US889029A - Mechanical musical instrument. - Google Patents

Mechanical musical instrument. Download PDF


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US889029A US33769206A US1906337692A US889029A US 889029 A US889029 A US 889029A US 33769206 A US33769206 A US 33769206A US 1906337692 A US1906337692 A US 1906337692A US 889029 A US889029 A US 889029A
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musical instrument
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Philip Jacob Meahl
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Philip Jacob Meahl
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    • G10F1/00Automatic musical instruments
    • G10F1/02Pianofortes with keyboard


No. 889,029} PATENTED MAY 26, 1908.
PATENTED MAY 26, 1908.
2 snzms snn m 2 Fig 7.
F" .6. 27 lg I INVENTOR.
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mcnm nosrcar. INSTRUMENT.
I no. 889,029.
' To all whom it may concern." r 1 Be it known .thitjI', PHILIP J. MEAHL,'a' citizen of theUnitedStates, and'a resident of Bayonne, county of Hudson, and State of New-Jersey, have invented certainnew and useful-Improvements "in Mechanical Musical Instruments, of'which the following is 'aspeci- My invention relates to mechanical musical instruments, and particularly to means in "suchf'instruments for 'accenting certain notes or roups of notes,'i..e., controlling the force app ie d to sound such notes. Accenting devices'for this "general-purpose are al ready knownybut'in-"the'se the difference in the volume of sounds is produced by causing:-
the striking pneumatic to be operated upon" alternatively by--high and low w1nd,. 2. e., an under different tensions or pressureslike. In the playerpiano which -.-I have chosen as an illustration of theapplication of my invention, and to which it is particularly applicable, it is'at least difiicult to find roomfor these two wind chests of suflicient ea-.-.
pacity.- V My invention has forv its oblject the providing of novel means, -e. 9:, for t 1e accentuation of solo notes in a theme or melody at the will of the layer. v
Furt lerv objects of the invention will ap pear in the specification andbe pointed out.
. m'the claims.
a In the drawings, Figure 1 is a front elevation of so much of a player piano as isneccssaryto illustrate my inyention. Fig. 2 is a verticalscction through the plane 22, F ig.
. 1. Fig. 3 is a partial-vertical section on an enlarged scalethrough the same plane. Fig. 4 is avertical section on the plane 44, Fig. 3. Fig.5 is a artial viewon an enlarged scale of a suction chamber and connected parts shown in Fig.2. Fig. 6 is a longitudi nal vertical. section of a valve box shownin Fig. 7"is apartial vertical section similar to that of Fig. 2, but on anfenlarged scale and showingta modification. v
Referring to Figs. 1 (.06 of the drawings,
, certain usual and well knownparts of a ian-. .50 ola piano or like combined mechanica and manual instrument are designated as follows:
11 the keys, 12the hammers, 13 the dampers,
' V 14 thestrin'g's, 15 the bar moved by the softects in manual playing, 16 the tracker over which the music I Specification of Letters Patent. Application flIed OctoberG, 1906. Serial No. 337, 92.
is supplied from different wind chests or the Paten ted may 26, 1902:.
-' sheet 17 ismoved in'a well known manner,
" 18 striking pneumatics connected to actuate the hammers 125' Inthe embodiment of my invention shown I provide beneath the sheet moving means a board 19 formed with a longitudinally disposed series of ducts 20, "ach ofwhich has a widened o'en mouth 21,
' which: may be closed by as ide 22. i From each-duct 20 leads a tube 23 to a diaphragm extends in front-of the strin s 14 abovethe hammers 12, (see Fig. 5); ach diaphragm chamber'24 is closed by'a diaphragm 26, to which issecured a valve stem 27 carrying a valve :28 operative to connect a' neumatic 29 alternatively with the suction c amber or with atmosphere. It is of course understood that the chamber 25 may be unitary andcomiectedwith the entire series of diahragm chambers 24 and pneumatics 29. lhe usual bleed hole 25 is provided between the suction chamber 25. and the diaphragm .chamber 24. Each pneumatic 129 has a fin er 30 connected by. a rod 31to' the upper end of a lever 32, which is pivoted midway of its length to abracket 33 and. has its lower end in osition to be laced against thejrear end of t 1e head of the ammer l2.
While .it is perfectly competent to provide a diaphragm, valve, pneumatic and lever for each of the hammers controlled by the perforated music sheet, I have shown the presentinstance as a preferable and economical construction one of each of these connected parts for each two adjacent hammers. This is for the reasonthat the two consecutive semitones are not found in the same chord so that the release-movement of two ad'acent hammers .will be unobj ectionable liding freely on guide bars 34 immediately above the; board 19 is a block 3-5-carrying a pointer 36-,jwhich passes in front of the music sheet 17. Pivotedv at 37 to the block is a lever 38 normally raised by a spring 38 and having a finger aperture 39 and a lu 40 adapted to enter the mouths-21 of the fucts 20 and to close the ducts. V
As a means of cutting off the suction from the chamber 25, I have shown a valve box 41,-
to which a tube 42 leads from the chember25 and froinwhdch a tubeL43 leads to a wind chest,' n ot shown.- In the box 41 is aslide valve 44 adapted to close the duct 45. to which the tube43 is connected, (see Fi 6).
The operation of the device is as f0 ows: When the-device is to be used the slides 22 65 chamber 24 in a suction chamber 25,Wl110l1 a air lea ing therefrom so that thevalves 28 will- -the drawings.
are pulled out to the position shown in Fi 3 of t e drawings. It is obvious that w en the slides 22' are opened the correspondin diaphragm chambers 24 will be filled wit assmg through the ducts. and tubesbe raised to the Ipositionshown in Fig. 2 of n this case the p'neumatics 29 are connected with the suction chamber 25, with the result that thepneumatics will be drawnto theirv closed position against the. action of the ordinary sprin 29" ,shown in Fig.- 5 of. the drawin l ach pneumatic when closedwillactt rough its rod 31. to ress the lever 32 to the position shown in Big. 2 of the drawings, by which means" the hammer 12 is raised from its rearward position, in which it, rests against the bar 15. The result of thisoperation is of course to lessen the range of motion of the hammer 12 and conse uently toreduce the force of the 'blow strudl: by it against the string 14. In
. following the music the operator grasps the block 35, preferably inserting either the first finger or the littlefinger of the right hand through the aperture 39 in the lever 38. In
this way he slides the block 35 along the rods 34, the pointer 36 acting to follow any indications of the solo or other note'to be accented which may be marked upon the music sheet. It is obvious that each depression of the lever 38 will act to close one of the ducts'20 and to shut oif. atmos heric connection with the diaphragm cham will then be exhausted throu h the bleed hole 25 and the valve 28 will fa to the position shown in Fig 5 of the drawings, thus opening the pneumatic 29 to atmosphere and permitting itsexpansion. The expansion of the pneumatic acts to throw the lever'32 to the position shown-in Fig. 5 of the drawings and to permit the. hammer to drop back to its full stroke osi'tion, thereby increasing its ra e of 'motion and the consequent force with w 'ch it strikes the string 14.
In this form of construction air is continually passing'through such of the ducts 20 as are not closed by the operator by means of the lever 38, so that a small amount of additional force is required in operatin the pedal bellows of-the instrument. In tli the device'shown in Fig. 7 of the drawings this possible objection 1s obviated. In :this
' form of the device .the guide bars 334, block 35, pointer 36 and lever 38 are similar to those already described. The-block. 49 in this case carries a-lever 50 pivoted at 51 mid= way of its length, on the forward end of which",
lever thelug 40 of the lever 38 presses. The lever-50 may preferably be raised-rat its-for: ward end by a spring mouth of the duct 54, which is connected,=. as
before, by a tube to the diaphragm. chamso as to connect the r 24. This chamber e form of 52. At the rear .end of the lever'50 is a valve-53 adapted to close-the ber 57 and connected therewith by a bleed hole 58'. The diaphragm 5 6 carries a valve stem 59, on-which are two pup et valves 60, 61, acting, as before, to. open t e pneumatic 29 either to suction from the chamber 57 or to atmosphere. The finger 30', rod 31, lever 32 and bracket 33 may be as above described.
each diaphragm chamber 56 is normally exposed to suction through the bleed hole 58. In this case the valves 60, 61 drop by avity neumatic 29 with the suction chamber 57 t ereby collapsin it and pressing forward the hammer 12 y the means already described .to lessen its ran e of motion. When the operator by means or the lever 38 tilts the lever 50 and raises the valve 53 from its closed position, air passes through the duct 54and tube 55 to the chamber 56, whereby the diaphragm 56 and the-valves 60 and 61 are raised to the position shown in Fig.- 7 of the drawings. The pneumatic 29 is then cut-01f from connection with the suction chamber 57 and open to atmos here, in which case it will be expanded by its lnternal spring 29 and will, through the rod 31, 'move the lever 32 to the osition which permits the hammer to drop ack to its full stroke.
The position of the slides 22 and 62 shown in the two formsof construction described is the same. By withdrawing a ortion of these, as e. g. those at the bass en of the in- 'strument, leaving those at the treble endin Bythe arrangement of the parts above'described it will be apparentthat it is possible toemphasizethe'notes of a melody or ofa theme, even-when thenotes of such theme 'areassociatediwithi many other notes. Such .emphasis-isoft'en desirable in playing piano arrangements of zorchestral compos tions, in which? it isidesi-rablc, to emphasize the theme which is played by someone instrument 1 of theorch'eStra; this theme, being thus brought out distinctly; againstthe background of complex: orchestration.
Bythe phrase small group as applied in the claims to thenote sounding devices, &c., it-is obvious'that I include either a smgle "ssaose tion given are preferred forms only, and may be varied mechanically as occasion requires.
What I claim is: y v 1. In a h1usical-instrument,'a plurality of note-sounding devices, mechanisms for vary ingthe force applied to'sound a note, each such mechanism controlling agroup of adjacent note-sounding devices', 'cach group being -'so small in number. as to permit solo orthe; matic eiiects to be produced, aniline/ans for operating such mechanisms.
' 2. -In a musical instrument,a plurality note-sounding devices, mechanisms forvarying the force applied to sound-a note, each such mechanism controlling a; 'group of adjacent note-sounding.devices, each group being. so small unnumber as to permit solo orthematic effects tobe' produced, and manually cofn trolled means for operating su ch mechanisms I 3. In a'musical-instrument, a'plurality o'f' noteesounding devices, pneumatically ac .tuated mechanisms for varying the force ap 5 plied to sound a note, each'such mechanism controlling agroup of adjacent note-soundi-ng devices,";e ach jgrou being so sinall in -number as 'to permlt so 0 or them'amc effects to such mechanisms. 7
to. be produced, and means for operating 4; In a mechanical piano; or like musical instrument," strings, hammers, a plurality; of
pneumatically tactuated means each con: structed and fi'tted toreduce the} range of is -r nove -ment of a small group-of said hammers, sanda lurality of ducts connectcdthereto, a
suitably sliding block and a fingerlever pivoted thereon for closing saidducts for controlling the passage of'air through each of said ducts.
- at will, substantially forfthe purpose speciins rument strings,- hammers, a tracker,
chanical piano or like musical tracker,- a plurality of pneumatically ail-7 tuated means each constructed and fitted to reduce the range of movement of a small group-of said .liammers, manually controlled pneuma'ticallyiactuated means, and an in- 3 '6. in afniechanic'al musicalinstrumenha pluralit of note-sounding devices, pneumati'cal y actuated mechanisms for: varying the force applied to sound a note, each such mechanism controlling fa group or" adjacent note-sounding devices, each group being so small in number as te-permit: solo or thematic trolled, means for-preventing and'permitting the operation oi said pneurnaticnniechan'lsm's atwill.
7. in a mechanical musical' instrument, a
matically actuated 'frnechanism's for varying" the force applied toy-sound a; note, eachs'uch mecl1anism controlling a group'ol adjacent note-sounding devices, each group being so effects to be produced,and independent mark" ually controlled means for preventing andpermitting the operational said pneumatic zti'echani's ms at will. I
8; Ina mechanical piano or like musical instrument, string hammers, a plurality of structed andffitted toreduce-tlie range of movement of a small group-of said hammers .a-plurality'of controlling ductsleading to ducts, therebypreventing and permitting the operation ,of each of said pneumatically -'acpurposes specified.
specification in the presence of two subscrib ing Witnesses. 1
Witnesses: j A. W. SPF-NOE,
E'. R. JoHNsoN,
,sliding meansfor controlling each said,
effects to be produced,"and' manually con-- small in number as to permit solo or thematic,
pneumatically actuated means each con- In testimony Whereof l have signed this -means for moving a music sheet over said dicatcr secsred. Said sliding means and adapted topass over a music sheet njovedever said tracxensubstantially for the pur plurality note-sounding devices pneu-"i said pneumatic means and independent, manually control-led slides for-closing said.
'tuated means at'will, substantially for the
US33769206A 1906-10-06 1906-10-06 Mechanical musical instrument. Expired - Lifetime US889029A (en)

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