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Inspiration.docx - Inspiration In searching for inspiration...

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Unformatted text preview: Inspiration In searching for inspiration as to how a medieval cra3sman may have solved the problem of an exceedingly shallow case, we eventually turned to a type of construction which would have been obvious to anyone at the time: timber framing. A walk down the streets of Rouen, Strasbourg, Colmar, Quedlinburg, Braubach, or Melsungen provides a visual tutorial as vivid today as it would have been in just about any fourteenthcentury northern European city. 6e framing of the upper levels which lie between the steeply sloping roofs is of particular interest, for the shapes formed by these acute triangles are quite similar to that of a wing-shaped keyboard instrument. 6e small extensions at shallower angles o3en found near the lower edge of the roof line in particular are analogous to the treble curve. In terms of load bearing, the downward force of the roof is quite similar to the force applied by the strings. 6e design 2nally decided upon is essentially half of the normal roof-framing design known as a ‘king post’, with the post forming the spine of the instrument. 6ose with knowledge of historical piano design will immediately recognize this as an ‘A-frame’, a design common to many piano makers of the southGerman and Viennese schools. Like the ‘Viennese’ piano action, the ‘A-frame’ is assumed to have been invented by Stein, but here again we are confronted by the fact that this supposed mid eighteenthcentury ‘invention’ had already been employed in another readily observable application for at least 300 years before Stein was born. ...
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