new piano for students

Posted by: apple*

new piano for students - 11/18/12 08:22 AM

I saw a 1908 Steinway (Hampberg) at an estate sale for 15,000. This is a little out of the budget of this family who has 6 adopted special needs kids as well s 3 or 4 of their own. They are super Catholic and sweet as can be. I teach 4 of their older children.

the piano is ABSOLUTELY exquisite.. clear as a bell, it sustains forever - I think they could get it for about 10,000 especially if they carried in the kid that sits in the wheel chair (sorry to sound crass). It has exquisite legs and a gorgeous music desk. the finish is a gorgeous mahogony.. looks like this:

5'8" tho, not 6' 11" It needs a bit of damper work. There are some residual tones that continue to lightly sound. I have an excellent tech and can get him to come over and appraise it, but he is out of town. I'm going over today to do some appraising myself. I can see that a few of the dampers are just a bit tilted.. most of them are ok. everything seems to work perfectly but i still wonder what I should look for. the pedals are very precise and the notes are very even.

it sounds absolutely exquisite. I like it better than my newer Estonia. It's about 5/8".
Posted by: Ed Foote

Re: new piano for students - 11/18/12 08:34 AM

Greetings,
Beware!! Older Steinways often demonstrate corroded action centers (verdigris), and this condition can be masked by some lubricants, (only to return later and freeze the action for good). You do not want to buy a money pit!

The case work on these pianos is beyond belief, they are stunning. More important is the condition of the action, and if you have 100 year old parts in there, the odds of it not needing continual repair and maintenance under heavy use are slim. For a piano that is played only occasionally, maybe at the holidays, this might be the one, but for the musical anchor for a bunch of kids learning to play, I doubt it would be a good investment.

I have rebuilt two of these, with many new parts, strings, dampers, flanges, etc. They are both now owned by very well known performers here in Nashville, and both are killer pianos. The problem with old Steinway uprights is that they sell for less than half as much as a grand, even though the time and cost involved in restoration is the same or more. Very few techs will, or can, actually put the time in them to make them dependable, durable instruments.

Don't even consider it until your tech has pulled a few hammer-butts and checked the pinning.
Regards,
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: new piano for students - 11/18/12 09:23 AM

Originally Posted By: apple*
It's about 5/8".
10K seems expensive for such a short piano.
Posted by: malkin

Re: new piano for students - 11/18/12 09:41 AM

Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Originally Posted By: apple*
It's about 5/8".
10K seems expensive for such a short piano.


Wise guy!