Posts tagged polish

Art Case Pianos – Part 2 – The Classics

In part one of this series we looked at the very FIRST art case made by Steinway.  Oh sure there have been many MANY other manufacturers before and after 1856.  That was just a small story introducing the concept of “art case” – if you weren’t familiar with the term.  Now we’re going to look at a few examples of modern art case pianos.  To begin with, i thot i’d introduce a recent photo of a piano named Grotrian – high end, beautiful and such a classic art case.  To me an art case is all about proportions – note how the cabriole legs (double curved 18th century type) give a certain elegance to the design. The music rack is embellished with scroll work. Repeated again under the keyboard. Even the side rims are notched and accented with motifs. Though i prefer satin art case instruments, this one has been high polished. In England, they’re called ‘bright’ finishes. Check out these other examples of art case: a few vintage Steinways – one with ornate carvings, the other with detailed inlays. While some would call these garish, if you’re a woodworker of any kind, you’ll appreciate if nothing else, the labour that went into the meticulous detail.

 

And finally, some modern day examples of art case – Bosendorfer designed by Audi. Steinway’s year 2000 “Rhapsody in Blue” limited edition (commemorating George Gershwin). And one of my all time favorites, Schimmel’s Pegasus. Click on the picture to see the enlarged photos.

Piano Maintenance – Cleaning and Polishing

Go ahead… ask me. Ask how many different products i’ve used over the years trying to find the best polish and cleaner for pianos.  Well the answer would be about 15.  Generally there are 2 types of finishes on pianos – lacquer and polyester.  Polyester is usually the mirror finish on grands and uprights.  Although lacquer can achieve the sheen, polyester resin is by far the product of choice to obtain that look due to its intrinsic properties.  While lacquer is somewhat hard, it also is thin and brittle.  Poly (as they say in the biz) is thick and durable.  I usually tell people that is has similar properties to glass – looks beautiful for a very long time.  Chip it and it doesn’t really repair well.  Lacquer however can be easily touched up but doesn’t have the same long term durability.  I’ve seen 20 and 30 year old poly pianos that look showroom condition but i can’t honestly say that about lacquer.  Regardless, the do-all product that seems to work well for both is Cory Polish.  It cleans, it polishes and most important, it doesn’t leave a greasy residual film.  Keep rubbing with a soft cloth and it can even burnish the top layer to rub out superficial scratches.  To boot, it smells nice.  Now if you have a satin piano… Cory also makes a polish for that as well.  Give it a go… it’s the best i’ve found over the last 14 years.

Cory Website

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