Classic Concept (Classic 121 & 116): This design was originally developed by Arno Wilhelm Schimmel in the 1930’s with the idea of building a new category of upright piano. The sound volume of the large-framed constructions should be retained, but the appearance should be much more graceful. The design idea was revolutionary at the time and was patented several times. Through the success of this innovative idea, Schimmel quickly developed into the largest German piano manufacturer. The construction was continuously improved and perfected with the help of the CAPE computer software developed in-house in 1980. The result is timeless instruments in sound and feel.
Heavy-duty hammer head
Our hammer heads are made from highly elastic merino felt with high flexibility and low damping properties. This is made from the highest quality merino wool in a traditional fulling process in Germany. For the hammer cores we use hardwoods in combination with tension-regulating bottom felts. The result is a great wealth of tones in the different dynamic levels as well as long-lasting tones due to the low damping effect on the strings (short contact period due to highly elastic felt).
“Mineral coatings” are used for the whole tones in all Schimmel instruments. These were developed by Schimmel and have particularly beneficial properties for pianists. They offer a secure and pleasant playing feel and are “glare-free” thanks to the matted surface, which is particularly advantageous for the pianist on stages with spotlights.
Tonewood from the region
We call tonewood all the resonance woods that produce the sound. For this we use selected mountain spruce from the Bavarian and Bohemian forests, the origin of the tonewood of the German instrument makers. For this we only select the perfect wood, which has grown slowly in high altitudes, so that soundboards with optimal vibration properties can be joined. The trees are pre-selected in the forests and then specially cut open and dried over long periods of time. Despite this intensive pre-selection, only about 2% of the timber obtained in this way is suitable for our soundboard production.
The bridge transmits and distributes the vibrations of the strings to the soundboard. Schimmel invented the “mass-reduced bridge” so that the bridge can withstand the string tension, transmit the energy optimally and at the same time prevent the soundboard from vibrating freely as little as possible. A dynamic contour is milled into the flanks of the bridge, which ensures that the richness of timbre is increased and the tones sound longer. An innovative idea that still received a patent even after more than 300 years of traditional piano construction.
Dynamic tone bar
The “Dynamic Tone Bar” is clamped to the soundboard during the production of the soundboard. This regulates the flow of energy in the soundboard when playing at different volumes, allowing for a greater range of tonal colors depending on the attack and volume. This is what we call high tonal dynamics. Depending on the size and shape of the soundboard, we use either one or two “Dynamic Bars” to achieve the best possible result. (see table)
Multi-layer reed block
We use pinblocks with thin hardwood layers so that the instrument keeps the tuning optimally and is easy to tune. These were already developed by Schimmel in the 1950s as so-called “tropical climate-resistant” reed blocks and have proven themselves over the decades.
Traditionally, pianos are equipped with small metal rollers. In our experience, however, these are rarely used. The risk of damaging the floor is quite high. For this reason, we equip our pianos with high-quality glides that are coated with Delrin from below. This allows for easier gliding on smooth hard floors and reduces the likelihood of floor damage. In addition, the front gliders can be adjusted in height to compensate for uneven floors. This prevents the instrument from twisting and improves the tuning and the stability of the regulation.
Extended manufacturer’s warranty
Schimmel offers an extended manufacturer’s warranty through its network of specialist dealers. Because we trust and stand by the quality of our instruments.
CAPE – Designed by Schimmel
As early as the 1980s, Schimmel was working with computers to improve the construction of his instruments, making him a pioneer in the piano industry. Since then, the use of computers in construction has been constantly further developed and is now known as CAPE (Computer Assisted Piano Engineering) as a unique and comprehensive software solution that incorporates decades of development work and research results. On this basis, new ideas and constructions are constantly being created that set standards in the industry.
The use of CNC machines for the production of precision parts has also been promoted since the 1990s. These are added to our instruments exclusively by hand and are a prerequisite for achieving the highest quality.
Environmental protection and sustainability have been part of the company philosophy at Schimmel since the company was founded in 1885. It starts with the quality of our instruments. With a Schimmel instrument, you are purchasing a durable product that will be used for many years, often for generations. Which industry can say that it keeps receiving requests for spare parts for products that are more than 100 years old? Durability conserves resources. In addition, we manufacture our instruments from predominantly renewable raw materials – domestic wood from certified forestry and wool – and our cast iron plates are made from recycled scrap metal in a complex process. The wood leftovers and shavings from production are used to heat the production facility in winter, and on the roof of the manufactory we generate solar power. Bio filters and a modern heating system complete our production. Of course, we produce according to the high German environmental standards. This not only applies to our manufactory in Braunschweig | Germany, but also in Kalisz | Poland. In China, the production of our Fridolin instruments is environmentally certified according to ISO 14001 in order to ensure our high standards of environmental protection and sustainability here as well.