How old is my piano?

How old is my Bechstein?

Historic Bechstein pianos often cause their owners to ask about the history.

A C. Bechstein grand piano is made for generations. It is loved and inherited and belongs to the family. But not always is the personal story of an instrument perpetuated. Some instruments have served great personalities, were in royal courts or with famous musicians, have travelled the world and even survived wars without being damaged. Based on their construction and quality materials, Bechstein grand pianos are virtually indestructible. Naturally, parts subject to wear and tear require regular maintenance. Our archive service receives almost daily requests for the personal story of a Bechstein grand piano. Such stories are very exciting! If only an instrument could talk about its own life adventure! Unfortunately, we only have the data of the initial purchaser in our archive files. If the first buyer was a Bechstein dealer, this information is not very helpful when it comes to the stages of an instrument’s long life. Inasmuch as in most cases there is no feedback to the adventures of our uprights and grand pianos, we can only give information about the first step of life - as long as our books were not damaged in the war.

Please understand that this archive must be compensated with a small service fee (26 Euro), because requests are numerous. Unfortunately, we cannot offer such detailed information service for Zimmermann and W.HOFFMANN brands.

Our tables show the year of manufacture. An evaluation report can only be created on site.

If you want to know the age of your C. Bechstein grand piano, you can find it in the attached table using the large instrument number on the cast iron plate or at the front of the sound board near the tuning pins. We offer this service for W.Hoffmann and Zimmermann, too.

The age of your Bechstein instrument tells you nothing definitive about the value of your instrument. Only an on-site assessment can give you detailed information about the condition of your instrument. Please understand that photos and descriptions are not helpful here. Uprights and grand pianos are highly complex and complicated instruments, where it is not easy to look into their musical heart. Only an on-site specialist can get an idea about the condition of the individual components. A historic instrument is possibly interesting for a museum, but not for an active musician who needs a modern keyboard and action to prepare his concert activity. Our retail partners are best suited to give you first-hand information.

We have created overviews of the serial numbers. We provide tables for C. Bechstein and Bechstein, W.Hoffmann and Zimmermann.

To the archive tables of Bechstein


To the archive tables of W.Hoffmann


To the archive tables of Zimmermann

Our tradition

Since 1853 C. Bechstein builds instruments to the highest standards. We invite you to take a look behind the scenes of a profound art.

Restoration and repair

The world's only workshop for original and certified Bechstein piano restoration.

The Art of Piano Making

How is a Bechstein grand piano built? Get to know our production - in image and sound.