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Home-made techniques so as to not disturb the neighbours!!! :D (Read 1332 times)

Offline mussels_with_nutella

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I came across an article talking about how to make a home-made sordina.

It said that putting some cloth between the hammer and the strings everything is fine.

I'm considering buying a vertical piano, but I'm living in a student residence, so it would be annoying for the other students to have a hammering piano at the other side of the wall/floor. QUESTION:

Do you know if the cloth-method is effective, and do you know any other methods?
If I can turn down the volume, I will buy it.
Make me buy a piano, pleeeease!!! :D
Thank you!
Learning:
Liszt's 3rd Liebestraum

When a man is in despair, it means that he still believes in something
Shostakovic

Offline michael_c

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Re: Home-made techniques so as to not disturb the neighbours!!! :D
«Reply #1 on: March 07, 2016, 08:22:38 AM »
The cloth method is effective and many upright pianos have this already integrated. If an upright has three pedals, usually the middle pedal is the "mute" or "practice" pedal: when depressed it will bring a strip of felt between the hammers and the keys. The pedal can be blocked in the down position.

The drawback to this method is that all you get is a muffled sound and you will not be able to practice nuances of touch effectively. The better (but more expensive) solution nowadays is a digital silent system which is sold ready-installed on many new uprights or can be retrofitted on older models. With this system you can, at the touch of a pedal, transform your acoustic upright into a digital piano that can be played through headphones.

Offline mussels_with_nutella

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Re: Home-made techniques so as to not disturb the neighbours!!! :D
«Reply #2 on: March 07, 2016, 09:36:34 PM »
Yes, I was thinking of buying a digital one. But since I have never had a "real" piano (whether upright or big one), and since I saw an offer of 40 from a used one with the possibility to try it out... ;) I have to catch the train!

So you think it will work, isn't it? I'll try then!!! :) If it didn't work, I would have a beautiful piece of furniture in all cases :P

Thank you! :)
Learning:
Liszt's 3rd Liebestraum

When a man is in despair, it means that he still believes in something
Shostakovic

Offline indianajo

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Re: Home-made techniques so as to not disturb the neighbours!!! :D
«Reply #3 on: March 09, 2016, 01:17:18 AM »
My method was
1.  get a useful degree, not a music performance one
2. save money for a down payment
3. buy a house where the piano is 12 m from the nearest detached neighbor residence.  3 m wall to wall separation is also important, and dense foliage helps.  
4.  then buy the piano.  Loud & proud, like my Sohmer, no mufflers on that instrument.
5.  don't live in a city where apartment living, vertical stacks,  or common walls is necessary.  
This place isn't popular, or on anybody's top ten list, but I can practice at 3 AM as loud as I want if I wake up sneezing then (like last night).  
BTW I can play the stereo as loud as I want, anytime I want, too.  I've got bar capable PA speakers on stands surrounding my Hammond organ, and a 260 W/ch amp, so when the cannon goes off in 1812 overture, the music hits 100 db for a second.    Like the speakers shown at the reception  in Four Weddings and a Funeral only bigger woofers.  

Offline michael_c

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Re: Home-made techniques so as to not disturb the neighbours!!! :D
«Reply #4 on: March 09, 2016, 09:03:29 AM »
Yes, I was thinking of buying a digital one. But since I have never had a "real" piano (whether upright or big one), and since I saw an offer of 40 from a used one with the possibility to try it out... ;) I have to catch the train!

So you think it will work, isn't it? I'll try then!!! :) If it didn't work, I would have a beautiful piece of furniture in all cases :P

Thank you! :)

I wasn't talking about a digital piano, I was talking about an acoustic piano with a digital silent system fitted. This way, you get the best of both worlds: a real acoustic piano whenever you can play at normal volume (the neighbours must put up with some music) and a digital one played through headphones (but with the keyboard and action of the "real" piano) for the times when your neighbours need some peace.

Do be careful with a piano that's selling for 40. You'll already need to pay much more than that just to have it moved, and only a piano technician can tell you how much it will cost to put it into shape for regular playing, or even if that's feasible. You may play it, see that all the notes work but that it's out of tune, and think "it just needs tuning". Then the tuner tells you that it won't hold it's pitch because the pinblock is cracked, or that strings are rusted and trying to bring them up to pitch will probably result in several of them breaking, and that it not worth repairing. So you end up with a useless piece of furniture that already cost you a few hundred Euros and will cost even more to get rid of, unless you can find a sucker who will buy it from you for 40 ...

The essential advice that's always offered here and on other forums is this: get a piano technician to look at the piano before you make the decision to buy or not.


Offline briansaddleback

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Re: Home-made techniques so as to not disturb the neighbours!!! :D
«Reply #5 on: March 10, 2016, 12:04:40 AM »
There are two aspects of piano playing sound that can potentially bother neighbors, especially those living adjacent next to you or beneath you:

1) the one we all know. The sound. You can do your home made application which is a great idea and that greatly reduces sound. Or get a digital piano or a silent piano type appliance attached.

2) this one is the one most really dont know about , the reverberations of a piano. The hitting of the keys and the impact reverberates through the piano through the floor and /or walls and the vibrations are usually the thing that bothers most people. Because it is a constant thumping type of 'sound' . This you deter by having soundproof walls and /or proofing the floor as well.
Work in progress:

Rondo Alla Turca

Offline mussels_with_nutella

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Re: Home-made techniques so as to not disturb the neighbours!!! :D
«Reply #6 on: March 12, 2016, 02:47:15 AM »
I wasn't talking about a digital piano, I was talking about an acoustic piano with a digital silent system fitted. This way, you get the best of both worlds: a real acoustic piano whenever you can play at normal volume (the neighbours must put up with some music) and a digital one played through headphones (but with the keyboard and action of the "real" piano) for the times when your neighbours need some peace.

Do be careful with a piano that's selling for 40. You'll already need to pay much more than that just to have it moved, and only a piano technician can tell you how much it will cost to put it into shape for regular playing, or even if that's feasible. You may play it, see that all the notes work but that it's out of tune, and think "it just needs tuning". Then the tuner tells you that it won't hold it's pitch because the pinblock is cracked, or that strings are rusted and trying to bring them up to pitch will probably result in several of them breaking, and that it not worth repairing. So you end up with a useless piece of furniture that already cost you a few hundred Euros and will cost even more to get rid of, unless you can find a sucker who will buy it from you for 40 ...

The essential advice that's always offered here and on other forums is this: get a piano technician to look at the piano before you make the decision to buy or not.




Best advice ever :) I will take it in much consideration :) In fact, I have just bought an extremely cheap guitar which didn't have a peg. I didn't notice at the beginning, and I had to change the whole set of pegs (which costs ~10, luckily). However, in a piano, as you say, all problems are by far muuuch more subtle to see (and by far much more expensive to fix). Thank you! ;)
Learning:
Liszt's 3rd Liebestraum

When a man is in despair, it means that he still believes in something
Shostakovic

Offline hardy_practice

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Re: Home-made techniques so as to not disturb the neighbours!!! :D
«Reply #7 on: March 12, 2016, 06:35:20 AM »
You take a rod about an inch square and the length of the action, tack an inch or two of felt along its length.  Open the lid and place it on the knobs that loosen the action.  When you don't want it leave it in but roll up the felt.  There will need to be the odd gap in felt where structural stuff is in the way.
B Mus, PGCE, DipABRSM