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Graham WalkerThis is the website of Graham Walker, Dorset, UK who has had an interest in the early piano for over 30 years. He has undertaken the restoration of instruments for private collection and has also carried out research on early pianos and their makers over this period. This has been done alongside a career in management consultancy and performance management. Early retirement in 2007 enabled him to become more involved and he commissioned a cloth manufacturer to produce an authentic keyboard cloth. This cloth is the nearest match to an early 19th century piano cloth that can be made within modern manufacturing processes. It was initially produced for his requirements but it soon came in demand by others.  Further types of cloth have been replicated by request from makers and restorers.  These cloths can be purchased from the online shop on this website.  He has also undertaken some research into the leather used in early English pianos and is currently working in liaison with the Institute of Creative Leather Technology, Northampton University, UK with the objective of determining specifications. He is involved in supporting interest in the early piano and is passionate about ensuring that our heritage of early pianos collections in the UK can be maintained for the future.

A traditional English silk mill has replicated the organza blue/green silk found in the nameboard and internal fretwork of early 19th century square pianos. The quality, colour and appearance are similar to the original. This silk has been weaved especially for the purpose and is not commercially available.

The nameboard fretwork from an early 19th century square piano showing the new green silk

The nameboard fretwork from an early 19th century square piano showing the new green silk

The nameboard fretwork from an early 19th century square piano showing the original faded green silk

The nameboard fretwork from an early 19th century square piano showing the original faded green silk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It is often found that the silk is either missing or has already been replaced with unsuitable material that is too thick and of inappropriate colour. Therefore, the use of this new silk will greatly improve the appearance. At present only a limited quantity has been produced. It is not available to purchase directly through the online shop but please email graham for further information.

There is an article on Square Piano Nameboard Fretwork that gives more information about the introduction of the fretwork in square pianos.

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