Facts to consider when buying a used piano privately:
*If you don't know pianos, know your piano store!
*Buying a used piano privately can be dangerous and costly.
What appears to be a rare bargain may prove to
be a real liability. unless you are a piano expert, your best assurance
is to rely on the judgement of the most experienced dealer in your area
with a proven record of integrity and fair dealing. it is unwise to
pick up an old piano privately "to get started with". a poor piano
offers discouragement to the child and is at best, a questionable
investment for the parent.
Here are just a few of the
many danger areas encountered when a non- expert piano buyer buys a
1. Plate - may be cracked or
broken which cripples the piano musically and renders it useless.
2. Strings - bass strings
may be "tired and tubby", totally devoid of tone.
3. Sounding board - may be
cracked or worse yet, may have lost crown to become tonally deficient.
4. Ribs - may be broken or
pulled away from soundboard.
5. Bridges - may have lost
proper bearing, be broken, split or cracked, necessitating a major
6. Tuning pins - may be
loose, may have been previously "doped", may require oversized pins,
may require new pin block. avoid, like the plague, any piano with pins
showing. evidence of having been pounded.
7. Pin plank - may be split
and is very costly to repair. since this is concealed, experienced
judgement is required.
8. Actions - may be
literally worn out rendering piano useless. if rebushing is required.
this is very costly. a complete regulation requires much time of an
expert and is expensive if properly done.
9. Hammers - may be worn out
or improperly filed so as to require replacement - another costly
10. Trap work - the internal
leverage controls of the expression pedals may need complete
11. Refinishing - many
people learn to their sorrow that refinishing a piano is not a home
do-it-yourself project; that it requires much hard work and know how
best left to a skilled craftsman. good refinishing work is expensive.