In 1980 I graduated from Davidson College and then served four years in the U.S. Army. I began my studies in piano technology in 2003 and immediately joined the Piano Technicians Guild (PTG), the premier continuing education organization for this craft. In 2007, I earned the Registered Piano Technician certification.
Monthly and annual training has always been and will always be a top priority for me.
My promise to you is to bring all I have learned to your doorstep. My total engagement with your piano is what I offer.
I DO MY OWN WORK...
I tune upright, grand and square pianos, as well as harpsichords. My focus is on clarity of sound, stability and repeatability.
I do all kinds of repairs, including broken and sticking keys, broken strings, damper problems and pedal issues.
I can regulate your upright and grand piano, making each key feel and play the same.
A piano is a series of levers. Metal, felt and leather are constantly moving against each other constantly when keys are played. As they wear, the levers become less efficient. The result is reduced power and dynamic range. Regulation refers to making these levers work as efficiently as possible.
I do both.
Refurbish refers to keeping most of the original parts and replacing only the completely worn out pieces.
Rebuild means to use new parts. It does not tolerate putting new parts on top of old parts. Rebuilding work is more extensive and more expensive.
I can do all levels of voicing, depending your needs.
A piano can sound harsh and brittle, dull and muffled, or somewhere in-between. Voicing refers to changing that sound using various techniques, including sanding paddles and needles.
Humidity System Installation
I can install this system on your piano.
A piano is made mostly of wood. Wood swells and shrinks as relative humidity changes, and so do the parts of your piano. Installing a humidity control system on your piano will keep your tuning more stable and will protect the parts of your piano from the damaging effects of humidity changes.
I enrolled in the Randy Potter School of Piano Technology in 2003. Simultaneously, I participated in a 4-1/2 year informal apprenticeship program in Charlotte, NC with my mentor, Ed Sutton, Registered Piano Technician. That relationship continues as we collaborate on new ways to learn, teach and promote this craft.
Using our own time and money without reimbursement or profit, Ed Sutton and I developed this self-directed modular training class that teaches quintessential skills a piano technician needs to master. We learned a lot along the way.
"He or she who teaches learns twice."
Upright Action Models
Most beginning piano technicians use jigs and models as learning tools. Upright action models can cost up to $200.
In 2018, I made 30 of these models using worn out pianos destined for the junk yard. I shipped them, at no charge, to the first 30 people who joined PTG along the east coast. Included was a DVD I made about how to assemble and regulate the model. The construction protocol I developed is 22 pages long and includes 100 pictures. I'm giving this information away, hoping to inspire other outreach efforts.
This year-long program was a huge action geometry learning project.