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Posted By: SkateTroe Considering Home Repair/Rebuild - 09/17/19 12:41 PM
Hello, all!

New guy, name's Mark, and I've got a Triumph Autopiano built in the year 1900 that just got moved into my new house. It was at my folk's home for for 8 or so years, and with my uncle for an unknown amount of time before that. Before him, I don't know its history.

From what I understand, it has been rebuilt at least once in its life, but it's currently not functioning properly. The pedals turn the scroll, but the keys aren't even pretending to be played. The piano guy who came out quoted $1,500 to take it away and try and fix it, with a warning that it may well become more expensive as he tears it apart. Between the new house and the wedding next month, that's not really in the budget.

So, the way I see it, I can have a broken player piano, or I can try and fix it with the worst case scenario being that I continue to have a broken player piano. As a mechanical engineer, I think the latter would be well worth the time and effort, but I wanted to ask some people who know more than me what they think.

So, a couple questions:
Is this thing gonna be an impenetrable fortress of confusion and terror, surprisingly doable, or somewhere in between?
Are there any resources you all might recommend?
Assuming I need parts, any idea where one gets parts for a 119 year old piano?

I likely won't start anything until after the wedding, but any advice on useful research or tips from the experts around here would be very much appreciated!!

Thank you all in advance!
Posted By: Dave in Denver Re: Considering Home Repair/Rebuild - 09/25/19 04:38 PM
You might not get many responses here. You may want to also post your question on Mechanical Music Digest, where the older players are frequently discussed. I'd also suggest getting a copy of Player Piano: Servicing and Rebuilding by Arthur Reblitz. It gives a LOT of information on how to rebuild old players. It is available on Amazon.
Posted By: Del Vento Re: Considering Home Repair/Rebuild - 05/29/20 12:12 AM
Not sure if you are still wondering or if this project has moved forward in other ways, but I am responding regardless.

I strongly recommend that you get at least one, if not both of these books:

https://www.amazon.com/Piano-Servicing-Tuning-Rebuilding/dp/1879511029/

https://www.amazon.com/Player-Piano-Rebuilding/dp/0911572406/

I have the first and it is great. It only briefly mentions player pianos, but I suspect you will need to know and fix some of the regular piano parts. Or at least evaluate your instrument, which both books will give you a great deal of understanding, even if you don't do anything other than "look inside".

Best,
D.
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