Author Topic: Advice on selling Fender Rhodes  (Read 390 times)

Offline darwin

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Advice on selling Fender Rhodes
« on: August 22, 2021, 09:45:38 AM »
I am assisting a friend who has a Fender Rhodes suitcase 73 model with sparkle silver top that she received from her mother in about 1970 or so.  She is reluctantly considering selling,  The piano is single owner, and is completely as purchased.

The instrument hasn't been used for a few decades, and is in pretty good shape except that 4 keys (near the high end of the keyboard) didn't return to position when we were checking things out,  There is also an issue with the cord to the amp, it has to be pulled out slightly on the piano side to work.  Everything else that we can tell is cosmetic.  The owner just dealt with that when she did play it.

Attached is a photo taken before checking the functionality, so the 4 keys are as found, not "drooping".

The real question we have is whether the piano should be restored, or functionality returned to working condition before selling, or would she be unlikely to recoup that expense?  If some level of tuning/restoration should be done, any recommendations for someone to contact in New England?

Also, I didn't try, because I don't want to mess anything up, but does the top just lift off so that I can take pictures of the internals?
 
Thanks for any guidance.

Offline The Real MC

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Re: Advice on selling Fender Rhodes
« Reply #1 on: August 22, 2021, 11:30:30 AM »
Yes the top lifts off, that's how maintenance is done.  You can take pictures there.

Other than the grill cloth, that's the cleanest silver top piano I have seen.

Restore or sell as is?  I'd say sell as is.  The clean condition will attract buyers.  There's a strong possibility that the felt hammers have worn grooves and will need re-shaving, which is a labor intensive $$$ repair.  Instead of re-shaving, the hammer set can be swapped out for the next generation hammerset with wood/plastic hammers.  They are interchangeable.  Reshave hammers or swap out - leave that option to the buyer, sell the piano as is.

Offline darwin

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Re: Advice on selling Fender Rhodes
« Reply #2 on: August 22, 2021, 11:57:20 AM »
Thanks.  I was leaning that way, since there seem to be many people who would mod, and any maintenance/tuning could be done in tandem.

It's always best to ask those who know.

Offline darwin

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Re: Advice on selling Fender Rhodes
« Reply #3 on: October 11, 2021, 08:34:31 PM »
I finally got around to taking pictures of the inside of the silver top...

However, when I try to lift, the back seems to move fine, but not the front.  Do I need to remove the control knobs or anything to remove the cover?

Offline spave

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Re: Advice on selling Fender Rhodes
« Reply #4 on: October 11, 2021, 11:43:28 PM »
No, you shouldn't need to remove any knobs to take the lid off.

The lid is hand laid fiberglass and is form fitted to the top of the Rhodes. After being in the same place for 60+ years it will have subtly curved over time to essentially "fit like a glove" to that particular instrument.

When trying to remove it, try to lift straight up so that none of the fiberglass bends. If it feels like you are going to break something then set it back down and try lifting from a different position.

I know with my Rhodes that some lids like to only lift off a certain way whereas other ones you can just pick up without an issue.

Just lift carefully and make a note of what worked getting it off because it will likely be just as finicky getting back on as well.


Also if you can, please post the photos here. It is not often someone has photos of an early Sparkletop.
1972 Home Rhodes Prototype
1971 Suitcase Fender Rhodes
1977 Wurlitzer 270

Offline darwin

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Re: Advice on selling Fender Rhodes
« Reply #5 on: October 12, 2021, 03:44:50 PM »
Since I left the question, I looked around and saw a video of someone removing theirs, and I thought it should just lift off... Thanks for the confirmation, and the hints on successfully getting it opened. :D

Offline pianotuner steveo

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Re: Advice on selling Fender Rhodes
« Reply #6 on: Yesterday at 06:26:17 AM »
Yes I agree, do not work on this piano, sell as is. The 4 sticking keys are a very simple repair to most buyers. I personally would much rather see a piano that needs simple repairs than a piano that was repaired by an inexperienced person. This piano may be pretty valuable, especially since nobody has messed with it.
1960 Wurlitzer model 700 EP
1968 Gibson G101 Combo organ
1975 Rhodes Piano Bass
1979 Wurlitzer 206A EP
1980 Wurlitzer 270 Butterfly Grand
2004 Hammond XK3
2009 73A Rhodes Mark 7
2009 Korg SV-1 73
2017 Yamaha P255
2020 Kawai CA99
....and a few guitars...