Having spent, including the purchase price, 4700 on a 70's Estonian concert grand (restrung bass strings and new hammers), I feel disappointed by the upper treble. The sustain under a pluck test is lacking in that region and consequently the treble suffers. I am aware that in terms of investment one ostensibly should never spend significant finance on such an instrument because one can never get it back. Notwithstanding in my case I am only interested in the best sound for the cheapest outcome. Names mean little to me and this piano has a very good bass and good midrange. If at the end of the day I could get the piano sounding significantly better by shimming the soundboard or by being even more radical then I would consider, but only if the outlay would be substantially less than getting a replacement instrument. Also I already am unlikely to get back what I have invested in the instrument.
I should be very grateful for any advice with suggested prices of what might be possible for alternative options.
- Colin Nicholson
- Executive Poster
- Posts: 1839
- Joined: 04 Jul 2010, 19:15
- Location: Morpeth, Northumberland
I certainly wouldn't be too disappointed knowing only half a job has been done.
If the bass has only been restrung, then the old treble strings will "reflect" on this in comparison, and nor sustain in unison with the bass. If the tension of the treble strings (about 2/3) has not been released during the bass string replacements, this would cause horrendous strain on the 18 tons of down-bearing on one side of the piano - hence putting strain on the soundboard/ bridges/ (agraffes?) and wrest plank.... and the general structure of the instrument. Shimming a soundboard can be a lengthy and expensive job, and should have been done prior to re-stringing - depending on the length of the crack/separation.
When I went to Australia nearly 2 years ago, my colleague had an Estonian concert grand (well, about 7ft in length) .... and personally, it sounded great and played well.
Replacing all the treble strings is cheaper than replacing the bass!
Someone else on the forum may be able to help you re investment, however its best to state the currency you are quoting/ country where you live.... this is a UK based website.
Hope that helps