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According to references [Groves dictionary of musical instruments I think] the number of instruments in the percussion family exceed six hundred. In reality most of the instruments will be closely related and very rare. Furthermore the standard orchestral range of instruments is smaller still. Even so, I work on a broad variety of instruments, and yet I am still asked if I repair guitars or whatever. My brain can hardly cope with all the knowledge associated with my own specialism without taking on other sections of instruments, I will leave those instruments for those instrument makers!

So to demonstrate the diversity of what I do do [hehe], below are all the posts I have written, in chronological, order starting with the two latest (which are featured on the home page) and going backwards into the depths of time.

Cymbal Cradle Prototype (Job No: 1333)

The cymbal cradles that are available commercially work, but don’t fit the specifications of my customer. So I have been asked to produce some and come up with some solutions to the problems encountered. The first part of the project is to make up some jigs so the parts can be replicated consistently.

Deagan case Glockenspiel (job no 1334)

So many times I get glockenspiels with a note bar missing and enquiries about the cost of replacement. So many times people are shocked at how expensive they are. This post is about making a new note and will show why they are expensive

Premier 751 Vibraphone (Job No: 1327)

There are a lot of vibraphones coming through my workshop at the moment, including the Premier 751. The content of this post has been kept broad to show what I am doing when I service or overhaul a 751 vibe.

Premier 500 Xylophone (Job No: 1331)

It is a rarity for me to work on location, but sometimes it is just not practical to remove and return a whole instrument.

Premier 751 Buying Guide

The 751/701 vibraphones made by Premier are great sounding instruments and certainly very portable. They have not been made now for a good number of years which means that the only way of acquiring one is to buy it second hand. In this post I have made a buying giude to highlight the potential pitfalls when buying.

Lefima Tambourine repair (Job No: 1273)

This job is a classic example of a repair which on the surface looks straight forward and easy. The reality is that there are a lot of facets to the job from making and shaping the jingles to pinning the head in place.

…How to control humidity

This is a simple explanation of why humidity is the main cause of atmospheric tuning issues for xylophones and marimbas, and what can be done about it.

Adams Timpani Repair (Job No: 1325)

Despite their age, these drums still have components that have been cheaply (and badly made). I remember from the last time that I saw these drums that the fork pressings were a bit tricky to get right and did not inspire me with confidence. Well finally they have started to go wrong on a regular basis, so I have been asked to come up with a solution. In this post I start to think about how to go about making replacements.

Premier 750 Vibraphone (Job No: 1227)

Premier made the 700 series vibraphone from 1947 – 61, then updated the frame calling it the 701 from 1961 – 79. So I was 5 when the latest version of the Premier vibe was made, which is why I am slightly confused as to exactly what model this vibe is. Confusion is my normal state especially when it comes to Premier’s instruments, this looks like a 700 series, but with a new (at the time) pedal system. The 700 had a damper system with a central pull rod and a small toe pedal, whereas the 701 has the long pedal. However I can’t remember how the top frame worked on the last 700 (with centre pull) I worked on, I think it was like this instrument.

Premier 751 Vibraphone (part 2) (Job No: 1279)

With the structure of the vibraphone stabilised in part one, I know look at the rest of the instrument discussing the importance on the damper system and my approach to doing this conversion.