US1015896A - Keyed zither. - Google Patents

Keyed zither. Download PDF

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Publication number
US1015896A
US1015896A US62161611A US1911621616A US1015896A US 1015896 A US1015896 A US 1015896A US 62161611 A US62161611 A US 62161611A US 1911621616 A US1911621616 A US 1911621616A US 1015896 A US1015896 A US 1015896A
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keys
bar
key
hammer
hammers
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US62161611A
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Bernhard R Kiessig
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JOSEPH N VASEY
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JOSEPH N VASEY
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    • GPHYSICS
    • G10MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; ACOUSTICS
    • G10DSTRINGED MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; WIND MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; ACCORDIONS OR CONCERTINAS; PERCUSSION MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; AEOLIAN HARPS; SINGING-FLAME MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • G10D3/00Details of, or accessories for, stringed musical instruments, e.g. slide-bars
    • G10D3/06Necks; Fingerboards, e.g. fret boards
    • G10D3/08Fingerboards in the form of keyboards
    • G10D3/09Fingerboards in the form of keyboards for zithers

Description

B. R. KIESSIG.
KEYED ZITHER.
APPLICATION FILED APR.17, 1911.
Patented Jan. 30, 1912.
2 SHEETS-SHEET 1.
B. R. KIESSIG. KEYED ZITHER.
APPLICATION FILE-D APB..'17, 1911. v
1,015,896. Patented Ja11 .30, 1912.
2 SHEETS-SHEET 2.
UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE.
BERNHARD R. KIESSIG, OF CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, ASSIGN OR OF ONE-HALF TO JOSEPH IN. VASEY, 0F BROOKFIELD, CHICAGO, ILLINOIS.
KEYED ZI'II-IER.
To all whom it may concern Be it known that I, BERNHARD R. Kinssre, residing at Chicago, in the county of Cook and State of Illinois, have invented certain new and useful Improvements in Keyed Zithers, of which the following is a specification.
My invention relates to keyed zithers' or like instruments and particularly to improved form of key action therefor for more efiioiently controlling the striking of melody strings.
Among the important objects of the invention are to provide improved form of engagement between keys and hammers, in which adjustable studs on the keys engage with the rounded upper front edges or corners of the hammers to thus impart both transverse and longitudinal thrust to the hammers, thereby causing quick and powerful response and rapid throw of the hammers with comparatively light touch on the keys; and to provide improved arrcngement for enabling the hammers and keys to be quickly and accurately alined.
My invention will be clearly understood by reference to the accompanying drawings, in which Figure 1 is a plan View of a musical instrument, showing a sounding board, strings, and a key board and action parts, Fig. 2 is an enlarged transverse sectional view taken substantially on line 2 2, Fig. 1, showing the action parts in normal position, Fig. 3 is a similar enlarged sectional view showing the same action parts in position after depression of a key, and Figs. 4 and 5 show a modified arrangement of association between the keys and the hammers.
Stretched across the sounding board 1 are the various strings 2 whose front ends are fastened to pins 3 and whose rear ends wind about tuning studs 4. The key board K is mounted at the front of the sounding board and comprises side walls 5 and 6 connected together at their rear ends and at the top by a bar 7 and connected together at their front ends by a bar 8. The keys k are arranged in a row between the side walls 5 and 6, and each key is flexibly suspended from the rear bar 7 by a flat spring strip 9 secured to the key and bar preferably by staples 10, as indicated. The front edge 11 of the rear bar 7 is rounded, as shown, and adjusting screws 12 pass through suitable Specification of Letters Patent.
Application filed April 17, 1911.
Patented Jan. 30,1912.
Serial No. 621,616.
openings in the springs and into the bar along the rounded edge thereof. After the keys is are secured to the rear bar the screws 12 are adjusted against the springs to bring the keys in horizontal alinement. Secured to and extending downwardly from the rear end of each key is a rod 13 terminating in a damper pad 14, which damper pads engage with the strings when the keys are in their upper normal positions, as indicated in Fig. 2. A hammer h is associated with each key, and below said key and parallel. therewith. Each hammer is flexibly supported by a flat spring strip 15 secured to the under side of the hammer and the bar 8 preferably by staples 16. The front end a of the inner edge 8 of the bar 8 tapers upwardly, and each spring strip 15 has passing therethrough an adjusting screw 17 which threads into the tapered face a, a washer 18 of leather, rubber or other suitable material being applied between the screw head and the spring strip. By means of these adjusting screws the hammers can be adjusted into horizontal alinement. Each hammer has extending downwardly from its inner end a striking head 19 shod by a felt strip 20, and above this head each hammer carries an abutment cushion or pad 21 for engaging against the under surface 22 of the associated key, when the parts are in normal position, as shown in Fig. 2. Side walls 5 and 6 have vertical extensions 23 and 24 with inclined front edges 25 for receiving an abutment plate 26 shod at its lower edge by a felt strip 27 against which the tops of the keys rest when in their normal position, as shown in Fig. 2. As indicated in Fig. 1, the front face of this abutment strip may be marked adjacent each key to indicate the note of said key.
Extending downwardly from each key near the outer end thereof is a stud 28 preferably in the form of a screw-eye whose head 28' is parallel with the associated hammer and in engagement with the upper outer corner 0 of the hammer, this corner being slightly rounded and shod with a strip of leather 29 or other suitable material. Extending along the top of the front bar 8 is a cushioning strip 30 of felt, and the under side of each key has a disk 31 of felt, the felt disks impinging against the felt strip 30 when the keys are depressed, as indicated in Fig. 3. The particular engagement of the studs 28 with the upper outer corners of the hammers is an important feature of this invention. When the parts are in normal position, as indicated in Fig. 2, the heads of the screw-eye studs engage justat the brink of the slightly rounded corner 0, and as a key is depressed the stud head travels along and around the corner into engagement with the end edge of the hammer, such engagement causing combined transverse and longitudinal thrust on the ham mer. In prior devices, where the stud on the key engages only with the top of the hammer, there is a tendency for the hammer to move bodily, thus making the touch very much harder, requiring more force on the keys to effect proper striking of the strings. Vith my unique arrangement there will be no such tendency to cause bodily downward movement of the key, as in my arrangement this is prevented by the longitudinal thrust applied to the key in addition to the transverse thrust when the rounded head of the stud 28 moves around the upper outer corner of the hammer. Such engagement causes a change in ,leverage which causes the hammer to be moved forcibly and thrown rapidly with only a comparatively light touch 011 the key. Adjustment is of course made so that the hammer receives sufficient overthrow upon depression of the key to carry its head away from the string after the string is struck. The damper attachment 13-1 releases the string when the string is struck by the hammer and reengages the string to cause damping thereof when the key assumes normal position.
In Figs. at and 1 have shown a somewhat modified arrangement which is particularly desirable where more powerful operation of the hammers is desired. Such modified arrangement consists in providing a small ridge or hump 32 on the leather facing 29 on the corner of the hammer. 1n the normal position shown in Fig. 1 the rounded head of the stud 28 engages at the foot of this ridge, and when the key is struck the head travels up the abrupt ridge and causes a rapid initial downward impetus to be given the hammer so that it will. forcibly strike the string. After passing over the bump or ridge the stud travels along the rounded side of the facing 29 and along the end of the hammer in the same manner as in the arrangement shown in Figs. 2 and 3. 1 thus provide a simple action for instruments of the class described, which comprises a minimum number of parts and which can be inexpensively manufactured, yet which is extremely flexible and efficiently responsive to a light touch which closely approaches the touch in ordinary pianos. In prior devices of this class the touch is very hard and entirely different from the touch found in ordinary pianos, so
he must use when playing the ordinary piano. In my construction also the keys and hammers can be secured to the supporting bars 7 and 8 in a more or less rough manner and then subsequently trued up into alinement by the adjusting screws 12 and 17.
I do not of course desire to be limited to the precise construction and arrangement and application thereof herein shown, as changes are of course possible which would still come within the scope of the invention, and
1 therefore claim the following:
1. In an action for musical instruments of the class described; the combination of front and rear horizontal supporting bars, a plurality of keys each flexibly hinged to the rear bar-by a flat spring strip and extending forwardly and terminating over the front bar, a hammer under each key, a flat spring strip secured to the under side of each hammer at the front end thereof and to the under side of the front bar whereby said hammers are flexibly hinged to the front bar and extend rearwardly below and parallel with the keys, and a stud extending downwardly from each key and engaging with the upper front corner of the hammer upon depression of the key whereby both transverse and longitudinal thrust is exerted on the hammers upon depression of the keys.
2. In an action for instruments of the class described, the combination of front and rear horizontal supporting bars, keys hinged to the rear bar and extending forwardly and terminating over the front bar and striking against said front bar upon being depressed, hammers below said keys and extending rearwardly from said front bar and parallel with the keys, a flat spring strip secured to the under side of each hammer and to the front bar whereby said hammers are flexibly hinged for vertical swing, the front upper corners of such hammers being slightly rounded, and studs extending downwardly from the keys and engaging with said rounded corners to exert both transverse and longitudinal thrust on the hammers upon depression of the keys.
3. In an action for instruments of the class described, the combination of front and rear horizontal supporting bars, keys hinged to the rear bar and extending forwardly and terminating over the front bar to strike against said front bar upon depression thereof, hammers below said keys and parallel therewith and extending rearwardly from the front bar, a hinge member secured to the under side of each hammer near the front end thereof and secured tothe front bar, and studs extending downwardly from the keys, the stud of each key moving about the upper front corner of the associated hammer upon depression of the key whereby both transverse and longitudinal thrust is applied to the hammer to cause downward swing thereof.
4:. In an action for musical instruments, the combination of front and rear horizontal supporting bars, keys hinged to the rear supporting bar and extending forwardly and terminating over the front bar to strike against said front bar upon being depressed, hammers parallel with and below said keys and extending rearwardly from the front bar, a strip of spring material secured at one end to the under face of each hammer near the front end thereof and secured to the front supporting bar to flexibly hinge the hammer, a facing of soft material about the upper front corner of each hammer, and a stud extending from each key and moving over said corner when the key is depressed to exert both longitudinal and transverse thrust on the hammer.
5. In an action for instruments of the class described, the combination of front and rear horizontal supporting bars, keys hinged to the rear supporting bar and extending forwardly and terminating over the frontbar and impinging against said front bar upon being depressed, hammers parallel with and below said keys and extending rearwardly from the front bar, hinge members connecting with said front bar and with the lower faces of said hammers near the front ends of the hammers, the upper front corners of the hammers being slightly rounded and each having a transverse ridge, and a stud extending from each key for engaging with said ridge and rounded corner upon depression of the key to cause rapid and powerful throw of the hammer. v
(3. In an action for instruments. of the class described, the combination of front and rear supporting bars, keys extending forwardly from the rear supporting bar and terminating over the front bar, a strip of spring material secured to each key and to the rear supporting bar whereby said keys are flexibly hinged, adjusting screws passing through said spring strips and engaging with the said rear supporting bar for ad justing said keys to horizontal alinement, hammers below said keys flexibly hinged to the front supporting bar, and studs extending from said keys and engaging with said hammers upon depression of the keys.
7 In an action for instruments of the class described, the combination of front and rear horizontal supporting bars, keys hinged to the rear bar and extending forwardly therefrom, hammers below said keys and parallel therewith, a hinge member secured to the under side of each hammer near one end thereof and secured to the front bar, and studs extending downwardly from the keys, the stud of each key moving about the upper corner at the hinged end of the associated hammer upon depression of the key whereby both transverse and longitudinal thrust is applied to the hammer upon depression of the key to cause rapid throw thereof.
8. In a key action for instruments of the class described, the combination offront and rear horizontal supporting bars, keys hinged to the rear bar and extending forwardly therefrom, hammers below said keys and parallel therewith, a hinge member secured to the under side of each hammer near one end thereof and secured to the front supporting bar, a ridge formed at the upper corner of each key at its hinged end, and a stud extending downwardly from each key for engaging with the ridge of the associated hammer upon depression of the key to cause rapid throw of the hammer.
9. In an action for musical instruments of the class described, the combination of a horizontal supporting bar, keys extending forwardly from said supporting bar, a strip of spring material secured to each key and to the supporting bar whereby said keys are flexibly hinged, the upper edge of said bar adjacent the hinged ends of the keys being beveled, and adjusting screws passing through said spring strips and engaging with the beveled edge of said supporting bar for adjusting said keys into horizontal aline-ment.
In witness whereof I hereunto subscribe my name this 12th day of April, A. D., 1911.
BERNHARD R. KIESSIG.
Vitnesses CHARLES J SCHMIDT, NELLm B. DEARBORN.
Copies of this patent may be obtained for five cents each, by addressing the "Commissioner of Patents,
' Washington, D. G.
US62161611A 1911-04-17 1911-04-17 Keyed zither. Expired - Lifetime US1015896A (en)

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Cited By (1)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2532226A (en) * 1949-03-04 1950-11-28 Lyle M Hartman Musical instrument

Cited By (1)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2532226A (en) * 1949-03-04 1950-11-28 Lyle M Hartman Musical instrument

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