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Old 04-28-2010, 02:02 PM   #1
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Moving a Piano...


Ok so... I bought a keyboard last month to learn how to play piano and after a month I realized that it won't cut it if I want to continue with playing styles etc (playing softly etc.).

After looking at the prices for weighted key keyboards... they seem to be on par with alot of the pianos Iíve seen online.

I am looking at a few nice Baby Grand Pianos but I am not sure how hard it will be to move it from the sellers home to mine...

I can get plenty of strong guys together but does anyone else know exactly what is needed to pull off a move of this kind? I'm not talking a Grand Piano but it will be larger than a Upright.

Any recommendations for a vehicle to transport? Materials to protect?

As a side note... to start the piano will be in an upstairs guest room but I may be tempted to bring it into our basement once it is finished. This would only happy once everything is finished and the humidity was set at a comfortable level (not fluctuating like crazy). The floor would be stained concrete, the walls drywall, the ceiling... either open wood, drywall, or drop ceiling. Any recommendations for acoustics of this space? Will the piano sound poor due to the room setup???

Thanks all!

Chris

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Old 04-28-2010, 02:24 PM   #2
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Having had a few pianos over the years, I would suggest to consider a small living room grand over a baby grand as they typically hold their value better and have a better sound and play. IMHO...

As for moving a piano, I have preferred to engage a professional piano moving company (not just any furniture mover...). They have the right equipment, people, and experience. And if they damage it - they will have repair persons to remediate problesm and have recourse against them. Again, IMHO...

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Old 04-28-2010, 02:25 PM   #3
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Moving a Piano...


If it were me, I'd look on Craigslist for free uprights. I see them all the time.... usually FREE! (You move)
Some look pretty sweet too, and a piano tuner to come tune it after it's home is way cheaper than a new Baby Grand....
Uprights have smaller footprints too.

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Old 04-28-2010, 02:51 PM   #4
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Moving a Piano...


True about the uprights but I really like the look of the grands.

I've seen grands on CL for a few hundred which seems reasonable to me.

vsheetz: Can you explain the difference between a living room grand and a baby grand piano?

While I am keeping the piano mover option in mind it's not my first choice by any means. If this was just a large piece of furniture the move would be a cake walk. So I am just looking for the additional complications involved when dealing with a piano.
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Old 04-28-2010, 03:25 PM   #5
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It would be ideal for you to rent or construct a piano dolly.
You need to consider these things:

#1 - you cannot (or should not) tilt a piano too much, to tipping it sideways to bring it in the front door.
#2 - that means you have to know where you'll bring it in at - you might have to remove a wall, window or door for entry.

To move a piano you would need assistance (the heavier the piano the more people you need) and a piano dolly - which you might be able to rent but I built one that I use to use.

If you're going to seriously consider buying a piano I suggest you go to the piano store and discuss them - learn about the different types, models and features, and really consider it. They aren't cheap, that's for sure.
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Old 04-28-2010, 03:28 PM   #6
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I got a free spinet piano in immaculate condition last summer. They are out there, but if you like the bay grands, then that's what matters.

I hired a professional piano mover to move mine. $280 to move it about 25 miles, and I thought that was a great deal. The two guys that moved mine owned the business, and they said they've been working 7 days a week for more than 2 years, up and down the east coast. The two of them moved 7 pianos that day (and their truck was full of them). They carted it up at the start point on a dolly with some blankets and straps, manhandled it when they had to, but most of the time it rolled on the dolly. Very impressive watching them muscle it carefully up the stairs in my house.

They had a bunch or ramps in the truck, too, and a pretty wild looking jib arm that I guess they'd hang out a window and hoist pianos up.
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Old 04-28-2010, 07:35 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vsheetz View Post
Having had a few pianos over the years, I would suggest to consider a small living room grand over a baby grand as they typically hold their value better and have a better sound and play. IMHO...

As for moving a piano, I have preferred to engage a professional piano moving company (not just any furniture mover...). They have the right equipment, people, and experience. And if they damage it - they will have repair persons to remediate problesm and have recourse against them. Again, IMHO...

This is a no brainier,

protect you investment,

spend two- three hundred bucks,

call the premiere piano dealer around and hire the proís.
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Old 04-28-2010, 10:40 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DownRiverGuy View Post
vsheetz: Can you explain the difference between a living room grand and a baby grand piano?
see Parlor Grand here
http://musiced.about.com/od/beginner...pianotypes.htm
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Old 04-28-2010, 11:12 PM   #9
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Moving a Piano...


GREAT INFO GUYS!!! Thanks again

I will read thru that link tonight vsheetz!

I am working closely with my piano instructor to decide on the piano. She actually said she is willing to call up the owner AND test drive the piano if it is within driving distance. So while I am new at this I do have some guidance. But the info you guys have provided is a great resource as well!

So... sounds like this will be a HUGE PITA to move.... if I have to rent a special piece of equipment to move it.... yup I'll pay a "piano moving" company to take care of it for me and give them a drink after along with payment!

I will keep you guys posted on what I end up with BUT I recall that a family friend has had an old school grand piano in their home for yearsssss with no one playing it. Seeing that we gave them a van a few years back (contractors and theirs died midway thru a large job) I think they'd be game for giving it up if we moved it for them

Granted this depends on the piano condition... but I'll keep you guys posted and post photos if it comes to that!

Anyone live in South eastern Michigan that can recommend a moving company???

Last edited by DownRiverGuy; 04-28-2010 at 11:13 PM. Reason: I spell gud
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Old 04-29-2010, 08:33 AM   #10
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Moving a Piano...


I also would strongly recommend a pro piano mover.

I have had a piano moved twice, and I would never attempt to do it myself, or have some "friends" move it.

It will be worth the price.
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Old 04-29-2010, 09:28 AM   #11
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Moving a Piano...


I understand the interest in grand pianos. They do look nice. My understanding of the various terms (baby grand, livingroom grand, etc...) is that these simply refer to the shorter versions of a grand piano. All pianos with the horizontal sound board are, in my understanding, grand pianos. The only question that remains is the size. Pick one that fits your space. Of course, all other things being equal, the larger ones sound better.

Regarding moving a grand, this is best performed on a board, apparently called a skid board. Legs are removed, the body (properly protected) mounted to the board, and the whole assembly moved vertically on a set of wheels such as a furniture dolly. Professional assistance is a good suggestion.

Having said all this, I slightly regret my purchase of a grand piano. They are hard to move, lose value, and take up a lot of room. As I consider options later in life, moving to smaller places, I wonder what I am going to do with that thing. If you have a large house, place less value on $10K than do I, and expect to have one for most of your life, perhaps this is less of a concern.

As for playing, I much more enjoy my electric keyboard. (Good ones can be had for less money than a grand). If others in the house don't want to hear me practice, I can put on headphones. Electrics have more than one, sometimes hundreds of, voices. They don't go out of tune. They can be used with your computer with music composition software and as midi inputs. They can be taken with you if you have the need to play in bands at other locations. They require no special microphones to integrate with sound systems. Unless you are talking about a very large Bosendorfer, Steinway, or Mason-Hamilin, I even think they can sound better (voices are usually sampled from some VERY NICE accoustics).

Enjoy your new piano, whichever direction you take.

Last edited by oberkc; 04-29-2010 at 09:30 AM.
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Old 04-29-2010, 05:48 PM   #12
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Moving a Piano...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Aggie67 View Post
I got a free spinet piano in immaculate condition last summer. They are out there, but if you like the bay grands, then that's what matters.

I hired a professional piano mover to move mine. $280 to move it about 25 miles, and I thought that was a great deal. The two guys that moved mine owned the business, and they said they've been working 7 days a week for more than 2 years, up and down the east coast. The two of them moved 7 pianos that day (and their truck was full of them). They carted it up at the start point on a dolly with some blankets and straps, manhandled it when they had to, but most of the time it rolled on the dolly. Very impressive watching them muscle it carefully up the stairs in my house.

They had a bunch or ramps in the truck, too, and a pretty wild looking jib arm that I guess they'd hang out a window and hoist pianos up.
Wow, that sounds like a lucrative gig. So they really do hoist them up and down on rigs. I always thought that was a setup for TV comedy. For obvious reasons, that's definately not a DIY project.

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