Ah, you're talking to the master here! I have had countless old pianos
in my lifetime. I treasure old pianos, though many are simply crap,
turned out in their thousands in the East End in the 1920s and not
worth the iron they cast as the frame. But some are worth saving and
restoring. One big problem with pianos of all ages is their weight.
They really are a bugger to move around, especially up or down stairs.
Its condition depends on whether it has been kept in the right kind of
atmosphere. Too dry or too damp will ruin even a Steinway. Also, if it
is wildly out of tune, you may never get it into tune again, or if you
do, the tuning will slip after a short while. Note that pianos used to
tune A above middle C to 435 Hz, not 440, so you may never get modern
concert pitch out of it. However, a piano can be restrung, a new
soundboard is not impossible (not for a DIY-er, though) and the whole
action can be overhauled.
Whatever you do, please don't just break it up unless there is no
other way. Many kids might love having a piano, but it never occurred
to their parents to get them one. Even if you only get a nominal fee
(or nowt) for it, you might have the satisfaction in your dotage of
seeing the Leeds Piano Competition winner on TV whose tentative first
forays on the keyboard were done on your old piano!
I LOVE pianos!
I was the original poster of this query - and mine was a genuine question.
Thanks to all who gave answers.
I have decided to put an ad in the free ads in the local weekly paper and
offer it as free to a good home, buyer collects.
If no takers , I'll have to see about getting it taken away and paying for
Thanks for all your help.
Yet another suggestion if you find no takers is to consider offering
parts of it to the local tech college. My brother used a piano
keyboard to build a synthesizer as a project at his college. He only
used the keyboard, nothing else. He added loads of electrical
contacts, wires and stuff and put an inordinate amount of effort into
My Grandma, who died some 40+ years ago, left an upright piano, which I
dismantled. I remember having a hell of a job getting rid of the iron
frame, but I did recover hundreds of wood screws about No 8 x 1" with a
semi-round (sort of mushroom) head. I still have a few of them
somewhere! I think there were about 3 per note, plus quite a few others.
I once had ideas of using the keys as the basis for a nelectronic organ,
but I still haven't got a round tuit (nor do I know where the keys
Keep it, take piano lessons, and paint your front door green.
Er, well, OK, give it away, then. Someone will be very glad of
it, especially if it's got an iron frame. They aren't as common
as they once were.
I was a musical child and (pitifully) practiced the piano on a
cardboard template cos my family couldn't afford a piano. You have to
have grade 5 piano to study music at university, even if you are a
virtuoso something-else-ist. I'm 32, could have changed since. If
you get in touch with your local education authority and ask about
instumental peripatetic (sp?) teachers, they might be able to sort
I don't think universities are interested in how well you play because the
courses are mainly academic. Different at the music colleges of course. I
hope your daughter went on to do something more profitable :-)
She became a cabinet maker (after meeting a design student at college), they
ran a mail order very fine custom designed and made furniture business then
they bought a small farm in Wales on which they rear rare breed sheep and
cattle and have obtained organic status. That feeds them (and us, partly),
they still do the cabinet making for other bills.
She also plays double bass and violin with several Welsh orchestras and has
even found bass pupils in the Welsh mountains - one who has just gained her
Grade 8 ...
It's not financially profitable but very satisfying. They consider that
they're privileged to be doing what they want and being beholden to no-one.
I agree, a hand to mouth life can have its own riches.
Well, we had several other children so needed a large vehicle to accommodate
everything. My boss took pity on us and bought a small (10 seater) minibus
for us, there was just room for the bass as well as children,
boy/girlfriends, cat, sports kit, art equipment and the other paraphernalia
which goes with schoolchildren - as well as beehives. Winter was little
different from summer, apart from extra jumpers.
It was more necessity than dedication ... we weren't natural parents but
lust is a powerful urge and, having been irresponsible in having them, we
felt that we had to bring them up responsibly.
It's paid dividends, we have no worries or responsibilities now.
Except that No 5 has just moved house and needs help with plumbing and
re-wiring etc. ...
Heigh ho :-)
I learnt to play on such a piano. My mother bought it cheaply and had it
tuned. Wasn't perfect but then I don't have the best ear anyway. Still can
play a load of Xmas songs I learnt then.
Reminds me of the music teacher that came to the house. She was a real old
biddy, tweed skirt etc. She had quite a beard. She also had buck teeth and
used to make hissy sounds when she spoke. This affliction led to small bits
of spit flying from her mouth. When you are 7, such things were hard to
deal with. She would give an instruction and a bit of spit would land on a
key, and I would be totally grossed out as kids would say now. I'd avoid
that key like the plague and play wrong notes rather than touch the lurgied
key- getting my knuckles rapped with a ruler for my efforts.
Ah happy days. So sell it and let some kids enjoy similiar happy memories.
And with modern DNA extraction methods and cloning, you never know,
they might even be able to recreate the old biddy! Imagine a
spittle-flecked wizened chin appearing like eddies of smoke from the
gaps between the keys, to rise up, coalesce and form the indomitable
Miss Tweedy, stroking her beard and picking her teeth. It's enough to
put off any seven-year-old going near a piano!
On the other hand, my teacher was a female German music student from
the Musikhochschule in Cologne, was about 22, had amazing threepenny
bits and a figure to die for. I practised avidly. I think I was about
32 at the time.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.