Summary Report for:
49-9063.00 - Musical Instrument Repairers and Tuners
Repair percussion, stringed, reed, or wind instruments. May specialize in one area, such as piano tuning.
Sample of reported job titles: Banjo Repair Person, Brass Instrument Repair Technician, Fretted String Instrument Repairer, Guitar Repairer, Instrument Repair Technician, Luthier, Mandolin Repair Person, Piano Technician, Piano Tuner, Stringed Instrument Repairer
Tasks | Technology Skills | Tools Used | Knowledge | Skills | Abilities | Work Activities | Detailed Work Activities | Work Context | Job Zone | Education | Credentials | Interests | Work Styles | Work Values | Related Occupations | Wages & Employment | Job Openings | Additional Information
- Play instruments to evaluate their sound quality and to locate any defects.
- Adjust string tensions to tune instruments, using hand tools and electronic tuning devices.
- Reassemble instruments following repair, using hand tools and power tools and glue, hair, yarn, resin, or clamps, and lubricate instruments as necessary.
- Disassemble instruments and parts for repair and adjustment.
- Repair or replace musical instrument parts and components, such as strings, bridges, felts, and keys, using hand and power tools.
- Inspect instruments to locate defects, and to determine their value or the level of restoration required.
- Compare instrument pitches with tuning tool pitches to tune instruments.
- String instruments, and adjust trusses and bridges of instruments to obtain specified string tensions and heights.
- Polish instruments, using rags and polishing compounds, buffing wheels, or burnishing tools.
- Repair cracks in wood or metal instruments, using pinning wire, lathes, fillers, clamps, or soldering irons.
- Mix and measure glue that will be used for instrument repair.
- Shape old parts and replacement parts to improve tone or intonation, using hand tools, lathes, or soldering irons.
- Refinish instruments to protect and decorate them, using hand tools, buffing tools, and varnish.
- Make wood replacement parts, using woodworking machines and hand tools.
- Align pads and keys on reed or wind instruments.
- Solder posts and parts to hold them in their proper places.
- Remove dents and burrs from metal instruments, using mallets and burnishing tools.
- Test tubes and pickups in electronic amplifier units, and solder parts and connections as necessary.
- Adjust felt hammers on pianos to increase tonal mellowness or brilliance, using sanding paddles, lacquer, or needles.
- Remove irregularities from tuning pins, strings, and hammers of pianos, using wood blocks or filing tools.
- Strike wood, fiberglass, or metal bars of instruments, and use tuned blocks, stroboscopes, or electronic tuners to evaluate tones made by instruments.
- Wash metal instruments in lacquer-stripping and cyanide solutions to remove lacquer and tarnish.
- Assemble and install new pipe organs and pianos in buildings.
- Analytical or scientific software — Katsura Shareware KS Strobe Tuner; Katsura Shareware ProLevel; Tunic OnlyPure; Veritune Verituner (see all 8 examples)
- Air hoses
- Alcohol lamp — Alcohol lamps
- Alignment jig — Alignment jigs; Key button jigs; Neck jigs
- Allen wrench — Allen wrenches
- Angle gauge — Flute gauges; Hammer angle gauges
- Anvils — Bench anvils
- Applicator brushes — Glue brushes
- Artist knives — Felt cutting knives
- Audio mixing consoles — Looping machines
- Automatic lathe or chucking machine — Bench lathes
- Awls — Pointed awls
- Belt sander — Belt sanders
- Bench grinder — Bench grinders
- Blow pipe — Blowpipes
- Blow torch — Blow torches; Butane heaters; Pencil torches
- Boring tool — Bore tools
- Burnisher — Burnishing rings; Flute body mandrels; Hand burnishers; Scraper burnishers (see all 5 examples)
- C clamps — Adjustable C clamps; Deep throat C clamps
- Cable bender — Bending irons; Damper spoon benders
- Calibration weights or weight sets — Gram weights
- Calipers — Dial calipers
- Center punch — Center pin punches
- Chamfering machine — Chamfer tools
- Cleaning brushes — Bench brushes; Bore cleaning brushes; Brass mouthpiece brushes; Valve brushes
- Cold chisels
- Compressed air gun — Air dusting guns
- Conduit benders — Heat staking tools
- Countersink tool or counterbore tool — Countersinks
- Curved nose pliers
- Depth gauges — Fret slot depth gauges
- Diagonal cut pliers — Diagonal cutters
- Die stocks
- Dip tanks — Chemical dip tanks
- Disc sander — Disc sanders
- Drill gauge — Drill gauges; Wire drill gauges
- Drilling machines — Drill presses
- Electronic instrument tuner — Digital tuners; Electronic tuners
- End cut pliers — End cut nippers
- Extending clamp — Cam clamps
- Feeler gauges
- Flaring tool — Tubing shrinkers
- Flat nose pliers — Duck bill pliers; Jaw pliers; Long flat nose pliers
- Fluorescent lamps — Leak lights
- Gas burners — Bunsen burners
- Gas compressors — Sprayer compressors
- General purpose motor AC — Bench motors
- Glue guns
- Guide jig — Post drilling jigs
- Hacksaw — Hacksaws
- Hammers — Dent hammers
- Hand clamps — Feeler gauge holders; Pin vises; Soldering clamps
- Hand or push drill — Hammer head borers; Hand drills
- Hand reamer — Barrel reamers; Broaches; Pin hole reamers; Socket reamers (see all 7 examples)
- Hand sander — Fret dressing sticks
- Hand sprayers — Precision spray guns
- Heat guns
- Heating or drying equipment or accessories — Pad cup heaters
- Height gauges — Height measurement gauges; Key dip blocks; String height gauges; Top deflection gauges (see all 6 examples)
- Hex keys — Ball-end hex keys; Bracket hex wrenches; Hex drivers
- Hold down clamps — Violin clamps
- Hole saws — Tone hole cutters
- Hook wrenches — Damper rod hooks
- Humidifiers — Guitar humidifiers
- Humidity sensor — Digital humidity gauges
- Incandescent lamps
- Inspection mirror — Inspection mirrors; Valve mirrors
- Ironing machines or presses — Flute pad irons
- Jacks — Grand piano jacks; Scissor jacks
- Knife file — Nut files
- Laboratory forceps — Alligator forceps; Curved nose forceps
- Laboratory heaters — Glue pots
- Laboratory spoon — Wax spoons
- Lapping machine — Valve lapping machines
- Levels — Clarinet pad leveling tools; Fingerboard levelers; Piano leveling devices; Sharp leveling and key-dip devices (see all 5 examples)
- Lighters — Spark lighters
- Locking pliers — Vise grip pliers
- Magnetic tools — Pencil magnets; Telescoping magnetic pickup tools
- Magnetizer demagnetizer devices — Magnetizers
- Manual wire straighteners — Hart spring tools
- Metal cutters — Spring cutters
- Needle file — Needle files
- Needlenose pliers — Chain nose pliers
- Nut drivers
- Oil lubricator — Bench oilers; Oilers; Precision oilers
- Packing hooks — String hooks
- Planes — Hand planers; Hand planes
- Positioning jig — Saddle locating jigs; Soldering jigs
- Power buffers — Buffing machines
- Power drills
- Power routers — Routers
- Power sanders
- Power saws — Portable band saws
- Precision file — Fret end dressing files; Fret files; Razor files
- Pressure indicators — Mag machines
- Protractors — Hammer angle protractors
- Pry bars — Punching lifters; String lifters
- Pullers — Agraffe removers; Piano stringing hooks
- Punches or nail sets or drifts — Arch punches; Punches; Spring punches; Tuning pin bushing punches (see all 5 examples)
- Radius gauge — Radius gauges; Understring radius gauges
- Rotary paper or fabric cutter — Felt cutters
- Round file — Rat tail files
- Rulers — Regulating gauges; String action gauges; String spacing rules
- Sand blasting machine — Sand blasters
- Sash clamp — Fingerboard band clamps
- Saw blades — Screw slotters
- Saws — Adjustable fret slotting saws; Bridge pin hole slotting saws; Refret saws; Rip saws (see all 8 examples)
- Screw clamps — Edging clamps; Soundhole clamps; Spool clamps
- Screw extractors
- Screwdrivers — Flange screwdrivers; Grand screwdrivers; Regulating screwdrivers; Slotted screwdrivers
- Scribers — Magnetic scribers
- Shears — Curved nose scissors
- Soldering iron — Soldering irons
- Spacers or standoffs — Hammer butt spacers; Piano key spacers
- Specialty wrenches — Action regulators; Bushing inserters; Pocket truss rod wrenches; Tuning wrenches (see all 17 examples)
- Spray gun — Automated sprayers
- Straight edges — Fret rockers
- Surface thermometers
- T handle tap wrenches — Tap wrenches
- Telescoping gauge — Telescoping gauges
- Tenoner or tenoning machine — Tenon expanders
- Tension testers — Gram tension gauges
- Thickness measuring devices — Screw gauges; Tuning pin gauges
- Thread counters or gauges — Screw pitch thread gauges
- Threading dies — Thread cutting tools
- Tinners snips
- Tongs — Soldering clips
- Torque wrenches
- Torx keys — Torx drivers
- Tube bending machine — Dent machines
- Tuning bars — Tuning hammers; Tuning levers
- Tuning forks
- Tuning pins — Piano tuning pin cranks; Piano tuning pin extractors; Tuning pin setters
- Tweezers — Cross lock tweezers
- Utility knives — Purfling cutters; Seam separation knives
- Web clamp — Band clamps
- Welding or soldering kit — Heat control units
- Wire brushes — File cleaners
- Wire cutters
- Wire gauge — Music wire gauges
- Wire wrapping tool — Coil makers
- Wood chisels
- Work benches — Bench blocks
- Customer and Personal Service — Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
- Fine Arts — Knowledge of the theory and techniques required to compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.
- Mechanical — Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
- English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
- Repairing — Repairing machines or systems using the needed tools.
- Troubleshooting — Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
- Quality Control Analysis — Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
- Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
- Time Management — Managing one's own time and the time of others.
- Active Listening — Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
- Complex Problem Solving — Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
- Operation Monitoring — Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
- Service Orientation — Actively looking for ways to help people.
- Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
- Equipment Maintenance — Performing routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.
- Equipment Selection — Determining the kind of tools and equipment needed to do a job.
- Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
- Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
- Social Perceptiveness — Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
- Hearing Sensitivity — The ability to detect or tell the differences between sounds that vary in pitch and loudness.
- Arm-Hand Steadiness — The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
- Finger Dexterity — The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.
- Manual Dexterity — The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
- Auditory Attention — The ability to focus on a single source of sound in the presence of other distracting sounds.
- Control Precision — The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
- Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
- Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
- Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
- Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
- Visualization — The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.
- Flexibility of Closure — The ability to identify or detect a known pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in other distracting material.
- Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
- Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
- Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
- Selective Attention — The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
- Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
- Multilimb Coordination — The ability to coordinate two or more limbs (for example, two arms, two legs, or one leg and one arm) while sitting, standing, or lying down. It does not involve performing the activities while the whole body is in motion.
- Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
- Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
- Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
- Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
- Performing for or Working Directly with the Public — Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.
- Handling and Moving Objects — Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
- Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material — Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
- Controlling Machines and Processes — Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).
- Thinking Creatively — Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
- Repairing and Maintaining Mechanical Equipment — Servicing, repairing, adjusting, and testing machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of mechanical (not electronic) principles.
- Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People — Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.
- Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work — Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
- Scheduling Work and Activities — Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.
- Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
- Performing Administrative Activities — Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork.
- Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
- Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
- Communicating with Persons Outside Organization — Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.
- Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
- Monitoring and Controlling Resources — Monitoring and controlling resources and overseeing the spending of money.
- Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information — Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.
- Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings — Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
- Selling or Influencing Others — Convincing others to buy merchandise/goods or to otherwise change their minds or actions.
- Performing General Physical Activities — Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.
- Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others — Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.
- Training and Teaching Others — Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
Detailed Work Activities
- Test mechanical equipment to ensure proper functioning.
- Align equipment or machinery.
- Adjust tuning or functioning of musical instruments.
- Adjust equipment to ensure optimal performance.
- Reassemble equipment after repair.
- Lubricate equipment to allow proper functioning.
- Disassemble equipment for maintenance or repair.
- Repair worn, damaged, or defective mechanical parts.
- Replace worn, damaged, or defective mechanical parts.
- Solder parts or connections between parts.
- Inspect mechanical equipment to locate damage, defects, or wear.
- Remove dents from equipment, materials, tools or structures.
- Test electrical circuits or components for proper functioning.
- Smooth surfaces of objects or equipment.
- Prepare compounds or solutions to be used for repairs.
- Refinish wood or metal surfaces.
- Fabricate parts or components.
- Clean equipment, parts, or tools to repair or maintain them in good working order.
- Assemble mechanical components or machine parts.
- Travel to work sites to perform installation, repair or maintenance work.
- Remove parts or components from equipment.
- Operate welding equipment.
- Cut materials according to specifications or needs.
- Paint surfaces or equipment.
- Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — 93% responded “Every day.”
- Telephone — 90% responded “Every day.”
- Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 79% responded “Extremely important.”
- Electronic Mail — 83% responded “Every day.”
- Face-to-Face Discussions — 79% responded “Every day.”
- Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls — 79% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Freedom to Make Decisions — 66% responded “A lot of freedom.”
- Deal With External Customers — 55% responded “Extremely important.”
- Structured versus Unstructured Work — 48% responded “A lot of freedom.”
- Time Pressure — 52% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
- Wear Common Protective or Safety Equipment such as Safety Shoes, Glasses, Gloves, Hearing Protection, Hard Hats, or Life Jackets — 48% responded “Every day.”
- Contact With Others — 45% responded “Constant contact with others.”
- Frequency of Decision Making — 48% responded “Every day.”
- Sounds, Noise Levels Are Distracting or Uncomfortable — 34% responded “Every day.”
- Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 38% responded “Important results.”
- Exposed to Contaminants — 38% responded “Every day.”
- Importance of Repeating Same Tasks — 41% responded “Extremely important.”
- Spend Time Making Repetitive Motions — 38% responded “More than half the time.”
- Duration of Typical Work Week — 45% responded “40 hours.”
- Spend Time Sitting — 45% responded “More than half the time.”
- Exposed to Hazardous Equipment — 41% responded “Every day.”
- Letters and Memos — 31% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
- Level of Competition — 52% responded “Moderately competitive.”
- Exposed to Hazardous Conditions — 28% responded “Every day.”
- Exposed to Minor Burns, Cuts, Bites, or Stings — 31% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.”
|Title||Job Zone Three: Medium Preparation Needed|
|Education||Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.|
|Related Experience||Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for these occupations. For example, an electrician must have completed three or four years of apprenticeship or several years of vocational training, and often must have passed a licensing exam, in order to perform the job.|
|Job Training||Employees in these occupations usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.|
|Job Zone Examples||These occupations usually involve using communication and organizational skills to coordinate, supervise, manage, or train others to accomplish goals. Examples include hydroelectric production managers, travel guides, electricians, agricultural technicians, barbers, court reporters, and medical assistants.|
|SVP Range||(6.0 to < 7.0)|
Interest code: RAI Want to discover your interests? Take the O*NET Interest Profiler at My Next Move.
- Realistic — Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
- Artistic — Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.
- Investigative — Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
- Conventional — Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
- Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
- Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
- Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
- Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
- Independence — Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
- Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
- Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
- Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
- Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
- Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
- Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
- Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
- Innovation — Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
- Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
- Independence — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
- Achievement — Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
- Working Conditions — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.
Wages & Employment Trends
|Median wages (2020)||$17.70 hourly, $36,810 annual|
|Employment (2019)||8,900 employees|
|Projected growth (2019-2029)||Decline (-1% or lower)|
|Projected job openings (2019-2029)||700|
|Top industries (2019)|
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2020 wage data and 2019-2029 employment projections . "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2019-2029). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.
Job Openings on the Web
Sources of Additional Information
Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.