The journey of the Steinway & Sons grand piano begins with raw lumber and metal. Over the course of a year, those ingredients are transformed by hundreds of craftsmen into an intricate musical instrument that is the piano of choice for the world’s great artists.
Every Steinway grand piano has a continuous bent rim containing between ten and sixteen layers of hard rock maple. Patented in 1878, Steinway & Sons has been bending rims by hand each day ever since.
After being bent, the rims enter a hot and humid conditioning room for several months.
The workers in this department install the wooden skeleton of the piano – radial bracing, keybed, Hexagrip pinblock, and case cornice. The parts are joined to the rim via maple dowels, creating a solid, resonant internal structure.
The soundboards are crafted of the finest close-grained Alaskan Sitka spruce and given their characteristic diaphragmatic shape, a 1936 Steinway & Sons patent. Sugar pine ribs punctuate the underside of the soundboard.
The bridge is notched, the bridge pins are hammered in, the soundboard is installed, the plate is fit, and the piano is strung.
One piano contains thousands of action parts, and we craft all of these in our action department. Tiny details are crucial, and every part is checked with care.
Every piano is tuned, voiced, and regulated multiple times. The keys are weighed off and lead weights inserted to ensure an even touch.
Passion & Precision
Master to apprentice, generation after generation, every Steinway is built with decades upon decades of knowledge and experience. Artisans take pride in humanizing a piano that is still made by hand, striving for and achieving continuous innovation and improvement. Every Steinway & Sons grand and upright is a masterpiece of craftsmanship and a consummate work of art. Each Steinway, consisting of more than 12,000 individual parts, has its own musical character and is as unique as the individual who plays it.
Steinway & Sons
Steinway & Sons was founded in 1853 by German immigrant Henry Engelhard Steinway in a Manhattan loft on Varick Street. Over the next thirty years, Henry and his sons developed the modern piano. They built their instruments one at a time, applying skills that have been handed down from generation to generation. The Steinway became the choice for ninety-eight percent of concertizing artists, none of whom are compensated to endorse the instrument. The Steinway earned a reputation as an investment for the owner and a legacy for future generations.