Updating Your Old Piano

You’ve had this piano for quite a while.  Maybe you inherited the piano from your Grandmother who used to teach piano lessons on it, or from a friend who was moving and couldn’t take the piano with them.  All the notes still work, but lately you’ve noticed that it just doesn’t play or sound as good as it used to.  Perhaps your child’s piano teacher has mentioned that your piano could use some attention beyond normal tuning, but you just don’t know how to proceed.  Well, for those of you out there who may be feeling some of these things, I have good news!  Your piano can be saved!

I will leave myself a little wiggle room here and say that MOST pianos can be saved.  Of course, there are some instruments out there that were not quality pianos to start with, and years of use and abuse have pretty much used them up.  Such instruments are not really worth the cost of updating, but having said that, almost all pianos can benefit from some basic maintenance and TLC.

While pianos tend to last longer than most household items, the truth is that piano parts do wear out.  Pianos are made of wood and iron and steel and felt. There is not much that will affect the iron frame of the piano, but everything else is changing constantly around it. The felt used in pianos is very dense and durable, but eventually it wears through. The wood parts are constantly changing with the weather and sometimes warp.  The steel strings eventually loose their elasticity and start to break.  After 40 or 50 or 60 years, it is hard to believe that a piano would NOT need some work!

I would suggest that you give me a call and set up an appointment for me to come assess the piano and find out exactly what the piano needs.  I will check the soundboard, the strings, the bridges, the keys and internal action parts, the condition of the cabinet, the hardware holding everything together, and even the piano bench.  After a thorough examination, then, and only then, can I tell you what needs to be repaired or replaced and how much it would cost.  Occasionally I run across instruments that are so badly worn, that a total rebuild is in order, but most of the time, existing parts can be repaired without replacement.  In many cases, worn felt can be replaced at a cost far below the cost of a new part.  Existing hammers can be filed and reshaped.  These hammers can then be worked with to produce the kind of tone you want the piano to have.

Updating your piano in this way can breathe new life into your tired old piano and extend it’s life for many years to come.  Piano owners tend to have sentimental attachments to their pianos, and wouldn’t dream of parting with these beloved instruments.  By updating these pianos, they can be around for the next generation to enjoy!

If you have questions, please give me a call, or send me an email with the form provided in the “Contact Joe Tom” section.  As alway, thanks for tuning in!

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