Designed in-house, we are proud to announce the development of Alaska Piano Services' very own piano brand!
Why Create Our Own?
As piano technicians, we have the unique opportunity to maintain, service, and play on some of the finest pianos in the state of Alaska. The refinement in the touch and tone of a high-end piano delivers an experience that immerses a player in a way that’s difficult to put into words. Unfortunately, the price tag for most high-end pianos makes them cost prohibitive and unrealistic for most piano players. Our goal is to alleviate this barrier and provide pianos that will deliver the experience of a high-end model at a more affordable price.
Weickert Hammers - Tonal Rebirth of Piano's Golden Age
During what some industry professionals and historians refer to as “the Golden Age of pianos” (1890-1920), there were hundreds of piano manufacturers in business in the United States. Piano hammers were made using Weickert felt exclusively on some of the finest pianos on the market , including New York Steinway, who was the biggest customer of Weickert felt in the United States, making this the original Steinway hammers that had a significant role in their reputation building amidst strong competition
Weickert felt was originally manufactured in the district of Leipzig, Germany in 1783, and over the next 100+ years, they tweaked and refined their formulas and moved the production plant to Wurzen (town in Leipzig). In the early 1900s, Weickert was producing felt for over 200,000 pianos every year. Sadly, the company fell on hard times and lost track of the formulas for a period of time after the Great Depression.
After the company was revived in 1991, the formulas for the felts were rediscovered and some felts were sent anonymously to Steinway as a test. With very positive responses, they wanted more of this product that reminded them of “the old Weickert felt.” Since then, the Wurzen factory has regrown its production of Weickert felt to levels unseen since 1903. In the modern piano market, Weickert felt is used on some of the best pianos in the world (Hamburg Steinway, Fazioli, Ravenscroft, etc). We, at Alaska Piano Services, want to introduce you to this legendary felt through our own line of grand pianos.
There’s a lot that goes into designing a piano action, and even most piano technicians don’t fully understand the complexities. It involves an extensive understanding of piano action geometry and physics and requires formulas and calculations for measuring weight ratios for action leverage points and their effects on the mass and inertia on the touch weight (how the piano feels under the pianist’s fingers while playing).
The vast majority of pianos offer a touch weight that feels too heavy, slow, or uneven, which can be an obstacle to enjoying the experience of playing and mastering advanced player techniques. This is due to design limitations resulting from overspecialization in factory production lines, costs associated with improving aspects of design, and lack of skill set and product experience for the design process.
Alaska Piano Services is proud to be equipped with the knowledge, skills, and experience to design actions that deliver a highly enjoyable piano playing experience. We have designed an action that rivals some of the best pianos on the market.