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#1233392 - 07/18/09 12:39 PM Used Baldwin M, 1989  
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 12
Bernard40 Offline
Junior Member
Bernard40  Offline
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Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 12
I just auditioned a Baldwin M from ~1989 yesterday.

(I'm looking closely at Ms Rs and Ls, hopefully for under 12k)

This piano was out of tune, was sitting next to a large window, and 1 foot away from a forced air heating register.

Still, the action was great. And here's the kicker: the seller is in a rush to move, and they only want $5k for it.

(A further bit of data is that the owner bought it in 1991 for only $10k--she showed me the receipt--when it was only one or two years old...this makes me suspicious--didn't they go for around 30K new back then?)

My question is: is it possible that the neglect of this Baldwin M could render it irreparable, or costly enough to repair as to wipe out the price advantage?

It's hard to "connect" to a piano so out of tune, so I'm tempted to just move on, but maybe I just lack a technical imagination on this one...

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#1233406 - 07/18/09 12:51 PM Re: Used Baldwin M, 1989 [Re: Bernard40]  
Joined: Jul 2009
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Bernard40 Offline
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Bernard40  Offline
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Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 12
...oh, and the $10k price in 1991 was from a dealer.

#1233421 - 07/18/09 01:12 PM Re: Used Baldwin M, 1989 [Re: Bernard40]  
Joined: Dec 2005
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TX-Dennis Offline
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TX-Dennis  Offline
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It's probably okay, but you would be well advised to have it checked over by a tech to be certain. It's a great price for the piano, but $5000 is still too much money to leave things entirely to chance (in my view, anyway).

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#1233474 - 07/18/09 02:58 PM Re: Used Baldwin M, 1989 [Re: TX-Dennis]  
Joined: Oct 2008
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Jeff Clef Offline
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Jeff Clef  Offline
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Joined: Oct 2008
Posts: 4,788
San Jose, CA
I noticed you said nothing about the sound. A tuning and tech evaluation will bring things into focus for you, in that regard. Employ the technician yourself. No reason it should hold up the move for the seller, if you get busy on it without delay. Very inexpensive and necessary insurance, from your perspective.

I could see why a person would buy a two-year-old piano instead of a new one, saving twenty grand. Your inner feeling of suspicion is understandable... and maybe, significant. Do you want this instrument; do you love it? Or, are you just chasing after a bargain-basement piano fever-dream?

Just a question for you. Hey, it could be a great opportunity if it's right for you and it checks out. The setting you described does raise some big question marks about condition. If the seller balks at having the tech inspect, consider yourself answered.


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#1233490 - 07/18/09 03:40 PM Re: Used Baldwin M, 1989 [Re: Jeff Clef]  
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 12
Bernard40 Offline
Junior Member
Bernard40  Offline
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Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 12
Good points--I don't love it...yet. I've played some Rs that I did.

I guess my question is, could years of neglect and lack of tuning (not to mention its placement next to a heating register) "ruin" a piano's potential? In particular, as concerns a Baldwin M--perhaps they innately hold up against the conditions better (or worse) than an alternative make.

I agree with you, though--I'd rather pay double or even triple for a perfect match...in fact i'm halfway out the door. On the other hand I don't want to rule out this one if some trivial routine work could make things right.

#1233549 - 07/18/09 05:56 PM Re: Used Baldwin M, 1989 [Re: Bernard40]  
Joined: Aug 2005
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Larry Larson Offline
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Larry Larson  Offline
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Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 992
Carmel, Indiana
A good inspection by a qualified tech will reveal any damage from neglect or any other cause. I don't think there is anything about leaving a piano untuned that is going to cause any damage. Baldwins are extremely durable, so I wouldn't worry too much. The price is very good, so if I were you I'd ask the dealer to have it tuned and see how you like it when you play it afterwords. If you don't love the sound and action, keep looking! Larry

1995 Baldwin L grand
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