Regulation

Piano Tuning Phoenix by Wes Flinn RPT

Mythological Greek Phoenix

Regulation

— by Wes Flinn RPT

‘Regulation’

“Regulation” refers to and includes all the keys and hammers and other internal working parts of a piano, which collectively are called the “action” mechanism of a piano. Then, to “regulate” this action means to adjust all of these various parts to work properly and efficiently.It is vital for a piano owner to understand that nearly all piano actions are made out of natural wood, and are susceptible to changes in temperature and humidity. A piano action must be regulated to the climate in which the piano will operate — moving from one climate to another usually requires the re-regulation of a piano — see my note on moving pianos in the section below “Piano Maintenance Levels“.

These parts number from about 10,000 parts in an Upright Piano up to as high as 12,000 parts in a huge 10-foot Grand Piano.

Regulation” refers to the adjustment of all these parts so that each note mechanism moves and performs its individual job correctly, as well as evenly and efficiently in relation to all other notes in the piano.

Regulation procedures can range from: 1) a ‘touch-up’ service to tweak or improve the existing settings when they are more or less correct; and, 2) to a full regulation service that can require two days or more to complete on a performance grade piano.

“Regulation” also includes the concept of properly Lubricating all these working parts.

The first signal that your piano needs Regulation is when the keys start feeling heavy and more sluggish than normal, and piano seems tiring to play. Part of this symptom is due to need for Lubrication, and part due to need for adjustments — both are done together.

Grand Piano Action “Motor” Picture:

Click here for a side view of a Grand Action “motor” —

A very useful way to think of the Action in a Piano is to consider that each one of the 88 keys on a piano represents an independent physical “motor” located directly behind it in the inside of a piano — then think of 88 of these individual motors as simply hooked up side by side, next to each other, and there you have it! That’s what any piano action is!

A very useful way to think of the Action in a Piano is to consider that each one of the 88 keys on a piano represents an independent physical “motor” located directly behind it in the inside of a piano — then think of 88 of these individual motors as simply hooked up side by side, next to each other, and there you have it! That’s what any piano action is!

Very important: Sometimes a piano cannot be regulated without some basic repairs!

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