Reconnected with Ernie Miller and exchanged a few emails. His e-book “Harpsichord Project” has gone final and he was kind enough to send me a link to download a copy from his new website. I am most appreciative for his support and guidance over these past couple of years. Well, looking at the last few entries here it is clear that the project has not gotten restarted very effectively.
But, the bench is currently clear, at least for a while, so perhaps now would be a good time to get some work done on the keyboard. The next few tasks include finishing up the custom-ground tool to set the key blanks (key mortise punch) on the pins, fit the keys, and paint them and then install the sharps and put the tops onto the sharps. All the parts are rough-cut and after getting re-acclimated it will be time to start up again. The only parts not rough-cut are the sharp tops. I am using a ‘paper’ bonded material that I purchased from Masecraft just for this purpose. It is a dark bone/ivory color and it should contrast nicely with the dark walnut sharps.
I also spent some time today organizing lists of parts needed to build harpsichord and reconciling the supply list chapters with the details in each chapter of “Harpsichord Project”.
Finished grinding the Key Mortise Punch, made from a Stanley cold chisel. Ground to a blade thickness of .104 and length of .6, with a point that tapers down to .1 and measures .47 across at the top of the ‘shoulders’. This was challenging to get it to the correct size.
Did several test ‘punches’ and then completed punching the balance rail hole in all fifty-one keys.
Cleaned up band saw marks on key sides, sanded to 220 and began to cut rear key slots and fit keys to key frame. Fitted quite a few keys today. Here is picture of the progress:
and a close-up of fitting the tails: