Advice on Second Hand Russian Pedal Harp For Sale

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    Gerrard Els on #227739

    I recently found this second hand Russian pedal harp for sale.

    This is an old Lunacharsky harp, although we do not know what’s its age and model. We think it is around 50 years old but not sure. There appears to be a number 717 and then VIII.

    This harp does squeak when changing pedals,it hasn’t been serviced in atleast 20 years. Also, there’s a crack right at the bottom right of the harp. Anyone to give me advice on this harp would be of great help?

    Would you recommend it to an intermediate harpist?

    • This topic was modified 2 years, 2 months ago by Gerrard Els.
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    tinacourtenay on #227745

    Hello Gerrard,
    A vertical crack on the soundboard is more serious than a horizontal crack on the soundboard. Where is the crack? Is it in the soundboard?

    Gretchen Cover on #227746

    Where do you live? What is the price? Are you able to get a harp tech or someone specialized to look at the harp? A major problem could be getting disks or other replacement parts.

    Carl Swanson has one his harps he makes for sale on his website You might want to look at that.

    paul-knoke on #227764

    It does appear to need a new soundboard.

    catherine-rogers on #227767

    From what I’ve heard (and I could be wrong), many harp techs in the U.S. won’t work on these harps because they can’t get parts for them. Definitely have a reputable harp technician check out any used harp you may consider buying.

    Tacye on #227800

    My experience of such harps is they have their uses, if the price is right. That board looks rather like one a friend bought – it was some years before she changed the soundboard, but that one looks like it too has a replacement in its future. Is the neck straight enough – do all the sharp disks engage the strings properly?

    Can you get a technician to look at it and advise? It would need servicing anyway, how would you arrange that?

    Gerrard Els on #227827

    The crack is horizontal, on the right hand side (left in the picture), right at the bass of the soundboard.

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    Gerrard Els on #227829

    yes, we’ve got a harp shop in a city nearby, they bring a Lyon and Healy & Salvi harp technician that comes here every two years, he is able to look at it, but if something goes wrong along the way, the risk can become serious.

    Gerrard Els on #227830

    I live in South Africa, the harp costs $6900

    Gerrard Els on #227831

    I checked the neck, as in the photo, it leans quite a lot to the left, yet when I tested the pedal for a good 40 minutes straight, the discs were near perfectly only for a total handful in the top 0st, 1st and 2nd octaves that had off intonation. The harp needs some new strings as well as they get out of tune within 20 – 30 minutes of playing in an enclosed room.

    The harp’s pedals are very squeaky and felt stuck when moving from natural to sharp, therefore it will only benefit for practicing exams at home indoors and not at weddings too.

    Tacye on #227833

    That isn’t the soundboard crack that worried me. I was looking at the bit either side of the centre strip 2 octaves from the bottom.

    Gretchen Cover on #227839

    You should pass on this. You will end up with an unplayable harp and spend a lot of money doing so.

    Gerrard Els on #228306

    Ah are vertical cracks rather something to be concerned about? Don’t want the paw-paw to hit the fan with a broken soundboard later on.

    Gerrard Els on #228307

    Thank You Gretchen, I decided to pass on this harp instead, even though it was a good deal for such a large harp ^^

    Saul Davis Zlatkovski on #228969

    It is not like buying a secondhand Lyon & Healy or Salvi harp, which are reliably made. Even with them, you have the risk of spending far more than you pay, for possible repairs. It is in the end, cheaper to buy a new harp, in many cases. Still, for a beginner to practice exercises on and pieces that have few pedal changes, if any, it is okay. I had such a harp for one year, and it was better than nothing. But only for one year.

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