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#1304474 - 11/13/09 12:21 AM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: newgeneration]
krikorik Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/25/09
Posts: 64
Loc: AZ
John
The sand technique you mention is called Chaldni modal analysis

you can see it applied to a viola here

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0HwPw3YEwSQ

a plate here

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GtiSCBXbHAg

and on a classic piano lecture by Conklin

http://www.speech.kth.se/music/5_lectures/conklin/howdoes.html

It is very powerfull to see the vibration modes, but I guess it takes lots of experience to modify them correctly.

Eric
Thanks for all the shared material
Regards
Krikorik

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#1304574 - 11/13/09 07:01 AM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: krikorik]
BoseEric Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 731
Loc: Fairfield County, CT
Thanks for all the positive comments. I've been laid low by something I picked up from that &*$!@$# in the row ahead of me on the flight back. He coughed the whole flight!

Feurich will come soon.
_________________________
RPT. In the business: Feurich pianos, Neupert harpsichords, Hidrau benches, piano technician

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#1304575 - 11/13/09 07:04 AM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: BoseEric]
BoseEric Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 731
Loc: Fairfield County, CT
The photo with Udo in it shows the end result of the sand technique. If you look closely you can see a fine line of light colored sand collected on the outer edge of the soundboard. This is what they want at the end of the process.
_________________________
RPT. In the business: Feurich pianos, Neupert harpsichords, Hidrau benches, piano technician

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#1304995 - 11/13/09 05:48 PM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feuric [Re: BoseEric]
Oz Marcus Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/23/09
Posts: 457
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Eric,

Thanks for sharing such wonderful pictures and stories. It is great to hear about the different factories and see such wonderful pictures of places I have never been.

Marcus

PS get well soon


Edited by Oz Marcus (11/13/09 05:49 PM)
_________________________
Oz Marcus
Currently working on:
Schubert Impromptu in C minor - D899
Chopin Prelude Op28 No 15, nocturne Op48 no 1
Bach Prelude & Fuge WTC II No 12 in F minor
Aspiring to Rautavaara - Piano Sonata 2 - Fire Sermon

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#1305001 - 11/13/09 06:00 PM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feuric [Re: Oz Marcus]
Tweedpipe Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/16/08
Posts: 425
A very enjoyable post Eric.
Very much appreciated. thumb
_________________________
Dear Noah,
We could have sworn you said the ark wasn't leaving till 5.
Yours sincerely,
The Unicorns



------------------------------


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#1305052 - 11/13/09 07:04 PM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feuric [Re: Tweedpipe]
Steve Cohen Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10468
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Eric,

I KNEW I liked you for some reason!

Great post.

Thanks.
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

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#1305069 - 11/13/09 07:33 PM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feuric [Re: Steve Cohen]
BoseEric Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 731
Loc: Fairfield County, CT
Steve...
Buying an ad wasn't enough?
_________________________
RPT. In the business: Feurich pianos, Neupert harpsichords, Hidrau benches, piano technician

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#1305109 - 11/13/09 08:15 PM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feuric [Re: BoseEric]
Steve Cohen Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10468
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Originally Posted By: BoseEric
Steve...
Buying an ad wasn't enough?


Are you implying that I can be bought for the price of an ad???

[Truth is, I'd turn in my mother for a 1/4 page ad!] smile
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

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#1305120 - 11/13/09 08:40 PM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feuric [Re: krikorik]
newgeneration Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/04/09
Posts: 428
Loc: Richmond Hill, Ontario
So how many manufacturers make use of the Chaldni modal analysis? Is it quite common? It seems like a very integral part of creating a decent soundboard?
_________________________
John
J.D. Grandt Piano Supply Company
Steingraeber & Söhne (Canada) www.facebook.com/SteingraeberCanada
Lomence Modern Crystal Piano (North America) www.facebook.com/LomencePianos
Piano Bass String Manufacturing Specialist (Worldwide) www.jdgrandt.com

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#1306495 - 11/16/09 09:46 AM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: newgeneration]
Terry5758 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/13/09
Posts: 348
Loc: Vero Beach,Florida
Eric hope you are feeling better. When is the next edition to log your visit to Feurich? I'm anxiously awaiting.



Terry
_________________________
Proud owner of a fully restored Feurich concert grand built in 1912 with Phoenix System.
Gotta love that German technology

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#1306776 - 11/16/09 05:28 PM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: BoseEric]
Strings & Wood Offline


Gold member until Dec. 2012


Registered: 05/22/08
Posts: 1837
Loc: USA
Thanks Eric, I have really enjoyed traveling vicariously through your stories and pictures in this thread, as well as the previous one. thumb
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#1307198 - 11/17/09 12:45 PM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: Strings & Wood]
BoseEric Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 731
Loc: Fairfield County, CT
Sorry for the delay. Editing photos has not seemed very interesting to me for the last week. But am feeling better and eager to share my Feurich experience.



After Bayreuth, I drove to the charming lake town of Gunzenhausen. We in the states think things are old if George Washington visited. However both Martin Luther and Goethe visited Gunzenhausen. In fact, my hotel (same name, same site, different building) was established in 1364!!

The few Feurich pianos I have seen have always impressed me. They have a strikingly unique sound, but well within the norms of German makers. The recent history of Feurich has confused even some in the German piano industry, leading to me hearing all sorts of stories about their current production. However I was met by a very cordial Julius Feurich (IV, I think) and his son Julius (V, if I'm correct about the previous). Founded in Leipzig, the Feurich family included a number of piano builders, even competing among themselves for a while. However with the end of WWI, Julius' family moved to the West and started making the Feurich piano again from scratch. Recent history includes a short lived acquisition by Bechstein (described by some as a "hostile takeover")and a subsequent return to family ownership and management. More recently there was a joint project with a Chinese manufacturer for pianos for Asia. The recent ending of that agreement leaves the Asian built Julius Feurich line, made by others, available only in Asia. This chain of events has led to some speculation as to how many Feurich pianos are really produced in Germany.


I can confirm that I saw both grand and upright production in Gunzenhausen with typical German attention to detail and absolutely no indication that there was any "finishing off " of Asian product going on, as some have speculated.


Feurich is a small maker among small makers. Julius says his grand production this year will be about 20. The Feurich shop is, shall we say, small with just about every square inch of the building is used for production or storage.






I am now late for an appointment. To be continued.
_________________________
RPT. In the business: Feurich pianos, Neupert harpsichords, Hidrau benches, piano technician

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#1307227 - 11/17/09 01:31 PM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: BoseEric]
Terry5758 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/13/09
Posts: 348
Loc: Vero Beach,Florida
Eric,
It's good to know you are feeling better. Great pics of Gunzenhausen and the Feurich factory. I knew the building was small,but not that small.I believe it is Julius V and Julius VI. I have met them both. Julius VI is a very nice typical 17 year old. He was visiting Melbourne Fl. this summer and i took him to visit the Kennedy Space Center. When he saw the launch pad,he was very much impressed.
The original Feurich building was much much larger,but was destroyed by the allies in World War II. During our day togeather,he gave me a lot of information about the Feurich history. In the near future i will be visiting Bayreuth and Gunzenhausen. Julius has promised to give me a tour and show me as he says "some very beautiful castles." Of course i will be visiting the Steingraber and feurich factories,as i proudly own a piano made by both. I agree with you Eric that the Feurich is a unique sound and very beautiful i might add.Thanks again Eric. This makes for a nice appetizer before i see the main course for myself. I can't wait to go!!!!! I absolutely love German pianos.




Terry
_________________________
Proud owner of a fully restored Feurich concert grand built in 1912 with Phoenix System.
Gotta love that German technology

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#1307361 - 11/17/09 05:47 PM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: Terry5758]
James Senior Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/01/08
Posts: 342
Loc: England
Fanscinating Eric,
do you know when Feurich moved into their current building? Did it have anything to do with their sale from Bechstein, e.g. downsizing?
In the third picture from the bottom, you can see an action - does it have carbon fibre shanks and wippens? They certainly look darker than usual...
I'm surprised that Feurich used their name in an attempt to build in Asia. It certainly didn't work for Ibach - It may even have tarnished the brand name, leading to their sad demise.
Obviously I'm glad Feurich are still around and striving for top quality. I have one from 1925 and it's a joy.
Looking forward to more pics :-)

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#1307492 - 11/17/09 10:08 PM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: James Senior]
Oz Marcus Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/23/09
Posts: 457
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Thanks for sharing Eric,

I did not realise that their production was so limited. 20 grand piano's per year! No wonder I have not come across any in Australia.

Marcus
_________________________
Oz Marcus
Currently working on:
Schubert Impromptu in C minor - D899
Chopin Prelude Op28 No 15, nocturne Op48 no 1
Bach Prelude & Fuge WTC II No 12 in F minor
Aspiring to Rautavaara - Piano Sonata 2 - Fire Sermon

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#1307519 - 11/17/09 11:07 PM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: Oz Marcus]
Terry5758 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/13/09
Posts: 348
Loc: Vero Beach,Florida
I'm certainly glad i own one of the few and that the Feurich dealer(also the Steingraeber dealer) is only 15 min. from me.


Terry
_________________________
Proud owner of a fully restored Feurich concert grand built in 1912 with Phoenix System.
Gotta love that German technology

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#1307530 - 11/17/09 11:27 PM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: Oz Marcus]
turandot Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/27/07
Posts: 7174
Loc: torrance, CA
Originally Posted By: Oz Marcus
Thanks for sharing Eric,

I did not realise that their production was so limited. 20 grand piano's per year! No wonder I have not come across any in Australia.

Marcus


Marcus,

Mr. Feurich was on here one day in August. AS best I can figure out, he has not posted since. At that time he said:

Quote:
The first comment I would like to make is, that the present number of pianos in production does not mean anything about the SIZE of a company. It Has been said that Feurich is making 20 high end pianos only. This is correct in terms of grand pianos. Together with vertical pianos we are making about 50 pianos on total. But this reflects the present economical situation at these days. As you know we have a high percentage of exports, and so we are also depended to other countries economies. IN the years when the dollar was strong we shipped up to 85 grands to the US in one year. I want to say, that it is not only the present output of production when you are talking about the size of a company.

It also is important that the pianos we are producing are fixed orders.


http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/topics/1259031/1.html
_________________________
Will Johnny Come Marching Home?
The fate of the modern wartime soldier

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#1307542 - 11/17/09 11:47 PM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: Oz Marcus]
Terry5758 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/13/09
Posts: 348
Loc: Vero Beach,Florida
I'm certainly glad i own one of the few and that the Feurich dealer(also the Steingraeber dealer) is only 15 min. from me.


Terry
_________________________
Proud owner of a fully restored Feurich concert grand built in 1912 with Phoenix System.
Gotta love that German technology

Top
#1307630 - 11/18/09 07:40 AM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: Terry5758]
BoseEric Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 731
Loc: Fairfield County, CT
The Feurich bass bridge has a rather complex construction


Both Steingraeber and Feurich offer the new WNG composite action parts on request. Maybe Förster too, but I did not see any in progress there.



Feurich uses a proprietary depleted uranium based yellow dye for the hammer underfelt, believing that this augments the upper partials in the....just joshing you, the color is for brand identification and, in my opinion, to help piano technicians maintain their sunny disposition.



Here is a closeup of the Fandrich action Feurich offers on vertical pianos. There is a clever additional spring (with a loop) between the top of the jack and the catcher shank, pushing the jack back into position. According to Julius, Renner provides the holes and the spring, but they must be bushed, installed and regulated by Feurich.

It is quite interesting to think about the Feurich production facilities now in comparison to the stature the company had in it's earlier years in Leipzig. While all these makers are dedicated to a particular sound and the construction techniques that achieve that sound, and all have strong family connections, I get the impression that Julius is maintaining his legacy with a real dogged determination. I mean, come on, there are easier ways of making a living! And yet, here he is, making 20 grands this year, hopefully more the next. My assumption is that he is driven by the belief that the Feurich sound has a place in this world. I agree with him.
_________________________
RPT. In the business: Feurich pianos, Neupert harpsichords, Hidrau benches, piano technician

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#1307635 - 11/18/09 07:54 AM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: BoseEric]
BoseEric Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 731
Loc: Fairfield County, CT
I'd like to extend my most heartfelt thanks to all the makers I have visited in these two trips. They have been unfailingly courteous and welcoming and I deeply appreciate the opportunity I have had to visit them and learn about their marvelous pianos. I hope I have represented them well and since I have not received any rotten blutwurst anonymously in the mail, maybe so far so good. These are serious people in a small, arcane world who deserve the respect and appreciation of us all, no matter what piano is in our home.

There are still a couple I have not visited, so hopefully (for me, at least) I'll get to post again.
_________________________
RPT. In the business: Feurich pianos, Neupert harpsichords, Hidrau benches, piano technician

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#1307642 - 11/18/09 08:25 AM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: BoseEric]
BoseEric Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 731
Loc: Fairfield County, CT
One more stop
By chance my trip coincided with a trip by my friend and dealer from Montreal, Andre Bolduc and his son Christian.

The main business of the Bolduc family is offering high quality wood components to the piano trade. Andre has built this business into one of the world's most highly regarded suppliers of pinblocks and soundboards, supplying some very high end makers as well as rebuilders.

There is a trade school in Ludwigsburg that offers what is generally considered to be the only formal course in piano building in the world. The school (whose formal name I neglected to write down) offers courses in a variety of trades, including brass instruments and organs as well as pianos. The school was the site of a 3 day class in soundboard replacement Andre and Christian were invited to present by the German Piano Technicians Association. I got to sit in on a small part of the class and later (happily) got to sit in on a couple of beers with them.



Edited by BoseEric (11/18/09 08:26 AM)
_________________________
RPT. In the business: Feurich pianos, Neupert harpsichords, Hidrau benches, piano technician

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#1307654 - 11/18/09 09:04 AM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: BoseEric]
DanLaura Larson Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/01/08
Posts: 695
Loc: Pocatello, Idaho
This was a really wonderful thread, as was your previous factory thread. Thank you so much for taking the time to write these up.

Dan
_________________________
Dan and Laura Larson
Fazioli and Ibach grands
Larson Piano Studio
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#1307666 - 11/18/09 09:31 AM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: DanLaura Larson]
Terry5758 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/13/09
Posts: 348
Loc: Vero Beach,Florida
Originally Posted By: DanLaura Larson
This was a really wonderful thread, as was your previous factory thread. Thank you so much for taking the time to write these up.

Dan




Ditto!
_________________________
Proud owner of a fully restored Feurich concert grand built in 1912 with Phoenix System.
Gotta love that German technology

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#1307673 - 11/18/09 09:44 AM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: Terry5758]
Steve Cohen Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10468
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
This thread is one of the best on the nature of hand-crafted, European pianos I've read. Having been to numerous mass-production piano factories, the contrasts are crystal clear.

We need to archive this thread and refer those who ask about these issues in the future.

Great job, Eric. the PW community is indebted to you.

And I know you had a great time in your travels and writing this great series of post!!!

Thank you!
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

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#1307675 - 11/18/09 09:48 AM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: BoseEric]
The Owner Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/16/09
Posts: 1
Loc: Near Hamburg, Germany
Originally Posted By: BoseEric
There is a trade school in Ludwigsburg that offers what is generally considered to be the only formal course in piano building in the world. The school (whose formal name I neglected to write down) offers courses in a variety of trades, including brass instruments and organs as well as pianos.


That is the Oscar-Walcker-Schule.

Website: http://www.ows-lb.de/

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#1307682 - 11/18/09 09:59 AM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: The Owner]
BoseEric Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 731
Loc: Fairfield County, CT
Danke to you Steve, and to The Owner and to everybody who expressed support.

NOW GO OUT AND BUY A HIGH END, EUROPEAN BUILT PIANO!!


Edited by BoseEric (11/18/09 10:02 AM)
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#1307683 - 11/18/09 10:00 AM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: BoseEric]
turandot Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/27/07
Posts: 7174
Loc: torrance, CA
Originally Posted By: BoseEric
I'd like to extend my most heartfelt thanks to all the makers I have visited in these two trips. They have been unfailingly courteous and welcoming and I deeply appreciate the opportunity I have had to visit them and learn about their marvelous pianos. I hope I have represented them well....


For sure you have. It's the fact that you have represented them without actually repre$enting them that makes it especially neat!

Eric,

Now that the main course it over, could you expand on the point you made about squeezing the soundboard into the rim (Steingaeber and the maker whose name you forgot smile ). I could follow the waves on the beach/swimming pool analogy, but not the how-to of the squeezing process. Is this part of achieving crown?
_________________________
Will Johnny Come Marching Home?
The fate of the modern wartime soldier

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#1307690 - 11/18/09 10:15 AM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: turandot]
BoseEric Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 731
Loc: Fairfield County, CT
TDot, this gets out of my area of expertise, both in that I'm not a designer nor do I represent a company who makes their pianos this (that)way. But, lack of expertise has never stopped me before.

One maker notches the inner rim for ribs all the way through the inner rim on one side of the piano, but not on the other side. The idea is that installing the dense outer rim (great pressure, clamps etc) will push the rib on the side notched all the way through, and the other side, buttressed by being against a couple laminations of the inner rim, will not move, causing, or at least supporting, more curve in the rib and voila, the soundboard. We're talking very small amounts here. The rib DOES NOT measurably stick out on the side notched all the way through. Maybe it's more support than additional pressure.

(If I don't remember the name of a maker, that usually means I don't care how they do it. Some companies don't need my help.)
_________________________
RPT. In the business: Feurich pianos, Neupert harpsichords, Hidrau benches, piano technician

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#1307701 - 11/18/09 10:30 AM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: BoseEric]
plumpfingers Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 169
Loc: Northern California
Just wanted to add my thanks and many kudos to Eric for an incredibly enjoyable tour of fine European piano manufacturing demonstrating again the beauty of this incredible art/science. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

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#1307899 - 11/18/09 04:45 PM Re: More factories; Förster, Steingraeber (again) and Feurich [Re: plumpfingers]
Steve Cohen Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10468
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Don't be surprised if Eric's journey isn't revisited in a future Piano Buyer article!
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

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