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#2320608 - 08/27/14 10:01 AM New old Vose and Sons Upright Piano  
Joined: Aug 2014
Posts: 11
RT White Offline
Junior Member
RT White  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Aug 2014
Posts: 11
Alexandria, VA, USA
Greetings,

I'm very new to the piano world. My mother played. I don't.

A hockey teammate of mine is getting married and, in preparing for a move, has to get rid of a Vose and Sons upright piano.

I've scheduled the piano to be moved by a piano moving business.

I've attached a photo. Some of the corners could use some refinishing, but I'm told the keys and pedals work and the piano needs to be tuned. I'm also told the keys are ivory. Until I have the piano and can look for the serial number, I won't be able to lock down on the age, but I was hoping someone here might have an idea, of a range (or not, if pianos all look the same over the years).

This piano is free, which, to me at least, seems like a pretty good deal.

Thanks for your help,
Ryan

[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]

Last edited by RT White; 08/27/14 10:03 AM.
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#2320648 - 08/27/14 11:33 AM Re: New old Vose and Sons Upright Piano [Re: RT White]  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 1,398
Eric Gloo Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Eric Gloo  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: May 2001
Posts: 1,398
Richfield Springs, New York
Welcome to Piano World!

The case looks very similar to one I regularly tune, which was made in 1900. If in good condition internally, Vose uprights of that vintage can be extremely nice pianos.


Eric Gloo
Piano Technician
Certified Dampp-Chaser Installer
Richfield Springs, New York
#2320655 - 08/27/14 11:50 AM Re: New old Vose and Sons Upright Piano [Re: RT White]  
Joined: Aug 2014
Posts: 11
RT White Offline
Junior Member
RT White  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Aug 2014
Posts: 11
Alexandria, VA, USA
Thanks for the response Eric. I'm looking forward to actually getting the piano and seeing it with my own eyes.

The story behind it (as told after our last time game, in our sponsor bar), my teammate's future wife lived next to an older couple. The older couple either died or moved, and the daughter took over care of the house, but had no use for the piano. My friend and his fiancee rescued the piano, so an au pair could play it. Eventually the au pair left and the piano remained, with hosts who knew nothing about the piano.

I've been taking banjo lessons, and I used to play trumpet, but I thought, once tuned, the piano would help me get a better understanding of music. Notes on a piano seem to be fairly straight-forward. On my five-string banjo I can play the same note in multiple places on the fingerboard.

I had the room, and I thought it might be nice. I have no idea what it could be worth, but I suspected it would be worth more that $0, especially given the fact that it had been played but, while remaining in the same place, had gone out of tune.

Again, thanks!

Ryan

#2320670 - 08/27/14 12:11 PM Re: New old Vose and Sons Upright Piano [Re: RT White]  
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 1,275
LarryShone Offline
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LarryShone  Offline
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Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 1,275
England
That looks a beauty!


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#2320671 - 08/27/14 12:13 PM Re: New old Vose and Sons Upright Piano [Re: LarryShone]  
Joined: Aug 2014
Posts: 11
RT White Offline
Junior Member
RT White  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Aug 2014
Posts: 11
Alexandria, VA, USA
Thanks Larry. The piano movers are moving it in about 10 days across DC. That will be the first time I see it in person. There is some scuffing on the wood, but I think that's the kind of stuff that can be easily fixed (I'm just assuming). If the insides are good to go, I think I got pretty lucky here.

Last edited by RT White; 08/27/14 12:15 PM.
#2320728 - 08/27/14 02:54 PM Re: New old Vose and Sons Upright Piano [Re: RT White]  
Joined: Aug 2014
Posts: 11
RT White Offline
Junior Member
RT White  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Aug 2014
Posts: 11
Alexandria, VA, USA
I guess the typical follow on is, if this piano is fine inside, and everything checks out, and it ends up being from the late 1800s, early 1900s; is it worth anything?

Besides verticle or upright, I don't know if this is a style. I see some Vose and Sons listed on sites in the $10,000-$20,000 range. And then I see Vose and Sons listed at $500 or so. It's not clear to me why there is such a difference.

So assuming everything on this piano works fine (and sounds good after it's tuned) and assuming its from between 1895 and 1905... what do you think it's worth? I've looked for the info on my own, and I've been all over the place on trying to find an answer.

#2320764 - 08/27/14 04:45 PM Re: New old Vose and Sons Upright Piano [Re: RT White]  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 1,398
Eric Gloo Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Eric Gloo  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: May 2001
Posts: 1,398
Richfield Springs, New York
In my area, and in most areas, older uprights have little or no value. The market is flooded with older large uprights, and newer small uprights.


Eric Gloo
Piano Technician
Certified Dampp-Chaser Installer
Richfield Springs, New York
#2320817 - 08/27/14 06:58 PM Re: New old Vose and Sons Upright Piano [Re: Eric Gloo]  
Joined: Aug 2014
Posts: 11
RT White Offline
Junior Member
RT White  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Aug 2014
Posts: 11
Alexandria, VA, USA
Older uprights are the lawyers and MBAs of the world…. too many of them.

Good to know. Well, I guess it won't be my "Antique Roadshow" moment, unless a copy of the Declaration of Independence is inside.

I hope its in good shape, and basically ready to go so I can enjoy it (and maybe learn a bit about pianos.).

#2320822 - 08/27/14 07:20 PM Re: New old Vose and Sons Upright Piano [Re: RT White]  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 22,761
pianoloverus Offline
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pianoloverus  Offline
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Joined: May 2001
Posts: 22,761
New York City
IMO the case is very beautiful. So if you or a pro can fix the dings on the front and you have plenty of room, I think you got a good deal even if there is some serious problem with the insides.
It's very nice just a a piece of furniture.

#2321033 - 08/28/14 08:35 AM Re: New old Vose and Sons Upright Piano [Re: RT White]  
Joined: Aug 2014
Posts: 11
RT White Offline
Junior Member
RT White  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Aug 2014
Posts: 11
Alexandria, VA, USA
Thanks pianoloverus. I think the case will have to be refinished. I haven't seen it in person yet, but the case was rained up briefly. The folks giving it to me rescued it long ago from the rain, and it's been played since, but I think the rain affected the finish of the case. I'm told the keys are fine and the inside is fine.

This is all new to me, so your comments have been very helpful.

I started playing the five-string banjo in February of this year. In the banjo world, good banjos (especially five-strings) seem to retain their value. The Steinway of the banjo world is likely a Gibson. My dream is to find an original pre-war flat head five-string Gibson.... and pay little to nothing for it, only to realize it's worth $100K-$250K.... but I don't think that's going to happen.

When I agreed to take the piano I was happy. I got a little excited that it might be a "real find" worth a few thousand or so, in its current condition. I've come back down to earth and realized that, while my piano may not have a real market, if it works, and it looks good, it'll be a real treat. And once I know the age, I might have a bit of history in my living room.

I've also figured out moving a piano is more expensive than moving a banjo. My next goal is to stop saying "banjo" when I mean "piano"..... but they're SOOOOOO close.

I'll tell you one thing, the string-count in my apartment is about to increase exponentially!

Thanks again for everyone's honest comments. This has been very helpful for me.

#2321037 - 08/28/14 08:45 AM Re: New old Vose and Sons Upright Piano [Re: RT White]  
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 11,334
Rickster Offline
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Rickster  Offline
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Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 11,334
Georgia, USA
Originally Posted by RT White
I started playing the five-string banjo in February of this year. In the banjo world, good banjos (especially five-strings) seem to retain their value. The Steinway of the banjo world is likely a Gibson. My dream is to find an original pre-war flat head five-string Gibson.... and pay little to nothing for it, only to realize it's worth $100K-$250K.... but I don't think that's going to happen.

I've been playing the 5-strings banjo since I was 16 years old. We had a 3 piece blue-grass band when I was in high school and we won a couple of FFA string band contests. A fun time in life!! smile

I don't play the banjo much anymore (spend most of my time learning to play the piano now). But, it is a little like riding a bicycle... except you get really rusty at it. smile

The primary focus in playing the 5-string banjo is the finger picking scheme... the chording is not too difficult since you only have 4 strings that you chord; the 5th string is a drone and is only picked, not chorded.

I've had a lot fun over the years playing the 5-string banjo. smile

Rick


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