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What is the Piano Technicians Guild?

Piano Technicians Guild logo.  Michael Carlin is a Registered Piano Technician in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

The Piano Technicians Guild (PTG) is a voluntary organization of piano technicians. The PTG was founded in 1958 as a merger of a couple of similar organizations that began in the early 1900s. The organization represents more than 100 years of collective knowledge

about the care and service of all types of pianos. Globally, the PTG has approximately 3,300 members. The Piano Technicians Guild also operates the piano tech industry's highly regarded certification program, known as the "Registered Piano Technician."

Registered Piano Technician logo.  Michael Carlin is a Registered Piano Technician in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

You may have noticed that I describe myself as a Registered Piano Technician (RPT). In order to earn that certification, I needed to pass a number of rigorous examinations in tuning, repairing, and regulating pianos. Any technician who is an RPT has passed these examinations. If a technician is not an RPT, that means that the person either has not passed those exams, or has a lapsed PTG membership. In my view, it's a good idea to determine whether a technician is an RPT. Passing the RPT exams requires a substantial commitment of time and effort, and a person who is an RPT has invested that time and effort and worked diligently to pass the exams.

Piano Technicians Journal cover.  Michael Carlin is a Registered Piano Technician in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

The Piano Technicians Guild publishes a monthly journal, with issues going back to 1958. The Journal is an invaluable resource for PTG members. We have an online searchable index of issues that help us to handle issues that arise in the care and repair of the multitude of pianos that we encounter. Local chapters of the PTG meet regularly to share knowledge and teach each other valuable skills. I am a member of the Detroit-Windsor chapter of the PTG, and I value the friendships and the deep knowledge reservoirs that my colleagues have.

The PTG also holds an annual convention, the largest gathering of piano technicians in the world. This year's convention will be held in Arlington, Virginia in the last week of July. I'm looking forward to geeking out on technical sessions and catching up with piano technician friends from other parts of the United States and around the world.

For me, the Piano Technicians Guild is a great organization that encouraged me to work hard to pass the RPT exams, provided me with the coveted Registered Piano Technician designation once I passed, provides me with monthly articles that help me to continue learning, puts me in touch with other PTG members in my area through the local chapter, and that puts on the annual conventions, which draw piano technology experts from around the world. I'm proud to be a member of the PTG and I'm proud to be a Registered Piano Technician.

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