Steinway Piano Restoration

Steinway Piano Restoration

Pleasing transformation: Steinway grand 1904: French polishing

Before and after restoration: Steinway upright model K 1936

We buy, sell and restore Steinway Pianos and would be pleased to quote for work on modern and old Steinways.
Steinway grand pianos have a powerful tone and are designed to be played in a sizeable room with a high ceiling (the model “S” made around 1925 is the exception to this, being of quieter tone). Smaller rooms would be better suited with a much quieter piano such as a Blüthner.

For more information please see our Steinway grands and Steinway uprights pages.

Common restored grand pianos


steinway piano restoration, model o grand piano

A Rosewood model O Steinway grand piano

Models O’s, A’s and B’s are by far the most common Steinway grand pianos that are restored. They vary enormously in quality by the amount of use that it’s had, but generally the older Steinway grand piano has had extensive use and will therefore most likely to be very worn. Reconditioned grands can also vary in quality so if you’re buying a restored Steinway grand we would strongly recommend having a Steinway trained technician check it first.

I thought I would send you a few lines expressing my gratitude to you and your team

I thought I would send you a few lines expressing my gratitude to you and your team for the fantastic job they have all made in reconditioning my Steinway grand piano. The outcome is a beautiful piano, the rosewood veneer now looks just like it was over hundred years ago. Truly magnificent and the polishing by Mana was a great work of art. The high polish looks fabulous in the snooker/piano room. The interior again looks like brand new and is joy to behold. The sound is splendid, I just wish for the first time in my life that I had carried on with my piano lesson so that I could enjoy playing it now. To say I am pleased with the result is an understatement. The men who did the actual removal and reinstallment were extremely nice and very courteous I would be more than happy to recommend your Company at any time.

Robert Cranmer-Brown

Unlike other instrumentalists who can carry their instruments with them…

Unlike other instrumentalists who can carry their instruments with them, pianists are more reliant than most musicians on the people who maintain and care for the instrument. For that reason there has always been a strong relation between pianists and piano makers, technicians and tuners (e.g. Beethoven and Broadwood, Chopin and Pleyel, Liszt and Bechstein, Gershwin and Steinway, Richter and Yamaha, etc.). Oxford is really fortunate in having Marcus Roberts and Roberts Pianos. He has shown the same care and attention to the need of the professional pianist as any of these famous names from the past. For my annual Oxford Summer Piano Series Marcus went out of his way to make sure I had a superb instrument on which to prepare 8 taxing recital programmes while visiting the city, and his help has been invaluable. I would also not hesitate in recommending his business to the amateur pianist as much as the professional. All budding pianists, of whatever age and whatever level of skill, should always have access to the best instruments available, and Roberts Pianos, whose instruments are superbly maintained, is in a unique position to help.

Jack Gibbons

Common restored upright pianos


Most common Steinway upright pianos brought and sold in the UK are pre-1900 and generally require extensive reconditioning. Dealers tend to veer away from restoring a Steinway upright as all Steinways are “fussy” pianos and eat up much time in the reconditioning process. An old Steinway upright can take almost as long to restore as it would a grand. Therefore it is not an economical proposition for a lot of dealers. However, at Roberts Pianos we do offer restoration on all Steinway upright pianos including full action replacement.

Grotrian Steinweg, Bechstein, Lipp are other fine older style German upright pianos found in the UK, their design is more simple and in some instances can be a better economical consideration than to pay the costs of restoring a Steinway upright piano. However modern Steinway pianos (from about 1950) do become much more efficient in their design.

Fully restored 88 note Steinway upright piano, 1888


A factor to consider with the finish


Please note that mahogany pianos with bright polyester finishes have the tendency to fade over time due to the wood and it may be impossible to restore without having to strip the polyester. Therefore we would recommend a piano with a polyester finish that is black coated as we believe this would make a better investment. Turned legs and fretted music desks are found on most Steinway grand pianos up to about 1905. Square tapered legs and plain music desks are the most common.