Why A Restored Piano?
The answer in a word is value. A piano is truly an
engineering wonder, with over 12,000 parts. Its durability, tone, and
playability depend upon quality of materials used, engineering design and
the quality of craftsmanship.
vintage instrument from the better American and European producers contain
materials and craftsmanship that are only available today in the costliest
hand made pianos.
There was a time when the forests of North America and Europe
provided plentiful supplies of old-growth spruce which could be
transformed into soundboards – the heart and soul of the instrument.
Over a century of heavy logging has severely depleted the supply of select
spruce available to today’s piano manufacturers. What remains is cost
prohibitive to mass market producers. In addition, most of the hardwood
forests of the world have been severely depleted reducing the selection
and quality of veneers available today. Before the mass produced
piano forced manufacturers to drastically reduce costs, manufacturers took
the time to air cure the woods they used, instead of kiln drying the
believe that the superior selection of available lumber and
the unhurried treatment used in shaping it into a piano is one of the
factors contributing to the superior tone and beauty of vintage
Today’s greatest pianos use scale designs (the string lengths and
thicknesses, the harp designs, over stringing of bass strings) developed
around the turn of the twentieth century and their rims are still bent
around rim presses dating from that time period. The modern Steinway
action was developed in the 1890’s. Vintage instruments are therefore
modern in design.
The zenith of the piano manufacturing industry was probably just before
the Great Depression in the United States. Because the piano was the
primary source of entertainment in the home, the industry was prosperous
and was able to attract the best craftsmen. Pianos were hand built
by artisans who took great pride in what they were producing. Many
pianos featured elaborate, often custom furniture designs.
Many of the vintage pianos restored by Levon's Piano Service
feature carved detailing, intricate
designs and ornate castings which are only available at great cost today .
The vintage pianos restored by Levon's Piano Service
represent a wise
investment. They will not only provide many years of musical pleasure,
but when properly maintained, will retain their value. They also
represent good absolute value, a restored handmade piano is price
competitive with new mass produced pianos.
Steinway Musical Instruments, Inc. Annual Report to the Securities and
Exchange Commission states: “Management believes that used instruments
provide significant competition within certain segments of the musical
instrument industry. Because
of the potential savings associated with buying a used Steinway piano, as
well as the durability of the instrument, a relatively large market exists
for used Steinways.
It is difficult to estimate the significance of used piano sales, since
most are conducted in the private aftermarket. The Company, however,
believes that used Steinway pianos provide the most significant
competition is its market segment.”
In summary, the vintage instruments that Levon's Piano Service
superior materials, craftsmanship and design at an affordable price. They
represent good value.