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Joined: Feb 2008
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"95% of the millionaires out there have at least one Mercedes."

Hope this i snot too much OT, but I've read an interested book some years ago, "The millionaire next door", which actually said the contrary: that only a tiny minority of mercedes drivers are millionare, and that most millionaires do not drive Mercedes at all but "detroit metal"!

The theory of the book (written by two statisticians) is that most US millionaires are self made and only a minority sons of millionaires, and they are self made man who drive detroit metal because they don't believe in showing off and this thrifty attitude is what made them millionaire in the first place.

Just wanted to insert this opinion here because the book is in my eyes very interesting.

EDIT: I see now that Glenn Grafton came before me, so I am not too OT after all.. wink


"The man that hath no music in himself / Nor is not mov'd with concord of sweet sounds / Is fit for treasons, stratagems, and spoils." (W.Shakespeare)

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Hey both are expensive and both have a well developed brand name. Both have their quality and value questioned. Both are subject to envy, scourge, lust, desire and disinterest. Both have strong German roots, both are likely to be around for a long time. Both are the basis of comparison by their competition.

On the other hand, one can look good in a Mercedes much easier than behind a Steinway so if you are going to drive buy the Mercedes.

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Specifically, the book referenced above cites pickup trucks as the preferred vehicle of many millionaires. From my earlier post:
"Documentation of millionaires' vehicle usage is that the most commonly used vehicle among them is ..... (drum roll) .... the F150 (1/2 ton) pickup truck. This is according to the author of a book about millionaires.

That must mean I am living rather well with my 3/4 ton Chevy truck. (Smiles and hitches up overalls with thumbs under shoulder straps.)
Yep, I'm feelin' pretty special now."

I hope my new piano serves me as well as my Chevy truck and lasts as long. I love my truck! heart It still runs like a champ with over 200,000 miles on it. I treat it right with regular oil changes and new tires. In return, it keeps me safe, even during the harsh winters of Minnesota. I love its four wheel drive.

It would be a challenge for me to haul my drywall, 2x4s, or gravel with a Mercedes or BMW. Everyone has different performance preferences, and mine are met best by my full-size 3/4 ton truck. (And my hubby doesn't even mind!)

So all you millionaires out there, eat your heart out! You may have a fancy hood ornament, but I've got a great truck! laugh

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One difference--Mercedes, like all car companies, puts a tremendous amount of design and engineering effort into their cars. Steinway believes their pianos are already perfect and makes little to no attempt at any design improvements.

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The situation as told to me regarding Benz is that the engineering is still strong, but that they are subcontracting many sub-assemblies that were at one time (15 years ago) made in-house. In this way the design is not the source of many failures, but rather the secondary suppliers. This was related to me by a fellow that owns a high-end repair facility local to me. He said that he's glad that he does his own repairs because he can't imagine owning one otherwise, such is the cost of maintenance.

Steinway has designed wonderful pianos, but many times it is not the secondary parts suppliers that let them down. It is the factory's lack of proper prep. If you were to alter the design of a Steinway to suit you, what would you like to change? I have owned two Benz's and one Steinway.

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Quote
Originally posted by John Pels:
If you were to alter the design of a Steinway to suit you, what would you like to change? I have owned two Benz's and one Steinway.
It is generally acknowledged that many of their grands have various scaling problems. I have neither the expertise or experience to expound on them, but people with both certainly have.

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Quote
Originally posted by John Pels:
If you were to alter the design of a Steinway to suit you, what would you like to change? I have owned two Benz's and one Steinway.
It is generally acknowledged that many of their grands have various scaling problems. I have neither the expertise nor the experience to expound on them, but people with both certainly have.

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I don't know exactly what scales you have an issue with. I would imagine any scale from way back when can be improved. I DO know that the Steinway M scale was lauded some years ago as a great example of a scale in Travis' tome on piano restringing which is a bit of a bible for piano technicians. Most pianists that I know seem to like the "Steinway sound". Maybe someone of Del's stature can comment here. For me I generally have no issue whatsoever on how most Steinways sound when properly prepped. I am not in love with the pedal action, but that's just me.

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Quote
Originally posted by Roy123:
One difference--Mercedes, like all car companies, puts a tremendous amount of design and engineering effort into their cars. Steinway believes their pianos are already perfect and makes little to no attempt at any design improvements.
Actually Steinway are always striving to improve their designs, and in over 150 years development, have been registering numerous patents , including many improvements in recent years.

However, I wish they'd make an even bigger concert grand - the Steinway Model E - perhaps 14 feet long with 100 keys (A-1 to C8) to be the undisputed heavyweight champ of dream pianos!
It could be done - Rubenstein R-371 already comes quite close!

A brand new Mercedes-Benz certainly depreciates in value a lot faster than a Steinway, that's for sure.
Also, if you had one hour left to live, would you rather spend it playing a Steinway or sitting behind the wheel of your car, probably stuck in a traffic jam?!

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Quote
Originally posted by propianist:
Quote
[b]Originally posted by Roy123:
One difference--Mercedes, like all car companies, puts a tremendous amount of design and engineering effort into their cars. Steinway believes their pianos are already perfect and makes little to no attempt at any design improvements.
Actually Steinway are always striving to improve their designs, and in over 150 years development, have been registering numerous patents , including many improvements in recent years.

However, I wish they'd make an even bigger concert grand - the Steinway Model E - perhaps 14 feet long with 100 keys (A-1 to C8) to be the undisputed heavyweight champ of dream pianos!
It could be done - Rubenstein R-371 already comes quite close!

A brand new Mercedes-Benz certainly depreciates in value a lot faster than a Steinway, that's for sure.
Also, if you had one hour left to live, would you rather spend it playing a Steinway or sitting behind the wheel of your car, probably stuck in a traffic jam?! [/b]
Patents for the last 40 to 50 years or longer have been pretty trivial, IMO--nothing of any significance to the player.

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I have done a carefully-controlled scientific study of millionaires, and my results indicate that 100% of millionaires own a PT Cruiser, do not own a piano, and enjoy babysitting my kids.

Now that I look at my results, though, maybe I need a larger population for my study. smile

Of course, comparing a Steinway to a Mercedes is clearly not valid. When your Mercedes is out of tune, you drop it off for the afternoon at your technician's shop. Try that with your Steinway! On the other hand, you can let your eight-year-old operate your Steinway without being arrested.

Personally, I find it much more informative to compare pianos to fruit. Indeed, Steinway is the apricot of the piano world. :p

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However, I wish they'd make an even bigger concert grand - the Steinway Model E - perhaps 14 feet long with 100 keys (A-1 to C8) to be the undisputed heavyweight champ of dream pianos!
It could be done - Rubenstein R-371 already comes quite close!
This is based on the old presumption "bigger is better"

There are few other products in the world where things couldn't be more wrong.

Most piano manufacturers will confirm that the design of a 7' grand is generally the ultimate size for balance and evenness of tone.

And there are countless smaller pianos out there, even 'uprights', where nothing needs to be added to make them a perfect instrument.

Perhaps not for the Opening Ceremonies of the Beijing Olympics. wink

But for *you* and *me*.

Norbert



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Yes, Norbert! I see you agree with me. The 7' grand is like my Chevy truck, perfect for the purpose. thumb

You are such a smart man. laugh

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from Norbert
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Most piano manufacturers will confirm that the design of a 7' grand is generally the ultimate size for balance and evenness of tone.

And there are countless smaller pianos out there, even 'uprights', where nothing needs to be added to make them a perfect instrument.
Thanks for this Norbert. Nice to read something other than the simplistic 'taller is better' and 'longer is better' generalizations.


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I would think comparing a piano to a house or apartment would be better, since both have a similar capability to be restored. Having been around pianos my whole life and working on them the last 30+ years there are only a few makes I would consider rebuilding and Steinway (pre WWII) is on the top of that list - ALWAYS. I did not get pulled in that direction by anything other than the instrument itself and the greatness of it. Just like a well built house from the past.


Stephen Drasche - Drasche Pianos/AC Pianocraft, Inc. 4th generation piano rebuilder - Steinway specialist
www.acpianocraft.com
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