US1722978A - Piano shutter - Google Patents

Piano shutter Download PDF

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Publication number
US1722978A
US1722978A US753558A US75355824A US1722978A US 1722978 A US1722978 A US 1722978A US 753558 A US753558 A US 753558A US 75355824 A US75355824 A US 75355824A US 1722978 A US1722978 A US 1722978A
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casing
sound
piano
shutters
strings
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US753558A
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Jr John Hays Hammond
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Jr John Hays Hammond
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    • GPHYSICS
    • G10MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; ACOUSTICS
    • G10CPIANOS, HARPSICHORDS, SPINETS OR SIMILAR STRINGED MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS WITH ONE OR MORE KEYBOARDS
    • G10C1/00General design of pianos, harpsichords, spinets or similar stringed musical instruments with one or more keyboards
    • G10C1/04General design of pianos, harpsichords, spinets or similar stringed musical instruments with one or more keyboards of grand pianos
    • GPHYSICS
    • G10MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; ACOUSTICS
    • G10CPIANOS, HARPSICHORDS, SPINETS OR SIMILAR STRINGED MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS WITH ONE OR MORE KEYBOARDS
    • G10C3/00Details or accessories
    • G10C3/02Cases
    • GPHYSICS
    • G10MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; ACOUSTICS
    • G10CPIANOS, HARPSICHORDS, SPINETS OR SIMILAR STRINGED MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS WITH ONE OR MORE KEYBOARDS
    • G10C3/00Details or accessories
    • G10C3/16Actions
    • G10C3/22Actions specially adapted for grand pianos
    • GPHYSICS
    • G10MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; ACOUSTICS
    • G10CPIANOS, HARPSICHORDS, SPINETS OR SIMILAR STRINGED MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS WITH ONE OR MORE KEYBOARDS
    • G10C3/00Details or accessories
    • G10C3/26Pedals or pedal mechanisms; Manually operated sound modification means

Description

July 30, 1929.

J. H. HAMMOND, JR

PIANO SHUTTER Original Filed Dec. 3, 1924 2 Sheets-Sheet l l VENTOR M. ATTORNEY ly 30, 1929. J. H. HAMMOND, JR lama-1a PIANO SHUTTER Original Filed Dec. 3, 1924 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Patented July 30, 1929.

UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE.

PIANO SHUTTER.

Application filed December 3, 1924, Serial This invention relates to improvements in stringed musical instruments and more particularly to a piano having a shutter control for varying the intensity of sound.

It is the object of the present invention to provide an improved stringed musical instrument such for example as a piano having substantially sound proof casing with means provided on the casing for variably controlling the intensity of sound emitted therefrom.

Another object of the invention is to provide an improved pedal control for use with a piano whereby the shutter mechanism may be operated.

In ultra modern music the piano is being utilized as one of the instruments of a symphony orchestra. An example of a composition in which this is the case is Stravinskys Noces.

Broadly stated it is the object of the pres ent invention to provide an improved control means for a piano, so that the volume of sound emitted therefrom may be very carefully regulated and thus the instrument may be utilized for such purposes as one of the parts of a symphonic orchestra.

Other objects will appear from the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawing in which Figure 1 shows diagrammatically one embodiment of the invention applied to a grand piano having a portion of the casing broken away;

Figure 2 is a section taken on the line 22 of Figure 1.

Figure 3 is a diagrammatic sectional rear elevation of a modified form of the invention, and

Figure 4 is a detail view of the strings.

In the following description and claims parts will be identified by specific namesfor convenience of expression but they are in tended to be as generic in their application to similar parts or equivalent construction as the art will permit.

Referring to the drawings in Figure 1 there is shown so much of a stringed musi cal instrument of the type commonly desig nated as a grand piano as is necessary to an understanding of the invention, having a casing 10 supported on suitable feet such No. 753,558. Renewed November 30, 1928.

as 11, 12, 13, and having a manual 14 including keys for operating the playing mechanism.

The casing 10 is provided with a hinged cover 15 including a leaf l6 hinged thereto whereby the piano may be closed when dosired it being understood that when in a. closed position the hinged cover 15 and leaf 16 are co-extensive with the opening in the top of the casing 10. A rod 17 is hinged to the side wall of the casing 10 for supporting the cover 15 in open position, the arrange ment being such that the support 17 rests within the casing when the cover is closed.

The side walls of the casing 10 are preferably constructed as shown in Figure 2 and are formed with a main wall portion 20 having a suitable veneer 21 on the outer surface thereof and having an inner layer 22 formed of a material which is an absorbent of sound, such as felt or the like.

For producing sound within the casing 10 there is provided a plurality of differently tuned strings, such as 30 stretched over a usual metal framework. In proximity to the strings there is provided a sounding board 31, the construction and arrangement of the strings 30 of the sounding board. 31, being well known in the art and requiring no further detailed description. It is understood that the keys of the manual 14: are operatively connected with operating de vices, such as hammers to cause the strings or a group of strings tuned to the respective note to sound.

The mechanism may also include a pianissimo pedal 40 and a locking pedal 41. for adjustably positioning the hammers in. order to produce a subdued or piano effect, as is well known in the art. A loud pedal 42 may be provided for controlling suitable muffling means as is well known in the art.

For variably controlling the intensity of sound emitted from the instrument without requiring actuation of the mufliing attachment or varying the position of the hammers, there is provided a plurality of series of shutters. I have shown one series of shutters positioned over the strings 30 within the outline of the casing 10 and another series of shutters below the sounding board 31 and Within the outline of the casing 1.0,

but it is understood that any other arrangement of groups of shutters may be employed if desired without departing from the spirit of the invention. Each series includes a plurality of shutters such as 43, 44, in the upper group of shutters and 45, 46 in the lower group of shutters which are pivotally mounted in hearings in the wall of the casing 10 so that they may be rotated about their longitudinal axes. The upper group of shutters is provided with a connecting rod 47 extending transversely of said shutters and each is individually linked to each of the shutters of the respective group so that transverse movement of the connecting rod 47 causes rotation of the shutters and thus opens or closes the passage therethrough for sound. The lower series of shutters is similarly provided with a connecting rod 48 similarly linked to respective shutters and operating in like manner.

For operating the groups of shutters there is provided a pedal 50 conveniently positioned with respect to the performer which may be supported upon and keyed to a shaft 51 journalled in bearings of the brackets 52, 53 and having a bearing in the foot 12. The arm 54 is pinned to the rod 51 intermediate the length thereof and is operatively connected through a broken link connection comprising an element 55 and an element 56 to a bell-crank lever 57 associated with the connecting rod 47 and a bell-crank lever 58 associated with the connecting rod 48. The bell-crank lever 57 thus operatively inter connects the element 56 and the connecting rod 47 being journalled in a bracket 59 secured to the wall of the casing 10. The bellcrank lever 58 forms an operative connection between the element 56 and the lower con necting rod 48 and is journalled in a bracket 60 conveniently mounted on the frame of the instrument. The elements 55 and 56 are pivotally connected at 61.

In operation the performer uses the man ual 14 in the customary manner to play the instrument. When it is desired to vary the intensity of sound-produced in a more agreeable manner than is possible with the pedals 40, 41, 42 he operates the pedal 50. Rotation ofthis pedal in a clockwise direction with respect to. Figure 1 causes movement of the arm'54 in a clockwise direction'and down ward movement of the element 56. By means of the bell-crank lever 57 downward 'movement of the element 56 is converted into movement with the connecting rod 47 towards the left of Figure 1 and the corresponding movement of the lower connecting rod 48 towards the left ofFigure 2, thus ncreasing the openings between the shutters the passages thus reducing the intensity of sound. The sound may thus be varied as may be desired, in accordance with the requirements of the music or the mood of the performer, and greatly improved control of the intensity of sound may readily be obtained.

The performer is enabled to adjust the opening of the shutter passages with very great accuracy and without causing changes from the music as ritten, such sustained notes, as has been heretofore experienced *ith the so-called loud pedal of instruments of the prior art.

The performer can also easily reduce the volume of sound and control the reduction with accuracy possible with the pianissimo pedal heretofore employed and thus the music may be rendered with wider variations of expression than has heretofore been possible and made more agreeable to the ear.

ery much greater than is In the modified embodiment shown in Figure 3, there is shown a stringed musical lnstrument of the same general type as in Figure 1. The instrument comprises a casing 10 supported on suitable feet such as 12,

13 as has been described in connection with Figure 1.

For producing sound within the casing 10 there-is provided a piano-forte action shown diagrammatically as at 70 which may include strings and sounding'board means as in the embodiment of Figure 1.

h h 1 l l l l 1 e mec anism may also mciuoe a 011C 1 pedal 40 and a locking pedal 41of conven '71 by means of a bell crank lever 73 and links 74, 75. It is understood that when the pedal 72 is depressed, the link 75, bell-crank lever 7 3 and link 7 4 are moved, and the mechanism 71 is actuated in order to cause the hammer mechanism to shift with respect to the strings;' In a grand piano this is effected by shifting the hammers to strike a reduced number of strings, and in an upright piano-it is effected by shifting the hammers into closer relation wit-hthe strings. Thus a reduced volume of sound is produced by the strings. Upon release of the pedal, the hammer control mechanism is restored to normal in the usual manner.

For simultaneously controlling the emission of sound from the instrument so to increase the effects of the regulation of sound, there is provided a plurality of series of shutters. One series of shutters, such as the shutters80is positioned over thepianoforte act1on'70 and another series, such as the series 81, 81 is positioned below the action, and within the outline ofthe casing 10. Each of said shutters is rotatably mounted to rot-ate about its longitudinal axis. The shutters of each series are so spaced as to close the sound passage effectively when the respective shutters of the series are substantially in alignment. Each shutter is provided with an outwardly extending arm such as 82. The upper group of shutters is provided with a connecting link 83 interconnecting all of the arms 82 of the upper series of shutters. The lower group of shutters is provided with a connecting link 84, interconnecting all of the arms 82 of the lower series of shutters. The upper connecting link 83 and the lower connecting link 84 are operatively interconnected by a pair of hellcrank levers such as 85-85, each pivotally mounted on the casing 10, and a rod 86 interconnecting said bell-crank levers. The lower connecting link 84 engages a bellcrank lever 87, by means of a pin and slot connection, the bell-crank lever 87 being pivotally mounted on a depending fixed bracket 88. The other end of the bell-crank lever 87 is pivotally connected with a rod 89, the other end of which is pivotally connected with a pedal 72.

For returning the shutter mechanism to normal after having been actuated, there is provided a retractile spring 90, secured at one end to an ear 91 from a part of the fixed casing 10, and the other end being secured to an ear 92 from a part of the connecting link 84. In the operation of the form of the invention shown in Figure 3, the performer causes sound to be produced within the easing 10 in the usual manner. When it is desired to vary the intensity of sound emitted, particularly to increase the volume of sound, the pedal 72, is depressed by the foot of the performer into the position shown in Figure 3. The hammer control mechanism 72 is thus actuated and causes the sound to be reduced in volume, at the same time the shutter mechanism comprising the links 83, 84:, 85, 86, 87 and 89 to be operated, and thus the shutters 81 are adjusted into the open position as shown in the drawing. Upon releas ing the pedal 72, the hammer control mecha nism 71 is restored to normal in the usual manner, and the shutters 81 are again closed by virtue of the action of the retractile spring 90.

The invention upon which the application is based is broader than the specific embodiments shown and described, for example, the structure selected for purposes of illustration is that of a piano but it is understood that the invention may be readily applied to any other form of musical instrument as may be desired.

WVhat I claim is 1. In a musical stringed instrument, the

jacent said. strings, a casing having sound openings and including a substantially sound proof layer for effectively suppressing sound, a pair of groups of normally open centrally pivoted closures for said openings, each group of closures being parallel with and spaced from the sounding board and forming when closed in combinationwith the casing a pair of resonant chambers, a single pedal for actuating said closures for variably controlling the intensity of musical sound emitted from the instrument.

3. In a musical stringed instrument, a plurality of tuned strings, a sounding board adjacent said strings, means for variably suppressing sound produced by said strings including a casing having sound openings and including a layer of substantially sound proof material and a plurality of normally open centrally pivoted closures for said openings positioned adjacent said strings and parallel therewith for variably suppressing sound directly emitted therefrom, a second series of normally open and centrally pivoted closures positioned adjacent said sounding board and parallel therewith for suppressing sound transmitted through said sounding board, and a single pedal for actuating all of said closures.

4. In a musical instrument of the percussive type, the combination with tuned strings, of a casing having oppositely disposed apertures, controllable closures for said apertures and having boundary walls intermediate said apertures each provided with a layer of substantially sound proof material.

5. In a piano, a casing, a piano movement in said casing including hammers and. strings, said casing having an opening, a closure device for said opening, means for shifting said hammers and strings relatively to reduce the sound generated, and a single means controllable by the will of the opera tor for simultaneously operating said shifting means and moving said closure device to closed position.

6. In a piano, a casing having sound insulating walls, a piano movement in said casing including hammers and strings, said casing having an opening, a closure device for said opening, means'for shifting saidhammers and strings relatively to reduce the sound generated, and a single means controllable by the will of the operator for simultaneously operating said shifting means and moving said closure device to closedposition.

7. In a piano, a casing, a piano movement in said casing including hammers and strings, said casing having an opening, a closure device for said opening, means for shifting said hammers and strings relatively, and a single means controllable by the will of the operator for simultaneously controlling said shifting means and closure device.

8. In a musical instrument, a casing, a source of sound within said casing, devices for controlling the amount of sound generated by said source, devices for controlling the amount of sound emitted from said casing, and a single means controllable by the will'of the operator for simultaneously operating said devices.

7 9. In a piano, a casing, a piano movement in said casing including hammers and strings, said casing having an opening, a closure device for said opening, a hammer shifting pedal, apparatus connecting said pedal and said hammers, and apparatus connecting said pedal and device, whereby said hammers are shifted to soften the sound and said device is moved toward closed position simultaneously by movement of said pedal.

10. Ina grand piano, a casing, a piano movement in said casing including hammers and strings, said casing having oppositely disposed openings above and below said movement, a closure device for each of said openings, a hammershifting pedal, apparatus connecting said pedal and said hammers, apparatus connecting said pedal and devices, whereby said hammers are shifted to soften the sound and said devices are moved toward closed position simultaneously by movement of said pedal. s

Signed at New York, in the county of New York and State of New York, this 28th day of November, A. 'D. 1924.

- JOHN HAYS HAMMOND, JR.

US753558A 1924-12-03 1924-12-03 Piano shutter Expired - Lifetime US1722978A (en)

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Cited By (2)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US5804745A (en) * 1994-07-26 1998-09-08 Kabushiki Kaisha Kawai Gakki Seisakusho Apparatus for adjusting sound volume of grand piano
US6720489B2 (en) * 2002-06-10 2004-04-13 Daniell Revenaugh Piano muter

Cited By (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US5804745A (en) * 1994-07-26 1998-09-08 Kabushiki Kaisha Kawai Gakki Seisakusho Apparatus for adjusting sound volume of grand piano
DE19581045C2 (en) * 1994-07-26 2003-08-14 Kawai Musical Instr Mfg Co Device for adjusting the volume of a grand piano
US6720489B2 (en) * 2002-06-10 2004-04-13 Daniell Revenaugh Piano muter

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