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"Tips and Tricks"

Electric Vacuum Pump Won't Fit in the Piano

Reference Materials

What if it doesn't fit?

   That's a tough one.... In my opinion, there are only two reasonable options. One, decrease the size of the right reservoir bellow. Basically this means cutting it in half length-wise (not width-wise). Two, locating the pump box outside of the piano. This can be done any number of ways, but the most common is to place the pump box in something like a cabinet, that's located adjacent to the piano. (Some of my customers have drilled a hole in the floor and placed the pump box in the basement...)

    A third option, which I don't normally recommend, is to remove the pumping pedals and locate the box in that space. Some of my elderly customers have opted to do this because they no longer pump the pedals. And, they keep the pedals in a safe place so that they can be put back in the piano at some later date -if that's desirable.

    Regarding the right reservoir, there are a few options depending on how the air is being channeled in the windtrunk. Option one, which I believe is the best option, is to make a new smaller bellow that is specifically designed to accommodate the requirements of an electric vacuum pump. I won't go into all of the details at this time, but when an electric vacuum pump is added to the system, care must be taken to avoid the possibility of choking the flow of air from the player system into the vacuum pump. This is accomplished by using a special kind of spring inside the new bellow which prevents the bellow from fully collapsing at higher vacuum levels. The beauty of this first option is that the original reservoir bellow is simply taken off and put in a safe place, which allows the system to be put back to its original condition at a later date -should that be desired.

    The second option is to cut the reservoir down to the required size to accommodate the pump box. This is always less expensive than the first option, but would require making a new bellow if it was necessary to return to system to its original configuration.

    The third option, which may or may not 'be' an option, is to remove the reservoir altogether and attach the flange fitting (for the vacuum hose from the pump) directly to the hole that connects the reservoir to the windtrunk. This option, if available, is the one that most of my customers select. The only downside of this option is the loss of 1/2 of the reserve capability of the system. However, as is generally the case, people who are installing a vacuum pump don't normally use the foot pumps. And, that being the case, there is no need for the second reservoir. That's because the vacuum pump is constantly 'pumping'.

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This page was last revised April 13, 2016 by John A. Tuttle, who Assumes No Liability
For The Accuracy or Validity of the Statements and/or Opinions
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Since "Player-Care" is an internet business, I prefer that we correspond via E-Mail (click here to fill out the 'Request Form'). However, if I'm not in the middle of some other activity, you can reach me at 732-840-8787. But please understand that during the hours from 8AM-5PM EST (Mon-Sat), I'm generally quite busy. So, I probably won't answer the phone. If you get the answering machine, please leave a detailed message stating the reason for your call. Also, repeat your name and phone number clearly and distinctly. By necessity, I prioritize everything in my life. And, if you call and just leave your name and number, and ask me to call you back, it might be a day or two before I return your call. Why? Because I don't know why you want me to call and I might not be prepared to assist you in an effective and efficient manner. If you leave me an E-Mail address (which I prefer), spell it out phonetically. The more you do to help me, the more I can help you in return. Don't rush. You have four minutes to record your message.

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