My Piano, November 2010 Update

I need to keep a record of what’s been happening with my piano, as every time someone comes to look at it, I forget what work has been done!

My 15 year old Alex Steinbach piano got it’s first tuning in about 4 or 5 years this week, which is a bit sad. I had left it to wallow for that time while I had other things on my mind, like sorting out my life! For the record, I bought my piano new in 1994 or 1995 for $3995, and it was shipped to Darwin from Tasmania. While in Darwin I looked after it pretty well, getting it tuned every year, sometimes twice due to the monsoonal humidity. After I separated from my husband, the piano sat at my friend Nikki’s house for a year or so, from there the piano was trucked to Brisbane around 2005 for the cost of $880.

While living on the north-side of Brisbane I got it tuned once, and I vaguely remember that tuner saying something about silverfish and a broken string, he left some insect repellents in there which was removed this time around. I started looking for a south-side piano tuner about 12 months ago and it’s taken me this long to get up the courage to get someone in. I narrowed my search to tuners registered at the APTTA site for Queensland. I really wanted to get it done before I was 20 weeks pregnant, because that’s when the baby can hear in the womb, but I am 28 weeks now so I have left it a bit late.

So last week the piano tuner I had decided upon, a local musician called Martin Holmes, comes in and says it’s not worth tuning because all the felts on the keys have been eaten, probably by silverfish, and need to be replaced first. This of course tripled the price and really threw me at the time, although in hindsight it shouldn’t have surprised me that much. It has been sitting idle for a long time, afterall.  I was very nervous that this man unknown to me was taking out all my keys, to take away and refit some new felts, which apparently is a very fine and detailed job to do, and would take more than the weekend to complete. I had to utilise several anti-worry techniques that I’ve been taught this year  by my counsellor to get through the week, lol!

So this time around, the key bushes have been re-felted by hand. A string has broken and will need to be replaced when the part arrives in a week or two. There is a spare broken string wound up in the bottom of the piano which might have been the original of another string which had been replaced at some earlier date. The piano has been vacuumed out, so next time we can see any new dust. Thankfully, the piano is sounding very nice again, I think Martin has done a good job, and I can’t wait to get stuck back into my playing.

Now it’s finally done, and I can start with my planned repertoire of children’s songs, a basic piano course and some improvisation. As long as I don’t need that bottom A with the broken string too much over the next fortnight, I should be right!

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Kiki
    Nov 27, 2010 @ 02:52:29

    Yay..enjoy your newly tuned beauty! It looks awesome! I recently took my childhood piano from my parents and into my home and have been tunning it regularily and enjoying it…! yes it is hard when others are tunning it and you worry…so far so good! I love having it back in my life..and I hope you enjoy all the new adventures yours will bring to you..sounds like you have alot of creative musical projects underway..have FUN!! Nice to know a kindred!
    Kiki

    Reply

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