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Topic: one-string piano (Read 1 time) previous topic - next topic


I'm not a musical expert but I'd have thought your technique on an acoustic has more to do with the resonance into the body and harmonics than proper tuning.

For a one string piano my thoughts would be the point that the string passes through being movable with a servo or stepper motor (like the fingers on guitar) and a fixed hammer (plucking in the same point).

In laymans (my) terms, move the 'finger' and then 'pluck' and repeat?


do you guys think it is possible to have this thing controlled by a servo going 200BPM at max, and still have it quiet enough to be able to record it?

If you still plan to have the assembly moving along the string, I imagine that'll need motors and gearing and so on which will be rather noisy. Servos would be noisy too - and not particularly well suited to sudden movements - so I would have thought a solenoid would make a better actuator.
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@Paul_S: not certain about that yet. the mechanism that taps the string should be movable so i gotta mount it somewhere that it is still free to have movement along one axis... like you say, probably gonna have to try some things out.

@tack: hmm, interesting thought about making the string movable instead of the hammer. however, i think that would make the entire device a lot bigger. not entirely sure though, because i am not even sure how long the string would need to be for this to work properly. got to experiment with this a bit.

@PeterH: well, the assembly will not be moved by motors but by hand. in essence it could be quite a simple slider-thing, but of course it would have to move along some type of rail or something. however, don't think that would have to be noisy.
thanks for pointing out that servos aren't too well-suited to sudden movements. i didn't know that. in fact, i simply thought of a servo because that is the only thing i know of that makes things move mechanically with applied power. i had to Google for 'solenoid'... but that does sound interesting. thanks again, that might be a better method indeed.

any tips on how to approach this? or should i stop asking and start building? :)


Surely it can't be any longer than what you've already proposed with the moving hammer, but should give proper control over the tuning.

It's the length and tautness of string that will determine your overall range, which will always be limited with a single string anyway.


Dec 16, 2012, 08:13 pm Last Edit: Dec 16, 2012, 09:25 pm by Grumpy_Mike Reason: 1
I made a harp player out of the read / write motor from CD drives. Now it was one motor per string but is gives you and idea of an alternative plucking mechanism.


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