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#1894666 - 05/10/12 09:43 AM Toyo pianos
hairydog Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/10/12
Posts: 5
Hi. I'm new to this forum - have browsed a bit.

I wonder if anyone has any experience of Toyo pianos. I am looking to replace my very loved but tired Welmar and have about £4,000 (UK) to spend. I looked at the Toyo NA123 and quite liked it but would be very interested in some opinions - only other pianos that I liked within my budget so far have been pre owned yamaha (U1 and U3) for about £3,500.
Very many thanks!

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#1894798 - 05/10/12 01:59 PM Re: Toyo pianos [Re: hairydog]
joe80 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/30/09
Posts: 2551
Hi, how old is your Welmar? They are a good brand, would it be a good idea to have reconditioning work done on it? Talk to the people at www.pianorestorations.co.uk, they used to work for Welmar at Perrivale and founded their own restoration centre for Bluthner instruments and other pianos in 2003. Their work is astonishing and it would be well worth calling them. I don't know how much it would cost to have what needs done done, but you'd end up with a far superior piano.

I personally don't know too much about Toyo pianos, but they're not my favourite sounding instruments - at least the ones I played. I prefer the sound of Wendl und Lung (or Feurich as they are branded now) or Brodmann.

#1894976 - 05/10/12 07:05 PM Re: Toyo pianos [Re: hairydog]
Sparky McBiff Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 1112
Loc: Toronto, Ontario
If you are talking about Yamahas you will always have a heard time finding something that will fit into your budget.
The piano industry has changed significantly in recent years and there are now some very good pianos out of China that are significantly more affordable (although their prices are rising) more so than the usual Kawai or Yamaha that most people immediately think about.
Hailun 198

#1895121 - 05/11/12 02:31 AM Re: Toyo pianos [Re: Sparky McBiff]
hairydog Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/10/12
Posts: 5
Thanks very much.My Welmar is a little over 60 years old. My tuner was not sure it was worth doing major work on, but I might rethink given the helpful link. Buckinghamshire is not a million miles away from where I live,

Many Thanks

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#1895173 - 05/11/12 05:55 AM Re: Toyo pianos [Re: hairydog]
joe80 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/30/09
Posts: 2551
You know, 60 years old isn't SOOO old. There are some fine sounding pianos out there of that age and older that have been reconditioned with just a new set of strings and some action work. I guess it's because the soundboards aren't as big as grand pianos so perhaps they have a tendency to last a bit longer. I have no idea. Maybe it's just because I like the sound of old uprights when they work! There is also J.Reid pianos in London, who do an excellent job of restoration. I have no idea how much it will cost but they seem to specialise in English uprights. Let us know how you get on!

#1895369 - 05/11/12 01:41 PM Re: Toyo pianos [Re: hairydog]
hairydog Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/10/12
Posts: 5
Thanks, definately made me think more about restoration. It's worth a second opinion.

#1895400 - 05/11/12 03:19 PM Re: Toyo pianos [Re: hairydog]
Robert 45 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/18/06
Posts: 1660
Loc: Auckland New Zealand
The Welmar piano is a beautiful, quality instrument. However, from a financial perspective, restoring a 60 year old, vertical Welmar may not be a wise investment.

The cost of the restoration, depending on the extent of the re-build, may far exceed the value of the restored piano. Generally,the restoration of grand pianos is considered a safer bet financially.

Even with the best quality re-building work, there is the risk that you make not be completely happy with the outcome. The piano may be meticulously reconditioned, but the sound and touch of the restored piano may disappoint you.

You need to consider all aspects of your available options very carefully.

By the way, I know one concert pianist who has a Toyo upright piano and she speaks well of it.

Good luck!


Edited by Robert 45 (05/11/12 03:19 PM)

#1895424 - 05/11/12 04:40 PM Re: Toyo pianos [Re: hairydog]
joe80 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/30/09
Posts: 2551
Yeah there's a point there - if you SELL the piano you quite probably won't get back what you paid in restoration costs, but it may well be worth it if you want to keep the piano.

For instance, to fully rebuild a Bluthner grand, with a new plank, soundboard, action, restring, repolish the case and everything to the point of being a new instrument, costs about £15000. If you then tried to sell the instrument privately, after the rebuild, you might get £10000 for it, maybe less. Does that mean it's not worth it to rebuild? Certainly not! You rebuild a piano because you love it and want to keep it.

The quality of Mr Leverret's restorations is second to none - there honestly isn't a better piano workshop in the UK. There may be others who can match his work but his is the work I know best.

I don't know how much it will cost to restore your upright, but Mr Leverret will guide you through the options and you can decide what you want. It may be that he has an upright for sale that you fall in love with, so don't rule out that option either.

As for new pianos, well, it depends what you like. Most new pianos are of decent quality. Perhaps they lack that 'magic' of the old pianos, but they work well.

#1896030 - 05/13/12 04:43 AM Re: Toyo pianos [Re: hairydog]
hairydog Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/10/12
Posts: 5
I think it is worth exploring the rebuild option - I love the piano and it has such a beautiful warm sound. I have one last option to explore in terms of dealers, the place where I bought the Welmar many years ago. He has the biggest range of reconditioned pianos I have ever come across and after I've done that I'm going to go back and look at the Toyo. Problem is that dearest son who is very sentimental even at 10 does not want to have a new piano! Cross that bridge....

Thanks again, what a great website! Glad to have joined.

#1896131 - 05/13/12 11:02 AM Re: Toyo pianos [Re: hairydog]
MrMagic Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/29/05
Posts: 371
Loc: Stettler AB Canada
Hairydog, I recently bought an old piano and had it rebuilt, knowing I would never recover the cost from a financial standpoint. I was shopping for a new piano, but the prices for what I wanted seemed to continue to raise just beyond my reach.

Am I sorry? Absolutely not. I am very pleased with the outcome and now have the piano I wanted for sustantially less cost.
1928 Chas. M. Stieff 6'1" Grand. Major rebuild 2011
1920 Mason & Risch Upright (actually my mother's)
1971 Hammond R-100
Roland KR577
Roland VK-8M Tonewheel organ module
GigaStudio GS3 Ensemble (Bosendorfer & Estonia piano samples)
Roland E20, JV30 (retired)
An old concertina which I can't play


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