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I'm curious what they are charging for various restoration services.

Thanks!

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I was told by someone in a position to know (I think) that SS has closed their "restoration" shop. If I am wrong on this I would like to know.

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I'm sorry, I don't know if they publish prices. They might need to have a local approved technician inspect the piano first to decide what is needed. You might simply write to them through their web site and see if you get any rough guidelines of the cost. https://www.steinway.com/about/contact

Steinway no longer does their own restoration work, unless they VERY recently re-opened that workshop area in the factory.

All of their rebuilds are farmed out to private workshops 'approved' by them as official Steinway rebuilders. These shops cannot mention this publicly or accept work privately as the official rebuilding shop - it has to go through Steinway Company.


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My understanding of current Steinway company rebuilding practices is the same as Don Mannino outlines.

So much for factory authentic!


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So, how can an outside shop install a "genuine" SS soundboard and/or pinblock when these items are not available outside the factory? Are they supplying these parts at no charge or are they selectively "selling" them to outside contractors, yet refusing to sell to others?

Peter Grey Piano Doctor

Last edited by P W Grey; 07/19/21 08:04 AM.

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They sprinkle them with Steinway Holy Water, and Presto Bingo, they are there.

Call them and ask if you can visit their restoration center before deciding to send your piano to them.


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It’s no longer a Steinway until it gets that elusive official decal. Which makes me wonder… do they deliver that precious item directly to the holy ordained shop in a velvet lined, gold encrusted container in the accompaniment of four armed guards?


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The last restoration I dealt with was done on a 9 ft possibly 2008?
I believe the cost was around 60k. - it might be at least 50% higher now.
All new action parts felts and board, no finish work. It didn’t look like any bridge work was done either.
The down side is the piano was unplayable after restoration. I had nothing to do with the piano when the decision was made to send it for restoration so I can’t address its prior condition.
Action geometry could have easily been corrected but it was not, among other things.
It sat in storage room for several years as artists never selected it.
Finally the owners budgeted to let me correct many problems.
Being retired I’m not up on where their restoration happens now.

Last edited by Gene Nelson; 07/30/21 03:25 PM.

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I wonder if they are shipping them to China or similar?

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Farm it out to another rebuilder and use your name recognition to double the cost to the customer. Who probably thinks its rebuilt at the factory. Probably a 50% increase over the sub contractor. Now their threatening letter makes more sense.
Kinda chaps my hide.
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Someone just told me that similar shenanigans are occurring in the old auto parts world. Not sure yet if this is entirely true. Got to research it a little. I thought that was settled in court decades ago. We shall see.

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My understanding is that this firm is now the rebuilding arm for S&S.

https://premierpianogallery.com

It says as much on their website.


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As the authorized SS restoration facility its Interesting that Premier uses Renner whips on the NY SS restorations.
I always have simply because you can remove the heal and reposition to a repositioned key capstan as opposed to the immovable NY whip heal.
It’s the way I found to correct action geometry.
Also I suppose it’s considered a genuine SS part as the Hamburg comes from factory with Renners.
I always felt I needed to convince clients their NY SS would remain genuine SS for that reason when I installed Renners and dumped the NY’s.

Last edited by Gene Nelson; 08/01/21 12:01 PM.

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S&S is now unifying action parts for NY and Hamburg with a single rep, shank and flange made by Renner.


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Well maybe they will finally do something about the damper tray/sostenuto assembly.
Premier didn’t mention it as part of restoration. Or I missed it.
Pesky things are always lurking in the background.

Last edited by Gene Nelson; 08/01/21 12:20 PM.

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Originally Posted by tunerman
S&S is now unifying action parts for NY and Hamburg with a single rep, shank and flange made by Renner.

Steinway bought Renner in 2019: https://www.steinway.com/news/press...-acquisition-of-the-louis-renner-company

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Originally Posted by tunerman
S&S is now unifying action parts for NY and Hamburg with a single rep, shank and flange made by Renner.

Their website says it all:

Premier Piano Gallery is a pre-owned Steinway & Sons retailer located in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Certified as Steinway’s exclusive nationwide restoration center, our showroom is an excellent setting for musicians of all skill levels to browse a wide variety of nearly new, rebuilt, and limited edition Steinway grand pianos. We serve families, artists, teachers, churches, universities and schools across the Midwest. All pianos are warrantied and have been inspected by skilled technicians, ensuring Ste...

I guess they're it.

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They may be one of the Steinway restorations shops but they're definitely not the only one. I'll let you all use your noggins to work out who else might do this work. My guess is that apart from one I already know, there are probably several workshops doing this work now. It kind of p****s me off that Steinway have decided to operate this way and STILL say that a third party rebuilder can't produce a genuine vintage Steinway restoration, but never mind.

Steinway London will still send some pianos to Hamburg for rebuilding, but I notice they're replacing soundboards a lot less so more of the work can be done in their London basement. While I'm not saying that soundboards always need to be replaced, the prices of these rebuilt pianos available in London are extremely high. Steinway of course have always been more interested in selling a new piano than a rebuilt piano, or restoring a piano. Every piano maker is more interested in selling their latest product of course. Steinway do have a Model A in rosewood for sale currently, from 1907. This piano has a new soundboard installed, but while they used to say specifically that the soundboard was replaced in their Hamburg factory, the advert for this piano says that the work meets Steinway's uncompromising standard. My guess is that if this piano wasn't done in Hamburg, it was done in Poland, or perhaps Piano Restorations Ltd in the UK, but I don't have confirmation of any of this, it's just a guess.

It was the case that Blüthner London were starting to sell far more rebuilds than new pianos. The prices were cheaper and the instruments sounded nicer, people were happy to buy a rebuild, but it started to interrupt the business plan which was to sell new instruments, so they have reduced the amount of rebuilt stock coming through. Blüthner London are at least upfront about where the rebuilding work is done most of the time, and they'll say if it's done in the Leipzig factory. If it is not done in the Leipzig factory they may not say where it was done unless asked directly. They have used SAP Renovation in Poland, I think they've used Piano Ficks, and they use Piano Restorations Ltd.

I don't know if Bösendorfer offer a factory restoration, but you can certainly have your piano restored through them. I just don't know if it's done in-house or given to a third party. Yamaha don't tend to offer restoration for their pianos, probably in part because Yamaha didn't import pianos worldwide until the early 70s, and many of these pianos don't need more than new strings, hammers and damper felts for which Yamaha will sell parts to technicians. It will be interesting to see as the S-series pianos approach their 40th birthday if some of these instruments start requiring a full rebuild and what course of action is taken with them. I know nothing about the U-series uprights that have the official factory reconditioned sticker on them, other than the fact that they exist. I do know of one Yamaha CFIIIS that was fully rebuilt after a sprinkler system went off over it, I know who did the work, and Yamaha were very impressed with the work, and the rebuilder was very impressed with the quality of the piano both as a core and as a rebuilt instrument


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Unless they are directly part of SS factory payroll, is it in fact legal to selectively sell or withhold sale of certain parts to third parties? Is that not tantamount to saying: "I will sell it to you (A)...but I will not sell it to you (B)?" Is that a form of discrimination? Or does this sort of thing happen all the time and I'm just in the dark ages?

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Originally Posted by P W Grey
Unless they are directly part of SS factory payroll, is it in fact legal to selectively sell or withhold sale of certain parts to third parties? Is that not tantamount to saying: "I will sell it to you (A)...but I will not sell it to you (B)?" Is that a form of discrimination? Or does this sort of thing happen all the time and I'm just in the dark ages?

Peter Grey Piano Doctor

who knows?

I know that any UK technician who has a trade account with Steinway can buy parts from them through the London shop technical department. They won't sell a soundboard but they will sell to trade the soundboard replacement plus restringing service at Hamburg, or at least used to. I know of one model B that was done abut 12 years ago in Edinburgh and the technician had the soundboard, plank, and strings replaced in Hamburg, and he did the action himself. This tuner was a consultant to Steinways at the time that Steinways had consultant tuners. They don't have that now in the UK.


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