Regulating blades?

  • Participant
    tess on #221998

    I have a Clark harp Model A that I recently found at an estate sale. I’m nearly finished restringing it (waiting on a few more strings), and it’s sounding wonderful.

    The original blades are all intact and working, but many of them raise the pitch significantly more than a half step. Is there any way to regulate blades? They don’t look adjustable like levers. If it’s particularly complicated, are there any harp technicians that regulate blade harps? I know I could replace the blades with levers, but since all this hardware is intact, I want to try to use it.

    Participant
    wil-weten on #222000

    I don’t know whether this is possible for the Clark blades, but it may be worth a try: moving the blade in or out

    I found this tip on Biagio’s article at: http://harp.wikia.com/wiki/Sharping_Levers_for_Harps .

    Participant
    Biagio on #222002

    With some blades such as those used by Caswell and Triplett there is simple a shaft that is inserted in a hole drilled into the neck. You can adjust them by bending the shaft so that the sharp point is higher or lower.

    That will not work on the blades used by Clark. Those blades have the shaft enclosed in a metal tube – if you try to bend them they will break.

    Biagio

    Participant
    Tacye on #222005

    To get a blade to raise the tone by less than it currently is, you need it to either contact the string further up, or to push on the string less so it is less stretched. But pushing on the string less may cause buzzes. Are the blades with this issue in a group? This can happen where the soundboard has a bow and has shortened the string lengths.

    The simplest thing to try is to twist the blade more in the engaged position so it angles up more rather than just putting it horizontal.

    Participant
    Biagio on #222006

    What Tacye said. If they are not too far out of tune you could try ppushing the bridge pins in a little or pulling them out.

    The Clarks are lovely instruments but those blades are a real problem. It may be sacrilege to purists but I would just replace them all with Truitts or Lovelands.

    Good luck!

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