Built in 1972 at the New York Steinway Factory, Steinway & Sons Model B Grand Piano #430030 is a unique instrument with a rich musical history. Steinway & Sons Model B Grand Pianos are among the world’s most coveted instruments – often used at professional institutions as recording instruments. Model B #430030 served in this capacity. This seven-foot grand piano was purchased and used at Fireside Recording Studio in Nashville, TN. This studio was founded by Porter Wagoner and Dolly Parton. Co-owned by the singing duo, Wagoner later became sole owner of the facility after which Fireside was sold to various owners until it was closed just a few years ago. Recently, the studio closed and Steinway B #430030, which had served as the primary piano for the studio, was sold to a new owner in Texas.
This is a piano that we actually interacted with before being contacted by its new owner. We were asked by the studio owner if we were interested in purchasing the piano. Due to the fact we had a large inventory of early 20th century Steinway Model B Grands in our shop at that time, we politely declined. We were pleasantly surprised that we were able to see and work on this piano when it ended up at our shop as a rebuilding project!
THE PIANO RESTORATION PROCESS
The restoration and rebuilding of a piano’s action is one of the most essential parts of any piano rebuilding project. New hammers, shanks and flanges along with new Renner wippens (repetitions) were installed in the action. A new custom manufactured keyset was commissioned for optimum power and responsiveness. This keyset was weighed-off for the proper down and up weight. Expert action and tone regulation were conducted to ensure the finest response and a full, concert-level quality of tone. We spend many extra hours in this process to ensure that the piano does not just look like a fine instrument, but performs as one as well.
The original factory soundboard was carefully restored and refinished. A new custom fitted pinblock was fabricated. New blued tuning pins were driven into this block of hard maple and the finest Mapes wire and strings were coiled and brought up to pitch. We were very pleased with the end result of this restoration. The piano boasts a silky smooth action that is light and responsive. The piano’s tone is rich and full with a powerful bass that outclasses many other Model B Grands from this era.
At the request of the client, the cabinet was refinished in a rich polished ebony polyester finish. This finish is among the most durable finishes available in the piano industry. A state of the art QRS PNOmation3 Player Piano System was installed and properly regulated. A matching Jansen Duet Artists Bench serves as the finishing touch. We delivered the piano to its new owner in early November of 2018 and we are happy to report that they were quite pleased.
For over four decades, Chupp’s Piano Service, Inc. has been specializing in the rebuilding of the world’s finest pianos. With a focus on Steinway & Sons restorations, our work has become the preferred choice of concert venues, professional musicians, and universities across the country. Located in the heart of Northern Indiana, we are proud to carry on the old school tradition of high caliber craftsmanship.
Our rebuilding facility and showroom features premium restored Steinway, new Kawai and select pre-owned Yamaha pianos. When completed properly a rebuilt piano truly becomes, art you can feel!
For more about our extensive restoration process, click here.
Chupp’s Piano Service & Restoration | Vintage Art Case Steinway Grand Pianos | Fine Piano Restoration & Sales since 1975
Built in 1918 at the Kurtzmann Piano Factory of Buffalo, New York, this art case grand piano is a truly stunning example of historic piano manufacturing! The late 19th century through the early 20th century saw the golden era of the piano take form, as hundreds of competing companies fought to gain their share of the burgeoning piano market. This intense competition forged lasting quality and names that continue to represent the finest in craftsmanship.
Crafted at the New York Steinway & Sons Factory in 1896/1897, this fine Steinway & Sons Model B is in an imposing yet elegant Victorian Art Case cabinet design. The Model B has long had a reputation for being a powerful, awe-inspiring musical instrument and this grand piano is no exception! This piano was selected by us for a full restoration including a new action, a rebuilt belly, and a full filled cabinet finish.
Today, the 6’11” Steinway & Sons Model B Grand Piano is commonly referred to as ‘the perfect piano’. However, before this legendary piano rose to prominence, there was another instrument that helped push Steinway pianos toward being the world-class instruments they are known as today. Designed by C.F. Theodore Steinway, the Style 1, commonly referred to as the ‘Monitor’ was first put into production in 1871. It bears a marked resemblance to a scale design he created prior to joining his family at Steinway & Sons.
When listing the makers of fine concert level grand pianos, the name “Everett” is normally not among them. Mainly known for their upright pianos built in New Haven, Michigan, Everett was later purchased by Yamaha in one of the Japanese company’s forays into the North American market. However, prior to this, Everett was a Boston based company that manufactured heavily built, premium quality upright and grand pianos. Unfortunately, much of the information regarding the early days of Everett have passed into history.
The Steinway & Sons Model D is the concert piano which all others are judged against. Number 51257 was the first Model D to be completed on January 31st, 1884. Steinway Model D #53671 was built a short time later and was among the first of these legendary pianos to be built. Completed on July 21st, 1885, this New York built Concert Grand is one of the finest examples of ‘golden age’ piano making that we have ever seen. According to Steinway New York Factory records, this piano was sold to its first owner in the fall of 1918, so we are assuming this instrument was utilized as an early Concert & Artists instrument during the intervening years.
Built at the New York Steinway Factory in 1917, this Steinway Model B is a wonderful example of historic Art Case piano design. The Model B has long been considered to be one of the world’s most ‘perfect pianos.’ Measuring just under seven feet, these semi-concert instruments are often chosen due to their wonderful balance of size and sound. Steinway Model B #180473 was crafted during the pre-WWII ‘golden era’ of Steinway Factory quality. The quality of workmanship and the materials available resulted in some of the finest grand pianos ever manufactured. As the development of the modern piano began to culminate, more and more work was put into turning the cabinet of the piano into a work of visual art.
In 1980, Ed Hendricks of Hendricks’ Keyboards in Downers Grove, IL invited Dennis Chupp and Walter L. Boshart up to the Chicago area to meet John Steinway. John joined Steinway & Sons in 1939 and worked his way through various positions, eventually serving as the company Chairman.
John Steinway is pictured signing the Steinway Service Manual for Dennis. Through the great assistance of the late Ed Hendricks, Dennis would later have the opportunity to train at the New York Steinway Factory in March of 1981.
Before the well known Steinway Model D Concert Grand ruled the concert stage, there were a number of ‘Early Scale’ grands which were amazing instruments in their own right. A few years ago we rebuilt an 1868 Steinway & Sons Style 4 (Fancy) Early Concert Scale grand piano for the Lodge & Spa at Three Fork’s Ranch in Wyoming. This Early Concert Scale design was the first Steinway 88-note grand piano scale and was designed by company founder and patriarch Henry E. Steinway and his son Henry Steinway Jr. This era of Style 4 Concert Grands measure 8’5″ in length and a ‘full’ 7 1/4 octaves.