials,
but lacks the skill to do the work correctly.  That unit could be worse
off than one that only had the bellows replaced.  Where does that leave
the buyer?

I believe the best approach involves hiring an unbiased third party,
who doesn't sell player pianos.  Then there isn't any possible conflict
of interest.  He can perform an objective evaluation in the presence of
the prospective buyer (and the seller) and report his findings.

I've made a number of enemies this way, and they've all been sellers.
I've also made numerous friends this way, and they've all been buyers.
Telling the truth is only risky if you have something to hide, or if
you don't really know what you're talking about.  Music store owners
don't like to see me walk in with a prospective buyer.


John A. Tuttle

(Message sent Tue 2 Nov 1999, 20:25:47 GMT, from time zone GMT-0500.)

Key Words in Subject:  About, Educate, Public, Restorations

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