All Pianos Are Not Created Equal – Pinblocks Are Life Of The Piano

If there was one part of the piano considered the most important, one of the piano features which is most vital and integral to a piano’s quality is the pinblock. The pinblock holds the tuning pins that in turn, hold each piano string. Pinblocks must hold up to the immense tension applied byPianos Are Not Created Equal the tuned piano strings — as much as 20 tons of tension, the equivalent of 10 average cars. With that kind of pressure, you can see why the pinblock is so important and, since all pianos are not created equal, it’s important to do your research.

Quality pinblocks maintain the tuning stability of a grand piano and contribute to the overall tone and sound quality. The top manufacturers use hard rock maple for the pinblock, the industry standard and a tried and true wood.

Unfortunately, a few newcomers to the piano industry have come on the market lately touting an inferior pinblock construction and claiming to use more wood than traditional pinblock construction. And in a sense, they’re right. These companies use layers and layers, or plies, of thin beech wood glued together. They claim that more plies of wood create a stronger pinblock. What they don’t tell you, though, is that their pinblock’s strength comes from the glue holding the wood together, not the wood itself.

piano pinblockCooper Piano has a long standing tradition of fine wood craftsmanship has taught us that more is better — more wood, that is, not more plies or more glue. Time and expertise have proven again and again that solid wood creates the strongest pinblocks that promise to stand up over time to the immense tension from the piano strings. The finest concert pianos still use no more than six plies in pinblocks and usually an average of four plies.

When it comes to your investment in a piano, you want to know there is more holding the heart of your instrument together than just some glue. We’d love to hear about your experiences with pianos and any stories you might have to share about inferior vs. quality pinblock construction.   

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