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By Sharon Grehan-Howes
What you will need:
The sawn lumber should be be slowly seasoned and dried in a a climate controlled kiln. If you are building a very small piano your oven will probably do just fine.
Choose the less good looking wood and glue planks together to build a soundboard. Leave them to dry and season. Before the soundboard can "speak" the wood fibers must be stretched: do this by bending the soundboard and glue a series of ribs to the backside. Then mount the soundboard to a wood backframe.
Sound is sent to the soundboard by the vibrating strings through bridges, over which the strings are stretched.
You will have to notch the the bridges first. The front of the finished soundboard will have a pinblock where you will mount the tuning pins. As well as treble and bass bridges, but skip this step if you're running out of time.
Mount a cast iron plate to the soundboard/backframe assembly. (You will need to put a hole for each tuning pin in the cast iron you may need need help with that) as well as pressure bars and hitchpins, these will guide and anchor the strings.
After the plate is mounted drill holes into the pinblock guided by the holes in place or close enough.
Now you move on to stringing this is usually done by a skilled stringer, so if you have one around by all means use him/her. If not just wing it.