The Final Keyboard Project of 2014...
Earlier this evening I finished my final keyboard project for 2014! It is a new set of custom keys on the restored original frame of a 1949 Steinway model M. The piano is for one of the "restoration technique project pianos" being rebuilt by the Piano Technology graduate students at Florida State University.
This is the second Steinway M keyboard I've made for FSU in the last couple of months. The two pianos' serial numbers were only 5 digits apart. Both instrument back-scales were, for all practical purposes, identical. Both stacks were in pretty rough shape, so I had a few of the rails replaced and all new dowels put in.
The placement of the action stacks fore and aft on the frame and the locations of the balance rails were slightly different on each piano. I widened the headscale on both to the modern standard, and replaced the "accelerated action" balance rail with a quartersawn oak balance rail of similar characteristics to those used in Hamburg Steinways. The key-ratio's of both pianos were essentially kept the same as they were nearly perfect for this size of key.
Well, I'm off for the rest of the year and am already looking forward to starting my next keyboard project upon my return. It will be for a privately owned 1959 Steinway model D with what will be some very interesting design features!
Happy Holidays everybody!