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1869 Steinway Concert Grand #2778407
11/05/18 12:55 PM
11/05/18 12:55 PM
Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 51
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edferris Online content OP
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I uploaded the photos to the Picture Gallery, as instructed by Forum Help.
Style 3 or Style 4, they used both designations in that year for the Fancy case.
As you can see, it was a different color when new and now shows the second-rate mahogany they put under the original stain, which I think was Red Mahogany. The other side of the fallboard looks like that color.
Rebuilt in 1981 by Groff -- I've heard the name but don't know where and when he worked. The dealer says it's been sitting on his showroom floor ever since and he has tuned it twice in twenty-five years. It's in tune now, after the move.
The powerful bass (the instrument is 8'4") reveals cadences in the Beethoven Sonatas I've never heard before.

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Re: 1869 Steinway Concert Grand [Re: edferris] #2778743
11/06/18 12:56 PM
11/06/18 12:56 PM
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edferris Online content OP
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Actually, I now think it is a Flame Mahogany finish that has faded on the exposed surfaces. The grain is not very good, but I can see where they took the trouble to match it across the fallboard.
The una corda pedal doesn't work. Serves me right for spouting off about how a good pianist will get the effect with his touch rather than the pedal.

Re: 1869 Steinway Concert Grand [Re: edferris] #2779503
11/09/18 09:28 AM
11/09/18 09:28 AM
Joined: Jun 2011
Posts: 457
Chesterfield. MA
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Craig Hair Online content
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Ed,
That sure looks like rosewood to me. Rose tends to lighten with UV exposure.
There does seem to be a different aesthetic governing the bass register in that era.
Pianists seem to like the added clarity of left hand voicing.
Beautiful piano. Any pictures of the action?

Be well,
Craig


Craig Hair
Hampshire Piano
Chesterfield, MA
Conservative Piano Restoration
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Re: 1869 Steinway Concert Grand [Re: edferris] #2779523
11/09/18 10:38 AM
11/09/18 10:38 AM
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edferris Online content OP
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No, I haven't had the action out, and I don't want to try it. The dealer's tech said it had been replaced with a modern double-escapement action.
The top six notes on the bass bridge are triple-strung. Perhaps all concert pianos have that feature, I don't know.

Re: 1869 Steinway Concert Grand [Re: edferris] #2779576
11/09/18 03:06 PM
11/09/18 03:06 PM
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violarules Offline
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I like the look of the spalting in the wood around the rim. It actually might be spalted walnut, not rosewood or mahogany.

It sat on a dealer's floor for over thirty years? I didn't think things like that happened. At least it has 88 keys.

How does the treble sound with no capo bar?

Last edited by violarules; 11/09/18 03:08 PM.
Re: 1869 Steinway Concert Grand [Re: edferris] #2779627
11/09/18 06:41 PM
11/09/18 06:41 PM
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edferris Online content OP
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I looked at a woodworking book today and it said that the black lines were characteristic of rosewood. So I was right the first time, it's an ebony piano that has been stripped. I still prefer it to a black box.
I didn't notice that there's no capo d'astro! The treble is bright and resonant. It would be "plinky" if it were not so full-bodied, it does have those high overtones.

Re: 1869 Steinway Concert Grand [Re: edferris] #2779630
11/09/18 06:51 PM
11/09/18 06:51 PM
Joined: Jun 2003
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Oakland
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It looks like rosewood to me. Definitely not a stripped ebony piano — they would not have matched the grain if it were ebony.


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Re: 1869 Steinway Concert Grand [Re: BDB] #2779650
11/09/18 08:32 PM
11/09/18 08:32 PM
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violarules Offline
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Originally Posted by BDB
It looks like rosewood to me. Definitely not a stripped ebony piano — they would not have matched the grain if it were ebony.


Agreed. I highly doubt Steinway would have covered up that figured grain and spalting with an ebony finish.

Re: 1869 Steinway Concert Grand [Re: edferris] #2779651
11/09/18 08:33 PM
11/09/18 08:33 PM
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violarules Offline
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Originally Posted by edferris
I looked at a woodworking book today and it said that the black lines were characteristic of rosewood. So I was right the first time, it's an ebony piano that has been stripped. I still prefer it to a black box.
I didn't notice that there's no capo d'astro! The treble is bright and resonant. It would be "plinky" if it were not so full-bodied, it does have those high overtones.


Those "black lines" are called spalting. My dad owns a sawmill. That type of grain is highly desirable.

I'm surprised you didn't notice there was no capo bar! Glad you like the sound. How's about making a recording?

Re: 1869 Steinway Concert Grand [Re: violarules] #2779694
11/10/18 02:59 AM
11/10/18 02:59 AM
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Posts: 26,716
Oakland
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Spalting is discoloration due to moisture and fungus. Rosewood has figuration like this without any fungus.


Semipro Tech
Re: 1869 Steinway Concert Grand [Re: edferris] #2781355
11/15/18 02:49 PM
11/15/18 02:49 PM
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edferris Online content OP
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After looking at this ad:
https://www.pianomart.com/buy-a-piano/view?id=34185
it seems that Steinway had no problem in using rosewood with black lines showing.
Assuming that piano wasn't stripped, either.
I'm getting to like the finish, but I've seen better grain on a square piano.
Middle E and E-flat went a little flat, but I was able to bring them up to pitch. The pinblock seems tight; I assume it's the original one since it has the serial number stamped into it.


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