David C. Stanwood draws from a lifetime of experience in diversified fields including:
Machine tool making, felt making, artistic photography, professional sailing and rigging,
classical piano, and horticultural science. He received his degree in Photographic
Science and Engineering at Rochester Institute of Technology.

His life work began in 1978 when he received his certificate from Piano Technology
department of the North Bennet St. School in Boston under William E. Garlick. The
first question he asked was "if the action doesn't feel right what can I do to change it?"
The repeated lack of definitive answers to this question led him to research and
develop methods for improving the feel of piano actions. A pivotal event in his career
occurred in August of 1988, when Rudolf Serkin tested a Model D Steinway fitted with
a prototype "improved" action. Serkin was favorably impressed and encouraged
Stanwood to keep on his path.

Guided by evaluations of his work by top pianists, Stanwood went on to invent the
"New Touch Weight Metrology", a new system of units and measures that describes
how each action part contributes to the feel of the action in terms of weight, leverage,
and friction.  His crowning achievement is the discovery of  "The Equation of Balance"
This opened up a whole new field of study and practice, that of "Piano Touchweight
Technology", culminating in the creation of Precision TouchDesignstm.

His work dramatically improves the quality of restored or rebuilt pianos and is
also used frequently to improve new pianos and makes possible the customization of
pianos in a way that was never before possible.  Hundreds of concert pianos have been
upgraded with Precision TouchDesign.   His work also helps in the education of music
students by improving the quality of practice pianos as well as performance pianos
in Colleges and Universities, most notably the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music.
His work also continues to bring great benefits to pianists who suffer from injury or
who are in a weakened state due to health issues.  Most notably he helped the world
famous improvisation artist Keith Jarrett when he was suffering from Chronic Fatigue

His long range goal is integration of his component balancing techniques with the
manufacture and rebuilding of pianos worldwide and the improvement of pianos
everywhere.   Another long range goal is to integrate touch weight metrology into
the curriculums  of  piano technology schools across the globe.   His touch weight
metrology is already a permanent part of the curriculum at the North Bennet St.
School, and the
Master of Arts in Piano Technology degree program at the Florida
State University at Tallahassee.

Stanwood volunteers a considerable amount of time to teaching in his profession.
In October of 1990 he published "Factoring Friction with the Balance Weight System"
in the PTG Journal.  In June of 1996 he published "The New Touchweight Metrology"
in the PTG Journal followed by a series of articles in 2000 that layout a whole new
science within the discipline of Piano Technology.   Stanwood is frequently asked to
teach  classes and seminars to piano technicians across the continent and in Europe. 
Since 1991 he has participated as an instructor at the Annual Institute of the
Piano Technicians Guild .

His specialty also crosses over into public school programs were he has often been
asked to teach young students how to understand algebra using the analogy of
a piano key as a see saw and of an algebraic formula being equal when the see
saw is balanced.   This concept has been presented nationally on Public Television
on the Annenburg network series on mathematics and also in a Canadian Science 
program which has been broadcast to every French speaking country in the world.

On June 1, 2007 Stanwood was presented with the Distinguished Alumni Award
from the North Bennet St. School for his contributions to the craft of piano technology. For more info click HERE .

He lives and works at his home in the Lambert's Cove area of West Tisbury, on the
Island of Martha's Vineyard in Massachusetts.

Back to Stanwood Piano Innovations Home Page

Created: January 8, 1996,

Last Updated: March 30, 2007