Is It Time To Have Your Piano Rebuilt?

Is It Time To Have Your Piano Rebuilt?

You love your piano. It’s been in your family for years. But is it worth it to rebuild it?

If you’ve made the decision to have your piano rebuilt, your first step is to find the right person for the job. We get a lot of calls from people finding out more about the process, because a piano is the one heirloom that can stand the test of time. 

But is it worth it? Will a rebuild help create an instrument you’ll be proud to display and play for years to come? That’s something a technician will dig deep for before they make the final determination. 

Pianos have up to 12,000 parts. And considering pianos can live for decades, eventually, those parts start to wear out. Pianos are also subject to the environment around them. That firestorm that recently ravaged thousands of acres? That hurricane that caused the power to be out for a week? All of that plays into creating the condition of your piano. 

Playing the piano isn’t the only thing that breaks down individual pieces. Even sitting unused for weeks – months – at a time can take its toll on different parts. Wood can dry out and crack. Strings can tighten and rust. 

That’s where piano building comes in. This is a time-consuming process. It’s also expensive. This isn’t something you do with every piano; a high-class restoration project can only make a piano as good as the original foundation it was built on. The piano rebuilding process includes:

Rebuilding the action. That includes the frame, keys, keytops, hammers, underlevers, and other moving parts. This is what gives your piano the touch, sound, and tone. 

Rebuilding the soundbox. This includes the soundboard, bridges, strings, pinblock, tuning pins, damper felts, and other structural parts of the case. A lot of rebuilding projects start when the strings no longer can be tuned. 

Rebuilding the cabinet. This is usually for cosmetic purposes, when the outside finish no longer shines. Refinishing the cabinet is the last part of the process, and one of the most expensive as the refinisher will have to replace wood and hardware to match the original condition. 

Not all pianos are worth rebuilding. That’s because not all pianos are high enough quality to be worth the time and process. It’s not a good investment, as you’ll never recoup the cost it takes to bring it back up to mint condition. 

It’s better just to purchase a new, high quality instrument to get the most playability for your money.