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Used Yamaha U3 Question
#3009045 08/01/20 08:24 AM
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I have seen several websites advertising used Yamaha U3 pianos for sell in the price range of 4000 to 6000 dollar price rage.These piano are 40 to 50 years old.Is this the going rate for a piano this old?Also would it be wise to buy a piano this old at these prices?

Thanks

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Re: Used Yamaha U3 Question
wildboys #3009050 08/01/20 08:43 AM
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I'm gonna chip in here and say I don't know the answer. The Yamaha U3 is an excellent design and it's popular because it's so good. It used to be the first choice if you were looking for an excellent piano on a budget, but with the improvements that have happened over the last 20 years, the prices have increased. That and the economy is different, the exchange rates are different, everything is different. The so-called 'grey-market' Yamahas have been also been a popular choice with a lot of the piano buying public over the past 20 years. As the prices of new Yamahas have increased, so have the prices of the used instruments. Is it wise to buy a 50 year old piano for 4000 to 6000 dollars? I don't know. That's quite old. My gut tells me that it's too much money and that you'd be better to shop for a new piano, perhaps a Yamaha B3, or a Hailun, or a Ritmuller, or a Pearl River, and not worry so much about the name but try to find the best piano that fits your budget. Also in that price range there are some excellent digital pianos, and I'd stick my neck out here and say that the best of Roland, Yamaha and Kawai digitals are better than buying a 50 year old upright, but it depends on so many things.

Do you have a piano technician you can ask? That's probably the best place to start. Sometimes a 50 year old piano can be perfectly fine, but other times they can have a legion of problems.

Re: Used Yamaha U3 Question
wildboys #3009057 08/01/20 08:59 AM
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I bought my 33 year old U3 for 3850 dollar, in great condition except for a couple of broken return spring cords. I think you should aim for something like that if you want a u3.

4000-6000 for a 50 year old u3 seems too expensive to me, maybe except for when it is completely re-strung or something like that. I much prefer an u3 over a b3, but a new or young b3 starts looking pretty attractive compared to a piano of that age.

A digital is not an acoustic, but trying say a kawai nv5 which is in that same price range surely couldn't hurt.

Re: Used Yamaha U3 Question
wildboys #3009065 08/01/20 09:43 AM
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Oh I think the NV5 isn't a good choice. The Yamaha NU1 is much better! Sounds like your experience is a good one and you like your piano.

Yeah a digital is not an acoustic and there is, to be fair, always something lost by having a digital instead of an acoustic. It's always going to be a trade off. Sometimes the digital action is better than the acoustic in terms of repetition, but the clarity of the acoustic and the fact it's a live sound, and you're actually in control of the hammer, is something that isn't quite there on a digital yet although it's getting very close. There might always be that slight sense of being one step removed from the sound on a digital.

Anyway I probably shouldn't have brought up digitals since the OP wasn't asking about digital v acoustic so my bad sorry.

Re: Used Yamaha U3 Question
wildboys #3009073 08/01/20 09:57 AM
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You don’t indicate what location or currency you’re talking about.
In the US, that’s what I’d expect to pay for a 15-20 year old one from a private party with no warranty.


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Re: Used Yamaha U3 Question
terminaldegree #3009161 08/01/20 01:47 PM
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Originally Posted by terminaldegree
You don’t indicate what location or currency you’re talking about.
In the US, that’s what I’d expect to pay for a 15-20 year old one from a private party with no warranty.
Originally Posted by terminaldegree
You don’t indicate what location or currency you’re talking about.
In the US, that’s what I’d expect to pay for a 15-20 year old one from a private party with no warranty.
It is in US currency and comes with a 5 year warranty from a dealer.

Re: Used Yamaha U3 Question
wildboys #3009189 08/01/20 03:34 PM
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Hmm, so I was going to say that I thought those prices were high, but then I poked around Pianomart, and I guess it looks like U3s are routinely advertised in this price range (3-50 y/o). Which surprises me, but there you go.

Re your dealer warranty, that's good. Does the price also include the delivery and first tuning? If so, then maybe that makes it reasonable.

You still should have any used piano evaluated by an independent tech, even ones sold by a dealer.


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Re: Used Yamaha U3 Question
wildboys #3009210 08/01/20 04:38 PM
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If you can stretch your budget to about $7,500, there are a group of brand new 48-52” pianos whose current level of performance I would probably prefer to a 40-50 year old U3.


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Re: Used Yamaha U3 Question
wildboys #3009241 08/01/20 05:57 PM
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Terminaldegree is spot on. If you are considering an used u3, $5-7k should buy you a piano in 10-20 year old range with the dealer’s warranties, free delivery, and free 1st tuning. 40-50year old ones are typically in $3500-4500usd range with all or some of the freebies. The price varies depending on the region.

Last edited by K8KT; 08/01/20 05:59 PM.
Re: Used Yamaha U3 Question
terminaldegree #3009250 08/01/20 06:36 PM
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Originally Posted by terminaldegree
If you can stretch your budget to about $7,500, there are a group of brand new 48-52” pianos whose current level of performance I would probably prefer to a 40-50 year old U3.
I saw some group buys
but I live in Arkansas.All the ones I saw were so far away from my state.I was told between 1800 and 2500 for shipping to where I live.That would cancel out any saving I would receive.If you see a group buy in the $7500 range to Arkansas for a new U3 let me know.The local dealer here offered me a new U3 for $10000.

Re: Used Yamaha U3 Question
wildboys #3009260 08/01/20 07:20 PM
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No, I'm not suggesting a group buy. And, not a Yamaha in my last comment.
$10k for a brand new U3 is a pretty good price.

If you're picky about pianos and can play at all, I wouldn't recommend a group buy. It's going to be an unprepared piano, probably straight from the shipping crate. You want to buy a piano you can try first. That becomes 10 times more important (along with an independent tech inspection, prior to purchase) if you are considering a 40-50 year old used piano, that is possibly gray market.

Doing a google maps search, it looks like there are roughly 10 piano dealers that pop up in Arkansas. Or, depending on where you are in the state, there are probably more options in some greater concentration in St. Louis or the DFW metroplex.


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Re: Used Yamaha U3 Question
wildboys #3009413 Yesterday at 08:43 AM
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These are my thoughts. Buying used acoustic pianos is different from buying new. With a used acoustic condition is paramount. Conditions and care, wear and tear can vary widely with 40 to 50 year old uprights. Brand new U3s are an excellent choice. 40 to 50 year old U3s can still be wonderful or can be a money pit. You need a good independent piano technician to help guide you to buy one that can deliver good performance. Pricing can be a challenge but Larry Fine does have a depreciation schedule to help. It becomes a bit difficult if the older pianos have had some parts replaced. Best Wishes on your search.


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Re: Used Yamaha U3 Question
j&j #3009436 Yesterday at 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by j&j
These are my thoughts. Buying used acoustic pianos is different from buying new. With a used acoustic condition is paramount. Conditions and care, wear and tear can vary widely with 40 to 50 year old uprights. Brand new U3s are an excellent choice. 40 to 50 year old U3s can still be wonderful or can be a money pit. You need a good independent piano technician to help guide you to buy one that can deliver good performance. Pricing can be a challenge but Larry Fine does have a depreciation schedule to help. It becomes a bit difficult if the older pianos have had some parts replaced. Best Wishes on your search.
Dealer says it is in mint condition as new.He said I can refuse delivery once it is set up in my home and I don't like sound and fill of the piano.It is a 1987 model U3. I hope that was a good year.

Re: Used Yamaha U3 Question
wildboys #3009442 Yesterday at 10:22 AM
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Originally Posted by wildboys
Originally Posted by terminaldegree
You don’t indicate what location or currency you’re talking about.
In the US, that’s what I’d expect to pay for a 15-20 year old one from a private party with no warranty.
Originally Posted by terminaldegree
You don’t indicate what location or currency you’re talking about.
In the US, that’s what I’d expect to pay for a 15-20 year old one from a private party with no warranty.
It is in US currency and comes with a 5 year warranty from a dealer.
Unless I missed it, I'm still not clear how much the 1987 U3 you are considering is selling for. $4K or $6K? Rather than waiting for the piano to be delivered to your home, it would be wise to pay an independent tiano tech/tuner to evaluate the piano for you at the dealership to determine its actual condition. Also try to find out from the dealer exactly what work, other than tunings, has been done to it over the years. And yes, $10K for a new U3 is a very good deal.


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