Expand mobile version menu

Musical Instrument Repairer/Tuner  What They Do

Just the Facts


Repairs percussion, stringed, reed, or wind instruments. May specialize in one area, such as piano tuning.

This career is part of the Arts, Audio-Video Technology and Communications cluster Performing Arts pathway.


A person in this career:

  • Plays instruments to evaluate their sound quality and to locate any defects.
  • Adjusts string tensions to tune instruments, using hand tools and electronic tuning devices.
  • Disassembles instruments and parts for repair and adjustment.
  • Inspects instruments to locate defects, and to determine their value or the level of restoration required.
  • Repairs cracks in wood or metal instruments, using pinning wire, lathes, fillers, clamps, or soldering irons.
  • Reassembles instruments following repair, using hand tools and power tools and glue, hair, yarn, resin, or clamps, and lubricates instruments as necessary.
  • Compares instrument pitches with tuning tool pitches in order to tune instruments.
  • Strings instruments, and adjusts trusses and bridges of instruments to obtain specified string tensions and heights.
  • Repairs or replaces musical instrument parts and components, such as strings, bridges, felts, and keys, using hand and power tools.
  • Polishes instruments, using rags and polishing compounds, buffing wheels, or burnishing tools.

Insider Info

Dig into the details and check out what people in this job have to say about their work.



Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 20 lbs., sometimes up to 50 lbs. You might do a lot of lifting, carrying, pushing or pulling.
  • Work in this occupation involves use of protective items such as safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hearing protection, a hard hat, or personal flotation devices
  • Exposure to pollutants, gases, dust, fumes, odors, poor ventilation, etc.
  • Work in this occupation involves using your hands to hold, control, and feel objects more than one-third of the time
  • Exposed to hazardous equipment such as saws, machinery, or vehicular traffic more than once a month
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time
  • Sound and noise levels are loud and distracting
  • Work in this occupation involves making repetitive motions more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves sitting more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Picking out a particular sound in the presence of other sounds
  • Detecting sounds and hearing the differences between sounds of different pitch and loudness
  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Regular working hours and limited travel

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Bow Rehairer -- Replaces bow hair of stringed instrument bows, using handtools.
  • Guitar Builder -- Handcrafts guitars from raw materials.