BLUEBOOK OF PIANOS
CONSTRUCTION AND SCALE DESIGN
effect in a piano must originate in the strings. The
soundboard, no matter how perfect, can only amplify
the sound produced by the strings. Pianos have from
215 to 230 steel strings graduated in length and
thickness to produce the 88 notes of a piano's scale
design. The shortest string is about 2", the
longest string may be 84" or longer.
The bass strings should be pure copper wound, not
Examine the spacing of the strings
relation to other strings, spaced evenly
without touching another string.
Depressing a key slowly, check
alignment. At the same time, check as
hammer strikes the strings.
to see if hammers strike all of the strings of all
Inspect the strings for even spacing (not touching
another string) and proper alignment with the
Listen to the piano - Is the tonal output powerful
enough, at least impressive enough that you should
expect from a "classic" piano, but capable,
nevertheless, of filling a room no larger than 15
square feet or of a volume not more than say, 2500
cubic feet ?
Is the tonal output reasonably mellow?
indicates hardened hammers from age or dry climatic
tone even and with a fair singing quality ? Is the
action satisfactory, that is, does it give a fairly
elastic response to your touch ?
The proper weight
for key depression is between 2 and three ounces in general. Simply
take a scale such as weight watchers, or the postage scale at the
post office. Get a few weights (fishing tackle ok) and find a small
weight that weighs around 2 1/2 to 3 ounces.. place that weight on
any piano keyboard where the fingers play and the key should
depress. This is an accurate, but simple way to test for touch, the
average touch is around 2½
ounces. Get a weight watchers scale and weigh out several coins to
make up 2½
ounces. Place them where the fingers would be.
© 2011 The "Original Bluebook of Pianos All Rights Reserved