Be Careful buying Secondhand Pianos

Last week I got a phone call from a new customer just outside of Dublin looking to have their piano tuned. They had just bought it second hand and were told by the seller that it was in perfect condition except for needing a good tune. This is probably the most common description of a piano I see on adverts or donedeal.
In this particular case, the customer had spent 400 euro on the piano and then had paid and extra 100 for it to be moved before having it looked over. The piano looked beautiful on the surface but realistically it was a complete write-off. It had missing strings, broken hammers, woodworm, rotting felts and a cracked soundboard. The customer should have paid been paid to take it off the sellers hands. This is not an isolated incident and occurs quite a lot.
If you are buying a second hand piano online, make sure you have it looked over by a professional piano technician. It will save you a lot of heartache. Even when you think you are getting a bargain or maybe even getting it for free, it is always worth having it looked at. Pianos do not get scrapped like cars, they get passed on. Always be aware of that. Often times a seller puts a value on a piano based on an emotional attachment to it, when it can quite often be of little or no value to anyone else. There are thousands of moving parts in a piano that can break. It is not just a set of strings that go out of tune.

Be smart. Have it looked over before you buy.

Oblong tuning pins On John Broadwood upright 1889. Tuning for the man.

Came across these weird oblong shaped tuning pins earlier today. I was tuning a guys piano who looked a little like Ed Sheehan, the pop sensation.  I have encountered similar ones before, on pre 1900 European pianos, but never as odd or tricky as these.  None of my lever tips fit and despite all my efforts I couldn’t budge the pins even one cent. It was like a “Lego house” of a piano. #allofthestars wouldn’t align.   Apparantly john Broadwood experimented with these pins between 1862 and 1897.  Judging by the  serial number (68876 was 1890) Im fairly certain this piano (68248) is probably of the same year. It also has a cast iron frame which was only introduced that year.  I felt really bad leaving the piano. I just couldn’t tune it. I tried to get the pin a small bump this way,a small bump that way. It just didn’t work. Felt really bad for the guy, who looked like he was probably a “grade 8” and really just wanted to sit at the ivories and #makeitrain. I could tell the music was just flowing in his #bllodstream

It also had this note about the tuning pins.


A/ Does anyone have a lend of a pre 1900 European oblong tuning tip extension?

B/ Do you know if they sell them in Argos? Thankfully, I have a birthday coming up.  P.s sorry for the long post, I was just [thinking out loud]

P.P.s my girlfriend mentioned if you mention the Ireland and the United Kingdom pop sensation  #edsheeran lot in your webpage content it really helps your SEO ranking and I’ve decided that it seems like a viable option. Sick of giving all my money away to geocities.  (Edit)P.p.p.s just realised I mispelled #bloodstream earlier in paragraph 5 of the post. I must have been #drunk.




Dublin Piano Tuner