Accu-Tuners Dr.Al Sanderson, RPT - Inventor
Paul Sanderson - Inventronics,inc
Dr. Al Sanderson, RPT
Dr. Sanderson holds a Ph.D. degree in Applied Physics from Harvard. He applied his knowledge of physics to pianos and tuning. He made many discoveries about piano tuning enabling him to patent the procedure of measuring inharmonicity and create a piano tuning. In 1982, the "Sanderson Accu-Tuner" was designed and has been manufactured by Inventronics ever since. Al has received many PTG awards including Member of Note, Hall of Fame, and the Golden Hammer.
Paul is the President of Inventronics, Inc. He has been involved with development and production of the Sanderson Accu-Tuner since its inception in 1982. He is responsible for the Accu-Tuner from development to production to distribution. He oversees all phases with a goal that the SAT be the finest electronic tuning aid in the industry.
Inventronics was started by Dr. Albert E. Sanderson in 1972 to create electronics solutions for problems brought to Inventronics by outside corporations, the same as was done at the Electronics Design Center at Harvard University. After a problem with another manufacturer producing one of Al's designs, Al decided to go into manufacturing for himself. Al started the designing of the Accu-Tuner and Henry Szmyt started the parts acquisition, and Paul Sanderson joined to get production up and rolling. In late 1981, early 1982 the first Accu-Tuners rolled out to complete the transition from consulting to production company.
Commited to Product and Service Excellence
"Every piano is a puzzle," says Sanderson, "and what the technician does to bring out its best is under-appreciated. The Accu-Tuner solves the puzzle mathematically." Faced with background noise, cranky spinets, or repeat tunings of a single instrument, Sanderson's invention is a tool that pays off in saved time and consistent results. More than twenty years after licensing a manually operated precursor to his computerized Accu-Tuner, Sanderson continued to devote himself to the training and practice of piano technology. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame of the Piano Technicians Guild, an international organization of individuals who tune, maintain, and rebuild the complex instruments. His collaboration with the guild resulted in its standardized certification test for piano tuners. He also served as curriculum adviser to the piano technology department at Boston's North Bennet Street School, which offers one of the few full-time training programs for piano technicians in the United States.
"I measured the frequency of the notes, put them where they were 'supposed' to be, and the piano still sounded bad." This, he says, is the problem solved in practice each time a piano is tuned - and one he was determined to conquer theoretically. His quest began with a cigar box full of electronic components. To perfect his product, Sanderson studied privately with master technician Bill Garlick, former head of the piano technology department at North Bennet Street School. He developed aural skills while the skeptical Garlick served as a research subject. Ultimately both were convinced the box was ready to compete on the market. In 1976 Sanderson left Harvard to focus on the Accu-Tuner, which has since found its way to Italy, Australia, Indonesia, and to the Copenhagen Symphony.
Inventronics has a dozen patents that apply directly to piano tuning instruments and patents on designing bass strings. Discoveries made during the twenty years of research on inharmonicity have been the basis for most of the piano tuning instruments in use today.
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