Two days before we left for a week of vacation, we bought a piano from our neighbors. As happy as I was to escape to the north woods of Wisconsin with my family, I kept thinking about the new toy I’d left at home. My dad tried to talk me into tuning it myself, but I am not insane. For each of the 88 notes, there are 3 separate strings. Seeing as it took me 10 minutes to get my 4-stringed dulcimer sounding right this morning, it’d take me 11 hours to tune a piano. I happily called a piano technician.
This afternoon, the technician came over and cleaned and tuned the piano. The piano looks beautiful (apart from needing new key tops) but internally we didn’t really know what state it was in. There were a few keys that got stuck when playing, and a few that didn’t feel quite right when pressed – I was hoping the technician could
cheaply easily remedy the situation.
I sent the boys outside to play with the hose so I could
annoy observe the tehcnician while he worked. It was absolutely fascinating to see the inner workings of the piano and watch as it was being tuned. The most amazing thing about my piano? That it could play at all. Once the covers were removed, we discovered enough“treasures” jammed on top of/between/under the keys for me to open a second-hand knick nack store.
The technician removed:
- 1 jigsaw puzzle piece
- 1 Christmas ornament
- 1 toothpick
- 1 tube of eyeliner (!)
- 2 long brass rods (?)
- 1 small brass fitting to connect the brass rods
- 1 large eraser
- 1 nickle
- 5 pennies
- 11 (ELEVEN!) pencils
- 1 marker (black)
- 3 candy wrappers (Mr. Goodbar, hard candy, and fruit roll-up)
- 1 crayon (green)
- 1 safety pin
- 2 bobby pins
- 2 pens
- 1 gum wrapper
- 2 paper clips
- 1 plastic clip
- 1 mystery piece of wood (4″ long)
- 3 broken ivory keytops
(Disclaimer: I’m sure my neighbors are not guilty of this piano abuse – the piano originally belonged to a church in town. =) )
The piano was very flat so the technician raised the pitch before tuning it. Only 2 strings broke during tuning and he didn’t uncover any other major problems. Woo hoo!
If you need a piano technician in South-Central Wisconsin, Mark Milligan was great. He didn’t even give me a hard time for all the garbage my piano ate.