A piano with an aluminum piano plate, called the Alumatone plate, was created in the late 1940s by Winter and Company, piano manufacturers, and Alcoa, a manufacturer of aluminum and aluminum products. The metal frame of a piano, often called the plate or harp, anchors both ends of the strings, withstanding a tension of 20 tons or more. The first completely metal frames were patented in the mid-1820s, and they are now generally cast in iron.
The similar strength of aluminum and cast iron permitted the weight of the cast metal frame to be reduced more than 60 percent, to as little as 45 pounds for a spinet. In 1945 Alcoa signed an agreement with Winter and Company to manufacture aluminum piano plates and began to market their new creation. Many of Alcoa’s ads can be seen in Etude, a magazine for the musician and pianist, in 1949 and 1950. The typical ad campaign boasted the slogan “stop…lift…listen,” which was asking consumers to stop, feel the light weight of the new piano, and listen to the quality of sound. A brochure, circulated by Alcoa, claimed that some 50,000 pianos had been created containing this aluminum plate by 1949. After 1950, however, the aluminum piano plate was no longer used by piano manufacturers.
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Famous quotes containing the words plate, aluminum and/or piano:
“Then he rang the bell and ordered a ham sandwich. When the maid placed the plate on the table, he deliberately looked away but as soon as the door had shut, he grabbed the sandwich with both hands, immediately soiled his fingers and chin with the hanging margin of fat and, grunting greedily, began to much.”
—Vladimir Nabokov (18991977)
“With two sons born eighteen months apart, I operated mainly on automatic pilot through the ceaseless activity of their early childhood. I remember opening the refrigerator late one night and finding a roll of aluminum foil next to a pair of small red tennies. Certain that I was responsible for the refrigerated shoes, I quickly closed the door and ran upstairs to make sure I had put the babies in their cribs instead of the linen closet.”
—Mary Kay Blakely (20th century)
“There was an old, old house renewed with paint,
And in it a piano loudly playing.”
—Robert Frost (18741963)