Sunday, March 6, 2011

Refinishing Pianos

There are a lot of things to realize when one goes about refinishing a piano; the many corners you discover, if the instrument has any cabinet detail to consider, the key set that has to be covered or removed, the plate and string area to protect. There is also the hardware attachments, hinges, music desk brackets, bench hardware, brass trim, etc.

A typical grand piano is approximately 5ft. wide (1.5 m) and for the most part 5 ft long, or longer. While that is only 25 square feet, (7.6m) the cabinet has thickness too; the depth is usually 15 to 18 inches. (38-40cm) Most of the removable boards are finished on both sides too.

Now we are talking about considerably more surface area to deal with; perhaps some 50 feet or more.
Sometimes when you have an older piano to refinish, you discover  previous damage.
 Long-time exposure to sunlight UV will fade out the natural patina in the wood cabinet, water or heat damage will cause the veneer to lift.

Perhaps you will discover an attempt at refinishing by someone who did not have a full understanding of the products or the procedure.

Here is a piano that came in for refinishing. The residence had been rented by the owner with the piano included.
Aside from the damage done to the instrument, I discovered that this one had been refinished improperly and also had long term light exposure. 
 This is a good photo album to view about refinishing pianos and the colour tinting process. It demonstrates some of the problems you have to solve to get the instrument looking good once again.

 Photo set available at the link below. Once at the photo album location left click on any photo to enlarge On the right side of the photos I have written some text about how some of the problems are overcome.
Here is the link and happy viewing

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