Reply To: La Clavietta Stainless Steel Reed
Okay, here we go!
I had to decide which of these banks of reeds to use in my #1 Pianetta, the original on the top or the one from the “parts” #2 Pianetta on the bottom. All the reeds on the #2 were functional, while the C# reed on the #1 seems to have failed. But, while there’s some corrosion with both sets, it’s much worse with #2.
Because I have not given up on the C# reed, whose problem now seems to me to be that the reed is hitting the side of the opening, so that scraping might resolve the issue, I decided to harvest the B reed for David from the #2 Pianetta. The corrosion problem, a defect of the Pianetta, seems to be from the larger plates on which the individual reed plates are seated.
The individual reed was easy to remove by scraping around the edges with a chisel and then lightly tapping with hammer and chisel on the edge.
It is possible that the corrosion has been caused by a chemical reaction with whatever kind of glue was used to attach the reeds. Now, although the reeds look the same as those on the Chordiana and other small Italians, the sound of the Pianetta (my Pianetta at least) is quite different from that of the others. I am guessing that this is not because of a difference in the reeds. The Pianetta has one design feature that I like and another that I don’t. The air-pad release mechanisms are very nice, solid and requiring no adjustments to get them lined up well. Torsion springs are used under the keys, rather than compression or entension springs. This means that the keys are much trickier to remove and replace and it is harder to adjust tension.
You can find my email address in my profile, David. Send me your address and I’ll try to get this reed out before I leave for Mexico on Saturday.