My business is about 50% non-player pianos and 50% players. There
is a _lot_ more business rebuilding non-player grands. I have restored
many: Steinway, Mason & Hamlin, Knabe, etc. I will choose what bass
strings and hammers I use based upon the instrument make and model.
I restored a small Bluthner and my choices were all German. I used
Roslau steel strings, GC (German Copper) bass strings and Renner
hammers. I restored a 5'1" Knabe. My choices for this instrument
were Abel "Light" hammers and Mapes bass strings.
I acquired a 6' tiger oak Wisner grand that had no strings in it.
I used Arledge, also in Tennessee. Arledge promotes a "rescaling"
service. They have a computer program that they say can ideally scale
any piano. Rescaling has become more of a science these days. I'm
happy with the results I got in all these instances. Other techs in
Europe I spoke to seem to love a company in the Netherlands.
I noticed the German wire seems more brilliant sounding and can be
"deeper" sounding to me, not always "richer" sounding.