Robert Conrad, Registered Piano Tuner/Technician, Tucson, AZ

Templates

From the Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary:

Template:  A gauge, pattern, or mold (such as a thin plate or board) used as a guide to the form of a piece being made; an overlay; something that establishes or serves as a pattern.

Templates are used for mapping the different sections (bass, midrange, and treble) of the piano.

Click this link to view the Template Header Sheet in a separate tab in your browser.  Template Header Sheet

If you have Microsoft ‘Word’ or Office, or something compatible on your computer, you can Copy and Paste this link into your browser’s address bar to download the complete Template Header Sheet to your computer:

pianotuningtucson.com/wp-content/uploads/170130_980_Template_Header_Sheet.zip

Each row is a Page in the AccuTuner’s memory.
Page numbers are the left most column (SAT) and begin with Page 141.

The other column headers indicate the A numbers as follows: A0, A1, A2, A3, A4, A5, A6, A7.

Some colors have been added to make the sheet a little easier to ‘read’.
The RED column is A4 settings,
The GREEN columns are the A2 and A3 settings, and so on.

Also, as an attempt at making the Template Header Sheet a little easier to read when looking for templates, a blue and green bar have been inserted separating the bass from the midrange columns and the midrange from the treble

For instance,

On page 540, the A4 number is 10.2 and the A3 number is 3.8.
On page 320, the A5 number is 2.2, the A6 number is 8.1 and A7 on that page is 35.9.

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These templates can be used for tuning as well as mapping.

When used for tuning without the LC Spreadsheet,  generally 3 Pages/Templates in the SAT will be used for the tuning:  One for tuning the midrange, another for tuning the bass, and a 3rd for tuning the treble.

For instance maybe Pg 542 will be used for tuning the midrange, Pg 750 for the bass, and Pg 800 for the treble.

When using the templates for tuning, since A2’s default position in all these templates is -1.9, most of the time some DOB in the Sub-Prime octave (A2/A3) is needed.   When DOB is used there, an offset or a little bit of math is needed to get a smooth transition when switching pages, and hitting the A1 and A0 targets.

Sometimes DOB is needed in the low bass as well, for an additional custom tweak down there.

Doing it that way can get complicated, but it can be done.  I tuned that way for a while.  The tunings sounded really good, but it was time consuming with all the button punching, page switching, turning the offset on and off, adding and subtracting DOB wherever it was needed, and so on.    And even with 900 templates, it was virtually impossible to hit all my targets exactly on every piano.

However, with the 900 templates, this method was the most accurate tuning I had ever done.   But again, it was complicated and time consuming.

My main takeaway during that time was that we were on to something.   Using the templates like this allowed me to use all my aural, technical, and AccuTuner skills, to be able to set my own targets, and set my own stretch in the different parts of the piano.

Now that we have the Littau-Conrad Spreadsheet,  I use the templates for mapping only.  Templates are great for mapping because they allow me to both aurally and technically decide on all my targets and then turn them into a number, a setting for each of my targets.    And with the LC Spreadsheet, I can hit all my targets exactly with the tuning!!   You can read more about how templates can be used for mapping the midrange and treble targets on other posts on this website.

I don’t get the laptop and spreadsheet out until I’m ready to create the tuning with it. I do the mapping with with just the SAT and the templates, finding all my A’s and also the D#s in the 3rd and the 4th octaves.   ( Click on this link to read more on balancing the 5ths).

Once I know where the A targets (and D#3 and D#4) should be, they all get entered into the spreadsheet.  After a bit of adjusting in the spreadsheet, a tuning is created and stored into the spreadsheet’s database for safe keeping.   Now, using Inventronics’ Piano Manager Software program, the tuning is imported into the Piano Manager and then sent into the SAT for the actual tuning.

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