Fender Rhodes refurb

Fender Rhodes refurb project

Several years back I decided to give my dad’s 1975 Fender Rhodes Mark I Stage 73 a bit of love and care. It was already in great shape; it didn’t leave the house much, if at all, was cosmetically beautiful, and all 73 pickups still worked. But the action was very sluggish and the tone fairly dead. I started reading up on refurbishment projects and with some help from Rhodes forums and Vintage Vibe soon had the piano completely apart in the basement, with new hardware [see here and here] and the Miracle Mod ready to be installed.

When the Rhodes was back together, the action was indeed quicker, and after some amateur attempts at voicing, the tone was brighter, with a nice twinkly upper register and bass with a little bark. I also had a pro tuner work on it, a guy from the East Village who specialized in electric pianos, and who I picked up from the Staten Island Ferry and brought to my apartment. He used his vintage stroboscopic tuner, and the old thing ended up sounding pretty great.

Here’s a briefly annotated look at the project: