All About Restored Pianos
Buying a piano is not something that should be undertaken lightly. New ones can be quite costly while restored ones are quite capable of producing sounds that are equal to those that have just been made.
That’s not to say that one should just buy a restored piano without having done some research. There are intricacies among them that people should have the foreknowledge of before even setting foot into the marketplace- doing this ill-prepared can wind up being a costly error that would make one pay even more than a brand-new instrument.
Finding the Types
There are typically three levels when it comes to pianos that have been restored. They are not iron-clad definitions, though, and if one were to interview a group of piano craftsmen, they may find that the opinions of what exactly falls under each umbrella could vary widely. Here are the three types with the general-rule-of-thumb definitions.
- Repaired – This type of piano is usually in pretty good condition save for some parts that are broken or were not properly adjusted before. Think of them fixing a pedal that is not working right, putting in a new string to replace one that snapped or replacing a hammer that broke. The bulk of the piano is fine and just needs this somewhat basic tinkering to get it back to where it previously was.There is not a big overhaul involved.
- Reconditioned – This requires more labor on the part of the piano technicians- this is plural because one tech might be good at replacing soundboards while another can do strings. Still, the aim here is to generally fix what is already in the piano, with minimal additions of any new parts. They can resurface hammer felt instead of having to put in new ones.
- Rebuilt – Obviously, this is the one that needs the most work and is the most labor-intensive out of the three. The goal, usually, is to try to get the piano to a pristine “like-new” state. It all depends on the budget of the person buying it and what is needed. The technicians will work within the confines of what the buyer can pay and also what the piano needs. Jobs like restringing the piano and either repairing or replacing the soundboard fall in these categories.
Doing More Research
There are a few things that one needs to take into consideration when they are deciding on a restored piano. Most importantly, they need to find out what kind of work is needed and what people doing this work define the above categories and what they charge. The lines of communication must be crystal clear. Otherwise it can lead to a lot of bad feelings. The vast majority of people who work in this field want repeat business, so they hew to the side of honorability.
Also, the buyer needs to know how much experience the people doing this work have. While everyone has to start somewhere, there needs to be someone who thoroughly knows the ropes watching over and ensuring the quality of the craftsmanship. People who have been doing this for a long time tend to have reputations. Look into reviews.
Making the Choice
The decision comes down to what the buyer can afford. Again, communication is key. Experienced, honorable piano people will give the highest-quality of what they have that fits into the budget. There can be no surprises.
Ultimately, it’s up to the person buying it to test the piano before purchasing it. They need to take all of the above into consideration, ranging from learning exactly what work was put into it, the parts that were replaced and how extensive the experience is of the person or people that did the job.
The craftsmen at A C Pianocraft are second to none when it comes to restoring pianos. They have many decades of experience working for this family business that is run by its second generation. Their work is on display in the showroom at their offices in Long Island City, Queens. They make excellent gifts for a family, especially around holiday times. If you are interested – give them a call at 718-361-9112.