Technician Spotlight: Geoff Secomb

GeoffWhere do you work and how long have you worked there?

I work and live in Brisbane, State capital of the state of Queensland, Australia (not far from the Gold Coast).  This is my hometown, and over the years my work has included a reasonable amount of teaching as well as repairing.  I also did a brief stint as a Sales Rep for one of Australia’s importer/wholesalers.

I have worked in many situations, but always for myself.  I was ‘on-site’ for a major store for a while (1989), then moved back to a home-based workshop, which has remained until last year when I moved into a small industrial unit.

What do you specialize in?

I’m a woodwind specialist, focusing on clarinets and saxes, although I am quite happy to work on any of the woodwinds and do some servicing on brass instruments.

What do you want the world to know about your work?ls

I’m self-taught and started doing my own work at age 16.  That gives me 43 years of experience and learning (sometimes the hard way.) My clientele includes everyone from beginning students to top professionals, both from my local areas and from other places around Australia.  One of my early sources of information was the old Erik Brand Repair Manual, and there were many times I undertook work without knowing it was supposed to be hard – I relied on common sense and took things slowly, and successfully fulfilled my client’s needs.

I’m trained in performance, (and still perform regularly,) with undergraduate and postgraduate degrees from the Queensland Conservatorium.

Which MusicMedic pads do you use and why?

I’ve fallen in love with the thin pressed felt clarinet pads.  They are, for me, the perfect combination of quality, affordability, and ease of use.  I use them for all my student work, and for professional use, I go to the Roopads for clarinet.

On sax, I use the tan pads as a daily use/student horn pad, and Roopads for pro gear. I find the tan pads seat well and easily and are a good firmness and thickness.

If you could give one repair tip, what would it be?

Even when you do everything right, always check and recheck the result – things don’t always do what you expect them to do.  Some problems still only become evident during a playtest.