6. Rims have to be stored at a very specific humid temperature

After the rims are pressed, they are stored in a climate-controlled conditioning room for months. This “rim conditioning room” is very hot and humid, allowing the moisture introduced from the glue during the rim bending process to come out of the rim at a controlled pace. The end result is a precise moisture content at which point the rim is ready to continue on its journey of becoming a Steinway piano. Additionally, time in the room allows the rim to acclimate to its new shape. Although rims coming out of the room look identical to those going in, there have been minor adjustments in the shape undetectable to the eye that have happened as the rim settles into its new shape. Steinway needs those minor adjustments to happen before the process of building a piano within that rim continues.

A special “case number” on each piano helps workers keep track of its specific needs, as “each piano is its own unique person,” Marketing & Communications Director Anthony Gilroy said.