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#2208024 - 01/04/14 12:13 PM retrofitting a piano
Donnabh Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/02/14
Posts: 3
I am just getting started with the research so pardon me if you have dealt with this topic before. I have an antique Chickering square grand piano-- beautiful cabinet-worthless musical instrument. Is it possible to put a digital player keyboard into this old piano and if so what is a good link to start me on this journey.

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#2208076 - 01/04/14 12:56 PM Re: retrofitting a piano [Re: Donnabh]
OperaTenor Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/13/06
Posts: 2543
Loc: Sandy Eggo, California
Hi Donna, and welcome!

Sure, this can be done. A lot of people would feel that's the best thing to do with a square grand... wink

With the removal of a couple of case parts, the key slip, and the panel above the keys, the action will slide right out, just as it does in a modern grand. All you'd need to do is find a digital that will fit into the resulting cavity, put the case pieces back on for looks, and you're pretty much set. You may want to do a couple of ancillary things like drill a hole through the key bed for the cord, but, I feel it's a pretty straightforward process.
Happiness is a freshly tuned piano.
Jim Boydston, proprietor, No Piano Left Behind - technician

#2208090 - 01/04/14 01:06 PM Re: retrofitting a piano [Re: Donnabh]
Donnabh Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/02/14
Posts: 3
Thanks Jim,
Do you have any recommendations on digital players that I should start looking at?

#2208099 - 01/04/14 01:22 PM Re: retrofitting a piano [Re: Donnabh]
OperaTenor Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/13/06
Posts: 2543
Loc: Sandy Eggo, California
Sorry, Donna, the only digital that I have any knowledge about is the Roland V Piano, and that's probably not what you'd want - way too expensive.

You might try Rich Galassini; he has a pretty broad knowledge of what's out there.
Happiness is a freshly tuned piano.
Jim Boydston, proprietor, No Piano Left Behind - technician

#2208152 - 01/04/14 02:38 PM Re: retrofitting a piano [Re: Donnabh]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014

Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7439
Loc: Rochester MN

The biggest consideration is what will "fit," as in the most compatible size of the actual keyboard. And I actually mean the number of keys, width, etc. You might be limited by what is available, rather than what you would prefer.
Marty in Minnesota

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

#2208312 - 01/04/14 08:19 PM Re: retrofitting a piano [Re: OperaTenor]
Donnabh Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/02/14
Posts: 3
Thanks, I'll give him a try.

#2208378 - 01/04/14 11:08 PM Re: retrofitting a piano [Re: Donnabh]
Jon Page Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/13/09
Posts: 397
Loc: Harwich Port, Cape Cod, Massac...
Find a digital keyboard you like and alter the case to accommodate it.

Jon Page
Piano technician/tuner
Harwich Port, Cape Cod, Massachusetts, USA


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