Monday, February 11, 2013

Sounding Board Cleaner

One of the problem cleaning areas of the piano is the top surface of the sounding board.

 Because of the strings running over top of the bridgework, this leaves little in the way of room for tools to reach underneath the strings to clean off the dust and dirt that accumulates over time on surface of the piano sounding board.

Dust and dirt hold moisture, and will retain moisture found in the air. That retention can cause the finish on the sounding board to be damaged permanently if not kept clean. This is one of the main causes of sound board decal deterioration.

I have taken a crevice tool from an old vacuum and made up a tool that fits underneath the strings. This tool allows most of the dust and dirt accumulations to be cleaned away. This is not the perfect tool for the job but it gets the majority of the flat surface cleaned up quickly. Then a small brush can be used for the really tight spots.

Take a crevice tool and block the end where the air enters. Then cut away one side of the tool along its length. Line the sharp edges with thin gauge felt to prevent scratches on the surface of the sound board finish and decal. Hook up the tool to your shop vacuum and you are ready to go.

 For the purposes of this demonstration I am using an empty paper towel roll. In a pinch if you have no small gauge plastic pipe or old crevice tool from your last vacuum then the paper roll is a good one for making this handy item. 

Here is a photo set for the making of the tool.

Sounding Board Cleaner

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