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#2184286 - 11/18/13 01:11 AM 1874 Steinway B WORTH RESTORING??
Sean Mathes Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/17/13
Posts: 3
Loc: Playa Del Carmen
Hello- I am new here and am hoping someone can give me a little advice. I have been looking for a Steinway for a few months now. I have already purchase a 1928 M but now I have also found a 1874 B and this is the one I am considering purchasing now. To me the price is extremely low at $4,000. I am willing to put money into this for a complete restore and rebuild but only if it's going to be a good financial decision.

So if I do get this can I easily get my money out of it after it's complete? I know there is a lot of variables in this but I would only be using a very good rebuilder and am guessing the cost would be about $20k.

My main question is, were the early Steinway's still great instruments? Or am I better staying with my 1928 M and rebuilding that at some point?

Thanks for any advice.

I'm a Steinway Grand Piano enthusiast and a mediocre player at best. I have owned several Steinways over the last 10 years. My most recent is a beautifully restored ebony 1928 Steinway M. Restored by my good friend Marshall Luke at the Luke Piano Company http://lukepiano.com

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#2184297 - 11/18/13 01:58 AM Re: 1874 Steinway B WORTH RESTORING?? [Re: Sean Mathes]
phacke Offline

Gold Supporter until November 11 2014

Registered: 10/18/12
Posts: 881
Loc: CO, USA
Greetings, Sean,

There was a little discussion about that here just recently that may be a reference for you,

Best wishes-

Steinway YM (1933)
...Working on:
J. S. Bach, Sonata No. 1 in B minor (BWV 1014)

#2184318 - 11/18/13 04:12 AM Re: 1874 Steinway B WORTH RESTORING?? [Re: Sean Mathes]
SMHaley Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/06/13
Posts: 1131
Loc: Seattle
There's a lot of potential gremlins in an instrument of that age. I would certainly do my homework as to the feasibility of doing a restoration... or really in this situation more like substantial rebuilding. Certainly a carved case that many of them had would be very appealing. If money were no object I would love an older art case with modern customized guts to it.

Depending on the condition doing anything to improve its situation may improve its overall worth but not considerably so.
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#2184362 - 11/18/13 07:49 AM Re: 1874 Steinway B WORTH RESTORING?? [Re: Sean Mathes]
Bob Newbie Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/02/06
Posts: 1555
Question is and has always been, how old do you go..is the 1870s too far back?
I'd be leery about any piano before 1890, weren't their a number of significant changes in piano design in the 1870s?

lets let the pros step up to the plate and answer this..
the "B" is a nice size..

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#2184408 - 11/18/13 09:37 AM Re: 1874 Steinway B WORTH RESTORING?? [Re: Sean Mathes]
OperaTenor Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/13/06
Posts: 2555
Loc: Sandy Eggo, California
This might be a good one for Rich Galassini to weigh in on.
Happiness is a freshly tuned piano.
Jim Boydston, proprietor, No Piano Left Behind - technician

#2184410 - 11/18/13 09:44 AM Re: 1874 Steinway B WORTH RESTORING?? [Re: Sean Mathes]
Eric Gloo Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/28/01
Posts: 1352
Loc: Richfield Springs, New York
Originally Posted By: naesm1
So if I do get this can I easily get my money out of it after it's complete? I know there is a lot of variables in this but I would only be using a very good rebuilder and am guessing the cost would be about $20k.

My guess is that your guess of $20k is too low.
Eric Gloo
Piano Technician
Certified Dampp-Chaser Installer
Richfield Springs, New York

#2184441 - 11/18/13 10:40 AM Re: 1874 Steinway B WORTH RESTORING?? [Re: Sean Mathes]
Ed McMorrow, RPT Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/09/12
Posts: 3885
Loc: Seattle, WA USA
A B this old would be 85 notes. This reduces market value by approximately $10K. A piano this age is 99.9% certain to need a full rebuild. The condition of key-set, action frame, and case parts are probably the biggest rebuild pricing variables.

$30K minimum is a more realistic ballpark figure for a total rebuild. You don't want to hire a rebuild by price alone if you want it to play and last like a new piano. Be sure to audition prospective rebuilders work as well, so you can know what you are getting. This also lets the rebuilder learn about your touch and tone preferences so they can shape the project to match.
In a seemingly infinite universe-infinite human creativity is-seemingly possible.
According to NASA, 93% of the earth like planets possible in the known universe have yet to be formed.
Contact: Ed@LightHammerpiano.com


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