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Have you ever toured a piano factory? #2511508
02/16/16 10:03 PM
02/16/16 10:03 PM
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Coyotewoods Offline OP
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When I was living in Japan, I made a day trip to Hamamatsu, the home of Kawai and Yamaha pianos. I think Yamaha may have relocated to a nearby town prior to my visit, but they started in Hamamatsu.

I didn't realize I could have scheduled a factory tour, which would have been simply awesome. But I did tour some showrooms and heard some of the visitors playing select grands. One was behind a rope and had a small entourage with him. I wonder who he was.

Have you ever toured a piano factory? What was it like?

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Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: Coyotewoods] #2511514
02/16/16 10:22 PM
02/16/16 10:22 PM
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Montreal, Canada
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guyl Offline
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Not a factory but I remember visiting "Yamaha Piano World" in the Shinjuka area of Tokyo , in 1987. They had some amazing 100th anniversary special edition models.


What do snowflakes and Chickerings have in common? There are no two exactly alike!
Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: Coyotewoods] #2511535
02/16/16 11:17 PM
02/16/16 11:17 PM
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First Town, First State
BrianDX Offline
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Originally Posted by CoyoteWoods
When I was living in Japan, I made a day trip to Hamamatsu, the home of Kawai and Yamaha pianos. I think Yamaha may have relocated to a nearby town prior to my visit, but they started in Hamamatsu.

I didn't realize I could have scheduled a factory tour, which would have been simply awesome. But I did tour some showrooms and heard some of the visitors playing select grands. One was behind a rope and had a small entourage with him. I wonder who he was.

Have you ever toured a piano factory? What was it like?

The next time we are in Kansai we should really take the stop on the Shinkansan and do this tour. Probably check out Kawai's factory as well.

Maybe in 2020 for the Olympics...

In the meantime, taking a tour of Cunningham Piano in my home town of Philly was pretty awesome. smile


Yamaha C2X | Yamaha M500-F
Groucho Marx: "Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others."
Curriculum: Faber Developing Artist (Book 3)
Current: German Dance in D Major (Haydn) (OF); Melody (Schumann) (OF)
Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: Coyotewoods] #2511547
02/17/16 12:03 AM
02/17/16 12:03 AM
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Posts: 253
Upper Middle Tennessee
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Bellyman Offline
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Upper Middle Tennessee
I got to spend a little time at the Baldwin grand factory in Conway, Arkansas about 20 years ago. It was a neat place to visit and I wish I had gotten to spend a little longer poking around.

I don't know if it's still even there or not or whether they even build pianos anymore. Gibson bought them out years ago and I lost touch with the goings on.

Never got to visit Steinway in NY.

Those are the only ones close that I can think of.

Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: Coyotewoods] #2511614
02/17/16 05:37 AM
02/17/16 05:37 AM
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Münster, Germany
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I toured some factories in Germany. It´s always very interesting. I visited Bechstein, Grotrian, Schimmel, Seiler, Steinway, Steingraeber, Blüthner, Feurich, Wilh. Steinberg and Pfeiffer. On my to-do-list is still Sauter and Förster.

Gregor


piano tech - tuner - dealer
Münster, Germany
www.weldert.de
Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: BrianDX] #2511634
02/17/16 07:49 AM
02/17/16 07:49 AM
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 11,366
Philadelphia/South Jersey
Rich Galassini Online content
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Rich Galassini  Online Content
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Originally Posted by BrianDX

The next time we are in Kansai we should really take the stop on the Shinkansan and do this tour. Probably check out Kawai's factory as well.

Maybe in 2020 for the Olympics...

In the meantime, taking a tour of Cunningham Piano in my home town of Philly was pretty awesome. smile


Thank you for the plug, Brian. smile

I have had the hospitality of several manufacturers and have had their permission to spend time in their facilities unfettered (almost). This is so much more fulfilling to me as we have our own line of pianos, we are rebuilders, and we sell new pianos.

Don't rule out visiting component manufacturers either. They can be great learning experiences.

I most enjoy learning a little from the men (and women) who actually perform the work. Language barriers aside, this has been my favorite part of spending time in any manufacturing facility.


Rich Galassini
Cunningham Piano Co.
Phila, Pa.
(215) 991-0834 direct line
rich@cunninghampiano.com
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Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: Coyotewoods] #2511831
02/17/16 04:33 PM
02/17/16 04:33 PM
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 6,357
Parsonsfield, ME (orig. Nahant...
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Originally Posted by CoyoteWoods
When I was living in Japan, I made a day trip to Hamamatsu, the home of Kawai and Yamaha pianos. I think Yamaha may have relocated to a nearby town prior to my visit, but they started in Hamamatsu.

I didn't realize I could have scheduled a factory tour, which would have been simply awesome. But I did tour some showrooms and heard some of the visitors playing select grands. One was behind a rope and had a small entourage with him. I wonder who he was.

Have you ever toured a piano factory? What was it like?


We've arranged for tours of the Mason & Hamlin Factory in Haverhill, MA several times, and plan to again this year, also Steinway in NY, and back in 2011 we took a group of forums members to Steinway Hamburg, Steingraeber, Bluthner, and Bosendorfer.

In addition to touring factories, we've had a great time with piano parties (Kathy and I plan to attend one in Italy this summer).

Check out some previous tours here http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/topics/2327001/LINKS_TO_WONDERFUL_PAST_EVENTS.html

And let me know if you'd be interested in tours in the future.



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Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: Coyotewoods] #2511839
02/17/16 04:46 PM
02/17/16 04:46 PM
Joined: Feb 2013
Posts: 232
UK
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UK
I visited Sauter in Spaichingen, very enjoyable visit ending up with a Delta in my home.
Would like to visit Pfeiffer in Stuttgart and Steingraeber in Bayreuth, and most likely a return visit to
Spaichingen. Who knows with what I will end up next.


Yamaha C3, Sauter Delta 185
Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: Coyotewoods] #2511894
02/17/16 07:15 PM
02/17/16 07:15 PM
Joined: Sep 2011
Posts: 589
California
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Thrill Science Offline
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California
I visited Yamaha in Hammamatsu. They arranged for a guided tour for me, and showed me the factory where the larger grands were built.

I since upgraded my C-7 for a Bösendorfer 225, so I'm hoping to take the tour in Vienna sometime in 2017.....


Robert Swirsky
Thrill Science, Inc.
Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: Coyotewoods] #2511905
02/17/16 07:49 PM
02/17/16 07:49 PM
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 1,943
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Rank Piano Amateur Offline
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I have toured the Cunningham Piano Factory facility in Philadelphia several times. It is always a fantastic experience--fascinating, informational, and fun too. Even though I have done this tour several times, it is never boring, and I always learn new things--and get to meet the extremely interesting people who work there. The variety of pianos they work on at Cunningham is inspirational, as are the stories of the craftsmen who work in the facility.

I have also toured the Mason & Hamlin factory in Haverhill. It was absolutely fascinating, and well worth the trip.

You are guaranteed a new and deeper appreciation of your piano if you take a tour like these!




Last edited by Rank Piano Amateur; 02/17/16 07:55 PM.
Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: Coyotewoods] #2511909
02/17/16 07:56 PM
02/17/16 07:56 PM
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Coyotewoods Offline OP
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This is all so exciting. I'd love to tour a piano factory someday, and good suggestion about touring a components factory. Aren't some soundboards still make in the States? I think I read that one company makes them in Ohio.

Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: Coyotewoods] #2511911
02/17/16 08:05 PM
02/17/16 08:05 PM
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Coyotewoods Offline OP
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You can tour the old Conover piano factory in Oregon, Illinois. The lower level is a shopping mall, the third floor is completely abandoned, and there are ghosts.

http://www.conoverghosts.com

So don't forget about the old abandoned piano factories for your next tour. :o))

Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: Coyotewoods] #2511917
02/17/16 08:32 PM
02/17/16 08:32 PM
Joined: May 2001
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Parsonsfield, ME (orig. Nahant...
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We love ghosts, and pianos!


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Find Us On:
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My Keyboards:
Estonia L-190 w/ ProRecord, Yamaha P-80, Harpsichord (kit), Clavichord (kit), Bilhorn Telescope Organ c 1880
-------------------------
It's Fun To Play the Piano ... PLEASE Pass It On!
Please invite every piano enthusiast you know to join our piano forums!


Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: Coyotewoods] #2511931
02/17/16 09:45 PM
02/17/16 09:45 PM
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Richfield Springs, New York
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Eric Gloo Offline
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I toured the Mason & Hamlin factory in Haverhill, Massachusetts. Unfortunately, the date was September 11, 2001.


Eric Gloo
Piano Technician
Certified Dampp-Chaser Installer
Richfield Springs, New York
Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: Coyotewoods] #2511943
02/17/16 10:11 PM
02/17/16 10:11 PM
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Coyotewoods Offline OP
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Here's a great article on the history of Chicago piano factories but especially the Steger building:

http://www.cityofchicago.org/conten...rvation/Publications/Steger_Building.pdf

It was published a few years ago by Chicago's landmark preservation office. It's an interesting read.

Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: Coyotewoods] #2512034
02/18/16 07:43 AM
02/18/16 07:43 AM
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I toured the Steingraeber factory last June. It was not a day that they were usually giving tours, but the sales associate was very gracious and took us through all four floors of the factory, as well as letting us play the historic pianos in the salons of the main Steingaeber home. It was a great experience!

Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: Coyotewoods] #2512556
02/19/16 03:55 PM
02/19/16 03:55 PM
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I just noticed the Mason & Hamlin piano factory tour ad in the sidebar. Was that always there?

I'd so love to tour all the factories mentioned in this thread someday. Wouldn't that be a fun focus for a Piano World get together someday? Piano factory tours with local wines and cheese?

Of course, I can barely afford to drive across town to get my piano tomorrow, but I can sure dream!

Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: Coyotewoods] #2513386
02/21/16 08:53 PM
02/21/16 08:53 PM
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I toured a workshop!

I got married in Seattle a couple years ago and spent a few days there. I went out to visit Darrell Fandrich's showroom in rural Washington and it was a real treat. He and his wife were super nice. His workshop is in an adjoining barn on his property.


Whizbang [Linked Image]
amateur ragtime pianist
https://www.youtube.com/user/Aeschala
Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: Coyotewoods] #2513388
02/21/16 08:57 PM
02/21/16 08:57 PM
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Coyotewoods Offline OP
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Wow, beautiful pianos made in rural Washington, what a treat that must have been. I'm exploring his website right now. Thanks for sharing!

Re: Have you ever toured a piano factory? [Re: Coyotewoods] #2513407
02/21/16 09:57 PM
02/21/16 09:57 PM
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Anybody in the Puget Sound area interested in getting a group together to visit Darrell Fandrich's shop?

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