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Hey all, I know that 'round these here parts that gear pr0n is near and dear to our hearts, so I had to share my excitement that my most recent purchase, the K&M 18881 stacker for my 18880 keyboard stand, landed on my doorstep a couple hours ago. Just in time for my jazz-funk gig Friday night (ooh, that's tomorrow!), yay! I was really thinking I'd like to use two boards for this gig; getting this in time makes that a certainty.




On the angle pic, the second tier looks crooked, but it's not (why is it that keys look like that when taken from an angle? So weird). Super lightweight. This whole stand folds pretty flat. There are adjustments to angle the tier down, 5 points of adjustment, from parallel to extreme vertical angle. I have it set to the slightest angle, not parallel, since it's a bit high. And that is my only gripe: I have this on the absolute lowest setting, so this is as close as I can get it to my bottom tier. If this is unacceptable to me I will take it to a machinist to drill another set of holes, maybe. I don't trust myself or my husband to do it accurately. Anyway, just thought I'd share, because maybe some of you are looking for a new stand and don't know about this one.

Beats the hell out of taking an X stand for one of the tiers and less bulky and involved than the Standtastic I used to have for 2 keys (but I sold that recently). grin

Last edited by Michelle (ggurl); 06/07/12 06:22 PM. Reason: changing pics, messin' around

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Rock and/or roll! thu


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Originally Posted By: Michelle (ggurl)
that is my only gripe: I have this on the absolute lowest setting, so this is as close as I can get it to my bottom tier. If this is unacceptable to me I will take it to a machinist to drill another set of holes, maybe.

In the mean time, you could try letting the stackers drop all the way down (i.e. don't use any of the holes at all). You can also flip them around backwards if you'd rather have the top board further back (i.e. to not cover the panel controls of the bottom board). Just always put the bottom board on the stand before the first, for stability.


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I thought you would like it - I like mine. If I modified to get the boards much closer together, I wouldn't be able to see all the controls on the PC3 or PC3X on the lower tier.

I think both tiers together weigh about 7 or 8 pounds.


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Scott, unfortunately I don't think I can slam the tier down like that ... the holes are necessary because that's where the screws feed through that the stabilizing bar across the back uses. I don't think it's too horrible, though. I'll report back what I think after the gig.


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Yeah, thanks, Jim! This stand is proving very satisfactory for sure. I've tried many, it seems. It is true that I might not be able to see the controls as well, but I am used to that; I had my boards (same two) practically touching last time I played out with two boards with any regularity. I think it's OK thoough, it's just been a while since I've played 2 boards like this.


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Very nice! cool

My best to you, Michelle!

Tom


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That's still the top contender if I ever decide to go ahead and replace my pair of X stands.

Is the overall height adjustable (of the lower tier)? If not, I'd hope I can get it for the height I'd want, which is 3 or 4 inches higher than piano keyboard height. I want the top board to be high enough to play standing, so I don't have to sit the whole gig. Yet I want to keep them close, like you have them (or maybe even closer -- find a friend with a drill press).

Also, does it pack up well without removing the tier, or do you pop those off and on each time? I'd really appreciate a detailed gig setup/teardown report!

About drilling the holes: if you have a drill press and know how to use it, go for it. If not, let someone who does take care of it! This is not a job for a hand drill.

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Originally Posted By: learjeff
Is the overall height adjustable (of the lower tier)?

Yes.

Originally Posted By: learjeff
Also, does it pack up well without removing the tier

Yes.


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Looks very nice. thu

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I have been interested in this one too. But does the brace get in the way of the knees?


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Originally Posted By: Nillerbabs
I have been interested in this one too. But does the brace get in the way of the knees?


Nope, I have one of these and never had a problem with that. I have the top tier but have not used it in anger yet. That minimum height thing is a bit of a bummer. I also have the K&M 18950 stand and you can get the second tier seriously low on that.

Downsides are that a) it's appreciably heavier than the 18880 and b) the top tier depth isn't adjustable and won't accommodate very deep boards like my Hammond XK3 unless you just perch the front on top of the retaining studs.


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Originally Posted By: Michelle (ggurl)
Scott, unfortunately I don't think I can slam the tier down like that ... the holes are necessary because that's where the screws feed through that the stabilizing bar across the back uses.

Depending on the weight of your boards and how wild you are when you play, it's possible you may find the stand sufficiently stable even without connecting the stabilizing bar.


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Originally Posted By: Aidan
Downsides are that a) it's appreciably heavier than the 18880 and b) the top tier depth isn't adjustable and won't accommodate very deep boards like my Hammond XK3 unless you just perch the front on top of the retaining studs.
On the 18880, they have both and adjustable and unadjustable top tiers available. But on the unadjustable one, like yours, I think you could just take a hacksaw to those retaining pegs, unless you need them because you're tilting the board down.


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OK, so I had my gig last night with this stand and have some impressions to report. Overall, I think itís a great stand for my needs.

A special thanks to you, Scott, for suggesting I slam the top tiers down and forego the pin. At first, I could not get this to work; I had the stand set on the lowest possible position, and there is NO leeway between that lowest position and the lowest setting for the tier. I really get the sense that they really engineered this thing well!

As a side note, first I was leery of taking out that stabilizing bar, which would be necessary to remove the pin and let the second tier drop to its lowest possible position. So, I took the top screw assemblies of the accordion-folding thingie down below and put the screws the other way, and replaced the standard nuts with the adjustible knobby screws from that top bar for routine (without tools) adjustment. Then I experimented with putting the bar on across that lower assembly to see if it change the stability. No. BUT, I left the knobs there even though I decided not to use the crossbar; this way, I can loosen the top and bottom assembly enough to let the accordion-thingy slide freely to let the stand close Ö and, I can really tighten down all four of those points when itís set up, which pretty much makes this as stable as it is with the cross bar attached to the top and only the bottom screws ratcheted down. I hope that makes sense.

In fact, as I made subsequent modifications to usage I really did notice the tolerances, fit and finish, and just plain accuracy in how this thing adjusts is quite precise and well done. It seems flimsy because itís so lightweight, and when I first got the stand about six months ago I was a bit concerned about how it would hold up. Well, Iíve gigged an appreciable amount with the single-tier version of this, and its taken a standard amount of car-commuting load-in/out abuse. No problems whatsoever with any moving parts, no bending or denting, etc of the poles.

Anyway, back to the two tiers. So I raised the stand itself one notch, which isnít much higher than the notch I originally had it in; I sometimes do this anyway, and raise my bench a bit. So this was not a foreign or uncomfortable position for me. Then, I was able to slip the second tier into the fittings and have the distance between keyboards be about and inch and a half tighter than it originally was. And this was just about as tight as I could want, really.

As a consequence, I did not transport the second tier attached to the whole stand, though you can do that. You can see what that would look like in this pic:



It looks like it takes a lot of space, but one thing to remember is how FLAT this stand is. The two tiers this way (lowest setting for top tier, second to lowest for bottom) is about 34 inches high. In the other pic you can see how flat the folded profile is; itís side profile is only 3 inches deep.

So what I did to transport was to pull the tiers out, folded them up, and stick them in my backpack that holds my cords, mic, pedals, miscellany like that. This other pic shows how small they fold up (with the Nord manual to give perspective on size).



I ended up playing standing up whenever doing an appreciable amount of work on the Nord/top tier, but thatís what Iíve always done anyway. I had the boards MIDIíd up so that I could play the Nord sounds from the Kurz and switch quickly to the Kurzís internal piano. Thatís all I used it for was piano Ö but, I had enough songs with piano that I didnít want to do this gig with the E2ís pianos. If I had a newer Nord with the better piano samples, I could have gotten away with one board. Another cool thing I was able to do was use the Kurz as a bottom manual for the Nord organ Ö donít really get a chance to do that much. So, there were advantages to having two boards, and itís been a while since Iíve had that flexibility. Itís more fun to play the lower manual on a lower tier than via a split on the Nord, which is what I usually do. In this band I donít kick bass, so I use the lower for a more subdued tone to do rhythmic stuff with and have the upper tier with more pronounced timbres, and can do a lot of fun riffing with that combo. I think thatís pretty common Ö

So those are my impressions. Definitely a solid stand. If I had roadies whoíd be abusing this stuff and throwing it in a truck with everything in hard cases I donít think Iíd use this (without casing it up as well), but then, if I had roadies I wouldnít be placing such a high priority on compactness and lightweight.

Last edited by Michelle (ggurl); 06/09/12 06:38 PM.

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Very cool, Michelle. I almost came to your gig Friday, because I wasn't gigging this weekend. But I ended up chilling at home instead. grin It's funny, Audrey showed me a picture from Facebook (I know, I never log on there), and I said "that's funny, I never see Michelle with a two-tier rig."

I've been using the Quick-Lok monolith stand with the 2nd tier. I love how quick and easy it sets up, and I'm able to position the boards pretty good. But I really dislike the way it transports, and it doesn't quite go low enough.

How low is the bottom tier on the new K&M? Can you get it to a position that feels like your piano at home?

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Hey Dave, aw, you shoulda come out, lol. I understand about taking that night off when you can get it, though.

The stand goes down to 24", I believe. It was pretty much the lowest-adjusting stand out there which is why I got it. It can be adjusted to same height as piano at home, even lower ... Actually, ergonomically, for me because I am so damn short and have such a short torso (grrr), I would use it on its lowest setting to be properly positioned. This is indeed a bit lower than a standard piano. I do mess with the height a bit though, if I want to sit a bit higher for gigging, and I'd say i do this 50/50. No rhyme or reason, sometimes i just feel like setting up that way, ha. For using two tiers, though, looks like I definitely will set it in the slightly higher position. You're just going to have to bring your Stage 2 over to see how it works out on this. razz


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I'm also using one of these 18880 stands now and then. Now, I realized that it works pretty good backwards(!) as well. At the lowest positition of the base, the upper tier is at perfect playing position for me standing up (and I'm a short guy around 5'8") - and using the stand backwards you can angle your boards towards the audience. What makes it more perfect is that my utility shelf (w mixer, Ventilator, SpringKing reverb and VoiceLive Touch) fits perfectly undeneath the board.
Now, I thought that I would hit the crossbar and the folding support construction with my legs/knees, but I wasn't bothered by them at all.
So here is a photo from a recent gig:



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Originally Posted By: Michelle (ggurl)
You're just going to have to bring your Stage 2 over to see how it works out on this. razz


Well, I know I can bring the Stage 2 over, but will I be able to leave with it? wink

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laugh Probably not!

Thanks for the details, Michelle. This really does look like the best upgrade for me. I'll have to put in a PO to the purchasing department, but that department has been very tight since we bought her a new Prius.

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Originally Posted By: Dave Pierce
Originally Posted By: Michelle (ggurl)
You're just going to have to bring your Stage 2 over to see how it works out on this. razz


Well, I know I can bring the Stage 2 over, but will I be able to leave with it? wink

--Dave


You're onto me! wink Yeah, since you and Audrey are my friends and I'd like to keep it that way, you'll get no problems from me, lol.

Glad you appreciated the "review," Jeff. I hope, if you decide to upgrade to this, that you like it as much as I do!


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Hey Michelle, it seems that this this stand is engineered for 2 larger keyboards ...
Point being, the 2nd tier stackers are attached to the bottom tier posts, correct?And if that is the case, what is the minimal workable width for the bottom tier?
My application would be using the 2nd tier for a Moog Little Phatty which is 26.5" wide...
I really like the weight and form factor, but if this stand is not workable, the Omega may be more appropriate for me.
Thanks in Advance,
Jim


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If her base stand is like my K&M stand, the width of the top tier is entirely dependent on how wide open you set the stand itself. Where the tiers connect are "fixed" (there's only one cavity where the tier connects), but that "fixed" position changes depending on how far you open the stand. Mine has two thumbscrews on the bottom (it's a tabletop style), and her's has thumb screws on the back (audience view).

I think that's correct, and I hope it makes sense.


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If you use the stabilizing bar that swings across the back, there is only one possible width. However, as Michelle and I both learned, the stabilizing bar is often unnecessary. If you leave the bar off as we do, then the width is very adjustable as well. Though if you make it too narrow, it will no longer be stable.


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As I sit here waiting for my MOX8 to be delivered, I read this thread and think:

Hmm? Maybe I need a new stand too! laugh


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Thanks Tony and Scott!!!!


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p.s. -- , if desired, it would not be difficult to put additional openings in the stabilizing bar that would allow you to continue to attach it at narrower widths.


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Hi Jim, I saw your question just now, but looks like others have answered it. I have not tried setting this up at a narrowness of about 24" but I can try that and let you know how stable that feels to me. What is your bottom-tier board??


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Michelle, if you could try it, that would be most appreciated! smile
Bottom board is a NE 73 (soon to be upgraded to and HP )

Thanks so much!
Jim


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OK, bumping this because it's been a while since Jim's request, but Jim, I set up the stand at 24" wide, outside end to outside end. This is what it looks like with a NE 73 on it:



It's quite stable. You wouldn't want to go any narrower than this, because you need a place to put your pedals, feet, and well, your own funky self. smile This actually feels a bit claustrophobic to me (likely only because I am in fact used to having the stand set wider), but I sat down and played a bit and it's plenty functional. I'm petite though, so you're gonna have to judge for yourself whether 23 inches or so of width would feel like enough operating room for you.


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