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MMD > Archives > December 2004 > 2004.12.17 > 04Prev  Next

Duo-Art Won't Play 88-Note Rolls
By John A. Tuttle

Hi All,  In answer to Annalisa's question, regular 88-note QRS music
rolls _should_ play just fine on a Duo-Art Reproducing piano as long
as the Duo-Art switch (in the spoolbox) is turned to 'Off'.

However, the 'tracking' problem is a totally different matter.  In my
experience, a fairly consistent problem with the new QRS music rolls
involves the roll flange on the right side of the roll.  In the most
simple terms, the hole in the flange is too small.  The problem this
creates might be a little difficult for a layman to fully understand.
So, forgive me if this gets a little long-winded.

While the tracking system in the Duo-Art uses the edges of the paper
as its 'guide', the system has limitations -- as do all roll tracking
systems.  And (cutting to the chase), if the right side roll chuck
doesn't seat all the way into the hole in the right side roll flange,
that effectively 'pushes' the entire roll to the right by approximately
1/8" to 3/16".  Depending on how well the tracking system operates, and
also depending on how the system is calibrated, the system 'might' be
able to compensate for such a large error.  However, at the very least,
the system would be greatly taxed.

Moving on quickly, the way to 'fix' the problem is to widen (or enlarge)
the hole in the right spool flange so that the roll chuck fits all the
way down into the hole.  However, if you have a fair number of new QRS
rolls, a more permanent solution to the problem would be to decrease
the diameter of the right roll chuck.  This is easily accomplished with
a decent metal file.  Having done the job numerous times in the past
three or so years, it only takes a few minutes and you only have to
remove a few thousandths of an inch, all the way around, or until the
chuck fits all the way into the hole in the flange.

As for maintenance, _all_ machines _must_ be serviced on a periodic
basis if they are expected to continue to operate well over an extended
period of time.  This is common sense.  As my mentor said to me,
"You change the oil in your car, don't you?"  All player pianos should
be serviced at least every two years.

Piano tuners will tell you that a piano should be tuned at least once
a year, and I won't disagree with that fact.  Pianos go out of tune
primarily because of temperature and humidity changes that the piano
is exposed to in the course of a year -- especially the changes in the
winter and the summer.  However, in many of today's homes, these
environmental factors are well controlled, and therefore the 'need' to
tune the piano frequently becomes less necessary.  (Pianos that go out
of tune simply because they get played have a problem!)

On the other side of the coin, if a piano gets played a lot, it is
essential to have the instrument regulated more frequently.  This is
because all machines wear to some degree every time they are used.  The
degree to which they wear is directly proportional to the intensity and
frequency of use.  Therefore, a player piano that is played loudly for
a few hours every day will require more frequent regulation than one
that only gets used for a couple of hours on the weekend.

Hope this helps.

John A Tuttle
Brick, New Jersey, USA

(Message sent Fri 17 Dec 2004, 14:21:38 GMT, from time zone GMT-0500.)

Key Words in Subject:  88-Note, Duo-Art, Play, Rolls, Won't

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