Following is a picture tour of a critical aspect of piano rebuilding – piano bridge duplication. The instrument shown is a Steinway Model M baby grand piano. The bridges being replaced are not the originals.
Several methods are not described here since they are proprietary. This does not necessarily mean that I keep secrets, in fact most of my processes have been demonstrated in clinics over the years. My main concern is that the information I present is not interpreted as DIY tutorials. Piano bridge duplication is a critical part of piano rebuilding, requiring advance training. If a piano bridge duplication is done incorrectly or not included as part of piano restoration that the instrument will not function optimally.
Removal of old pins before routing
Taking precise measurments of old bridge for consideration in establishing new bridge height.
Paper transfer template provides location of bridge pin holes. This become the blue print for accurate piano bridge duplication.
Routing of bridge cap down to vertical bridge base form.
New cap blank rough-cut on band saw
Bridge notching is done by hand. Piano bridge duplication is a very physical task. Pianos are precise instruments yet not necessarily delicate. Working on them is not always pretty.
Long bridge after notching by hand
New bridge cap after notching.
Graphite burnished into bridge top
Bridge Pins being inserted into bridge. After they are inserted pin top are ground. This is the final step in piano bridge duplication.