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Knabe and Thal piano

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Knabe and Thal piano

Postby Suzi » 27 Sep 2010, 10:56

Hello,

I have recently been given a Knabe and Thal upright piano, and have been trying to find out about the history of it etc there is a date on it of around 1897. does anyone know anything about these pianos. Im also looking to insure it, but dont know how much it is worth.... would anyone have an idea??

thanks

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Re: Knabe and Thal piano

Postby Bill Kibby » 27 Sep 2010, 22:59

Nobody anywhere can guess the condition or value of a piano without tuning it. I have no information about Knabe & Thal, is that how the name is written on the piano? Knabe is a well-known American maker, but Thal is a mystery to me!
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Re: Knabe and Thal piano

Postby anthony » 22 Apr 2011, 09:53

Hello Suzy,
I was wondering if you had any luck finding out about your Knabe & Thal upright piano. I also have this brand of piano bought from an elderly German lady around 30years ago. My piano is labelled Knabe & Thal Berlin 1879. I am actually looking to sell it and therefore was hoping you had ascertained some value range, mine has kept tune very well over the years but has unfortunately lost two ivory key covers. As you probably know this brand is proving difficult to research, any information would be much appreciated.
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Re: Knabe and Thal piano

Postby MarkGoodwinPianos » 22 Apr 2011, 10:10

Bill Kibby wrote:Nobody anywhere can guess the condition or value of a piano without tuning it.


In my opinion it is bad advice to say "you need a tuner" when the owner could just upload some photos and we can give a rough assessment based on its age, physical condition and whether it is straightstrung, overstrung, overdamped or underdamped. This forum is an a good position to be a great service to people. Telling people to hire a tuner to tell them that their piano is worth £0 is not a good service in my opinion.

Let's help people out. Let's share our knowledge and opinion.
If they really need a 100% accurate valuation and assessment then yes they should hire a technician but most folk aren't asking for a 100% accurate assessment, they just want a GENERAL assessment and a ROUGH valuation. We can give that very easily.
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Re: Knabe and Thal piano

Postby Colin Nicholson » 22 Apr 2011, 11:12

Anthony......

A photo speaks a thousand words as they say. Mark is right in what he says, but there is not even a hope-in-hells-chance of knowing any value at all about this piano unless we can see it. Also, certain piano casework colours do not sell well - if at all; ebonised black for instance is a 'no no' when it comes to selling.

Best think is to watch an episode of "Antiques Roadshow"!!
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Re: Knabe and Thal piano

Postby Feg » 22 Apr 2011, 11:22

MarkGoodwinPianos wrote:
Bill Kibby wrote:Nobody anywhere can guess the condition or value of a piano without tuning it.


In my opinion it is bad advice to say "you need a tuner" when the owner could just upload some photos and we can give a rough assessment based on its age, physical condition and whether it is straightstrung, overstrung, overdamped or underdamped. This forum is an a good position to be a great service to people. Telling people to hire a tuner to tell them that their piano is worth £0 is not a good service in my opinion.

Let's help people out. Let's share our knowledge and opinion.
If they really need a 100% accurate valuation and assessment then yes they should hire a technician but most folk aren't asking for a 100% accurate assessment, they just want a GENERAL assessment and a ROUGH valuation. We can give that very easily.


Mark, your 'rough assessment' based on photographs is all very well, but photographs cannot determine the state of the wrest plank nor the true state of felts/leathers/tapes/frame/soundboard etc. What may look reasonable in a photo and therefore worth £XXX may in fact be beyond economical repair and be worth £0!

There is also the legal aspect of any valuation - would you personally be prepared to take legal responsibility for a rough valuation based on photographs? Unfortunately, the owners of this forum 'could' find themselves being held to account for valuations given this way. The safest advice is that in all cases, an inspection by a qualified professional is the only way to get a proper assessment of the instrument and therefore an accurate value.
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Re: Knabe and Thal piano

Postby Bill Kibby » 22 Apr 2011, 17:31

Thank you! My point exactly... always. Quite apart from any other consideration, there are legal implications in stating values, and we are not licensed to do so. Most old pianos are written off when they reach the point where they need repinning and restringing. It has nothing whatever to do with design or specification. Until every wrestpin has been tested, nobody can say what the cost of repairs might be to make it useable. I have a tuneable, playable piano from the 1840s, do you expect me to throw it away because it doesn't meet modern specification?
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