The Otto Grau Story
"Everyone one has an old piano in their basement you can have if you move it."
Piano Home Otto Grau Melville Clark Questions Spare Parts Slide Show
Otto Grau Before
This picture was taken before I began restoration but after the keys had been done.
(November 2009)

I am not sure who manufactured this piano because The Otto Grau Piano Co. was a dealer in Cincinnati OH in the early 1900's I don't believe that they ever manufactured pianos. (Click here for additional Otto Grau Information)

This piano came into my families possession on April 23, 1993, it was given to my brother and his wife, she wanted to learn to play and the free price was right. The only catch was we had to move it. It was in a mobile home just south of Wilmington OH. It was in bad repair, the key tops were gone and it hadn't been tuned in years.

I have had this piano in my possession since 1994. My brother and his wife had to move and couldn't take it with them so they were putting it out for the trash and I rescued it.

I had the remaining ivory key tops replaced with plastic and I refinished the the sharps in August 1994 at a cost $175. I had the piano tuned for the first time since I owned it in December of 1994. It took up space in my living room as a large carpet weight for several years and then I loaned it to a friend who wanted to learn to play. She had it for several years during which it was tuned again, possibly a couple times. I then got it back in August 2009 when she moved and didn't want to take it with her. This time I am going to restore it, refinish the cabinet and move it back into my living room and try to learn to play it myself.

As you can see the project is moving along at a fair pace I hope to move it into the house in January and get it tuned. I am just getting started on repairs to the action, I'm guessing this will take me longer then the cabinet did. I am planning on resurfacing the hammers, replacing the dampers, and regulating the action and whatever else I discover along the way. I highly recommend the book "Piano Servicing, Tuning, and Rebuilding" by Arthur A. Reblitz. I wouldn't have know where to start without it, I am now reading "Player Piano Servicing and Rebuilding by the same author.

The cabinet is finished the key bushings are next and then at some point I want to replace the dampers, reshapeinished and it has been moved into the house for the next steps of restoration. My plan is to rep the hammers and regulate the action. I am going to get the tuning process under way in a month or so and at that time discuss my course of action with the Piano tech and continue from there.

It has been a very interesting project thus far and I am looking forward to the more intricate tasks ahead, I have read "Piano Servicing Tuning and Rebuilding" and I am currently reading "Player Piano Servicing and Rebuilding" both by Arthur Reblitz. Very interesting books.

The Piano has moved back into the house 1-2-2010.

This is the completed exterior with new bench.

Different angle

Name board after logo replacement, custom made by
Click here to see Restoration Pictures
Comments and Questions can be emailed to Ed Waite
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