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Topic: piano?  (Read 6727 times)
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atomic mary
« on: December 30, 2007 01:39:15 PM »

i hope this is in the right spot. okay, so we just moved into a house and a piano was left behind by the previous tenants.  it's big. it's ugly. it's heavy. it's taking up a big spot in my dining room and it doesn't work. at first i was mad, and then i got excited until i realized it doesn't work (and was going to be expensive to fix) and now i'm just tired of seeing it take up so much room.
yesterday at one of our many xmas' i was telling someone about it and saying that i'd like to move it into the yard and use it as a planter. they brought up the point of it not lasting very well through our canadian winters. and that if i was going to move it out of the house i may as well move it onto a moving truck and get it outta my sight. but then she said that she had these neighbours that converted an old piano into a bar. well, that got me kind of excited. although i can't for the life of me really see it. it stands almost as tall as me  (5'7") it may be 5ft. it comes up to my chin. it doesn't have the key... protector? they are always exposed, is what i mean. anyway, any ideas?
thanks
atomic mary
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MaeginMouse
« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2008 08:44:07 AM »

Well since it doesn't work you don't really have to worry about messing it up with the keys exposed is my though.
Maybe you can make a hideaway one? Like rip out everything on the inside of the piano and put glasses racks in there, and if theres room enough, liquor cabinet!

If you're good with furniture making, you could make benches to go all the way around it and make a table out of it?
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atomic mary
« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2008 12:12:54 PM »

hmmm, yes that's given me an idea!
the very tall part is mirrored, but i think if i can rip everything out, i could maybe put the mirror in the back and yes, put glass racks up there! i did say the keys don't work but i kind of lied. a few do work but i guess if i rip out the insides it won't matter anyway. i wonder if there is a way to keep the keys stable?  it's much too tall and narrow to make a table out of it. it seems like it is going to be a lot of work no matter what so more of a project for spring. i'll keep thinking until then. thank you so much for your ideas!
atomic mary
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« Reply #3 on: March 17, 2008 02:16:29 PM »

Before you do anything, have it valued.  Some old pianos are worth buck$$, even in poor shape.
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atomic mary
« Reply #4 on: March 18, 2008 07:49:09 AM »

i was just thinking about this post last night! hmmm, i seem to be  bit psychic in things of no importance!  Tongue
that would be sweet if it had some value! i know the last tennents bought it at value village for 40 bucks. my husband helped move it into it's current spot. i don't think it's that old. but it sure is ugly! i still haven't decided whether to to try and make it into something or just get rid of it. i got some power tools for my birthday and my husband said i should use the piano for scrap wood. we'll see. i just wish spring would hurry up! who would i call to value it?
thanks
atomic mary
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Gwydion
« Reply #5 on: March 18, 2008 11:27:24 AM »

Please DO get it valued before chopping it up!  Or at least google the brand name to see what it is. 

From the size you indicated, it's probably an "upright grand".  Uprights tend to be more desireable than the smaller pianos, because they have larger sounding boards, better resonance, and can produce a much more impressive sound-- often as good, or better than, a traditional grand piano.  Depending on age, condition, and manufacturer, some of these can be worth a nice chunk of change.  Some of them are actually worth quite a lot (our old family piano would be worth about $8000-$9000 if fully restored... and it was another piano left behind as "junk" by a previous owner.  Plays great, too.)

The keys not working might be an easy fix (something a good reconditioning/tuning would take care of), but you'd really need to call a local piano tuner to see what could be done about it.

If it's a newer piano (last 50 years or so), a local piano/organ company can probably give you a ballpark figure on price, repairs, and whether it's worth having it tuned or restored.  If it's older than 1940, most local stores won't be able to give you much information on it... but they can tell you whether there are any structural flaws (such as a cracked sounding board) that would seriously impact the value, and they can tune it if needed.  If it's older and the sounding board is intact, you might want to take some pictures and send to a vintage/antique piano sales & restoration company to see if they can tell you anything about value.

This may help some:  http://www.bluebookofpianos.com/grades.html; http://www.mprpiano.com/;
http://www.vintagepianoshop.com/

Now, if it turns out it's only worth a few hundred dollars, it probably IS worth more as wood for projects.  Most pianos are made from good quality hardwood (maple, usually), and a lot of them have pretty nice veneer, too-- so well worth salvaging.
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SpottedFrog
« Reply #6 on: March 19, 2008 07:50:25 PM »

So, if it's not of great value, I'd still try and disassemble in such a way as to keep the soundbox (term?) intact. My high school theather had the guts from an old piano we used with hammers & various other percussion instruments for sound effects, it rocked!!
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lissaw70
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« Reply #7 on: March 26, 2008 02:01:54 PM »

i hope this is in the right spot. okay, so we just moved into a house and a piano was left behind by the previous tenants.  it's big. it's ugly. it's heavy. it's taking up a big spot in my dining room and it doesn't work. at first i was mad, and then i got excited until i realized it doesn't work (and was going to be expensive to fix) and now i'm just tired of seeing it take up so much room.
yesterday at one of our many xmas' i was telling someone about it and saying that i'd like to move it into the yard and use it as a planter. they brought up the point of it not lasting very well through our canadian winters. and that if i was going to move it out of the house i may as well move it onto a moving truck and get it outta my sight. but then she said that she had these neighbours that converted an old piano into a bar. well, that got me kind of excited. although i can't for the life of me really see it. it stands almost as tall as me  (5'7") it may be 5ft. it comes up to my chin. it doesn't have the key... protector? they are always exposed, is what i mean. anyway, any ideas?
thanks
atomic mary

*blinking.......then fainting*


Please DO get it valued before chopping it up!  Or at least google the brand name to see what it is. 

From the size you indicated, it's probably an "upright grand".  Uprights tend to be more desireable than the smaller pianos, because they have larger sounding boards, better resonance, and can produce a much more impressive sound-- often as good, or better than, a traditional grand piano.  Depending on age, condition, and manufacturer, some of these can be worth a nice chunk of change.  Some of them are actually worth quite a lot (our old family piano would be worth about $8000-$9000 if fully restored... and it was another piano left behind as "junk" by a previous owner.  Plays great, too.)

The keys not working might be an easy fix (something a good reconditioning/tuning would take care of), but you'd really need to call a local piano tuner to see what could be done about it.

If it's a newer piano (last 50 years or so), a local piano/organ company can probably give you a ballpark figure on price, repairs, and whether it's worth having it tuned or restored.  If it's older than 1940, most local stores won't be able to give you much information on it... but they can tell you whether there are any structural flaws (such as a cracked sounding board) that would seriously impact the value, and they can tune it if needed.  If it's older and the sounding board is intact, you might want to take some pictures and send to a vintage/antique piano sales & restoration company to see if they can tell you anything about value.

This may help some:  http://www.bluebookofpianos.com/grades.html; http://www.mprpiano.com/;
http://www.vintagepianoshop.com/

Now, if it turns out it's only worth a few hundred dollars, it probably IS worth more as wood for projects.  Most pianos are made from good quality hardwood (maple, usually), and a lot of them have pretty nice veneer, too-- so well worth salvaging.

I COMPLETELY agree with Gwydion......... Roll Eyes
A lot of the uprights that have the mirrored top are antiques........... . Shocked
Just the cabinet on it could be worth quite a bit.........and only an antique dealer could let you know if restoration would be worth the investment;  if it would need to be fixed prior to selling.......or if it possibly could be sold as is to someone who deals with this kind of thing........ depending on the make,  model,  and how rare it is.  I certainly wouldn't chop it until I knew all I possibly could find on it!....... Roll Eyes
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Mama was wrong..........idle hands lead to fantabulous projects!!
atomic mary
« Reply #8 on: March 27, 2008 07:04:14 AM »

i tried to find a name on the piano and i moved that heavy sucker by myself thinking there was something on the back. i found a # 9591. it was burned? stamped? into the back. i checked the links that gwydion left and only the vintage piano shop worked for me. it said most mirrored pianos aren't worth very much. a few hundred dollars at best.. a few hundred dollars would buy a lot of craft supplies though!  Smiley
i will continue to hold on to it for awhile longer as spring seems to be refusing to come our way and i don't think i can do much until the weather is nice. thanks for the links though, what i read was very interesting.
atomic mary
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atomic mary
« Reply #9 on: March 27, 2008 12:01:52 PM »

my husband and i just took a better look at it too. it only has 2 foot pedals but it looks like originally there were 4. two of the holes have been patched. it's been patched in other places too. one above the keys and on either side under the keys. it looks like there were other ...legs?, holding up the keys. funny. now that i have started to take a closer look at it i'm starting to feel a certain fondness for it. i now want to know why they would have taken out 2 of the foot pedals? who did it?  sigh.
anyway, i hope spring gets here soon!
atomic mary
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