Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 2 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

SEARCH
the Forums & Piano World

This custom search works much better than the built in one and allows searching older posts.
(ad 125) Sweetwater - Digital Keyboards & Other Gear
Digital Pianos at Sweetwater
(ad) Pearl River
Pearl River Pianos
(ad) Pianoteq
Latest Pianoteq add-on instrument: U4 upright piano
(ad) P B Guide
Acoustic & Digital Piano Guide
PianoSupplies.com (150)
Piano Accessories Music Related Gifts Piano Tuning Equipment Piano Moving Equipment
We now offer Gift Certificates in our online store!
(ad) Estonia Piano
Estonia Piano
Quick Links to Useful Stuff
Our Classified Ads
Find Piano Professionals-

*Piano Dealers - Piano Stores
*Piano Tuners
*Piano Teachers
*Piano Movers
*Piano Restorations
*Piano Manufacturers
*Organs

Quick Links:
*Advertise On Piano World
*Free Piano Newsletter
*Online Piano Recitals
*Piano Recitals Index
*Piano Accessories
* Buying a Piano
*Buying A Acoustic Piano
*Buying a Digital Piano
*Pianos for Sale
*Sell Your Piano
*How Old is My Piano?
*Piano Books
*Piano Art, Pictures, & Posters
*Directory/Site Map
*Contest
*Links
*Virtual Piano
*Music Word Search
*Piano Screen Saver
*Piano Videos
*Virtual Piano Chords
Topic Options
#2177530 - 11/05/13 12:41 PM Starting the Research Process - Have a spinet, want a grand
mgmoore7 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/05/13
Posts: 13
A bit of background that will help.

Have 7 children, 4 currently play. My oldest is 13 and has played for 5 years. Next year, the 5th child will start.

Our current piano was a family spinet piano build in the 50's. It sat unused in the same home for all of its life until it came to our home. Amazingly, it holds a tune pretty well but you can imagine, it is showing signs of its age and its sound on a different playing field when compared to anything newer, especially a grand.

At this point, we are dedicated to piano and music in general. Currently, the piano gets 1-3 hours of use a day with 4 kids. They are "required" to play at least 15 minutes a day. We never have to twist their arm to play. A few of them love it and at times spend much time playing.

The room is 20 x 20 with 9 foot ceilings.

Preferred budget would be $8,000 or less. This puts us in the used market.

From what we have read... we want to stay away from baby grands for the most part but they are in our price range. We have started looking in the used market for piano's in the 6' range but are finding that this puts us into ones that are 20-40 years old and that gets worrysome considering how much use the piano had and the amount of use ours will get.

We definitely value shoppers but not cheap. Brand does not mean much but we are not going to be ignorant of resell.

We like a Balwin 6' that probably would go for about 6,500 that was built in the 70's I believe but had little use. We also like a new Ritmuller that was a 5'3" but a little over our budget but it sounded great. Prefer the more mellow tones vs something like Yamaha that is often quite bright.

At this point just looking for some help on general thoughts that might help point us to the right choice and any specifics that might fit the bill in our scenario.

Thank You!
_________________________
Matt
Tampa, FL

Top
(ads 568) Hailun Pianos

#2177562 - 11/05/13 01:33 PM Re: Starting the Research Process - Have a spinet, want a grand [Re: mgmoore7]
Caowner2013 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/17/13
Posts: 79
Hi mgmoore7,

We just went through similar process, so this is parent to parent. While price range is important, it may be just as informative and important to come from a totally different angle before considering price. Please allow me to explain.

Our kids have about 4 years (RCM Level 7+) under their belt, and also interested in progressing to higher levels in RCM. Their teacher assessed that they do have the ability to reach higher levels. With all that in mind, we decided to let them have a significant role in the selection process.

They had to play every grand in stores within driving distance (100-mi) regardless of age, size, brand and price. We even played multiple large concert-grands (8' & 9') from different makers. This was to help all of us learn what is currently available. They had to log their observations of touch and tone and all other meaningful characteristics "objectively". Their observations must match or better mine. From there, we determined the characteristics most important to help them progress and used that to pare the list and rank the rest. Then we repeated the "playing" process again and again until a ranked list of candidates was finalized. These all met our requirements with varying acceptable weaknesses in less important areas. From there, we looked up pricing and organized another list based on price. From that, we worked from the top choice down towards whichever fell into our price range.

This approach opened our eyes, ears and "hearts" (dangerous to wallet) to what is available out there today. Exposure to multiple brands and sizes also let our children identified and crystalized, for themselves, what they really appreciate and prefer in a piano.

We want the final choice to help them progress to their intended goals at the right cost. Most importantly, it would reveal if we could/should stretch to acquire a better candidate. This process also determined if my children truly were able to hear, feel and express the key observations in each piano. Failure to do so meant continuing practice with our very nice upright and no grand piano.

If you had done this already, please forgive this repetitious description.

Take your time, listen to them all, play them all and enjoy the hunt! We played and heard many fine grands and thoroughly enjoyed the process.


Edited by Caowner2013 (11/05/13 01:51 PM)

Top
#2177595 - 11/05/13 02:48 PM Re: Starting the Research Process - Have a spinet, want a grand [Re: mgmoore7]
mgmoore7 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/05/13
Posts: 13
Caowner2013
Thanks for the ideas. We had not thought of it from this perspective. Something to consider for sure. We tend to want to use everything as a learning experience for our kids.
_________________________
Matt
Tampa, FL

Top
#2177693 - 11/05/13 06:28 PM Re: Starting the Research Process - Have a spinet, want a grand [Re: mgmoore7]
musicpassion Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/30/12
Posts: 906
Loc: California, USA
It is best to enjoy the process and spend time.

The thought I wanted to share: I'd strongly suggest don't rule out pianos in the 5'6"-5'8" range. There are some stunning pianos in this size range that can satisfy the most discerning of pianists. It might also be easier on the pocket book.

You used the term "baby grand". Of course manufactures and pianists have been using the term for ages. But it's a rather vague term and has been used to refer to even fairly large pianos.

Have fun shopping!
_________________________
Pianist and Piano Teacher

Top
#2177699 - 11/05/13 06:40 PM Re: Starting the Research Process - Have a spinet, want a grand [Re: mgmoore7]
musicpassion Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/30/12
Posts: 906
Loc: California, USA
You mention you don't like the bright Yamaha sound.

In that case Baldwin is a good brand to consider. Another which might interest you is the Knabe. I'm mainly familiar with the vintage American pianos. Some of them are great (of course have a technician evaluate anything before you buy), and lots of people love their Knabe. I especially mention this because their value - like Baldwin - is fairly depressed so there are sometimes some real bargains available.
_________________________
Pianist and Piano Teacher

Top
#2177818 - 11/06/13 02:09 AM Re: Starting the Research Process - Have a spinet, want a grand [Re: mgmoore7]
michaelha Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/05/13
Posts: 783
Great notes Caowner. I have a similar routine when I visit wineries. smile

MGMoore, I don't want to assume you have tons of cash sitting around, but just in case you have a little flexibility. If you're thinking of getting the last piano they'll ever need in their childhood or something to hold you over for another 3-4- years. If it's your final destination, it might require a bit of luck. We couldn't find much in that range and I didn't want to upgrade every 3-4 years. For us, there's virtually no risk the piano is going to go unplayed and I'm convinced my kids will play throughout their childhood. So I wanted to get the best piano we could afford so they could maximize their time with it. However, I'm not suggesting taking a loan out for it.
_________________________
Casio CDP-100
2012 Kawai RX-5 BLAK

Top
#2177820 - 11/06/13 02:19 AM Re: Starting the Research Process - Have a spinet, want a grand [Re: mgmoore7]
Norbert Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 14117
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Quote:
We also like a new Ritmuller that was a 5'3" but a little over our budget


Not knowing where you are, perhaps would be worth to ask Ritmueller dealer again. There's dealers who make exceptions and are sincere helping someone to a good grand best they can.

Keep trying.

5'3 Ritmuller grand:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GkNGRbEWT4o

Norbert


Edited by Norbert (11/06/13 02:22 AM)
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

Top
#2177821 - 11/06/13 02:55 AM Re: Starting the Research Process - Have a spinet, want a grand [Re: mgmoore7]
michaelha Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/05/13
Posts: 783
He's in Tampa, FL.
_________________________
Casio CDP-100
2012 Kawai RX-5 BLAK

Top
#2177824 - 11/06/13 03:05 AM Re: Starting the Research Process - Have a spinet, want a grand [Re: mgmoore7]
michaelha Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/05/13
Posts: 783
Originally Posted By: mgmoore7
We also like a new Ritmuller that was a 5'3" but a little over our budget but it sounded great.


The Ritmuller has an SMP of 12,390. PianoBuyer suggests a 10-30% discount from that and I've found that it's usually 30% or more in reality. So at 30% off of SMP that's $8673.

I'm not sure how SMP is calculated, maybe it's wholesale x2. If so, you could probably do better.

Ritmullers on PianoBuyer
_________________________
Casio CDP-100
2012 Kawai RX-5 BLAK

Top
#2177860 - 11/06/13 06:56 AM Re: Starting the Research Process - Have a spinet, want a grand [Re: mgmoore7]
mgmoore7 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/05/13
Posts: 13
Thanks everyone. We are cash buyers so it keeps us from swinging too much and it just adds more time to the saving process. It is not that we could not spend 10 or 12k, its more about overall priorities with a household of 9 on a single income. I make a good living but also have to consider other things as we all do such as saving "something" for college, vehical replacements (already drive 2 vehicles over 10 years old) and the mass amounts of food that 3 boys eat...

The dealer in Tampa had the Ritmuller 5'3" I believe for somewhere between $8-9k "on special". The more I think about it, the upside could be worth it if I can stretch the budget a little more and go new on this piano. Other new pianos in this price range so far do not interest me. Guarantee, new.., lots and lots of life, very little risk.

To be honest, we would love to spend less than $5,000 but it seems luck would play a big part and will likely be a craigslist find but the risk goes up alot for sure. I definately cannot afford to risk losing much of a 4-5k price in a piano that is not all it needs to be.

So one thing I have been hearing is that a Baldwin from the 70's or 80's that has had light use could be a good option. I have seen a few of these locally and researching hear at the upper end of our price range. Another would be the Ritmuller 5'3'. Smaller than what we thought we wanted but what we heard was great and others seem to concur.

Anything else that might fit the bill in the upper end of the range? Other thoughts. Or any ideas on what might be good at the low end of the price range.

Thanks.
_________________________
Matt
Tampa, FL

Top
#2177869 - 11/06/13 07:33 AM Re: Starting the Research Process - Have a spinet, want a grand [Re: mgmoore7]
Jolly Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/20/01
Posts: 14048
Loc: Louisiana
Another alternative...

I'm seeing some used 6-footish (+/-) Koreans within your budget. The brands will be Samick, Pramberger, Young Chang, Weber, Kohler & Campbell. Most of these pianos will be about ten years old.

And, if you bump up to $10K, that can buy you several different new 5'3" pianos, but also allows you to purchase a new Brodmann CE-175 or a Knabe WG59.
_________________________
www.coffee-room.com

Over 1,000,000 posts where pianists discuss everything. And nothing.

Top
#2177888 - 11/06/13 08:14 AM Re: Starting the Research Process - Have a spinet, want a grand [Re: mgmoore7]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7239
Loc: Rochester MN
Hi Matt - Welcome to Piano World!

I keep thinking about that Baldwin on which you have a lead. It could be either an 'R' (5'8") or an 'L' (6'3"). Out of that time period, it could be a very good instrument and would probably be much better than newer imports in the 'budget' range.

What would be absolutely essential, if you are considering that piano, is to have a very detailed inspection performed by a qualified technician. As has been mentioned in other threads, special attention should be paid to the bridge pins.

In the 90's, Baldwin went through a rather un-glorious period and the phoenix has yet to fully emerge from the ashes. But, they built some very fine pianos in the years of the piano you are contemplating.

Best wishes to you and your family and enjoy your search.
_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

Top
#2177904 - 11/06/13 09:01 AM Re: Starting the Research Process - Have a spinet, want a grand [Re: mgmoore7]
mgmoore7 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/05/13
Posts: 13
Here is a 1975 Kawai KG-2C that we liked. It is listed at $7,500.
http://randyswholesalepianos.com/product/grand-pianos/piano-for-sale-1975-kawai-kg-2c-grand-piano/

I believe this is the Baldwin that we saw. It claims it was lightly used. 1976 Baldwin R226. 5'8" Listed at $8,500
http://randyswholesalepianos.com/product/grand-pianos/piano-for-sale-1976-baldwin-r226-grand-piano/

I really appreciate the discussion. It is very helpful!

The search is all the fun for me since I don't play. I wish I had a musical bone in my body.


Edited by mgmoore7 (11/06/13 09:25 AM)
_________________________
Matt
Tampa, FL

Top
#2177919 - 11/06/13 09:36 AM Re: Starting the Research Process - Have a spinet, want a grand [Re: mgmoore7]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7239
Loc: Rochester MN
Da music bone connected to da, ear bone. Da ear bone con ....
_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

Top
#2177955 - 11/06/13 11:51 AM Re: Starting the Research Process - Have a spinet, want a grand [Re: mgmoore7]
pianoloverus Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19226
Loc: New York City
My only advice is to make sure you sample enough pianos in your price range before making a decision. Since your main piano at this point is an older spinet, unless you have extensive experience playing other pianos almost any grand is likely to sound quite glorious by comparison.

Top
#2178151 - 11/06/13 07:09 PM Re: Starting the Research Process - Have a spinet, want a grand [Re: mgmoore7]
Bosendorff Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/11/12
Posts: 259
Hi mgmoore7,

The Ritmuller you mention is a very good choice in your budget if you like a mellow "classical" tone. Make sure to test also Knabe, Pramberger, Weber, Brodmann, Steigerman, Heintzman and Hailun grands if available around. Keep in touch to tell what you think. smile

Top

Moderator:  Ken Knapp, Piano World, Rickster 
What's Hot!!
Our latest Issue is available now...
Piano News - Interesting & Fun Piano Related Newsletter! (free)
-------------------
HOW TO POST PICTURES on the Piano Forums
-------------------
Sharing is Caring!
About the Buttons
-------------------
Forums Rules & Help
-------------------
ADVERTISE
on Piano World

The world's most popular piano web site.
(ad) HAILUN Pianos
Hailun Pianos - Click for More
Ad (Seiler/Knabe)
Seiler Pianos
Sheet Music
(PW is an affiliate)
Sheet Music Plus Featured Sale
(125ad) Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
(ad) Lindeblad Piano
Lindeblad Piano Restoration
Who's Online
127 registered (accordeur, Almaviva, AmateurBob, 37 invisible), 1788 Guests and 18 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Stats
75528 Members
42 Forums
156188 Topics
2293649 Posts

Max Online: 15252 @ 03/21/10 11:39 PM
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Replacing a treble string-Steinway B-under the bass strings
by Greg the Piano Tuner
Today at 11:47 AM
New set of studies probing Does Practice Make Perfect?
by music32
Today at 11:25 AM
Toyama Piano- A Year On.
by TheAccompanist
Today at 09:39 AM
Frederick Historical Piano Benefit Concert - July 29 2014
by Terrytunes
Today at 09:25 AM
Using a (continuous) sustain pedal as expression
by barmassimo
Today at 09:06 AM
(ads by Google)

Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
| Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World | Donate | Link to Us | Classifieds |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter | Press Room |


copyright 1997 - 2014 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission