The Anatomy of A Piano

The piano was introduced almost three hundred years ago. Ever since then, it has a special place in the hearts of people because of its unique characteristics. When you play a note on the piano keyboard, you will hear a sound. This may sound pretty simple in the beginning but as you explore the parts of the piano, you will see that it is the biggest and at the same time most intricate musical instrument that has ever been introduced in the market. To the untrained eye, exploring all parts of a piano can be really intimidating. As you analyze each piece in a step by step manner, you will be able to understand how it works.

The best part about a piano is that it is capable of responding to limitless varieties of human touch. It can produce sounds ranging in volume from a whisper to a thunder. If you are passionate to learn this instrument, you must have knowledge about each part of the piano and its role in producing a sound. Read on to understand more about the parts of this amazing musical instrument:

Strings

Every note sounded on a piano is due to a string or a few strings vibrating at a certain frequency. The sound produced is also affected by the diameter, length, density and tension of the wire. If the string is short and light, it will vibrate faster under more tension and therefore will produce a high-pitched sound.

These days, the piano strings are usually made of tough, hard steel wire that can nick the blade of conventional wire cutters. The lengths and diameters of the strings tend to increase from treble to bass. A number of notes are strung with the same thickness of wire but with different lengths and tuned to different tensions so that the desired pitches can be produced.

Hammers

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When you press a key on piano, a hammer flies up and strikes the strings that are tuned to produce specific note. The hammer falls away quickly so that the vibration of the string is not stopped. This specific action is known as escapement. In case the hammer remains in contact with the strings, you will see that a ‘clunk’ sound is produced rather than a sustained musical tone.

These days, the piano hammers are made of wood that are covered tightly with a thick compact felt. The hammers’ size increases gradually from treble to bass. When you play piano frequently, there comes a time when the felt of the hammer is affected and this is when the piano starts producing unpleasant and at times harsh tone. You would need to contact a tuner who can adjust the felt fibers and solve the problem.

Soundboard

It is a fact that the vibration of the piano strings is not loud enough to be heard at its own and therefore it has to be amplified. Therefore, piano is designed in such a manner that its strings are pressed down on a bridge which transfers their vibration to a thin yet large wooden piece known as sound board. This is how the vibration of the strings is spread throughout its mass. It is important to remember that a crack on piano’s soundboard is not a serious problem and can be easily repaired by a good technician. Without doing any ‘major surgery’ you can have the same tone quality of your piano. However, you can prevent cracks by maintaining the humidity level in the home.

Dampers

The prime role of dampers is to stop the vibration once the sound has continued for some time. As long as one keeps the key depressed, the strings will vibrate. Once the key is released, the damper falls back against the strong. A soft felt is pressed against them so that the vibration can be absorbed. The highest strings of the piano do not need dampers. This is because their rate of release of energy is quite quick and they stop sounding after a while.

Pedals

The pedal located on the right side of the piano is meant for lifting all the dampers at once from the strings. The pedal on the left side is meant for producing a soft tone. If you have a grand piano, its left pedal can be used to lift all the keys along with their hammers to the right. The role of soft pedal in vertical pianos is to bring the hammers closer to the strings so that they can strike with less momentum. Modern pianos have middle pedal as well and can be used for lifting the bass dampers only. The middle pedal of vertical pianos sometimes creates a muting effect for an extra soft sound.

Once you have purchased a piano, it is important that you learn about all the parts and their respective functions. It is equally important that you know how to take care of this musical instrument because it can be quite a delicate affair. At any time you wish to shift to a new home or even to a new room, you should never do it on your own. Seek professional assistance from Los Angeles piano movers so that none of its parts are damaged during the shifting process.

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