Building, Restoration & Repair
Our shop offers a full range of repair, rebuilding and technical and decorative services for any early keyboard instrument, built by us or not...antique, historically inspired or revival.
Handling an average of 50 to 60 instruments each year, the workshop delivers instruments carrying a full 5 year warranty on workmanship and materials. We attempt to hand deliver instruments if at all possible--seeing them set up and regulated in their new environment--and counseling owners on proper care and feeding.



Pictured above, Dowd French double with damage from smoke and a ceiling collapse, after a complete restoration in our shop.

Depending on an instrument's needs, we can rebuild and repair both the inner and the outer sections of an ailing instrument, including case interior bracing and soundboard ribs. We have the knowledge and experience to repair case cracks and joint failure, repair or replace bridges and hitchpin rails and deal with soundboard cracks and excessive soundboard movement.

 

(Below) Soundboard damage before and after repair.


We also restring, regulate and voice, offering both major and minor repairs and adjustments to registers, jacks and the keyframe / keyboard structure.


Above, restringing on a small clavichord

The shop can fabricate new guides, rebuild the action so that it is transposable, repair broken tongues and any other small moving parts. Revoicing may include installing plectra in a classic material such as crow quill or in a modern alternative such as Delrin or Celcon. Tuning services include the full range of historical and modern temperaments. Repair and rebuilding of the other parts of your instrument, including the lid, stand and music rack, are also offered.

A complete menu of cosmetic and decorative options is also available, from retouching case dings and wear to complete refinishing and redecorating. We can undertake historically appropriate decorative schemes including marbling, painted panels and faux finishing, gilding and banding, chinoiserie and lid painting, papering and mottoes.

(Left) Lettering a motto on a virginal lid.

 

(Left) Varnishing for gold bands on a case exterior.

For soundboard decoration we can supply both Flemish and French style painting, complete with appropriate decorative borders. Click here to see more examples of our decorative work.