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#635666 - 05/13/08 08:29 PM Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4234
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada
I came across a rare one the other day and decided that I would drop by and show some of the interested folks here.

This is a rare Heintzman & Co. Transposing upright piano, which used to be produced some time back. This instrument has 98 keys and songs can be played in 10 different keys …… 11 in fact, including the one you are in. In 35 yrs. of service to the industry I have only ever seen two of these.

For those not familiar with Picasa, when you click on the link here, there is an option above the first picture to see as a slide show. This is the best viewing, as you can adjust your time for each frame.

Enjoy!

http://picasaweb.google.com/silverwoodpianos/HeintzmanCoTransposingPiano
_________________________
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"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#635667 - 05/13/08 09:13 PM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano
Rod Verhnjak Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/09/06
Posts: 3659
Loc: Vancouver B.C. Canada
Gee Dan, you must not get out much \:D

We have had 6 of these through the shop, seen 4 others and have one in the shop right now.
The one in the shop right now has a fancy book matched walnut case.
They are quite cool.
And yes rare, compared to traditional Heintzmans.
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#635668 - 05/13/08 09:15 PM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano
Piano Guy Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/01/03
Posts: 400
Loc: Southern Ontario,Canada
Dan
There are two of these in my client base that I tune every year. A third one a few years ago that I did extensive repairs on. Someone tried transposing w/o using the clutch and snapped a bunch of stickers. Pretty creative bit of repair work. Very cool pianos.
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Richard, the"Piano Guy"
Piano Moving Tuning & Repair
From London ON to Fort Erie ON

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#635669 - 05/13/08 09:35 PM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4234
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada
Hey Rod and Richard,

Not getting out you are right, too much work in the shop…… No wonder I haven’t come across too many of these instruments, you two are hogging them all to yourselves… hehehe ;\)

Cheers………….
_________________________
Dan Silverwood
www.silverwoodpianos.com
http://silverwoodpianos.blogspot.com/
http://www.facebook.com/SilverwoodPianosDotCom
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#635670 - 05/13/08 10:09 PM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano
Bob Newbie Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/02/06
Posts: 1555
Irving Berlin used a transposing piano..not sure of the make/model..

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#635671 - 05/13/08 10:25 PM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano
Thomson Lawrie Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/12/04
Posts: 283
Loc: Grimsby ON Canada
I have a regular customer with one too. It's the only one I've seen in thirty years of tuning. I guess that means I don't get out much either. It's not the kind of shape as the one in your pictures though, all original.

I've always wondered if Irving Berlin's piano was a Heintzman. There couldn't have been that many manufacureres that made these.
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#635672 - 05/14/08 11:31 AM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano
Steve Jackson Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/02/07
Posts: 672
Loc: Toronto
I just had someone trying to sell a rebuilt one to me yesterday. They are reasonably common. Yes, Irving Berlin played one, but then Sohmer made one for him and he switched. I believe he had 2 Sohmers, but my memory aint so good.

Steve
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#635673 - 05/14/08 11:54 AM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4234
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada
Ok so this makes a total of twenty that I have found across Canada so far, in a country of 30 million people.
_________________________
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www.silverwoodpianos.com
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http://www.facebook.com/SilverwoodPianosDotCom
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#635674 - 05/14/08 01:18 PM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano
Cy Shuster, RPT Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/18/05
Posts: 3448
Loc: Albuquerque, NM
 Quote:
Originally posted by Bob Newbie:
Irving Berlin used a transposing piano..not sure of the make/model.. [/b]
It was a Heintzman. I've seen the one in the Jack Wyatt Museum in the PTG Home Office Museum in Kansas City. There's another in the Cantos Music Museum in Calgary (www.cantos.ca).

People have said that he always played in Db, but that's hard to know for sure.

--Cy--
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#635675 - 05/14/08 01:36 PM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano
BDB Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21922
Loc: Oakland
 Quote:
Someone tried transposing w/o using the clutch and snapped a bunch of stickers. Pretty creative bit of repair work.
A better mechanism would require engaging the clutch before the keyboard could be moved.

Berlin had several transposing pianos over the years. He was associated with Sohmer, but the one that was in the Smithsonian exhibit was something else, as I recall.
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#635676 - 05/14/08 02:19 PM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano
BDB Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21922
Loc: Oakland
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#1338017 - 12/31/09 05:01 PM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: BDB]
Lawrence Dickenson Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/04/09
Posts: 4
Loc: Ontario, Canada
I just ran into one of these last week. It was a Heinztman from 1897 and is in surprisingly good condition. Needs a bit of work with a couple of broken capstan stickers because the clutch operated by the middle pedal wasn't releasing the capstans from the keys properly and also a couple of broken hammer shanks, but otherwise in good condition for an old piano. The case was marvelous.
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#1338157 - 12/31/09 08:14 PM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: Lawrence Dickenson]
RPD Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/07/05
Posts: 961
Loc: Kalamazoo Michigan
Well, I must NEVER get out then...I've never seen one in all these years!! Thanks for posting Dan!

RPD
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#1338313 - 01/01/10 06:51 AM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: Silverwood Pianos]
Randy Karasik Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/08/06
Posts: 498
Loc: Arvada, Colorado, USA, Earth
Originally Posted By: Silverwood Pianos
I came across a rare one the other day and decided that I would drop by and show some of the interested folks here.

This is a rare Heintzman & Co. ...


Can you tell us more about the special process of preserving the original decal when refinishing?
_________________________
Registered Piano Technician
Serving Colorado Since 1978
randy@karasikpiano.com
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#1338338 - 01/01/10 08:44 AM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: Lawrence Dickenson]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4234
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada
Originally Posted By: Lawrence Dickenson
I just ran into one of these last week. It was a Heinztman from 1897 and is in surprisingly good condition. Needs a bit of work with a couple of broken capstan stickers because the clutch operated by the middle pedal wasn't releasing the capstans from the keys properly and also a couple of broken hammer shanks, but otherwise in good condition for an old piano. The case was marvelous.


Hello Lawrence,
Welcome to the forum. Yes the clutch if not set up properly will not release pressure from the inverted capstans. This causes them to drag on the tops of the key levers and will snap some of them at the flanges.
Just a week ago I got a call from a fellow on Vancouver Island who has one that was damaged somewhat in a home fire. So now, since May of 2008, we are up to the known whereabouts of 25 of these in Canada.
_________________________
Dan Silverwood
www.silverwoodpianos.com
http://silverwoodpianos.blogspot.com/
http://www.facebook.com/SilverwoodPianosDotCom
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#1338339 - 01/01/10 08:45 AM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: RPD]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4234
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada
Originally Posted By: RPD
Well, I must NEVER get out then...I've never seen one in all these years!! Thanks for posting Dan!

RPD


Well RPD, if you do ever get out, come this way and I can show you one of them up close and personal.
_________________________
Dan Silverwood
www.silverwoodpianos.com
http://silverwoodpianos.blogspot.com/
http://www.facebook.com/SilverwoodPianosDotCom
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#1338340 - 01/01/10 08:45 AM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: Randy Karasik]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4234
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada
Originally Posted By: Randy Karasik
Originally Posted By: Silverwood Pianos
I came across a rare one the other day and decided that I would drop by and show some of the interested folks here.

This is a rare Heintzman & Co. ...


Can you tell us more about the special process of preserving the original decal when refinishing?



Randy I can go one better, I will show you right here. If you left click once on this link, and then left click once on the first photo, top left, this will enlarge the photos so that you can read the text below each frame.
This is a tricky process, it only works with some decals, sometimes the process damages the decal too much, sometimes especially with thick old varnish it does not work at all. Here is the link........
http://picasaweb.google.com/silverwoodpianos/ObsoleteDecalRestoration#
_________________________
Dan Silverwood
www.silverwoodpianos.com
http://silverwoodpianos.blogspot.com/
http://www.facebook.com/SilverwoodPianosDotCom
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#1338358 - 01/01/10 09:42 AM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: Silverwood Pianos]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7904
Loc: France
Hi Dan, thanks for sharing that, indeed that is a very artistic process, I wondered if it was not possible those days to scan and have a decal made in gold color, if necessary ?

Does some try to do so ? A customer of mine is looking for that actually, may be he will find a way to have something done, it is only a matter of paper quality and the good print (offset ?)

Of course there may be different quality and thicknesses.
The market is not so poor for those kind of things , but may be originally it was done with a "silk frame" based process (where paint is thrown on a mask so it have some thickness)

Then it may be very expensive to obtain the same.


Happy New .....
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#1338431 - 01/01/10 11:56 AM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: Olek]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4234
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada
Hello Isaac!

Bonne année!! Best of luck for 2010.

Yes you can get the computer to scan the old decal and have it made on a cutter like truck letterings. These types of decals would be high-speed vinyl (plastic). And some do not like the look of this, including myself. I find it looks cheaply done because there is no border and some of the decorative inks are missing.The vinyl comes in different thicknesses and colours of gold, some are metallic flake and some not .. High gloss and satin too.

Yes to find the proper paper is the question. I have looked around for that previous and finally gave up. I am sure there is someone who would do the silk screen, but like you say it would be expensive……

Some people like to have the old decal restored because they like the antique look. Usually I only do the Heintzman decals, the one on the fallboard, that you can still purchase, and this one which is underneath the top flap on the uprights. Both of these are difficult to do because they are 14 separate pieces.

Interesting to note that it takes exactly the same amount of time to do this process on the fallboard decal as it does to install a new decal of the same sort. So I inform the customer and they decide which one they like best.
_________________________
Dan Silverwood
www.silverwoodpianos.com
http://silverwoodpianos.blogspot.com/
http://www.facebook.com/SilverwoodPianosDotCom
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#1338499 - 01/01/10 01:52 PM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: Silverwood Pianos]
Jerry Groot RPT Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/07/07
Posts: 6828
Loc: Grand Rapids Michigan
Nice and interesting pictures Dan. I don't think I've ever run across one of these pianos either.
_________________________
Jerry Groot RPT
Piano Technicians Guild
Grand Rapids, Michigan
www.grootpiano.com

We love to play BF2.

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#1338602 - 01/01/10 05:16 PM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: Jerry Groot RPT]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4234
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada
Hey Jerry,

Thanks for joining us here. It seems that some think they are quite common while others have not seen any at all....I guess that is just the way it goes sometimes.

These instruments are from a day long gone now; you can get computer programs to do the very same thing now. I used a program in the mid ‘90’s where you could play the keyboard and the paper would come out of the printer with the music written on the page, already staffed, the whole bit. I think the program was called Mr. Composer or something like that....

Best wishes of good health and prosperity for you and your family in 2010.
_________________________
Dan Silverwood
www.silverwoodpianos.com
http://silverwoodpianos.blogspot.com/
http://www.facebook.com/SilverwoodPianosDotCom
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#1338807 - 01/01/10 08:44 PM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: Silverwood Pianos]
Jerry Groot RPT Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/07/07
Posts: 6828
Loc: Grand Rapids Michigan
Thanks Dan, I wish the same for you and everyone else in here as well.

Yes, it is interesting how some people see a lot of certain makes while others see none or just a few. I would suppose maybe some of that might be due to where the piano was manufacturered to begin with or who sold the most of them maybe? I donno... Heck, I can hardly remember what I did last week anyway. confused What's my name again?

_________________________
Jerry Groot RPT
Piano Technicians Guild
Grand Rapids, Michigan
www.grootpiano.com

We love to play BF2.

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#1338946 - 01/02/10 12:39 AM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: Jerry Groot RPT]
Piano Guy Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/01/03
Posts: 400
Loc: Southern Ontario,Canada
Dan...have a look here....
http://www.decalsunlimited.com/shop/4;jsessionid=1308D09EDA981C9DC9A9F8083A517872


Edited by Piano Guy (01/02/10 12:40 AM)
_________________________
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Piano Moving Tuning & Repair
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#1339116 - 01/02/10 10:38 AM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: Piano Guy]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4234
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada

Thanks for the tip Richard. I will check this site out. Hope you have had a happy Holiday Season.
Best wishes for the New Year.
_________________________
Dan Silverwood
www.silverwoodpianos.com
http://silverwoodpianos.blogspot.com/
http://www.facebook.com/SilverwoodPianosDotCom
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#1587678 - 12/31/10 08:39 AM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: Silverwood Pianos]
Racket Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/29/10
Posts: 5
Loc: London ON CA
I have one of these Heintzman & Co transposing pianos. I bought it at a 2nd hand store for next to nothing. I've had one piano guy come and look at it...said it's not all that out of tune (and I believe that as my child plays some pretty hard stuff and it sounds good), he also said the 'board' is in "great shape" and all parts 'look original'. Anyway, I've been lookin for more info on it...the number is 15510. It has some age and most likely moving damage, missing some ivory and hammers and the clutch is broke (i think)...transposing part still works. It's got some pretty good looking raised wood decalled panels and the front pillars are very ornate (to me anyway). I have pictures at this link (suppose to work)and please forgive the quality(I also didn't clean it before I took pics): http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=292481&id=512379504&l=b18bdb3a54 If anyone has info on this particular piano let me know please. thanks


Edited by Racket (12/31/10 08:43 AM)
Edit Reason: added info
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#1587728 - 12/31/10 10:25 AM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: Silverwood Pianos]
pyropaul Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/16/10
Posts: 194
Loc: Montreal
Originally Posted By: Silverwood Pianos
So now, since May of 2008, we are up to the known whereabouts of 25 of these in Canada.


I know of one in Westmount, QC, that I saw at an estate sale in October.

Paul

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#1587755 - 12/31/10 11:09 AM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: Silverwood Pianos]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4234
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada

Thanks Paul,

With these two now I believe the grand total is up to 31 so far....
_________________________
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www.silverwoodpianos.com
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http://www.facebook.com/SilverwoodPianosDotCom
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#1587756 - 12/31/10 11:10 AM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: Silverwood Pianos]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4234
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada
Interesting find there Rachel; nice cabinet detail and front legs. I have this one in my shop right now but it is not a transposer. Notice any similarities?? Check out the link below….

http://picasaweb.google.com/silverwoodpianos/HeintzmanCo134251897?authkey=Gv1sRgCK__rLn34rHBQQ#

For yours there, I have had a look through the photos….serial number 15700 starts 1900 so you’re late 1899.

The cabinet is in waterfall mahogany veneer; the fallboard slides horizontally forward or back and the flap comes over to cover the key set.

17 ivory repairs make the ivory on this one questionable; to complete those repairs properly is expensive indeed at $150.00 per key for a head/tail setting and polishing……. I can also see others chipped at the front edge in other photos; might be best for someone to replace the ivory on this one…. The ivory of this period of Heintzman was very thick but also very soft. If you go to the photos above I have posted you can see that the ivory on the one here is deeply cupped in the center registers and will have to be replaced.

The center pedal is just unhooked from the long stem it attaches to for yours there.

Underneath the key bed shows the clutch assembly...the only part missing that I can see is the handle to operate the clutch. You might find a similar one in an architectural antique shop that sells old door handles…..or fixtures from old houses…. If you look at this photo here, this is a picture of the handle.

http://picasaweb.google.com/silverwoodpianos/HeintzmanCoTransposingPiano#5198769961508280818

From the photo of your plate in the bottom of your piano it looks like the bridge and plate for the K scale, which is the same as the one here…..

The hammer set you have there is single wrapped felt; most likely from Bohne & Co. and would be Weikert felt…too bad they are so ridged and most likely require replacement as shaping and voicing will not come up well. There are also several repairs to hammer stems there. Looks like action/ keyboard recondition with new felt and punchings there. Also there appear to be some damper problems going on there in the treble section….

One of the failings of these transposers was that if the action/keyboard cloths were not kept in good condition when the keyboard was shifted for transposing the regulation would change and sometimes dramatically creating various mechanical problems…….

Restoration is not cheap to complete but if your piano technician checks out the frame and it is not been compromised then you have a nice looking piece of Canadian piano history.
_________________________
Dan Silverwood
www.silverwoodpianos.com
http://silverwoodpianos.blogspot.com/
http://www.facebook.com/SilverwoodPianosDotCom
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#1588065 - 12/31/10 08:03 PM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: Silverwood Pianos]
Racket Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/29/10
Posts: 5
Loc: London ON CA
Wow, Dan. Thank you for all the info and sharing your knowledge with me. $150/per ivory eh! Maybe we could just take the ivory off yours and put them on mine....?(it is quite amazing how yours and mine are almost identical). So one more question for you or anyone else reading this: Any idea on the 'value' of mine in it's current condition (from what you can tell by my pics)?
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Racket: London ON

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#1588096 - 12/31/10 09:26 PM Re: Rare Heintzman Transposing Piano [Re: Silverwood Pianos]
Supply Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/11/06
Posts: 3919
Loc: Vancouver Island, BC, Canada
Neat piano Rachel. It's value is probably very close to what you paid for it, however.

This thread is a funny one - it keeps reoccurring at the close/beginning of every year.

Happy New Year everyone.

Oh, Dan, if you are still counting, about half a dozen went through a Victoria rebuilder's shop a number of years ago, at one time he had two there. I had oe i my clientele back when. I still get called out on occasion to tune a different one, this one is a German piano from Berlin.
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