THE STEINWAY RESTORATION CENTER ™ is the only place on earth with the equipment, experience, and dedication to maintain the integrity of a Steinway throughout a complete restoration process.
THE STEINWAY RESTORATION CENTER™ certifies every piano in writing so there is no question that the finished product has 100% GENUINE STEINWAY COMPONENTS. It is the genuine article and therefore has value derived from the Steinway legacy of excellence
When we receive a Steinway piano that is ready for restoration, it becomes available in the ARTIST RESERVE. If you want a genuine STEINWAY RESTORATION CENTER™ restored Steinway piano, this is one of the best and most affordable ways to get one. Subject to availability, you get the piano and the restoration in one ultra-competitive price. Your Steinway will take 6-9 months to complete, but when it arrives, it will be a 100% CERTIFIED AUTHENTIC STEINWAY.
In the world of high-end watches, they call it counterfeit.
The chart below was compiled from the website of a well-advertised Northeast rebuilder and retailer. Their pianos say Steinway on the outside, but they say something entirely different on the inside! You do not have to be a piano expert to see the difference. Our Steinway Restoration Center Pianos are priced about the same or less. Why would anyone pay those prices for a piano that is not a Steinway?
|STEINWAY RESTORATION CENTER ™||INFORMATION FROM THE WEBSITE OF A MAJOR SELLER OF REBUILT STEINWAYS.|
|FACILITY||Steinway craftspeople and equipment specifically designed to restore Steinway pianos.||One-floor workshop with several workers using store-bought woodworking tools|
|SOUNDBOARD||STEINWAY & SONS diaphragmatic soundboard made of Alaskan Sitka Spruce||Bolduc brand soundboard|
|BRIDGES||STEINWAY & SONS vertically laminated bridges||Bolduc brand bridges|
|ACTION||STEINWAY & SONS Accelerated Action||Renner action parts|
|PINBLOCK||STEINWAY & SONS Hexagrip Maple Pinblock||No information provided|
|HAMMERS||Specially designed STEINWAY & SONS hammers constructed at the Steinway factory from premium wool.||"Custom re-crafted" Steinway hammers. (we do not know what that means either)|
|STRINGS||STEINWAY & SONS strings made from high-tensile Swedish steel.||"Hand wound bass strings" is the only specification offered.|
|FINISH||STEINWAY & SONS hand polished polyester finish. 10 times stronger than lacquer. Emits no VOC's into the environment once dry.||Polished Lacquer|
|PREPARATION||STEINWAY & SONS Master technicians, tuners, and voicers.||No|
|CERTIFICATION||STEINWAY & SONS Certificate of Authenticity assures value for a lifetime.||No such certification. The value of this used Steinway will depend on the future buyer's ignorance of or tolerance for the piano's lack of authenticity.|
"I’ve been playing Steinway pianos exclusively for many years...They keep getting better every year.”
Of course they don't make Steinways like they used to. They're better.
Approximately 98% of piano soloists choose, without any remuneration, to perform on Steinway pianos. Not one of them demands to play an old rebuilt Steinway. Beware when someone tells you that “they just don’t make them like they used to.” Sellers of old, rebuilt pianos would have us believe in a "Golden Age" of Steinway of old where the pianos were much better than today. They would have us further believe that only they can revive these old Steinways to their former glory. We know there is no truth to their claims because those who make their living playing piano at the highest level, the concert pianists of the world, do not seek out these rebuilt pianos for performance over new Steinways.
Today's Steinway is the best it has ever been.
Thus, the profit motive of the rebuilder of old Steinways is clarified in the Golden Age Myth. In reality, the Steinway Factory has never been better equipped and the engineering tolerances being met today far exceed anything possible in the early 20th century. Today's Steinway is the most precise, best performing piano ever made. And the STEINWAY RESTORATION CENTER is the only authorized facility in the world with the same uncompromising standards as the Steinway Factory itself. Click here for the latest advancements in today's Steinway & Sons pianos.
While the cabinet of a Steinway grand has proven to last over 150 years, on average, we expect about 80 years of performance from a Steinway grand in a home setting. Sometimes they go many years longer and sometimes shorter, depending on use and care, but 80 years is where we, as piano experts, take extra care in determining a used Steinway's viability.
While anyone with skill can replace strings and action parts, the STEINWAY RESTORATION CENTER ™ is the only place on earth where Steinway craftspeople and specialized equipment have been brought together for the sole purpose of restoring the world’s finest pianos using 100% genuine Steinway components every time. It is the only place on earth that can replace a Steinway Diaphragmatic Soundboard. Often, expectations going into the restoration process are that the finished piano will be “good as new.” However, Steinway’s select materials, custom machinery, and proprietary expertise are impossible to replicate in a small shop with store-bought tools.
Ultimately, all rebuilding work is based on incomplete knowledge of the piano’s structural integrity. Soundboard cracks, splits in the bridges, rusty strings, etc., can be seen with the naked eye. However, cracks in the wrestplank (pinblock) or structural failures in the rim (the curved outer case) and support posts often remain hidden. The effect these problems will have on the piano’s performance may not be realized until after the piano has been rebuilt. Minor components, like strings, hammers, action parts, and dampers are easier to replace, but are nonetheless labor intensive because there are so many of them. Major components like the soundboard, bridges, and wrestplank require removal of the cast-iron plate, which not only makes the process expensive, but most often calls for the strings and tuning pins to be replaced as well. Often, rebuilding is done in half-steps, effectively patching together an old Steinway to keep it going. Weigh carefully the cost and risks of pouring money into an old Steinway, the same way you would with an old car or old house.
It may not. Many pianos are purchased with non-Steinway components. Our experience is that the overwhelming majority of used Steinway buyers are not aware of their rebuilt Steinway's generic components until they try to sell it. Some, we imagine, want the Steinway name for the status it displays and are willing to accept lower performance to get it at a lower price. However, if performance and longevity are of any value to you, we would suggest having a look at Boston Pianos, by Steinway & Sons as a worthy alternative in the same price range.
The vast majority of rebuilt Steinways are counterfeit, simply because using cheaper non-Steinway parts will greatly increase the profit-margin. If a buyer fails to verify the use of 100% Genuine Steinway Components, then a large premium may be paid for a piano that has a Steinway case and logo, but the inner-workings of some other piano. If the resulting piano is not truly a Steinway, then other pianos in the same price-range, like BOSTON PIANOS, by Steinway & Sons, are worthy of consideration.
Boston pianos were developed by Steinway to provide a practice piano with the same action-geometry as a Steinway piano. An unqualified success, Boston pianos are now the #1 practice piano in colleges and universities. Over 200 colleges and universities use Boston pianos exclusively in their practice rooms and faculty rooms. No manufacturer has achieved such a thing in the 300 year history of the piano. Recently, Boston won a comparison vs. several handmade European pianos in Diapason Magazine. In addition, within 10 years of purchase the Steinway Promise guarantees the full original purchase price of your Boston or Essex piano toward the purchase of a new Steinway grand piano.
A safer, worthy alternative to a rebuilt Steinway.
Colleges and universities seeking to train the next generation of pianists do not search for old Steinways to rebuild, they overwhelmingly choose Boston pianos, by Steinway & Sons. Boston pianos are designed with Steinway DNA and built on an assembly line (as opposed to handmade) to offer premium performance at a price that is less than half of a new Steinway. The STEINWAY PROMISE that comes with every Boston and Essex piano guarantees 100% of your purchase price toward the purchase of a new Steinway grand piano within 10 years. The new PERFORMANCE EDITION II Boston grands are unmatched in the industry.
If you have a family heirloom Steinway with a great deal of sentimental value, have your Steinway restored at the one place in the world with the proprietary knowledge and custom-equipment necessary to do it right. Your STEINWAY RESTORATION CENTER™ restored Steinway will come with certification that will prove it is 100% genuine and ensure that its value is tied to the Steinway legacy. Do not be fooled by imitators. There is only one Steinway & Sons.
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