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Old 28th September 2022
Lives for gear
Bstapper's Avatar
My two cents:

Stay away from the typical Wurlitzer consoles out there unless it’s free and close to in tune. They can be a hassle to work on if their are issues.

Stay away from British made pianos. They often have worn gears and technicians don’t like to work on them.

Try for one where the keys are close to level. And typically speaking the closer the piano is tuned to pitch the less expensive it will be to get it right.

As mentioned, if it is too far out of tune the tuner will be faced with a dilemma. Usually resulting in getting a range close to in tune and letting it slide may the end of the keys as it will take several visits to move the pitch closer to standard.

Free is usually the right price on an upright that needs a bit of tweaking and tuning. After moving you will end up at about market price as long as there is nothing major.

In general terms, the larger the soundboard the better the tone.

Level keys. Make friends with a technician you can consult on brand/model so that you don’t accidentally pick up mechanics that they are going to hate. Closer to pitch the better, even if it is out of tune. Check the felts for wear - the more dented the more work if you want it to get to 100%.

Check the frame and soundboard for cracks.

If you have never heard a frame break in half while being tuned it is a pretty spectacular sound…