The Knight piano company was established in 1936 and very quickly became one of Britain’s favourite manufacturers of fine, high end instruments.
The K10 is the most famous of Knight's range and is generally considered to be one of the “best upright pianos” ever produced in the UK.
The bass strings in the K10 are designed to cross the treble strings at a greater angle, so the strings are longer than most other pianos of this height. This extra length allows the Knight K10 to match the tone and volume of bigger upright pianos such as the Yamaha U1, which is why they are a firm favorite of piano teachers, tuners and music institutions. Many musicians have expressed the opinion of the K10 being equal in sound to a 5ft grand piano.
The frames in Knight pianos where built on the girder principle which has twice the strength of frames fitted to the average piano. Knight designers dispensed the bar brace in the treble section which claimed to have eliminated the "bad notes" which normally occur on each side of the treble break bar. The frame was anchored to a four post quarter sawn beech back, with the soundboard secured between the back and the iron frame. The exceptionally sturdy method used by Knight in the construction of their pianos ensures superior stability of tone and strength.
Variations of the K10
The K10 is still a very well sought after piano, but there are a few variations of this models case which can become very confusing for people who are shopping around for one; especially considering that most are listed with the wrong details.
School model (pictured in oak)
The most popular generally found on selling sites like eBay and Gumtree are the school models, usually in [stressed] oak cases with heavy duty rubber castors and brass kick plates around the pedals. School models were also available in mahogany.
As a rule, Sykes & Sons do not stock ex-school pianos, due to the heavy use and frequent abuse and neglect. Usually these examples are past any point of economical repair.
The K10 (pictured in mahogany)
This is what is generally considered as the ‘standard K10’ or the ‘early K10’.
We often joke here that these models look like a product of the military with their brutalistic and bulky architecture.
It is essentially the same case style of the school model but found without the heavy duty extras. Because of its chunky build, it was not considered to be an attractive piano and wasn’t popular among the public... which is where the following model came into play.
The Slimline (pictured in oiled teak)
The slimline was styled to conform with more modern and contemporary home furnishings with inspiration taken from the designs of Scandinavian furniture.
This edition is a favourite among our customers. The most common type is oiled teak, but they were made in mahogany and walnut too.
The exotic is remarkably similar to the Slimline in appearance and most wouldn’t tell the difference between the two straight away but the Exotic is slightly wider and rounded on the side profile.
Like the Slimline, the Exotic was made in two sizes, the K10 and the K6
The most common case type for the Exotic is oiled teak also.
All K10s were available with the third pedal option.