Err

Serving the Harp World Since 1817

Harp Servicing

Regulation and Adjustment


In order to maintain your harp in good working order, periodic attention from a trained technician is strongly advised.  Not only will your harp sound at its best, but should one day you ever want to sell your harp you will have a service history.


The harp combines wood and metals with an off-centre stress, which can exceed 1600lbs. This stress will, sooner or later, inevitably result in some movement in the harp’s structure. This is perfectly natural and a small amount of movement is to be expected in any harp. However, even a miniscule movement will change the position of pedal discs or levers and cause the harp to become out of tune with itself when the disc or lever is engaged. A harp technician will re-adjust the discs or levers so that the harp is once again in tune.


Harp servicing

Servicing

Eventually, some small parts need to be replaced or serviced. A fully trained harp technician would offer the following

  • Pedal Wrapping
  • De-Buzzing
  • Re-Rivetting Pedal Harp Actions
  • Re-Stringing
  • Servicing Tuning Pins (removed, cleaned, re-blued and oiled)
  • Servicing Bridge Pins ( removed, cleaned and re-lacquered)
  • Servicing Semitone Levers (levers need different treatment according to make: these include cleaning, re-lacquering, oiling and adjustment.)

Re-Stringing

A full size 47 string pedal with Top and 1st Octave in Bow Brand Concert Nylon, then Bow Brand Pedal Gut Strings and Bow Brand Concert Bass Wires - takes approx 2 hours to completely restring and allow for say at least 6 subsequent tunings over a couple of days to allow harp to settle and stretch to be removed from strings. Customers must understand that old antique harps such as Erard Grecian and Gothic harps may have used animal bone based glues, which can over time crystalise and weaken. This can lead to necks de-laminating at joints and soundboards peeling off , etc....

Restoration and Decoration

Some harp technicians can provide restoration of antique and older harps to your own specification – either cosmetic restoration for decorative purposes, or complete restoration to full playing order. All restoration is undertaken by experienced, qualified craftspeople. Services include:

  • Respraying
  • Scratch Repair
  • Casework Renovation
  • Polishing
  • Re-Gilding
  • Replacement of Worn or Damaged Parts
  • New Decoration

Here is an article about a fine Single Action Concert Harp by Egan of Dublin, now owned by the Irish Linen Centre and Lisburn Museum. Clive Morley Harps were instrumental in restoring it from a deteriorated condition to peak recital standard.


Harp Technicians we can recommend

Michael Parfett - info@michaelparfett.com

London     Tel:  0207 228 5577

Gerald Fentler - gerald@gfharpworkshop.co.uk

Monmouth    Tel:  01600 712656

Niebisch & Tree Harps -  ntharps@outlook.com

High Wycombe.  Tel: 01494 913686

Pilgrim Harps - John Hoare

01342 893242 info@pilgrimharps.co.uk

Billy Hornby

harpdoctor@btinternet.com   Tel:  44 (0)7771 797877

Area of service/travel: Europe: United Kingdom plus outlying islands, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Canary Islands, north Germany, Holland; Africa: South Africa