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It would seem that humidity at these levels for a period of time sufficient to grow this amount of mold would also affect glue joints, action parts (warp shanks affecting hammer alignment), etc. There may be some crown issues once it is at a normal humidity level since the soundboard surely expanded considerably during the high humidity period.

How does it sound?


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Originally Posted by GCPiano
Hi yeah wet / grey market, I think mean the same.

I think you are mistaken.


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Some great responses so far, and from some of our well respected piano professionals/experts.

That said, I'll share a few thoughts on the piano and the pics.

The good... the Yamaha C3 is an outstanding, high-quality instrument with an exceptional reputation.

The bad... yes, that is indeed mold/mildew, but I've seen worse, and much worse.

The good... As others have said, that mold/mildew can be mitigated/rectified to a high degree with some good mold-specific cleaner.

The bad... since there is evidence of mold/mildew due to a high moisture environment at some point, as others have mentioned, there could also be other detrimental/damaging effects from the moisture exposure which may not have manifested itself yet.

My opinion?... if it were me, and I was looking at that same piano as a prospective buyer, and I liked the way it sounded and played, as is, I would not pass on it due to the mold, but would expect a heavily reduced sale price due to the mold.

My opinion part II ( smile )... I would not pay anywhere near the current used market price for that piano, and wouldn't pay much more than a dealer might be willing to pay, which is wholesale or below, and likely way below.

The good... my opinion is worth something.

The bad... it (my opinion) is worth what it cost. smile

Good luck!

Rick


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I'm not philosophically opposed to gray market pianos, but, if I remember correctly, humidity issues is one of the standard concerns with them. This would seem to have suffered more than usual. If it were only on the underside, and superficial, then I wouldn't worry about it too much (but I do see some in the top photo too). What I would worry about, as noted above, is the overall integrity of anything else that might be detrimentally affected by long term exposure to high humidity.


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Originally Posted by PianoWorksATL
What I'm seeing looks treatable, but for the cleaners available to use on a piano, it will likely need multiple cleanings. I would also want it cleaned before coming to your home rather than introduce it to as-is.

It's easy for forget the follow up treatments...out of sight = out of mind, so set some reminders.

I think the mild vinegar and water solution could work well. I often clean sensitive areas of the piano with Murphy's Oil Soap, and wiping off any excess. If you try multiple cleaners, let the surfaces rest and fully dry between applications. You can be more aggressive on the laminate beams and rim than on the soundboard, and will likely need to be because those surfaces are more porous.

Good advice. Just clean the vinegar immediately as it is also a solvent for the glues used in that era of piano

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It looks like the connection between the rib and soundboard has been caulked, hard to tell for sure from the picture.
You can send samples of the mold for analysis to this company. They'll send a report that tells what it is and how to get rid of it. I've used them for mold in home construction projects.


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Wow, thanks everybody for the great responses -- I went out checking a few other pianos for comparison shopping today, so just checked the post right now.

I went back to this dealer and asked him about the mold. He said this is fairly common from gray market piano, they deal with this a lot, and guarantee it won't come back after treatment. He said he's been in market for > 10 years (which is true). So for what it's worth....

In terms of price -- I don't sense a lot of room for bargain -- seems like Yamaha piano is hot commodity right now ( I asked 5-6 dealers, many don't have any at all, others have G2 at this price, and good quality C3s are in 40-60% more). I was told shipping cost has gone up by 30-40%.

I saw a private sale C3, older by 5 years but only cheaper by 10%. Sound a tiny less good as this one (just a little brighter with older hammers), and whether warranty can be transferable is questionable. It's more risk and hassle with private sale, so I was gonna pass.

In terms of how it sounds so far -- this unprepped 1983 C3 sounds really sweet and beautiful. I think when the dealer tunes it, it will sound amazing.

I have taken some more pictures and see if the wise crowd have any more observation. The rest of the piano looks good to my untrained eyes

https://photos.app.goo.gl/t5o62Z8s3XcuQWyw9

https://photos.app.goo.gl/qov6C1kAe35Jff2W9

https://photos.app.goo.gl/yXzjCs7d6HBUCKsG8

https://photos.app.goo.gl/mMMQohJMaPDmXBBC9

https://photos.app.goo.gl/f2BmEvXyC6nxpMsr7

https://photos.app.goo.gl/AyzwW2A3ck71XYAs6

https://photos.app.goo.gl/pPwsy4kFe3koUFZt6

https://photos.app.goo.gl/yJCaURjEqsZz6ap48

I found a 1980s KG2C for 50% less (very competent and good piano), or a 2000 Kawai Rx2 for 20% more. I was thrilled to see the Rx2, but then I tested the C3 again and my heart was moved by C3. The Kawai doesn't move my heart that way. So I may take the risk and put a deposit down and see how it goes

Really appreciate all your thoughts and opinions!!

Last edited by GCPiano; 01/09/22 09:35 PM.

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This all sounds very encouraging! I would be leaning toward the C3 at the dealer's as well.

I played an Rx2 while piano shopping as well. I didn't like the action (but I never like Kawai actions, it's just my own problem I think).

Good luck and keep us posted!


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Originally Posted by GCPiano
Wow, thanks everybody for the great responses -- I went out checking a few other pianos for comparison shopping today, so just checked the post right now.

I went back to this dealer and asked him about the mold. He said this is fairly common from gray market piano, they deal with this a lot, and guarantee it won't come back after treatment. He said he's been in market for > 10 years (which is true). So for what it's worth....

In terms of price -- I don't sense a lot of room for bargain -- seems like Yamaha piano is hot commodity right now ( I asked 5-6 dealers, many don't have any at all, others have G2 at this price, and good quality C3s are in 40-60% more). I was told shipping cost has gone up by 30-40%.

I saw a private sale C3, older by 5 years but only cheaper by 10%. Sound a tiny less good as this one (just a little brighter with older hammers), and whether warranty can be transferable is questionable. It's more risk and hassle with private sale, so I was gonna pass.

In terms of how it sounds so far -- this unprepped 1983 C3 sounds really sweet and beautiful. I think when the dealer tunes it, it will sound amazing.

I have taken some more pictures and see if the wise crowd have any more observation. The rest of the piano looks good to my untrained eyes

https://photos.app.goo.gl/t5o62Z8s3XcuQWyw9

https://photos.app.goo.gl/qov6C1kAe35Jff2W9

https://photos.app.goo.gl/yXzjCs7d6HBUCKsG8

https://photos.app.goo.gl/mMMQohJMaPDmXBBC9

https://photos.app.goo.gl/f2BmEvXyC6nxpMsr7

https://photos.app.goo.gl/AyzwW2A3ck71XYAs6

https://photos.app.goo.gl/pPwsy4kFe3koUFZt6

https://photos.app.goo.gl/yJCaURjEqsZz6ap48

I found a 1980s KG2C for 50% less (very competent and good piano), or a 2000 Kawai Rx2 for 20% more. I was thrilled to see the Rx2, but then I tested the C3 again and my heart was moved by C3. The Kawai doesn't move my heart that way. So I may take the risk and put a deposit down and see how it goes

Really appreciate all your thoughts and opinions!!

I played a grey market Yamaha C3 at a Church a while back, and I was very impressed at how good it sounded and played. I assume it was a grey market piano because it only had two pedals, just like the one in your pics.

If you really like the C3 and you think it is priced fairly, in your own opinion, and you have confidence in the dealer, I would not hesitate to buy the piano, if they agree to clean it up good and remedy the mold problem.

If it turns out to be a mistake, it is not the worst thing that can happen, and you may still get a chance to enjoy the piano for a while. And, a while is all we really have.

All the best, and good luck!

Rick


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ShiroKuro, thanks for your support along the way!


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Thanks Rick

From my brief shopping experience, the C3 in the 70s and early 80s have 2 pedals. C2A in mid 80s have 3 pedals. Interestingly listed at a lot more.

I can't say I have complete faith in the dealer, but they in fact have been around for at least 7 years ( my friend checked out that store in 2015), and they do a lot of gray market pianos

They give 10 yr warranty, so if the soundboard becomes detached, I can at least storm the store angrily. Lol.

So I'd put deposit down, have them service / prep it before I commit.


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Originally Posted by GCPiano
Wow, thanks everybody for the great responses -- I went out checking a few other pianos for comparison shopping today, so just checked the post right now.

I went back to this dealer and asked him about the mold. He said this is fairly common from gray market piano, they deal with this a lot, and guarantee it won't come back after treatment. He said he's been in market for > 10 years (which is true). So for what it's worth....

In terms of price -- I don't sense a lot of room for bargain -- seems like Yamaha piano is hot commodity right now ( I asked 5-6 dealers, many don't have any at all, others have G2 at this price, and good quality C3s are in 40-60% more). I was told shipping cost has gone up by 30-40%.

I saw a private sale C3, older by 5 years but only cheaper by 10%. Sound a tiny less good as this one (just a little brighter with older hammers), and whether warranty can be transferable is questionable. It's more risk and hassle with private sale, so I was gonna pass.

In terms of how it sounds so far -- this unprepped 1983 C3 sounds really sweet and beautiful. I think when the dealer tunes it, it will sound amazing.

I have taken some more pictures and see if the wise crowd have any more observation. The rest of the piano looks good to my untrained eyes

https://photos.app.goo.gl/t5o62Z8s3XcuQWyw9

https://photos.app.goo.gl/qov6C1kAe35Jff2W9

https://photos.app.goo.gl/yXzjCs7d6HBUCKsG8

https://photos.app.goo.gl/mMMQohJMaPDmXBBC9

https://photos.app.goo.gl/f2BmEvXyC6nxpMsr7

https://photos.app.goo.gl/AyzwW2A3ck71XYAs6

https://photos.app.goo.gl/pPwsy4kFe3koUFZt6

https://photos.app.goo.gl/yJCaURjEqsZz6ap48

I found a 1980s KG2C for 50% less (very competent and good piano), or a 2000 Kawai Rx2 for 20% more. I was thrilled to see the Rx2, but then I tested the C3 again and my heart was moved by C3. The Kawai doesn't move my heart that way. So I may take the risk and put a deposit down and see how it goes

Really appreciate all your thoughts and opinions!!

There is what appears to be a crack in the bridge at one of the speaking length side pins in the treble section.

[Linked Image]

Here is the direct link so you can zoom in further on my snipped image -

http://forum.pianoworld.com//gallery/42/full/15882.png

Last edited by blueviewlaguna.; 01/10/22 12:08 AM.

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Thanks... Hmm... I read quickly on pianobuyer, if the crack is hairline, then it can be fixed easily? I'd talk to the dealer and definitely pay attention to the tone of that note

Hmm... i'm having second thoughts... Maybe should go for the 2000 kawai and have much less trouble to worry about


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Originally Posted by GCPiano
Thanks... Hmm... I read quickly on pianobuyer, if the crack is hairline, then it can be fixed easily? I'd talk to the dealer and definitely pay attention to the tone of that note

Hmm... i'm having second thoughts... Maybe should go for the 2000 kawai and have much less trouble to worry about


Have you contracted with an independent piano tech? You need to have them inspect the piano rather than just seeing what the dealer has to say. If you need to find a qualified tech, you can search by zip code at PTG.org

If you do not get this piano, I hope you will not settle for a piano that will not be a problem but only elicits a feeling of ‘it will do’. You will own this piano for a long time, so you should buy a piano that gives you pleasure and that you look forward to playing,


"Music, rich, full of feeling, not soulless, is like a crystal on which the sun falls and brings forth from it a whole rainbow" - F. Chopin
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Be certain that you like the action on the Kawai grands, because they are quite different from the Yamaha's all-wood action.

(Bias alert: I don't like the Kawai action at all and very much prefer the Yamaha action, but it's definitely personal preference)


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Kawaii actions do tend to feel different from Yamaha actions, but it has nothing to do with wood. In general, Kawaii actions have been heavier, but I don't know if that is still the case.

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Originally Posted by Roy123
Kawaii actions do tend to feel different from Yamaha actions, but it has nothing to do with wood. In general, Kawaii actions have been heavier, but I don't know if that is still the case.

I suspect it has a great deal to do with the wood, primarily because the Yamaha action is all wood, while the Kawai action have the parts made from carbon composite, here's a photo of the most recent version of the carbon action (millennium III) in a Kawai grand:

[Linked Image]

I couldn't quickly find a photo of a Yamaha grand action (and I'm not going to go pull mine out grin

In any case, when I was piano shopping, I played a lot of new and used Kawais (and also new S&S, Boston, Seiler.... and other makes and models).

I consistently disliked the Kawai action, so one day at a dealer's shop, I asked about it. He showed me a model (like the photo here) and pulled out the action in a Steinway as well (he did not have any Yamaha grands, new or used) and kind of talked me through the differences.

I wouldn't have called it heavy at the time... I never really figured out a good way to articulate it. I just knew I didn't like it. Fortunately I found my current piano, which felt great, and then even better after my tech regulated it. smile

But a lot of people do like the Kawai action, and they are very well-respected pianos, hence my emphasis on it being personal preference.


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Here's the best photo I could find of the Yamaha grand action:

[Linked Image]

Whatever the exact cause is, the two actions use different materials, so it makes sense that they feel different.


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Originally Posted by ShiroKuro
Here's the best photo I could find of the Yamaha grand action:

[Linked Image]

Whatever the exact cause is, the two actions use different materials, so it makes sense that they feel different.

I appreciate that you think the different materials cause the difference in feel, but, really, that's not the case. In the US, the WSG action manufactured by Mason and Hamlin, which is made entirely of nonwooden parts, has won high praise from too many people to name. Action feel is all about moment of inertia, action ratio, action spread, hammer weight, friction at the centers, balancier-spring tension, and a bunch of other parameters. This whole business of wood parts somehow being better is really a red herring at best, and holds back the piano industry at worst..

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