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#1997714 - 12/11/12 02:58 AM Baldwin SF-10
newinstru? Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/28/12
Posts: 113
Loc: SoCal
Several months ago I checked out a '92 Baldwin SF 10 at a church. It was not cosmetically the best, but I was more interested in the sound, thinking if it sounded great we could take care of the rest later. It was out of tune, however, and I told them i just can't tell if a piano would be good if it weren't. The hammers were also pretty grooved, and I pointed out that as well, if for nothing else to help them in the resale process (the people there seemed to know even less then I do!)It was selling for I think around 12k ( I was hoping to offer lower if I liked it). Frankly, being a church piano, my hopes weren't too high, so I wasn't terribly disappointed.

Lo and behold, I later saw it advertised again, but this time with a reference to a tech having tuned it, reshaped the hammers, maybe regulated...I can't remember......naming the tech...but this time with a higher price tag....15k. I was not tempted.

However, the price just got lowered to 8500, and I will find myself in the area yet again tomorrow afternoon. Now I am curious. There is a tech who said he would be able to meet me there and check it out if I went.

I was wondering, however, if any of you had any thoughts.......complete waste of time? Not necessarily? I read what Larry Fine says about Baldwins of that vintage. Does anyone have a Baldwin from around that time that they like? Is there something I should be looking for more specifically?

I welcome any opinions.....thanks.


Edited by newinstru? (12/11/12 03:33 AM)

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#1997722 - 12/11/12 03:30 AM Re: Baldwin SF-10 [Re: newinstru?]
rXd Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/11/09
Posts: 2313
Not a waste of time at all. I worked for two very prolific Baldwin dealers at that time. Many SF's passed through my hands. They were solidly built and preferred by many fine pianists. The SF and SD were a totally different concept of design from the smaller grands produced by Baldwin at that time.

It has had, however, 20 years of seemingly hard use. It is wise to have a tech who can coordinate with your visit. A call to the tech who did the work wouldnt go amiss as another opinion.

I cannot speak for the pricing from outside the local economy but, no doubt, others can.


Edited by rxd (12/11/12 03:47 AM)
Edit Reason: Tautological repetitition
_________________________
Amanda Reckonwith
Concert & Recording tuner-tech, London, England.
"in theory, practice and theory are the same thing. In practice, they're not." - Lawrence P. 'Yogi' Berra.



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#1997840 - 12/11/12 11:23 AM Re: Baldwin SF-10 [Re: newinstru?]
Carey Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/13/05
Posts: 7511
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona
Originally Posted By: newinstru?

I was wondering, however, if any of you had any thoughts.......complete waste of time? Not necessarily? I read what Larry Fine says about Baldwins of that vintage. Does anyone have a Baldwin from around that time that they like? Is there something I should be looking for more specifically?


By all means, check it out again !!!!!!

We recently purchased a 17 year old Baldwin SF-10 for our church for $10K. Found it on Craigslist. The piano started its life in a university setting and was played heavily for about one year. It was then taken back by the dealer. An expensive player system was installed, and the piano was purchased by a family with three kids in 1997. Bottom line - it hadn't had an "easy" life. When I first tried out the piano at the seller's home in August I was "put off" by the player system and how the piano might have been compromised by it. We certainly had no use for the player system in our church, and visually, the wires and boxes hanging down under the piano weren't very appealing. Once I had my own tech check the piano out, we decided to take a chance with it. We paid a local piano re-builder to remove the player system, which involved significant carpentry work and rebuilding of the trapwork. We also had him buff out most of the scratches on the piano's case. Once we moved the piano to our church, my tech gave the instrument a complete regulation (including reshaping the hammers, leveling the strings, etc.). We bought an artist bench, a piano spider dolly, and padded cover - and now, after a month - we couldn't be happier with the purchase. Then, to make things even better, a local piano tech who helped the re-builder remove the bulky old player system offered to buy the player system from us for $500 (it was a Baldwin Concertmaster system that probably cost around $5K when new). When the dust settled, we had invested around $13.5K for the piano (including the repairs, regulation, and accessories). Most importantly, the piano has a responsive Renner action, warm singing tone, and a rich, full sound. It should serve our needs for a long time.

So - if YOU can get a 20 year old SF-10 in reasonably good shape for $8.5K - and are willing to put a couple of thousand into it for repairs - you may be very pleased with the results !!!!

Good luck !!
_________________________
Mason and Hamlin BB - 91640
Kawai CA-65
YouTube channel - http://www.youtube.com/user/pianophilo

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#1997882 - 12/11/12 01:02 PM Re: Baldwin SF-10 [Re: newinstru?]
Chopinlover49 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/11
Posts: 643
It sounds like it would be worth trying out. What have you got to lose?

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#1997952 - 12/11/12 03:29 PM Re: Baldwin SF-10 [Re: newinstru?]
Mark... Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/27/06
Posts: 4444
Loc: Jersey Shore
I love the SF 10 Baldwins...if the tech ok's it and you like the sound and touch you will be a lucky person...

I'd be running to it...

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#1997959 - 12/11/12 03:51 PM Re: Baldwin SF-10 [Re: newinstru?]
kpembrook Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/10
Posts: 1510
Loc: Michigan
As the tech for a husband/wife duo-piano team who toured the US in a custom built motor home with 2 SF-10s in the back, I came to respect those instruments and consider them in the top echelon of 7' pianos.

I eventually installed Cadenza S hammers on both pianos when the time came for their renewal -- along with cryogenically treated wire. The piano duo considered them superior at that point to when they had selected them at the Baldwin factory.

I don't think you'll go wrong if you get this instrument.
_________________________
Keith Akins, RPT
Editor, Piano Technicians Journal
USA Distributor for Isaac Cadenza hammers and Profundo Bass Strings
Supporting Piano Owners D-I-Y piano tuning and repair

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#1998100 - 12/11/12 11:10 PM Re: Baldwin SF-10 [Re: newinstru?]
newinstru? Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/28/12
Posts: 113
Loc: SoCal
Thank you all so much for the encouragement and sharing your individual experiences. I did go see it. The tech was very helpful and informative (as are so many people I have come across in my search)......people who love what they do and share their passion with others). He spent at least an hour looking it over discussing other piano stuff with me.

Unfortunately, I think I have to chalk this up to another learning experience. The tech said if it were him he would offer no more than 5 k for it, as he thought it would need new hammers ( they were "shaped" .......is that the right word.....quite a lot. Anyway, bass sounded twangy still.......he thought it would need at least new bass strings and work on the action ( uneven). He thought it would need to put probably another 5k into it. I am too chicken to go into the land of unknowns with so many variables.

Thanks again. I really appreciate having a place to come to with all my questions!

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#1998101 - 12/11/12 11:10 PM Re: Baldwin SF-10 [Re: newinstru?]
newinstru? Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/28/12
Posts: 113
Loc: SoCal
Thank you all so much for the encouragement and sharing your individual experiences. I did go see it. The tech was very helpful and informative (as are so many people I have come across in my search)......people who love what they do and share their passion with others). He spent at least an hour looking it over discussing other piano stuff with me.

Unfortunately, I think I have to chalk this up to another learning experience. The tech said if it were him he would offer no more than 5 k for it, as he thought it would need new hammers ( they were "shaped" .......is that the right word.....quite a lot. Anyway, bass sounded twangy still.......he thought it would need at least new bass strings and work on the action ( uneven). He thought it would need to put probably another 5k into it. I am too chicken to go into the land of unknowns with so many variables.

Thanks again. I really appreciate having a place to come to with all my questions!

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#1998109 - 12/11/12 11:25 PM Re: Baldwin SF-10 [Re: newinstru?]
BDB Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 23697
Loc: Oakland
Looking is often a learning experience, even if you do not buy.
_________________________
Semipro Tech

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