Home Manuals Supplies Search Consult Contact Testing Service

The result of overly sensitive pouches in a player piano

Hi Dan,

I had to think about this for awhile...... What it tells me is fairly impressive, but may prove to be problematic. Theoretically, the pouch should inflate regardless of the amount (or volume) of atmospheric air that gets inside the pouch well. That stands to reason. However, what it also says is that the pouches are extremely sensitive. What concerns me is they might respond to the slightest signal that comes along. Consider that in the early days of music roll production, they used what are known as 'chain perforations' to extend the duration of a note. And, like a chain, which is comprised of individual links, a chain perforation was comprised of a series of equally sized holes that were all in a row. 'Connecting them', as it were, was done by leaving a space of paper between two adjoining holes. (As I have personally experienced this problem, I know from where I speak.) Now, in reality, this 'space' between the adjoining holes actually closes the hole in the trackerbar for a split second, and if a pouch is extremely sensitive, it will respond to that 'closing' of the trackerbar port. The result is what is known as 'chatter', or 'fluttering'. So, instead of the note just staying 'on' for the full length of the chain perforation, it turns 'on' and 'off' exceedingly fast and creates what might also be referred to as a 'buzzing' sound.

Fortunately, the technology of roll manufacturing improved in the mid-teens and chain perforations basically disappeared for about the next 75 years. Then QRS got the bright idea (said with sarcasm) of using thinner paper, to save money. Problem was, the paper was so 'weak' that longer perforations starter 'collapsing' (or folding in on themselves). To solve this problem, QRS (in a sense) 're-introduced' the chain perforation. But instead of returning to the use of round circles separated by blank spaces, they used squares separated by spaces. (Are you getting the picture?) So, now you have a 'space' that really does 'close' the hole in the trackerbar for a split second.

Again, fortunately, QRS realized the folly of their ways and started using a strong paper, which in turn allowed them to decrease the distance between the links of a chain perforation. Still, hundreds of thousands of their rolls with the wider spacing do exist.

Why am I going through this lengthily explanation? Just so you'll be aware of the fact that your system -with it's sensitive pouches- is not at fault. It's just very sensitive.... and I think that's a good thing!


John A Tuttle

We Gladly Accept These Cards
Discover, VISA, MasterCard

back to top..To The Top of this Page . . . . . . . . . . . back to index ..To The HOME Page

This page was last revised March 6, 2013 by John A. Tuttle, who Assumes No Liability
For The Accuracy or Validity of the Statements and/or Opinions
Expressed within the Pages of the Player-Care Domain.
Cartoon Graphics by E7 Style Graphics (Eric Styles)

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.

Grand 16 IconGrand 32 Icon

407 19th Ave, Brick, NJ, 08724
Phone Number 732-840-8787
(Voicemail Only, No Texts)
Upright 32 IconUpright 16 Icon

Google Adsense Ad