Category Archives: Piano pages

21Sep/15

Selling your piano and other stuff

For loads of stuff about how to look after your piano

More details to follow but meanwhile go to www.pianotuner.org.uk

Looking for a piano?

There are a lot of tempting new cheap black shiny pianos out there mainly made in the far East. They’re not all necessarily the great buys they look! Although, to be fair the more expensive ones can be very good value. Cheaply produced pianos often use sub standard materials combined with poor design and can mean the piano won’t work as it should or even be impossible to tune properly. Often, a secondhand more carefully built older instrument is a better choice.

If we haven’t currently got the piano that you’re looking for we may be able to help you find one in your price range and in the kind of style you’d like. Just give us a ring and we’ll keep an eye out for one that may fit the bill for you!

Looking to sell a piano?
Let us sell your piano for you as your AGENT

If your piano is within 20 miles radius of St. Albans we can inspect, value
it and put it up on our website together with photos for £50. In addition, if we are successful in introducing a buyer to you we, as your agent, will do so for 7% of the selling price, unless the piano is sold for less than £700 in which case the commission will be £50.

The advantages of selling your piano this way are that it will have our
professional endorsement as an instrument fit for purpose and at a fair price, usually much more than a dealer will give you!
We regularly have people contact us looking for pianos in all price ranges.
The advantages to buyers are obvious of course, they know they’ll be buying a piano which is sound, works well, is tunable and at a realistic price.
We reserve the right not to advertise your piano if, in our opinion, it is
not fit for purpose.

A piano bought and sold in this way is essentially a private transaction between buyer and seller. Delivery isn’t included but we can recommend a reliable and expert piano mover at good rates.

More stuff about selling your piano and valuations                                                        
As we can’t go traipsing around Hertfordshire for nothing we will usually still make a charge of £20 for the inspection of pianos which are sadly not worth anything.

For Sale

You can view the full catalogue of pianos here…

Recent additions to our catalogue –

We don’t buy and sell many pianos directly anymore but if you’re selling your piano we may be able to help, see our PIANO ADVICE page for details.

We are acting as AGENTS for most of the pianos listed on this site. If you’re interested in any of them please ring Kevin on 07771 642787 or send an email.

View the full list of pianos for sale

 

Repairs and Restoration

repairsI undertake all work from minor repairs to full restoration. I’ve been in the trade for forty three years now so have plenty of experience to draw upon. Recent reconditioning has included a Steinway Model K upright, a Bechstein Model V grand, and two identical Bluthner grands both with the unique and much loved patent Bluthner actions.

A typical full action and keyboard overhaul of an upright piano would cost in the region of £1500 – £1750 but could vary considerably depending on whether, for example, the hammers were going to be replaced or recovered or if there was extensive moth damage to the felts in the action or key frame. Prices for overhauling grand piano actions is usually more in the region of £2250 – £2500, again depending on how much work is needed.

To restring an upright piano, depending on type and size, would be in the region of £1500 and from £2500 for a grand. Plus collection and delivery costs.

repairs3I don’t offer a full re-polishing service anymore but for those on a budget I can strip, stain and hand wax pianos which vastly improves their appearance. All polishing work includes buffing and lacquering brasswork. Prices start from around £750

Sometimes it would not be worth considering spending a lot of money on a piano depending on the age and quality of the instrument, investing in a new one could be an option. I can give you the necessary advice to enable you to make a sensible decision.

Tuning

We are based in St. Albans and tune pianos all over Hertfordshire (and beyond!)

Regular tuning will ensure continued pleasure from playing your instrument. We recommend tuning twice a year to allow for changes in temperature and, more importantly humidity. Over time, all the moving parts of a piano will be affected by both playing and environmental factors. These will affect your piano’s performance.

Whilst tuning we can observe the piano’s action and make small regulating adjustments to help the piano play more efficiently. The other advantage of regular tuning is that we can advise on any further work that may be necessary at an early stage rather than let the piano deteriorate to a state from which it may be more difficult and expensive to recover from.

Tuning will make your piano sound at its best, improving the tone of each individual note and the piano as a whole. It is important to note, however, that the design of the piano and the quality of its components and assembly will affect how well it can be tuned.

I am qualified and experienced to tune aurally (with only the aid of a tuning fork). However, electronic tuning devices (ETD’s) have improved dramatically over the last few years and I now use one in tandem with aural tuning. ETD’s enhance the aural skills of a tuner and help to produce a good scale and octaves, and more accurate pitch raises on even the most difficult of pianos. An ETD uses expensive sophisticated software designed only for use by professional tuners, it isn’t a device which would enable a non-tuner to be able to tune! Setting the pin and achieving good unisons are skills that can only come with proper training and years of experience.

Piano Tuning reminder

Get an email reminder for when your piano is due for tuning. And enter Mr. Brice when prompted for the name of the tuner!

Expertise

Pianoforte Tuners’ Association logo

Brooklands Pianos was established in 1986 in St. Albans by Kevin Brice who has now been a professional piano tuner and repairer for 43 years. He has been a member of the Pianoforte Tuners’ Association for 29 years and has served on its executive council for two separate periods. He trained as an apprentice with H.G. Rogers and Son in Highgate under the guidance of Henry Rogers, his son Graham and the workshop manager Karl Elmendorf.

He has tuned, repaired and restored a vast amount of pianos in private homes, schools, music colleges, recitals and concerts over the years and has benefited from ongoing high quality training at Pianoforte Tuners’ Association Conventions as well as also lecturing in classes at these annual events. He has also visited piano factories to gain insights into manufacturing processes both in this country and abroad, namely Kemble, Milton Keynes (now sadly closed), Fazioli in Sacile, Italy, and Stuart & Sons in Newcastle, Australia.

Although Brooklands Pianos do not directly employ our other two tuners they both have been closely involved with Kevin and the company for many years. We all still go out tuning together when there are multiple pianos at the same venue.

jenniferJennifer Johnson is vastly experienced having graduated from the London College of Furniture in 1986 with a B.Tech HND in Stringed keyboard instrument manufacture and design. Although she has her own long standing customer base she still tunes Brooklands Pianos customers’ pianos on behalf of Kevin.
about_usKevin’s son Ralph joined Brooklands Pianos as an apprentice on a permanent basis in the Summer 2005. He currently works part time at Kawai Pianos in Milton Keynes doing final preparation work on their pianos. Then he’s mostly out and about tuning, but in Brooklands Pianos workshop from time to time and assists his dad when necessary. He has been full time for twelve years now and has successfully built up his own tuning round clientèle.