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MMD > Archives > February 2002 > 2002.02.17 > 09Prev  Next

Grey Market Yamaha Pianos
By Robert Linnstaedt

I was very interested to read D.L. Bullock's message (020215 MMD)
about Yamaha pianos from the so-called "gray market".  In my
understanding, "gray market" means products not entering our market by
neither (1) an authorized Yamaha dealer/distributor, nor (2) a smuggler
(also called "black market.")

Close friends purchased a nice, gray market Yamaha grand several years
ago, priced very low, and it has performed very well in their home
north of Houston, Texas.  I've thought about seeking a similar piano
for myself, but I am more than a bit concerned by what I've read off
the Yamaha Corp. of America site: "What About Purchasing A Used Yamaha
Piano?" at

Are they trying to discourage us from making a mistake, or is their
opinion tainted by their need to be the seller?

To elaborate, the Japanese climate is supposedly more humid than most
US climates, outdoors and in the home.  Central HVAC adds to the
affect.  Currently Yamaha manufactures American-market pianos to a
drier standard than for the Japanese-market.  They changed due to
warranty claims in the early 1970s related to dryness problems.

I found numerous discussion and comments on pianotech-digest V2001 #171.
Apparently there is potential for problems with loose pins, etc.  The
positive experience of my friends near Houston may be due to their
environment in The Woodlands, a development in forested swampland.

I live between Fort Worth and Dallas on prairie land -- a significantly
different climate.

Would some of you folks, with knowledge and experience, care to
comment?  A piano that fails, is no bargain.

Robert Linnstaedt
Arlington, Texas  USA

(Message sent Sun 17 Feb 2002, 20:19:10 GMT, from time zone GMT-0500.)

Key Words in Subject:  Grey, Market, Pianos, Yamaha

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