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Book Review: Piano Action Regulating by Brian Capleton

The first in our Book Review Series: Piano Action Regulating - a reference source for students and professionals by Brian Capleton. Continue reading to gain our insights on this interesting book.


This little book by Brian Capleton was first published in 2007 as a resource for the then available BTEC Advanced Diploma in Piano Action Regulating taught at the Royal National College. It covers the types of piano action including Grand Roller, Bluthner type and D type, and discusses the methods in which they are regulated throughout the book and common problems and diagnosis. It also includes basic physics principles of the moving piano action and brief notes on hammer toning and strike line.


Capleton makes interesting links to the musical demands of the piano e.g. "The note must be capable of playing a complete range of musical dynamics from very soft to very loud" in comparison to the practicalities of piano regulation. In order for regulation to be "correct" it must in fact meet the musical demands of the pianist and thus be adapted if necessary to achieve this. This is a fluid theory of piano regulation and is more applicable to working in the industry than rigid rules. As long as the piano passes the pianistic tests then chances are it is regulated well and you can be confident of it's performance capabilities.


Capleton makes interesting reference to the physics of the moving piano action. His comprehensive understanding of friction, inertia, mass, weight, springs and touch explain how they can work together to create the correct musical and pianistic results. Capleton shows how understanding the basic concepts of these can remove many diagnostic problems found at the end of regulation and by assessing these correctly at the beginning, provides a solid foundation for the regulation process. Correct regulation and understanding of these principles can be shown to achieve pleasing results.


The message of the book is to understand the basics of piano regulation in it's simplest terms and Capleton does this extremely well, providing the learner with a useful and compact resource for all regulation queries. Capleton includes a brief overview of hammer toning and strike line which can be used as a basis for further learning and understanding in this area.


Throughout the book Capleton uses clear and simple language so that the book is less of an academic paper, and more digestible to the reader. The text is broken down in to small chunks which are clearly categorised in to each principle and where possible there are clear photos to aid in understanding. Capleton makes reference to suggested further reading at the back of the book.


All in all I can highly reccomend this book. Its ease of read and understanding make it a useful resource for any piano technician and Capletons understanding and explanations of the basic principles of piano action movements are valuable not just to the student but the professional alike.


We hope you have enjoyed this little blog Book Review: Piano Action Regulating by Brian Capleton and we look forward to giving our views on other reference material in the future. Please be aware this is a short review not aimed at informing the reader of all of the principles or opinions of the author or the writer.


If you are interested in buying a copy of the book, please follow this link to amazon where you can get your own copy for only £20 Piano Action Regulating: a reference source for students and professionals: Amazon.co.uk: Capleton PhD, Brian: 9780955464911: Books


A picture of the book Brian Capleton's book Piano Action Regulating - a reference source for students and professionals used by Restore And More
Brian Capleton's book Piano Action Regulating - a reference source for students and professionals

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