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Smallest baby grand? #2754225
07/27/18 08:02 PM
07/27/18 08:02 PM
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Benton Tn
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oth47 Offline OP
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It seems that the Gulbransen Pinafore is the smallest acoustic piano,at least that I can find..who made or makes the smallest baby grand?

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Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: oth47] #2754229
07/27/18 08:49 PM
07/27/18 08:49 PM
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New York
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Smallest, or smallest worth having? grin

It's often said that unless you get at least a medium size grand, you're better off getting a good upright, unless all you care about is a piece of furniture.

I agree about the principle, but not about the size limit. I've had two very small grands, and while I didn't like the first one enough to keep it (traded it in for the second one), I thought it was still a worthwhile grand.

The first one was a Yamaha that was about 4'11. The second, which I still have and LOVE, is a Kawaii that is 5'1" or 5'2". (I don't know the model numbers. The Kawai might be a GE-20.) Of course it can't compete with the larger ones, but it's a terrific piano, and, in terms of what I look for in a piano, far superior to any upright I've ever come across.

I also once had a Steinway "S," which is 5'1". It was a beauty, in every respect, but eventually I found the lack of power in the treble to be frustrating.
There isn't such an issue with the Kawai.

Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: oth47] #2754230
07/27/18 08:55 PM
07/27/18 08:55 PM
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Like Mark_C said, the smallest baby grand I've ever seen is 4'11", or 4'10", depending on whether or not you include the lid overhang as part of the measurement.

I have heard of a "petite" baby grand, but don't know if they are smaller than 4'11" or not.

The small community technical college where I work has a 4"11" Chickering baby grand (made by Baldwin in the 1990s) that was donated to the college. To be so small, it sounds pretty good, particularly the low bass. Our own Dell Fandrich had a hand in designing that particular model baby grand when he worked for Baldwin back in the day. No wonder it sounds so good. smile

Rick


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Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: oth47] #2754233
07/27/18 08:59 PM
07/27/18 08:59 PM
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Oakland
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I think there were some that were under 4 feet. I recall that Gulbransen made some that fit into a small square case, but was laid out as a grand. I saw a very small Janssen, and one other like it, and they were actually decent pianos for the size.

I guess it was Mathushek, not Gulbransen.

Last edited by BDB; 07/27/18 09:04 PM.

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Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: Mark_C] #2754244
07/27/18 09:56 PM
07/27/18 09:56 PM
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New York
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
....The second, which I still have and LOVE, is a Kawaii that is 5'1" or 5'2". (I don't know the model numbers. The Kawai might be a GE-20.) Of course it can't compete with the larger ones, but it's a terrific piano, and, in terms of what I look for in a piano, far superior to any upright I've ever come across.....

Pardon the spelling mistake where I doubled the "i" in Kawai. grin

BTW, I saw some stuff on here about Sauter pianos -- maybe an old thread, I'm not sure -- and the brand seemed very interesting, so, just to see if maybe I might consider upgrading from the small Kawai, even though I really like it, I went and looked up the prices for small Sauter grands.

They seem to make a real nice 5'3" grand.
Price: $87,000

It made me feel very glad that I love the Kawai. ha

Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: oth47] #2754276
07/28/18 05:01 AM
07/28/18 05:01 AM
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Philadelphia/South Jersey
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The smallest production piano (and the cheapest) I have seen is the Kimball "La Petite". It was 4'5" long and it sounded like it.


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Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: BDB] #2754288
07/28/18 07:21 AM
07/28/18 07:21 AM
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Benton Tn
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Thanks for posting that link,some good reading there.

Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: Rich Galassini] #2754308
07/28/18 09:26 AM
07/28/18 09:26 AM
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Posts: 604
New Hampshire
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New Hampshire
Known in the vernacular as a "runt grand"

Will Truitt


fine grand piano custom rebuilding, piano technician and tuner
Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: Mark_C] #2754309
07/28/18 09:32 AM
07/28/18 09:32 AM
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Posts: 119
USA
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
Smallest, or smallest worth having? grin

It's often said that unless you get at least a medium size grand, you're better off getting a good upright, unless all you care about is a piece of furniture.



I will have to disagree. Even the smallest grand will have a superior action to an upright, simply because of physics. So while a large upright may produce more bass and more volume, a grand will always have the better touch.


2017 Boston GP-163 PE II
Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: oth47] #2754319
07/28/18 10:16 AM
07/28/18 10:16 AM
Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 3,598
Atlanta, GA
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Schoenhut, the toy piano maker, actually produced a few working mini grands for a couple of years. They had 2 models if I remember, around 4 octaves and less than 4' long. There are YouTube videos if you look for them.


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Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: BDB] #2754321
07/28/18 10:23 AM
07/28/18 10:23 AM
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Posts: 604
New Hampshire
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New Hampshire
Twenty plus years ago I rebuilt a CF Stein grand that looks exactly like your Mathushek, BDB. To the last detail.

Will Truitt


fine grand piano custom rebuilding, piano technician and tuner
Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: oth47] #2754323
07/28/18 10:26 AM
07/28/18 10:26 AM
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Posts: 604
New Hampshire
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In terms of hybrid scaling using Paulello or Pure Sound wire, these small pianos greatly improve in the bass and tenor areas.

Will Truitt


fine grand piano custom rebuilding, piano technician and tuner
Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: oth47] #2754379
07/28/18 03:04 PM
07/28/18 03:04 PM
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USA
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Schoenhut makes a 49 key baby grand that is about 3 feet long. Real plate, action, strings, dampers, pedals. I tuned one last month.




Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: oth47] #2754391
07/28/18 03:41 PM
07/28/18 03:41 PM
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Montreal, Canada
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The Wurlitzer butterfly grand (44 note version) was very small:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8qH1zSw_x7Y


What do snowflakes and Chickerings have in common? There are no two exactly alike!
Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: ghostwind] #2754401
07/28/18 04:55 PM
07/28/18 04:55 PM
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Ralphiano Offline
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Originally Posted by ghostwind
Originally Posted by Mark_C
Smallest, or smallest worth having? grin

It's often said that unless you get at least a medium size grand, you're better off getting a good upright, unless all you care about is a piece of furniture.



I will have to disagree. Even the smallest grand will have a superior action to an upright, simply because of physics. So while a large upright may produce more bass and more volume, a grand will always have the better touch.


I agree with the sentiment expressed by ghostwind. I am 3 years into piano, all of it on digital pianos (currently a Casio PX-760). When I get the opportunity to play on a grand, I am seriously hampered by the different feels between the digital and the acoustic grand. So, I purchased a baby (5'0") grand for the benefit of playing and acclimatizing to a real, grand type action. Although my keysticks are shorter than those in a larger grand, this action feels so much closer to a grand than does my digital.

As for tone, I was aware before buying that shorter pianos, all other things equal, will have compromised tone. However, along the way to my ultimate purchase, I pursued a 4'11" Young Chang PG 150. While considering it, I searched out all the YouTube videos featuring the G 150 or PG 150 and listened to them for their tone quality. While many of them had very suppressed sound quality, quite a few of them sounded surprisingly nice and would certainly be pianos I would enjoy playiing. So, I learned that short pianos can be capable of satisfying sound to one whose priority is in the playability more than the sound output.

In the end, though, I stumbled upon a very inexpensive, Apollo 5' baby grand. Although it was somewhat out of tune, I could tell it made nice sound, and the action, though needing maintenance, closely mimics the grands I have played.

If I remember correctly the G 150 is the pre-Del Fandrich and the PG 150 is the post Del Fandrich iteration of Young Chang's 4'11" piano. Unfortunately, I did not distinguish between PG 150s and the older G150s while listening to the YouTube videos. I'm venturing a guess that the PG 150s were the ones producing the nicer tones that I noticed.

In any event, there are very good reasons to have a 5' grand. In my case, a modestly nice tone was sufficient to make the move into grand piano action worthwhile, given the space and financial constraints that governed my purchase.

Last edited by Ralphiano; 07/28/18 04:58 PM.

Ralph

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Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: Rich Galassini] #2754491
07/29/18 09:17 AM
07/29/18 09:17 AM
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Upper Middle Tennessee
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Originally Posted by Rich Galassini
The smallest production piano (and the cheapest) I have seen is the Kimball "La Petite". It was 4'5" long and it sounded like it.


I hear ya. Kimball was a piano that was always frustrating to me as a technician. Most seemed like if they had just taken a few extra steps in the construction and quality department, they could have been much nicer pianos. The shop I worked for years ago rebuilt a 5'-9" (or similar size, don't remember exactly) and to be honest, that thing turned into a pretty nice piano.

Unfortunately, the "La Petite" and similar pianos are one reason electronic keyboards are so popular.

Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: oth47] #2754533
07/29/18 01:48 PM
07/29/18 01:48 PM
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Maryland/DC/No. VA
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I believe there are a couple of manufactures making 145cm grands. That comes out to about 4'9".


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Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: oth47] #2754578
07/29/18 06:56 PM
07/29/18 06:56 PM
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Benton Tn
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I found a few of the little Wurlitzer baby grands on ebay..pricey lil fellers.And too far away..

Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: oth47] #2755451
08/02/18 03:12 PM
08/02/18 03:12 PM
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Benton Tn
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I found a 44 note Wurlitzer butterfly..naturally,it's in California.There's a 77 note butterfly near Memphis..found a 77 noter a couple hours away and dirt cheap..of course it was gone.

Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: Bob] #2761427
08/27/18 08:00 PM
08/27/18 08:00 PM
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Benton Tn
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I watched 2 videos of the Schoenhut 49 key piano..one sounded like a coffee can full of dimes,but it was amazing what music came out of the other.

Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: oth47] #2761469
08/28/18 03:55 AM
08/28/18 03:55 AM
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Germany
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Edelweiss supposedly builds the smallest acoustic grand; the Sygnet G50. I saw Edelweiss instruments a few years ago at the Musikmesse; they had only 85 keys. But a grand piano is a grand piano. And they also advertised in the Piano Buyer.

https://www.edelweisspianos.com/ranges/g50/


Everything is possible, and nothing is sure.
Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: oth47] #2761521
08/28/18 10:59 AM
08/28/18 10:59 AM
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Chesterfield. MA
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This is the smallest real grand piano I have ever seen. As best I can tell, it is a Kramer "Kewpie"; made by Kelso. It is 48" long and 45" wide. It has a standard grand action and ivory keys. We hope to get to rebuild this one someday; we are just so curious.

http://forum.pianoworld.com/ubbthreads.php/galleries/2761519.html


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Hampshire Piano
Chesterfield, MA
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Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: oth47] #2761574
08/28/18 06:01 PM
08/28/18 06:01 PM
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Posts: 57
Benton Tn
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I like that Kramer..that name is on a list of smaller pianos that I'm writing down..I keep finding names I didn't know made the small pianos.Obviously,if I manage to gather up one of each,I'll have to find a bigger house.

Re: Smallest baby grand? [Re: oth47] #2765749
09/15/18 06:59 PM
09/15/18 06:59 PM
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NY, Manhattan and Dumbo/Brookl...
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I agree the Kramer is cute. After your elaborate restoration, it may end up sounding better than the large grands in the background....The SB grain seems not perfectly perpendicular to the ribs, or is this just the photo? If real, is there any rationale behind this?


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