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Tuning
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Baldassin - Sanderson Temperament
Tuning Master Class
Rick Baldassin, RPT  -  Baldassin Pianos  -  Salt Lake City, UT

Sunday, Sessions 9 and 10, Elm Classroom

In this aural tuning class, a sequence of tuning the temperament is presented which leads to a relatively foolproof way of finding out what kinds of thirds, fourths and octaves are needed to fit a given piano. As a result, the temperament tunes the same way on any piano, regardless of size or scale. This temperament sequence will be equally useful for beginners, those who normally tune with an electronic aid, and experienced aural tuners.

 

Custom Tunings with the Accu-Tuner
Paul Sanderson  -  Inventronics  -  Boston, MA
Saturday, Session 7, Hemlock Classroom

The Accu-Tuner has many methods for creating a tuning and you can pick the method that suits you best. The standard generic tuning works for pitch raising and basic tuning jobs. The three-measurement FAC method creates a custom tuning. One measurement and the Double Octave Beat control creates the only tuning that is perfectly tailored on the fly. Technician involvement in the creation of the tuning varies to the needs of the job and the level of piano/performer. This is the class to learn about new ways to create tunings, pitch raises, offset tunings, and with the only instrument that truly compares the piano to a pitch.

 

Ergonomic Tuning: Tools and Techniques
Nate Reyburn, RPT  -  Reyburn Piano Tech  -  Western Michigan
Friday, Session 2, Hemlock Classroom

This hands on class introduces ways to reduce stress on your body using both impact hammers and the traditional rigid lever. Reducing the strain on your shoulder, neck, and back by using the right tools the right way is crucial whether you're just starting out or have been tuning for years. We'll cover the basics as well as some advanced tips, then offer hands-on instruction.

 

Step Up Your Game
Rick Butler, RPT  -  Steinway Concert Technician  -  Washington, DC
Saturday, Sessions 5 and 6, Salon D Classroom

I once asked a much respected technician who teaches tuning at one of the resident tuning schools what the most difficult concept was for his students to grasp. Was it learning to hear beats? Was it learning to manipulate the tuning hammer? He said ‘Not at all’. What was it then, I asked? His answer somewhat surprised me. He simply replied: ‘Interval relationships’. Understanding how the various interval combinations are used to establish and analyze a tuning is very significant. When the use of these intervals is combined with our tuning objective or philosophy, the result can be quite amazing.

This class is not just about how to establish a temperament, but how to expand the interval relationships developed within the temperament, to the bass and treble of the piano. We will talk about how unisons are intervals which should reinforce our objective. We will also discuss how voicing is a critical part of tuning.

This lecture/demonstration class will appeal to those who wish to become aural tuners and pass the PTG Tuning Exam as well as those who are already aural tuners and wish to up their game. We will also use live video so everyone can see the keyboard when we are working at the piano.

 

You Can Tune It!
The Equal Temperament Game Show
Emily Townsend, RPT  -  North Bennet Street School   -  Boston, MA

Friday, Session 1, Salon D Classroom
Saturday, Session 8, Salon E Classroom

We're going to put our knowledge of equal temperament to the test! We'll draw note names out of a hat and tune a temperament in random order. This forces us to reconsider the interrelationships between the notes in our temperament and will stretch the limits of our aural tuning knowledge. We'll review traits of equal temperament and a little tuning theory as we go. If you've become set in your ways when tuning an aural temperament, this class will help you expand your options and try something new that might work well for you. Participation strongly encouraged but not required.

 

Where Does That Sound Come From?
Atsushi "Ace" Ugai  -  Yamaha Corporation of America  -  Piano Services Director
David Durben, RPT  -  Yamaha Corporation of America  -  Pomona Valley, CA

Friday, Sessions 3 and 4, Dogwood Classroom

We will demonstrate how tuning and regulation will have a direct effect on tone quality. Showing how to lay the foundation for good tone quality and how you can build on that with confidence in a good and predictable result.

 

Service and Repair
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Agraffes Can Be Fun!
John Zeiner Sr., RPT  -  John J. Zeiner & Sons  -  Lehigh Valley, PA
Friday, Session 4, Birch Classroom
Saturday, Session 7, Dogwood Classroom

Covering broken agraffes and hitch pin replacement including capo bar repairs. How to repair a damaged agraffe hole in the plate and using agraffe shims. Installation and alignment of a set of new agraffes. Discussing the Steinway patent on agraffes - Did you know that Steinway uses four different style agraffes in a piano?

 

Fix That Lyre
Debbie Cyr, RPT  -  North Bennet Street School  -  Boston, MA
Saturday, Session 5, Birch Classroom

Grand lyre repairs, featuring proper repairs for unglued lyre posts, a whirlwind tour of all kinds of pedal mechanisms, and a demonstration of just how easy installing a Steinway lyre really is!!

 

Glue for Piano Technicians
Louis del Bene, RPT  -  North Bennet Street School  -  Boston, MA
Friday, Session 4, Hemlock Classroom

Briefly discussing the different glues available along with terms and approaches. Louis will share what glues that he has found useful followed by a more practical discussion of glues used by technicians. Encouraging hands on interaction with different glues and demonstrating methods to achieve the ever-important goal of glue control.

 

How Our Work Affects the Pianist
Mario Igrec, RPT, M. Mus  -  Author, Pianos Inside Out  -  New York City
Saturday, Session 8, Birch Classroom

What do letoff, knuckle friction, boring distance, and bridge notching have in common? They make or break our most valuable customer - the pianist. In this intriguing and highly interactive class, Mario Igrec plays musical examples to demonstrate how those and other critical aspects of our work support or hamper the pianist's ability to convey musical ideas. What are we obsessing over too much and what are we neglecting? What yields greatest benefits for the pianist? Find out, sharpen your focus, and rediscover the purpose of our work.

 

In-Home Finish Restoration
Ruth Zeiner, RPT  -  Allied Piano and Finish LLC  -  Southeastern Pennsylvania
Saturday, Session 5, Hemlock Classroom

Often a customer’s budget doesn’t allow for a full refinishing, but the cabinet has the potential for handsome wood just waiting for a chance to shine. Learn how to make repairs, de-gunk the finish, and put a glow onto old finishes. The value of trade-ins leaps many times when the finish is beautiful.

 

Jansen Artist Bench: Anatomy, Service & Repair
Daniel Alberts, RPT  -  Indiana University of Pennsylvania  -  Pittsburgh, PA
Friday, Session 2, Fir Classroom
Saturday, Session 8, Elm Classroom

As the technician at The Indiana University of Pennsylvania, a designated “All Steinway” school, with an inventory of 100 Steinway pianos and BENCHES, Dan quickly came to discover that benches do require service! He also discovered that like him, many other technicians possess a limited working knowledge of one the finest and commonly found Artist Bench in our industry. This class will equip technicians with the information and general knowledge to become experts in Jansen Artist Bench service. Dan will discuss commonly found service issues and will teach you how to make those repairs. In addition to learning all there is to know about bench repairs you will likely catch on to Dan’s sense of humor and be entertained as he incorporates the ins and outs, and the ups and downs of university work throughout the class. In this class you will gain much knowledge about benches and have a few laughs!

 

Make It Shine!
Polyester Finish Service and Repair
All-Day Thursday Seminar - Registration Required
Ruth Zeiner, RPT  -  Allied Piano and Finish LLC  -  Southeastern Pennsylvania
Thursday All-Day, Sessions A thru D, Hemlock Classroom

Having the skills to cope with scratches, dings and gouges in piano cases greatly enhances your value to your customers and dealers. Add to your income in surprisingly simple ways. Many nicks and scratches are easy to repair with minimal material investment. All are learnable and not difficult with practice. This seminar concentrates on the repair and polishing of high gloss polyester finishes.

 

Pedaling From the Ground Up
Joyce Meekins, RPT  -  Meekins Piano Service  -  Washington, D.C.
Friday, Session 1, Birch Classroom

Technicians often overlook the crucial role pedals play in giving the pianist optimum control of the piano. Following a review of pedal systems, we will go on to consider ways in which the technician can offer individual players maximum pedal control. Factors such as pedal angle, the size of the player's foot and foot position, as well as different pedaling styles will be analyzed and illustrated with a videotape of players caught in the act of pedaling.

 

Piano Life Saver System Refresher
Kelly Hollifield  -  Dampp-Chaser Corporation  -  Western Carolinas, NC
Friday, Session 3, Elm Classroom

Get up to date! Be prepared to install vertical dehumidifiers with the new design and hardware. Learn how incredibly easy the new warranty registration is, and hear suggestions to navigate the transition. See what is coming soon for simpler grand humidifier servicing.

If you've installed hundreds of Systems, you can continue to look like the pro you are. If you're new, join in to learn foundational concepts and best practices from the start.

 

Problem Solving For The Field Technician
Peter Stumpf, RPT  -  Pittsburgh Steinway and Carnegie Mellon University  -  Pittsburgh, PA
Saturday, Session 5, Salon E Classroom
Sunday, Session 10, Birch Classroom

Confronting the tough nut issues we find on the road by following the process of diagnosis and solution within the mindset of doing the work efficiently, with the tools on hand and the time available. All the while keeping our obligations to the customer and the piano in mind.

Strategies for preventing problems and mending relationships will also be discussed. Questions welcome.

 

The Practical Road Warrior
Boaz Kirschenbaum, RPT  -  Vintage Tone Tool Co.  -  Boston, MA
Kirsi Lassi  -  Road Warrior  -  Helsinki, Finland

Friday, Session 2, Salon D Classroom
Sunday, Session 9, Birch Classroom

Tips and techniques for field technicians of every level, beginner to advanced. A fast paced, whirlwind tour of practical tips for regulating and voicing grands and uprights.... by way of New York, Boston, Hamburg, Berlin, Hamamatsu and Helsinki. Learn traditional and innovative American, Japanese and European methods and styles of work.

 

Tool Time with Keith
Keith A. Bowman, RPT  -  Performance Piano  -  South Central Pennsylvania
Saturday, Session 5, Elm Classroom

In-depth look at select tuning and regulating tools, voicing tools, measuring and string target jigs. Fixtures for clamping, boring and shaping hammers - what they do, how to set them up and how to use them safely and correctly. Where appropriate, discussing machine tool requirements and setups to obtain proper work results. Enjoy this 'Tool Time with Keith', a non-stop, tool packed class!

 

When Bad Things Happen to Good Pianos
Kent Webb  -  Steinway & Sons  -  New York City
Saturday, Session 8, Salon D Classroom

As we service pianos daily we encounter many diverse situations. Pianos span a wide range of styles, ages, and conditions and the problems we address reflect this diversity. Often it is true that diagnosis is ninety percent of the cure. Problems we rarely encounter can waste valuable time as we search for the causes. This class will explore the evaluation and the solutions for problems we must correct and demonstrate the procedures and tools required to properly perform these repairs.

 

Regulation
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Dampers Made Easy
Rick Butler, RPT  -  Steinway Concert Technician  -  Washington, DC
Friday, Session 4, Salon D Classroom

A KeyNote slide/video presentation that will demonstrate how to bend grand damper wires. We will discuss how to install a set of dampers in a grand piano. It will not matter whether they are new damper heads with new felts and wires, or a set of dampers that have been cleaned with new damper felts installed. We will also discuss how to trouble shoot a damper that is not working properly and how to handle those annoying dampers where the wire is buzzing against a string. The idea here is to simplify the regulation and adjustments associated with Grand Dampers.

 

Grand Action: A Balancing Act
Mario Igrec, RPT, M. Mus  -  Author, Pianos Inside Out  -  New York City
Friday, Session 3, Salon E Classroom
Saturday, Session 6, Dogwood Classroom

This introductory class explains how the grand action is balanced, introducing concepts such as action leverage, hammer "strike weight," downweight, upweight, balance weight and friction. The class explores how these aspects interact, how to measure them in a way that is compatible with the Practical Touch protocols, and why understanding them is useful. Students learn to calculate the balance weight and friction from down and upweight information both mentally and with a formula. Class participants are encouraged to take measurements and to compare measurements on several notes throughout the range.

 

Grand Action Regulating: Letting the Action Speak for Itself
Don Mannino, RPT  -  Kawai America  -  South Bay, CA
Sunday, Sessions 9 and 10, Salon E Classroom

This class teaches proper regulating without knowing the manufacturer's specifications, and is a high-level regulating class. Included is some discussion of preparing an action for regulation, but much time is spent on evaluating the action and drawing conclusions about establishing the correct regulation for the best performance in any action.

 

It's All About Jack
Randi Potter, RPT  -  Randy Potter School of Piano Technology  -  Portland, OR
Friday, Session 2, Dogwood Classroom
Saturday, Session 8, Chestnut Classroom

Virtually everything we do when regulating – whether on a vertical or grand piano – either affects, or reveals itself in, the Jack. When we come to a note with an “issue”, if we understand Jack we can quickly diagnose what needs attention, and then quickly correct it. Handouts include the regulating sequences, with a Quick Reference Guide to Jack.

 

Performance Upright
T. Michael Carraher, RPT  -  Performance Piano  -  South Central Pennsylvania
Keith A. Bowman, RPT  -  Performance Piano  -  South Central Pennsylvania
Friday, Sessions 1 and 2, Elm Classroom

This comprehensive, advanced class reviews action diagnostics and regulation theory with various models and at the piano. New tools and procedures are demonstrated for optimal regulation. Damper regulation, diagnostics, felt replacement and trapwork will be covered. Conditional issues that require reconditioning or parts replacement will be discussed, with new fixtures not previously demonstrated.

 

Regulating Upright Damper Spoons: Are there really spoons?
Don Mannino, RPT  -  Kawai America  -  South Bay, CA
Saturday, Session 7, Salon E Classroom

A class on the purpose and benefits of setting the damper lift in upright pianos accurately, a job so often overlooked when servicing upright actions. In this session Don covers the reasons for regulating, and provides a demonstration of how to use purchase and modify the blade type spoon benders, and use a special transparent spacing jig to make the job accurate and fast in almost any piano. At the conclusion there will be time to try it for yourself with a little coaching from Don. A practical, hands-on seminar for every technician.

 

The Perfect Touch
Regulation Master Class
All-Day Thursday Seminar - Registration Required
Rick Butler, RPT  -  Steinway Concert Technician  -  Washington, DC
Greg Sikora  -  Steinway Concert Technician  -  Philadelphia, PA

Thursday All-Day, Sessions A thru D, Salon D Classroom

Explore the secrets of what creates the perfect touch and tone. Rick Butler and Greg Sikora will examine and explain how to perform the highest level of regulation when it comes to the home owner, stage, artist, or the student. Two of the most highly sought after concert technicians in the most demanding markets have seen it all. Their technical guidance and personal experiences will prepare you for the highest level of regulation possible.

 

Voicing
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Craft of Voicing
Boaz Kirschenbaum, RPT  -  Vintage Tone Tool Co.  -  Boston, MA
Friday, Session 4, Salon E Classroom
Saturday, Session 7, Salon D Classroom

Become a more focused, mindful & artistic voicer. I'll demonstrate specific voicing techniques you can use on a variety of pianos. Learn about the voicing tools and "chemistry" used by Steinway C&A in both New York and Hamburg. We will also talk about impedance, power vs color, and how to work with these concepts to make your client's piano sound its best.

 

Dueling Tone Design
Voicing Master Class
All-Day Thursday Seminar - Registration Required
Rick Baldassin, RPT  -  Baldassin Pianos  -  Salt Lake City, UT
Eric Schandall, RPT  -  Piano Service Oslo, Norway  -  New York City

Thursday All-Day, Sessions A thru D, Dogwood Classroom

A first-time and unique opportunity to learn detailed voicing techniques by two world-class master technicians. Although Rick and Eric have had different manufacturer career paths, they will combine their unique perspectives to form a well-rounded and comprehensive overview of tone regulation. The class will be taught using two different pianos, with the work being performed by two technicians who will prepare the pianos in advance, and their work critiqued as is done with musicians who perform and are then critiqued in master classes.

 

Make the Piano Sing
Greg Sikora  -  Jacobs Music  -  Vice President and Chief Steinway Concert Technician
Friday, Session 3, Salon D Classroom

Every artist, pianist, student, teacher, and piano owner has a definition of how the piano should sound. What is that definition? How do we voice the piano to that definition? We will discover what makes for a good voicing, how to prepare for it, how to achieve it, and determine how to produce the best voicing for each piano. We will explore not only how to effectively voice the piano but how to make it sing.

 

Prep Your Voicing
Emily Townsend, RPT  -  North Bennet Street School   -  Boston, MA
Saturday, Session 6, Salon E Classroom

Many technicians overlook the two most important steps in achieving consistent voicing: Leveling strings and fitting hammers to strings. A voicing job is easier and ultimately more successful if these two steps are done well, but we often skip them out of a lack of familiarity or a desire to avoid their tedium. I will demonstrate several different tools for each procedure, which will hopefully provide everyone with an option that will become comfortable and easy. Of special note is a hammer fitting tool I have only recently acquired and have seldom seen used, which enables the technician to fit hammers without sliding the action in and out of the piano. This dramatically increases accuracy and dramatically decreases tedium!

 

Voicing Hard Pressed Hammers
Don Mannino, RPT  -  Kawai America  -  South Bay, CA
Friday, Sessions 1 and 2, Salon E Classroom

Don demonstrates the techniques needed to get good tone from the really hard hammers that we see in a variety of new pianos today. These hammers are not ideal for creating an expressive tone, but they are not hopeless, either! Don will discuss various methods of getting the hammers more resilient and musical, using bulk techniques as well as detailed needling techniques to extract the best sound possible from the most stubborn hammers.

 

Voicing the Treble In Grand Pianos, Tuning Hammer Techniques, and A Little About the Human Ear
Eric Schandall, RPT  -  Piano Service Oslo, Norway  -  New York City
Sunday, Sessions 9 and 10, Dogwood Classroom

The treble in grand pianos can be the most difficult area to get the amount and quality of sound that is necessary for the music and the performer. There are many techniques that can be used to help in getting the best we can from this area. As time allows, we will explore the tolerance of the hammer to needling, over needling, and possible recovery of good tone from too much voicing and wear. There will be reference to preparation of concert and recording instruments throughout the class.

We will also talk a bit about how we hear, and some observations about tuning hammer techniques that will help in achieving stability in your tunings. Reference to preparation of concert and recording instruments will be presented throughout the class.

 

Design and Specialty
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How To Be A Mentor
'Ease' Your Way Into Retirement
Randi Potter, RPT  -  Randy Potter School of Piano Technology  -  Portland, OR

Friday, Session 4, Elm Classroom

Perhaps the largest problems our industry faces right now, and for the foreseeable future, is the lack of new piano technicians entering the field. For the experienced technician that is able to take on an apprentice and also the technician that would like to plan for retirement with a gradual and smooth transition. For the past 28 years we have been working with hundreds of piano technicians, all over the world, who successfully take on apprentice – and with hundreds of our students who have successful relationships with one, or more, technician in their area. Our new training book, which we call The Mentoring Book: How to be a Mentor – How to be an Apprentice is designed to help potential Mentors understand how they can work with an Apprentice, and to help the Apprentii to understand what the Mentor needs in order for them to work together. Each technician attending this class will receive a copy of this book.

 

Shop and Rebuilding
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All About Hammers
Alexander Abel  -  Abel Hammer Company  -  International (Germany)
Norbert Abel  -  Abel Hammer Company  -  International (Germany)
Boaz Kirschenbaum, RPT  -  Vintage Tone Tool Co.  -  Boston, MA

Saturday, Session 8, Dogwood Classroom

What raw material is used to make good hammer felt? How is hammer felt made? What is the difference between quality felt and standard felt? With the use of live videos and visuals, you’ll learn the process of felt making and take a tour through the Abel Hammer factory in Germany. In addition, Norbert will teach the basics about weight, voicing, elasticity, and hardness in hammers.

 

America's Piano Hammer Maker
Ray Negron  -  Ronsen Piano Hammer Co.  -  Hudson-Adirondack, NY
Starr Taylor, RPT  -  St. Piano Rebuilders  -  Southwest Florida

Friday, Session 1, Chestnut Classroom

Ray Negron will take you through a tour of the Ronsen Piano Hammer Company. You will see the various processes used in manufacturing piano hammers, discuss the merits of the different felts and woods available, including our newest felt offering, Weickert Special by Wurzen, and be shown how to take measurements from your old hammers in order to facilitate ordering new ones. Starr will present voicing tips and other procedures to help you get the best sound possible from the different hammers we offer. New videos included. Questions are welcomed and encouraged.

 

Increase Your Business with Grand Action Regulation
Daniel Alberts, RPT  -  Indiana University of Pennsylvania  -  Pittsburgh, PA
Friday, Session 4, Chestnut Classroom

This will be a fun interactive class that will focus on methods that can help technicians develop and integrate grand action regulation as a means to develop their skills and increase their business. As the University Technician at The Indiana University of Pennsylvania, a designated “All Steinway School” Dan will share and discuss the process and research he implemented to determine why “The Grandwork Regulation Station” is the solution to grand action regulation. In the process, Dan discovered the tremendous market potential for grand action regulation work. Dan wishes to share this information with his fellow technicians so that they might take advantage of the opportunities to capture this segment of the market. Our Piano Technology Department and the administration at The Indiana University of Pennsylvania decided to purchase “The Grandwork Regulation Station”. Dan will demonstrate the features, the advantages, and the benefits of the product while providing evidence and rationale why “The Grandwork Regulation Station” is the perfect addition for any technician… the beginner, the intermediate, and the advanced. Come and discover!

 

Introducing the Grand Pre-Crowned Soundboard
Christian Bolduc  -  Pianos Bolduc  -  Factory Manager
Friday, Session 3, Chestnut Classroom

Shop not set up for full grand rebuild but you're interested in replacing a soundboard? Christian introduces us to the Grand Pre-Crowned Soundboard with ribs glued and new bridge capping ready to carve. This class provides an overview of proper measurements for duplication and requirements for a successful installation.

 

Key Rebushing
The Spurlock Method
Trix and Jacob Erwin  -  Erwin's Piano Restoration
Friday, Session 3, Fir Classroom
Saturday, Session 6, Birch Classroom

We will show you how to rebush a set of keys completely, with top quality results, in the time it takes to do an average tuning. We cover all aspects of the job including removal of old bushings, improvements to damaged keys, cloth selection, use of hot hide glue, and efficient use of tools. Learn the system that has made this once-feared job an enjoyable money maker for hundreds of technicians. A thorough 6 page handout will supplement excellent slides and live demonstrations.

 

Kiss Your Weight Problems Goodbye
Practical Touchweight Analysis
Melanie Brooks  -  Brooks LTD Piano Products  -  Connecticut

Saturday, Session 6, Elm Classroom

Discover a practical approach to touchweight and its use in grand hammer and action parts replacement. This class will provide you with the proper technical knowledge of weight measurements and parts selection and their effects on tone and touch in the grand piano action. We will also discuss using pre-hung hammers.

 

Measuring, Marking, and Cutting
Louis del Bene, RPT  -  North Bennet Street School  -  Boston, MA
Friday, Session 1, Dogwood Classroom
Saturday, Session 7, Chestnut Classroom

A discussion beginning with measurements used in the trade. Moving into ideas and uses of various measurements used in the field, 'precision measurements' vs 'semi-precision measurements' (which we use and where), "how do you say that", "visual marks” vs “guiding marks”, and matching your marking tool sets to your cutting tool sets to improve precision in our daily work on site and in the shop using traditional tools and methods.

 

New Hammers - Do It Yourself or Outsource
Alexander Abel  -  Abel Hammer Company  -  International (Germany)
Norbert Abel  -  Abel Hammer Company  -  International (Germany)

Friday, Session 2, Chestnut Classroom

Whether doing all hammer replacement by yourself or outsourcing some jobs, it is important as a technician to use your time efficiently to improve business and optimize your work. Norbert talks about unbored (for self boring), standard bored and custom-made hammers. We’ll also cover refelting existing hammers and making square grand hammers. 30 years of quality hammer making allows the Abel Hammer Company to offer expert advice and full service for all technicians.

 

Replacement of the Upright Pinblock
Christian Bolduc  -  Pianos Bolduc  -  Factory Manager
Saturday, Session 5, Dogwood Classroom

In a time where people are downsizing, upright pianos are in greater demand. See how replacing a pinblock can give new life and value to an old upright piano. In this fast paced class you will learn how to take necessary references before removing the sides of the piano, protocol to removing the pinblock using the Bolduc’s upright pinblock extractor and fitting the new block to the piano frame, as well as drilling it, glue and dowel into the case. Many tips and tricks to simplify the work are included.

 

WNG Complete Action Replacement
Bruce Clark  -  Wessell, Nickel & Gross  -  Boston, MA
Saturday, Sessions 7 and 8, Fir Classroom

Sometimes a piano needs a completely new action stack. WNG has addressed this need with the new WNG Top Action and this class. Most rebuilders learned that “Action Work” means putting everything back as it was. With a new action this is no longer possible. This class teaches the basics required to replace an entire action.

Topics covered include:
• How to create a scale stick.
• How to select the action features you need.
• How to create setup specifications.
• How to custom bore hammers for the new action.
• How to install the action on the keyframe.
• How to locate the capstan and heel for acceptable performance.

 

Working with Hammers
Dale Erwin, RPT  -  Erwin's Piano Restoration  -  Sacramento Valley, CA
Jacob Erwin  -  Erwin's Piano Restoration

Saturday, Session 7, Birch Classroom

Choosing and installing the right hammers for a specific piano is the single most important skill we can possess to improve a pianos performance and is critical to our success as technicians. What makes piano hammers work? What makes them different? Acoustic concerns, Hammer sampling, preparation, hanging and strike line issues will ALL be covered. Experience filing with the Erwin Hammer sander and other methods. The "Erwin Action Ratio Gauge" is a simple tool which aids correct parts selection and targets a specific predetermined hammer weight in 10 minutes. Other jigs and fixtures are demonstrated. We will explore Ronsen Weickert felt and experience a new easy to use voicing solution. An informative and fast paced class, Dale will distill 45 years of hammer expertise and practical techniques into a one period class.

 

Business
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Business Savvy Professionals
Melanie Brooks  -  Brooks LTD Piano Products  -  Connecticut
Friday, Session 3, Birch Classroom

Defining practical strategies to make savvy business decisions will help you realize your goals. Focusing on technical skills, we often lose sight of the costs of doing business. Join in a group discussion as we define what your time is really worth and build a road map to a successful business plan.

 

Growth versus Aging in your business
Peter Stumpf, RPT  -  Pittsburgh Steinway and Carnegie Mellon University  -  Pittsburgh, PA
Saturday, Session 7, Elm Classroom

Timeless business strategies and how they apply to our profession. Focus on developing income and reducing disorder. This class covers posturing yourself in the marketplace, identifying and capitalizing on opportunities, and the importance of visibility.

Growth vs. Aging also exposes waste within the typical tech's business and ways to manage or eliminate it. By streamlining our work, we can be more productive and make more $$$. As an independent field tech, a College and University Technician and owner of Pittsburgh Steinway, I have acquired a foundation in a variety of business experiences and fundamentals. Lots of illustrations to demonstrate. Questions encouraged.

 

Piano Teachers and Their Pianos: Your Most Important Clients
Joyce Meekins, RPT  -  Meekins Piano Service  -  Washington, D.C.
Saturday, Session 6, Chestnut Classroom

Teachers' recommendations can be the foundation of a successful piano service business. To create a productive working relationship, technicians must be aware the unique requirements of teachers and their pianos. Issues of scheduling, education, communication, long-and short-term technical requirements, and service will be discussed and illustrated with anecdotes from teachers' experiences. Leave with guidelines that will help you analyze and improve this essential part of your business.

 

The Gazelle Network - Building A Stronger Business
Luke Ehresman  -  The Gazelle Network
Saturday, Session 5, Fir Classroom

If you are trying to making a living as a piano technician, you need Gazelle. The Gazelle Network is a new software that enables you to manage your business on the go. Gazelle will save time and increase your revenue. Spend less time in the office, less time in the car, as you automatically remind clients their piano(s) are due for service and watch as they self schedule their own appointments using Gazelle's SMART Scheduler. Managing clients, pianos, and calendars for one or more technicians is what Gazelle does best. This class will be focused on showing you how Gazelle can transform your life by helping you focus on the things you love. Gazelle will enable you to spend your time servicing pianos and caring for people rather than playing phone tag and doing office work.

 

Electronic Tuning Devices (ETD's)
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Intro to the SMARTER Reyburn CyberTuner for iPhone/iPod/iPad
Dean Reyburn, RPT  -  Reyburn Piano Service  -  Western Michigan
Saturday, Session 5, Hemlock Classroom

In this class we will be using the NEW iRCT for Apple iOS. We quickly cover RCT basics, then demonstrate using RCT's Smart Partials analyzing a piano's inharmonicity to create smoother transitions at the breaks. We also explore the new Pure 12ths tuning style, accurate pitch raises, and converging the ear's aural preferences with a machine's digital decisions.

 

Introduction to the Accu-Tuner IV
Paul Sanderson  -  Inventronics  -  Boston, MA
Friday, Session 1, Hemlock Classroom

The Accu-Tuner has entered a new chapter, the old microprocessor had run its course and with a new brain we are able to teach an old dog new tricks. There are new features to let you have more control over the tunings, more control of the pitch raising, and yet still retain the long battery life and improve the durability with a new case. Software for up/down loading tunings to your Microsoft based computers is included with the Accu-Tuner IV. Come and see how you can use the Accu-Tuner IV to lighten your work load.

 

Tuning with the Verituner
Dave Carpenter, RPT  -  Veritune, Inc.  -  Chicago, IL
Friday, Session 3, Hemlock Classroom

See up close how to take advantage of the unique tuning features of the Verituner product line, including our app for iPhone, iPod and iPad. We will cover pitch raises, fine tuning, setting standard pitch, temperament, stretch styles, and saving tunings. Learn the best practices for getting a great sounding tuning on any piano with the fewest steps.

 

Player Piano Systems
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New Steinway & Sons SPIRIO
Gregory Cheng, RPT  -  Jacobs Music  -  Southeastern Pennsylvania
Friday, Session 2, Birch Classroom

We will demonstrate the system’s playback and custom iPad app, share music library highlights and present a service overview. Don’t miss this exclusive look at Steinway & Sons first NEW product in over 70 years!

The new Steinway & Sons SPIRIO is a high-resolution player piano that provides a musical experience indistinguishable from a live performance. Spirio utilizes a proprietary, high-resolution recording system that uniquely measures hammer velocity and proportional pedaling to unlock the Steinway & Sons experience.

 

QRS PNOmation 3
Saturday, Session 5, Chestnut Classroom

Learn about the latest in player piano systems. The PNOmation 3 allows wireless control of your player system from any web enabled device. It eliminates the need for a “controller” on the front of the piano and offers many onboard features. The complete system can be installed on virtually any piano. In addition, the system is also available as a low cost upgrade that can be added to any existing QRS system, or, can also drive any other brand of system with a midi 5 pin connection. Focusing on installation, upgrading existing systems, service and profit generation of this system.

 

What's New at Piano Disc. It's all about the Apps!
Mike Collins  -  PianoDisc
Friday, Session 4, Fir Classroom

The new iQ App breaks the boundaries of traditional music players and frees your PianoDisc system to play endless music. Your music purchases are automatically downloaded and installed, your MIDI recordings can be played without conversion, and you can directly download and play MIDI files from the Internet!

But that’s just the beginning. Now more than ever, you are free to enjoy, create, and learn.

 

RPT Exams and Prep
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Introduction to the Technical Exam
Exam Team
Saturday, Session 6, Fir Classroom

A walkthrough of the requirements of the PTG technical exam and a survey of test equipment and procedures. Find out how to prepare for the exam, what tools and supplies you need to bring to the test site and what examinees are entitled to before, during and after the test. Learn how to best utilize your time, improve efficiency, cope with exam anxiety and other skills and strategies you need to successfully tackle the exam. For PTG Associate members only.

 

Preparing for the Written Exam
Marc Poulin, RPT  -  PTG Northeast Regional Vice President  -  Vermont
Friday, Session 1, Fir Classroom

We will introduce you to all the study aids and material that PTG has published to prep you for the written exam. Explaining the procedures for starting the “Walk to RPT” and outline the content of the exam in an effort to put you at ease before you make the commitment. The written exam will be given on Sunday morning.

 

Step Up Your Game
Rick Butler, RPT  -  Steinway Concert Technician  -  Washington, DC
Saturday, Sessions 5 and 6, Salon D Classroom

I once asked a much respected technician who teaches tuning at one of the resident tuning schools what the most difficult concept was for his students to grasp. Was it learning to hear beats? Was it learning to manipulate the tuning hammer? He said ‘Not at all’. What was it then, I asked? His answer somewhat surprised me. He simply replied: ‘Interval relationships’. Understanding how the various interval combinations are used to establish and analyze a tuning is very significant. When the use of these intervals is combined with our tuning objective or philosophy, the result can be quite amazing.

This class is not just about how to establish a temperament, but how to expand the interval relationships developed within the temperament, to the bass and treble of the piano. We will talk about how unisons are intervals which should reinforce our objective. We will also discuss how voicing is a critical part of tuning.

This lecture/demonstration class will appeal to those who wish to become aural tuners and pass the PTG Tuning Exam as well as those who are already aural tuners and wish to up their game. We will also use live video so everyone can see the keyboard when we are working at the piano.

 

Tuning Exam Self-Study With Your ETD
Dave Carpenter, RPT  -  Veritune, Inc.  -  Chicago, IL
Saturday, Session 8, Hemlock Classroom

Learn a new way to practice aural tuning and study for the PTG Tuning Exam using your own Electronic Tuning Device as a tutor! See demonstrations of how the PTG Tuning Exam is scored and how you can drill and isolate each aural tuning skill independently with just a few easy steps using any ETD. Fine tune your skills to prepare for the exam, or just learn to be a better aural tuner.

 

Written Exam
Exam Team
Sunday, Sessions 9 and 10, Hemlock Classroom

The Written Exam will be administered Session 9. A review of the completed exam will take place privately with each person in Session 10.

 

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