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I have a 1912 Symphonic baby grand piano and I noticed two problems. This question is a two-parter:

  1. I noticed at the top of the beam for the soft pedal, the wooden piece is cracked. We thought of zip-tying it to keep it together. Is this a good fix? If not, what would be a recommended fix at home? If there is none, would I have to seek help from a technician?
  2. I also noticed that my sostenuto/middle pedal has a block on the bottom of it, but my sustain and soft pedals do not. I believe this block is responsible for keeping the pedals from wobbling and pressing so easily, as both pedals wobble and go down super easy, whereas the sostenuto/middle pedal is harder to press and doesn't wobble. I have a 3D printer and I can design a block for the other pedals (I understand the block felt wraps around the pedal to keep it firm, and lifts up with it). If I printed such a part, would it work well, or is this something I would have to have a technician look at?

If anyone is able to answer these questions, that would be greatly appreciated. Thanks for reading!

Cracked soft pedal (link to full-size image (too big to upload): https://drive.google.com/file/d/19uo30dWLefv6ornwdnQwv1TWbmDI-cW4/view)

Pedal blocks (link to full-size image (too big to upload): https://drive.google.com/open?id=1jPsbzV0mfBW1vjVkR8Uo_iwt1LBnhSVX)

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  • Were it mine, I'd open up the split with a couple of screwdrivers, fill it with two-pack, and bind it - or use a couple of exhaust clamps, right size, till it's set. Making a new one isn't difficult, but matching the thread may well be. obviously loosen the threaded rod before applying adhesive. – Tim Apr 26 '20 at 6:39
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To address the first question:

This is a simple mechanical issue. Eventually the wooden piece might have to be replaced. But wrapping will possibly get a further 100 years use from it, and can't do any harm! Or just leave it until your tuner/technician next visits. It's only the soft pedal, probably not in constant use. No great urgency. Tale his advice.

Note that it MAY have split due to the screwed rod being screwed in too far, indicating excessive wear and play in another part of the mechanism. I'm afraid odd pianos don't mature into valuable heirlooms, they just wear out!

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  • The movers did adjust the rods which helped the entire pedal box stop shaking side to side while pressing on them. Maybe they went quickly and over-tightened it. I also remember one time pressing the pedal and hearing a crack. I just thought it was the piano being old. I won't be able to get a tuner or technician at my house due to the present circumstances, so I may just zip-tie it. Thank you! – Victor Resnov Apr 26 '20 at 0:48
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    That will be one reason you're supposed to remove the lyre for transportation :\ – Tetsujin Apr 26 '20 at 8:30

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