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MMD > Archives > May 2008 > 2008.05.12 > 09Prev  Next

Check Valve for Electrified Player Piano
By M. Blaine Miller

Question from a newbie -- I own a 1919 Stieff upright player piano
with a "deluxe" unit.  It's in very good condition and plays well.
It was electrified in 1937 and works fine although a bit noisy with
the pump being placed outside of the piano in a wooden box.

The problem is that I would like to add a valve or shut-off of some
kind to the pump or hose leading into the bellows so that I could use
the pedals to play it if I so desired.  I've tried sealing off the
place where the pump hose goes into an elbow attached to the front of
the left bellows (that is, on my left when I am looking into the bottom
of the piano), but even with vigorous foot pumping there is not enough
suction to make it play!  Am I overlooking something obvious?

My knowledge of pneumatics is very slim, whereas the mechanical comes
naturally to me (I work on phonographs).  It seemed that closing off
that intake would do the trick, but I'm at a loss.  _Any_ advice would
be welcome, as I'm having a party for the Fourth of July and would love
to set that as my deadline to get this problem solved!

Thanks to all of you from Louisiana, I have poorly made videos of the
piano on my YouTube account.  Here's a link to the piano playing Bizet's
Carmen or search silentbacchus!

Thanks, M. B. Miller

(Message sent Mon 12 May 2008, 06:43:20 GMT, from time zone GMT-0500.)

Key Words in Subject:  Check, Electrified, Piano, Player, Valve

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