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Pierce Piano Atlas


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Sohmer baby grand #1916146
06/20/12 08:36 AM
06/20/12 08:36 AM
Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 3
S
srg Offline OP
Junior Member
srg  Offline OP
Junior Member
S

Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 3
Hi, I am new to this but I was hoping to get some information about a piano I might purchase. It is a Sohmer model 57 Louis XV piano serial number 160784. It looks to be in beautiful condition and I will be having it checked out by a technician. I am looking for my first and last baby grand so I want something that will sound good now and in the future. I don't know a lot about the quality of different pianos but have been reading The Piano Book and checking some websites online. If anyone knows about this piano and if it is a good quality for daily playing as well as the value of it (It would cost me about 8,000) I would appreciate hearing from you. Thank you to all who read this and respond.

Susan

Piano & Music Gifts & Accessories (570)
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Re: Sohmer baby grand [Re: srg] #1916169
06/20/12 09:26 AM
06/20/12 09:26 AM
Joined: Mar 2011
Posts: 1,812
Philadelphia, PA
J
jdw Offline
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jdw  Offline
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J

Joined: Mar 2011
Posts: 1,812
Philadelphia, PA
Sohmer was a good-quality maker up until the 1980s, so this could be a nice piano for the price. I used to have a Sohmer upright that was a lovely piano. I've heard that their grands didn't have quite as good a reputation as the uprights, though.


1989 Baldwin R
Currently working on:
Chopin, Waltz in E minor (op. posth.)
Schubert, Op. 90 no. 2
Mendelssohn, Op. 19 no. 2
Re: Sohmer baby grand [Re: srg] #1916261
06/20/12 12:48 PM
06/20/12 12:48 PM
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 1,419
Richfield Springs, New York
E
Eric Gloo Offline
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Eric Gloo  Offline
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E

Joined: May 2001
Posts: 1,419
Richfield Springs, New York
Hi Susan and welcome to the Piano World!

The Pierce Piano Atlas lists that grand as being made in 1966. I was just looking through some old files and came across a Sohmer brochure, listing the Model 57 as 5'7" long. I can't speak for other technicians, but I consider that larger than a "baby grand"...as that term means different things to different people. smile

I would think if it checks out OK by your piano technician, it would be adequate for daily playing. Hopefully someone else will chime in here, as I've only ever seen a handful of Sohmer grands, and they've all been much older than the one you are looking at.

Are you saying the cost is $8000 in the U.S.? If so, that sounds on the high side to me, especially if the piano is in original condition.


Eric Gloo
Piano Technician
Certified Dampp-Chaser Installer
Richfield Springs, New York
Re: Sohmer baby grand [Re: Eric Gloo] #1916427
06/20/12 07:40 PM
06/20/12 07:40 PM
Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 3
S
srg Offline OP
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srg  Offline OP
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S

Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 3
thanks for responding and checking the Pierce Piano Atlas for me, the price is actually $7,000 delivered. I am worried about the quality of the piano musically. The Piano Book says "the grands weren't particularly noteworthy. Basically, Sohmer grands were adequate instruments for casual use inside of nicely made cabinets."

Re: Sohmer baby grand [Re: srg] #1916431
06/20/12 07:59 PM
06/20/12 07:59 PM
Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 5,531
Olympia, Washington
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Del Offline
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Del  Offline
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D

Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 5,531
Olympia, Washington
Originally Posted by srg
thanks for responding and checking the Pierce Piano Atlas for me, the price is actually $7,000 delivered. I am worried about the quality of the piano musically. The Piano Book says "the grands weren't particularly noteworthy. Basically, Sohmer grands were adequate instruments for casual use inside of nicely made cabinets."

Sohmer grands of that era were very well made instruments of somewhat indifferent design. Much like many other pianos of the era—and today, for that.

They used Pratt, Read actions. These were the generic actions of the day. Their manufacture quality was not great but Sohmer was fairly careful about setting them up and making sure they arrived at their dealers in fairly good condition. Unless the piano has received heavy use the action should be adequate (although it may well need regulating and general servicing just due to normal wear).

Their scaling and soundboard designs were pretty much average for the day. No better, no worse. During the 1970s and early 1980s I was service manager at a store that sold both Steinway and Sohmer pianos. The Sohmer, although different in tone character, still compared favorably with the Steinway Model M. They responded well to careful regulating and voicing.

ddf


Delwin D Fandrich
Piano Research, Design & Manufacturing Consultant
ddfandrich@gmail.com
(To contact me privately please use this e-mail address.)

Stupidity is a rare condition, ignorance is a common choice. --Anon
Re: Sohmer baby grand [Re: srg] #1917110
06/22/12 06:42 AM
06/22/12 06:42 AM
Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 3
S
srg Offline OP
Junior Member
srg  Offline OP
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S

Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 3
Sounds like it could go either way depending on the condition of the individual piano but that at best it is average. Does 7,000 sound like a fair price? If it is in good condition is it a piano that will last for many years (with proper care and maintenance)? Thank you to everyone for your responses and help. Susan

Re: Sohmer baby grand [Re: srg] #1917118
06/22/12 07:32 AM
06/22/12 07:32 AM
Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 5,531
Olympia, Washington
D
Del Offline
5000 Post Club Member
Del  Offline
5000 Post Club Member
D

Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 5,531
Olympia, Washington
Originally Posted by srg
Sounds like it could go either way depending on the condition of the individual piano but that at best it is average. Does 7,000 sound like a fair price? If it is in good condition is it a piano that will last for many years (with proper care and maintenance)? Thank you to everyone for your responses and help. Susan

It sounds rather high to me but then I'm not selling it.

It depends entirely on condition. The basic structure is certainly good and the cabinetry is probably quite nice (assuming its been well cared for). They were nicely built with a lot of nice solid woods and all the right other stuff, but...a lot can happen to a piano over nearly half a century. And that is how old this piano is. It ain't no spring chicken any more. When you go to look at the piano take a technician with you who can give you an honest and thorough appraisal of the keys, action, hammers, strings, pinblock, soundboard, bridges, etc.

For that price I'd expect everything to be pretty much perfect. To keep the asking price in perspective it might be good to remember that if the hammers are a bit worn and the action regulating a bit rough it could easily cost a couple thousand more to have that work done.

ddf


Delwin D Fandrich
Piano Research, Design & Manufacturing Consultant
ddfandrich@gmail.com
(To contact me privately please use this e-mail address.)

Stupidity is a rare condition, ignorance is a common choice. --Anon
Re: Sohmer baby grand [Re: srg] #1917128
06/22/12 07:47 AM
06/22/12 07:47 AM
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 26,704
Oakland
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BDB Offline
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Oakland
I would urge you to see what you can get new for about the same price.


Semipro Tech
Re: Sohmer baby grand [Re: srg] #1917141
06/22/12 08:08 AM
06/22/12 08:08 AM
Joined: Apr 2011
Posts: 76
New York City
W
Williamus Offline
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Williamus  Offline
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Joined: Apr 2011
Posts: 76
New York City
I grew up playing a Sohmer and always loved it. I don't know a lot about the grands, but I LOVED my upright.

Re: Sohmer baby grand [Re: srg] #1917498
06/22/12 08:07 PM
06/22/12 08:07 PM
Joined: Mar 2011
Posts: 1,812
Philadelphia, PA
J
jdw Offline
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jdw  Offline
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Joined: Mar 2011
Posts: 1,812
Philadelphia, PA
Having been piano shopping recently, I don't think a new 5'7" grand at $7-8000 would approach the quality of the older Sohmers. But of course, it all depends on the condition of the instrument.


1989 Baldwin R
Currently working on:
Chopin, Waltz in E minor (op. posth.)
Schubert, Op. 90 no. 2
Mendelssohn, Op. 19 no. 2
Re: Sohmer baby grand [Re: srg] #1917626
06/23/12 05:45 AM
06/23/12 05:45 AM
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 409
Pennsylvania
J
jrcallan Offline
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jrcallan  Offline
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Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 409
Pennsylvania
Does anyone know if the Sohmer 50 had sostenuto - or bass sustain?


Baldwin M
Casio PX-330
Casio AP-45
Re: Sohmer baby grand [Re: jdw] #1917630
06/23/12 06:05 AM
06/23/12 06:05 AM
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 11,132
Philadelphia/South Jersey
Rich Galassini Offline
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Rich Galassini  Offline
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Joined: May 2001
Posts: 11,132
Philadelphia/South Jersey
Originally Posted by jdw
Having been piano shopping recently, I don't think a new 5'7" grand at $7-8000 would approach the quality of the older Sohmers. But of course, it all depends on the condition of the instrument.


I agree. A forty five year old piano could need substantial work though. Its total cost could be much higher, depending on the performance desired and the instrument itself.


Rich Galassini
Cunningham Piano Co.
Phila, Pa.
(215) 991-0834 direct line
rich@cunninghampiano.com
Subscribe to our YouTube channel for great content every week:
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