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Hi, all. I’m hoping someone out there can help with this question about a used Yamaha U3 I am considering purchasing. The asking price, at what I believe is a respectable piano dealer here in CT, is $5990. The piano definitely looks and sounds great, though I am certainly no piano expert. I’ve been told the piano was made in 1976 and has an odd serial number because it was destined for the Taiwanese market. The serial number, which is listed just to the right of the “U3” stamp, is 13671. There is no letter prefix. I’ve looked all over the web for information about this type of serial number, but no luck. The person I’m dealing with does seem like a decent fellow but I am a trust-but-verify type of person. Does the serial number story make sense and does the price seem reasonable for a 45 year old refurbished piano? I’ve checked other sites and found similar U3s for a similar price but none of them have this odd 5-digit serial. Thanks in advance for any help you can provide.

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According to this site, a Yamaha piano with serial number 13671 would have been built in Japan in 1932. And, if so, it would not have been produced for the US market.

https://www.thepianoshopbath.co.uk/yamaha-pianos/yamaha-piano-serial-numbers/

Last edited by Carey; 08/26/21 03:27 PM.

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Thank you for that response. So that’s a head scratcher. I don’t understand why a dealer would say the piano was made in 76 if it was actually built in 32. The piano (including under the hood) is in beautiful condition.

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Would it be terribly awkward to ask the seller how he knows? I doubt that he'd mind giving you a website link or showing you some relevant paperwork, especially if it helped make a sale.

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Originally Posted by YTF2020
Would it be terribly awkward to ask the seller how he knows? I doubt that he'd mind giving you a website link or showing you some relevant paperwork, especially if it helped make a sale.
Yes - ask.


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Funny you should mention that. I specifically asked the guy “ Are you aware of a website that will provide details for that serial number?” He responded by saying, “According to our records, this piano was built in 1976.” I guess I’ll need to be a bit more direct and specifically ask about the records he’s looking at and how can I confirm the accuracy of that date.

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Originally Posted by gmgisme01
Thank you for that response. So that’s a head scratcher. I don’t understand why a dealer would say the piano was made in 76 if it was actually built in 32. The piano (including under the hood) is in beautiful condition.

Since the rest of the situation is not adding up, it might be reasonable to assume that what's (still) represented on the piano is not in fact the full serial number.

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If someone could verify exactly when Yamaha started producing U3's that would help.


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Do the hammers look 45 years old or 89 years old? That is, if they are still original.


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Interesting thought mcontraveos. If I knew how to do so, I’d attach the photo I took of the serial number. It looks legitimate (or at least it looks similar in terms of font/size to the numbers I’ve seen on other u3s and I don’t see any signs of tampering).

In regards to the hammers, I wouldn’t know the difference between a 45 year old and 89 old hammer.

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The oldest U3 I have ever tuned was from about 1953. It had a tag on the inside with the Japanese date, the year of the Meiji empire.


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Thanks everyone for your help and suggestions. I will definitely pursue further information from the dealer.

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I have a chart that converts Taiwan piano serial numbers to Japan ones. It looks like that piano was from 1976.

[img]https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/p...DpudCuy6jW6hXjA=w978-h1304-no?authuser=0[/img]


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