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Trouble at M&H?
#2708095 01/24/18 02:29 PM
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I've had two technicians out recently work on my 1998 M&H model A.

I asked both what they think about the current M&H pianos. The first said, "I don't know, something is going on." He mentioned that they had changed plate manufacturers and that one of the local piano dealers (who is very well respected) stopped carrying them.

The second said that WNG may be going out of business soon, and that he wasn't sure if M&H would make it. He hinted that the problems may be with Pianodisc, which owns both WNG and M&H I believe.

Has anyone else heard anything? Would be a shame if M&H went out of business.

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Re: Trouble at M&H?
asb37 #2708126 01/24/18 04:15 PM
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That makes me curious too, and concerned. I have no inside information. My tech is the regional M&H representative and has a strong relationship with them. We talked about M&H Saturday, and he didn't say anything. We talked about the price of a new M&H BB and how M&H offers incentives to sell pianos.

From another angle, last year when he ordered my new WNG action for my S&S B I had to wait a long time to get the parts due to the factory backlog on orders, so I'd hope WNG itself is doing well.

Re: Trouble at M&H?
asb37 #2708131 01/24/18 04:26 PM
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Good grief! I hope this is not true because as a piano rebuilder, I don't want to go back to having to use wooden action parts.

Re: Trouble at M&H?
asb37 #2708132 01/24/18 04:26 PM
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Good grief! I hope this is not true because as a piano rebuilder, I don't want to go back to having to use wooden action parts.

Re: Trouble at M&H?
GC13 #2708133 01/24/18 04:27 PM
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Originally Posted by GC13


From another angle, last year when he ordered my new WNG action for my S&S B I had to wait a long time to get the parts due to the factory backlog on orders, so I'd hope WNG itself is doing well.

There are scores on techs on this site that swear by WNG action components and say they won't install anything else. I think they would be pretty upset if WNG disappeared - moreso than is M&H disappeared. But I suppose WNG could be sold off and continue to run even if that did happen.

Re: Trouble at M&H?
ando #2708135 01/24/18 04:31 PM
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Originally Posted by ando
Originally Posted by GC13


From another angle, last year when he ordered my new WNG action for my S&S B I had to wait a long time to get the parts due to the factory backlog on orders, so I'd hope WNG itself is doing well.

There are scores on techs on this site that swear by WNG action components and say they won't install anything else. I think they would be pretty upset if WNG disappeared - moreso than is M&H disappeared. But I suppose WNG could be sold off and continue to run even if that did happen.


Personally, I'd hope M&H itself could be sold off as well. We don't need another "Baldwin" story.

Re: Trouble at M&H?
asb37 #2708142 01/24/18 04:49 PM
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What exactly happened to Baldwin? There is a Baldwin Web site dated 2018 but only a single grand piano listed among their products.
Did they completely shut down, or was the name sold to an overseas manufacturer?


Colin Dunn
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Re: Trouble at M&H?
Colin Dunn #2708149 01/24/18 05:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Colin Dunn
What exactly happened to Baldwin? There is a Baldwin Web site dated 2018 but only a single grand piano listed among their products.
Did they completely shut down, or was the name sold to an overseas manufacturer?

http://www.baldwinpiano.com/Products/Pianos/Grand.aspx

Last I knew was that Baldwin is still American owned (Gibson) but produces their pianos in China. Afaik, that's still true.



“Sometimes I can only groan, and suffer,
and pour out my despair at the piano.”

-Frederic Chopin
Re: Trouble at M&H?
asb37 #2708150 01/24/18 05:06 PM
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I do not have any insider information, but I did have some long conversations with the Mason & Hamlin/WNG people at the PTG Convention this past summer. They said they were surprised by the high demand for the WNG parts and were catching up on orders. Schools and institutions love them. The booth was always crowded with technicians asking questions and wanting to order parts and tools. I know that many of our clients place Mason & Hamlin and Steinway in the same high category. They seem to be doing well.


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Re: Trouble at M&H?
asb37 #2708152 01/24/18 05:15 PM
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I too would be surprised if WNG went under. Their stuff is popular, even for non-M&H pianos. In fact, if it weren't so closely associated these days with M&H, I wonder if it might be even more readily adopted, perhaps by more manufacturers. In other words, I think it's a viable company.

Operating a piano manufacturer in a competitive market is a little more dicey. It'd be a shame if M&H shut down. Choice is always good for consumers.



“Sometimes I can only groan, and suffer,
and pour out my despair at the piano.”

-Frederic Chopin
Re: Trouble at M&H?
asb37 #2708155 01/24/18 05:20 PM
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Also, I'm gonna remain skeptical for now. Unaffiliated 3rd parties can read the tea leaves, so to speak, and draw the wrong conclusions or hunches.

This is the first time I've even heard a rumor about M&H struggling.
Curious if anyone else has heard anything more reliable (no offense to the OP).



“Sometimes I can only groan, and suffer,
and pour out my despair at the piano.”

-Frederic Chopin
Re: Trouble at M&H?
Retsacnal #2708165 01/24/18 05:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Retsacnal
Originally Posted by Colin Dunn
What exactly happened to Baldwin? There is a Baldwin Web site dated 2018 but only a single grand piano listed among their products.
Did they completely shut down, or was the name sold to an overseas manufacturer?

http://www.baldwinpiano.com/Products/Pianos/Grand.aspx

Last I knew was that Baldwin is still American owned (Gibson) but produces their pianos in China. Afaik, that's still true.


Why do they still show the artist grands on the 2018 website? Is someone still making an SD10?

Re: Trouble at M&H?
Joseph Fleetwood #2708174 01/24/18 06:12 PM
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Originally Posted by joe80
Originally Posted by Retsacnal
Originally Posted by Colin Dunn
What exactly happened to Baldwin? There is a Baldwin Web site dated 2018 but only a single grand piano listed among their products.
Did they completely shut down, or was the name sold to an overseas manufacturer?

http://www.baldwinpiano.com/Products/Pianos/Grand.aspx

Last I knew was that Baldwin is still American owned (Gibson) but produces their pianos in China. Afaik, that's still true.


Why do they still show the artist grands on the 2018 website? Is someone still making an SD10?

That question has come up here before, and one answer posted by an industry consultant was that they were still listed for the benefit of dealers who had these models present in their old new-stock. That seemed dubious at the time, given the length of time since they've been produced, and even more so at this juncture (now ten years).

Anyway, given the above, I have a standing offer to buy a new SF-10 with a non-black finish (and non-white, non-red and non-lucite, given some recent posts wink ), should anyone still have one in stock. No one has taken me up on my offer; at the same time, I'm starting to wonder if they were ever made in anything besides black.

I've even posted that I'd consider an L, if someone has one in old new-stock with a wood-grained finish. But, alas, have heard from no one.

I've also heard it said that the factory remains ready to gear up for custom production (or words to that effect).




“Sometimes I can only groan, and suffer,
and pour out my despair at the piano.”

-Frederic Chopin
Re: Trouble at M&H?
asb37 #2708178 01/24/18 06:20 PM
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About a week ago, the site only showed one piano. Must have hit the site right when they were doing maintenance.


Colin Dunn
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Re: Trouble at M&H?
asb37 #2708195 01/24/18 06:57 PM
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Come back home Baldwin, come back home ...


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Re: Trouble at M&H?
Colin Dunn #2708204 01/24/18 07:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Colin Dunn
What exactly happened to Baldwin?


Baldwin is a "ghost" make -- like Knabe. Just an old and famous name used on generic Asian pianos.


-- J.S.

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Re: Trouble at M&H?
asb37 #2708252 01/24/18 10:44 PM
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Dear friends:

Speaking of the rumours about trouble in Haverhill - my dislike of Bruce Clark pianos and, in particular, their creator, has been so oft-stated that to say anything more would have no point whatever. However, our technical community is so united in their admiration of W, N & G action parts that one would hope that this part of the operation might be salvaged. After all, the old, original W, N & G was an entirely independent action maker.

As I near the age of 70, this matter of bad Karma coming back to haunt one seems more and more to be a reality, not just a clever turn of phrase.

Karl Watson

Re: Trouble at M&H?
asb37 #2708267 01/25/18 12:54 AM
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Sorry to the OP, the danger of gossip going rampant, and some "good karma", but I know for a fact that the full Mason & Hamlin, PianoDisc and WNG contingent are still going strong and will all be in attendance at NAMM 2018 this week. Here are two recent "tweets"... by Mason & Hamlin/PianoDisc/WNG on 20 Dec 2017 and by their Exec VP Tom Lagomarsino, who tweeted from the show in Anaheim yesterday 23 Jan 2018 and posted some photos from their booth #398 Lounge 88 in the Anaheim Convention Center - NAMM 2018:

Mason & Hamlin Piano
@MasonHamlin
20 Dec 2017
See us at NAMM 2018 Anaheim, Ca Jan 25-28 booth #391 Lounge 88 the piano hall. #NAMM2018 #MadeinUSA @pianodisc @WNGparts
Mason & Hamlin Piano (@MasonHamlin) on Twitter

2018 Winter NAMM Sunshine! @NAMMShow #pianodisc #MasonHamlin #WNGparts – at Anaheim Convention Center
Mason & Hamlin, PianoDisc and WNG at NAMM 2018

Maybe some of our esteemed PianoWorld colleagues can go visit their booth and give us a report back. I'm sure Kirk Burgett, Tom Lagomarsino, David Honeywell and Cecil Ramirez, will all be there in full force - and would happy to see you and talk to you!


Jason Solomonides
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Re: Trouble at M&H?
asb37 #2708279 01/25/18 01:45 AM
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Thanks - glad to know all is well at M&H - Love their approach to making Pianos - I hope to own a new BB sometime in the future!!

Osho


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Re: Trouble at M&H?
Colin Dunn #2708338 01/25/18 09:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Colin Dunn
What exactly happened to Baldwin? There is a Baldwin Web site dated 2018 but only a single grand piano listed among their products.
Did they completely shut down, or was the name sold to an overseas manufacturer?


Baldwin made some financial moves which got them into trouble resulting in bankruptcy. They were still selling a good number of pianos from what I've heard at the time. But they were already selling a good number of imported pianos with the DH Baldwin name on them. Baldwin itself had acquired several other US piano makers like Wurlitzer. Gibson guitar acquired Baldwin, as has been stated. All US piano production was shut down and moved overseas. Who exactly makes them is unclear based on what I know. Are they made by a 3rd party or in Gibson-owned factories in China seems to be a mystery. They do not make the classic Baldwin designed pianos that made the company great even though they are still listed on their website (I just checked to verify). From what I can tell there are very few dealerships.

Then, there are the rumors mentioned earlier that the factories in the US were moth-balled and it would be conceivable to reintroduce the classic Baldwin designs. I've even heard some say that they can build an SD-10 or SF-10 if you're willing to pay for it, but there's been no proof of that.

Last edited by GC13; 01/25/18 09:31 AM.
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