Gavioli Piano Quartette
Gavioli Piano Quartette.
We often work together with other restorers who wish to restore certain parts of an instrument and have us restore other parts. In this example, we restored the piano—including the back structure, pinblock, soundboard, plate and action—for the Place de la Musique Collection in 1992 while John Hovancak and his associates restored the cabinet, pneumatic mechanisms and pipes. For musical authenticity, Andrew Pilmer created music based on original Gavioli arrangements for a smaller instrument with piano only. The key frame and cardboard music are mounted on the right side of the case.
Piano action and harp in Gavioli Piano Quartette.
Front view of the restored 54-note keyboardless piano mounted just behind the carved façade. It has a conventional piano action as found in a hand-played piano, not a simplified action as used in barrel pianos.
Piano back in Gavioli Piano Quartette.Back view of the piano removed from the cabinet, showing the unusual vertical orientation of the soundboard ribs.
Front interior of the Gavioli Piano Quartette.
Front interior view of the Gavioli Piano Quartette with the façade removed. The mechanism all works on pressure. Each row of piano stack pneumatics has a row of smaller primary pneumatics underneath, which take the place of pouches in an ordinary pneumatic stack. Each primary has a horizontal rod attached to a dowel projecting from the moveable board, which actuates a secondary valve. That valve inflates the larger pneumatic, playing the piano note.
Pipework in Gavioli Piano Quartette.
Rear view, showing from bottom to top, the pump, the valve chest for the pipes, the register box to its right, the pipe chest with two number stamped on it, and the violin, flute, and cello pipes.