Further information from my techie and £155 re-pad charges -
In reply to your query regarding prices, I am not surprised that people are questioning the price, but let me reassure you that my standards, the quality of my work, and my customer services are no less than those of other repairers anywhere else in the country.
What makes the difference is regional cost of living: London and the Home Counties are so much more expensive in most respects than rural Shropshire. This is reflected in the relatively low prices I am able to charge. I also work from my work-shop at home, so very little in the way of overheads.
My charges are, as with other repairers, based on time and materials: time is charged at £35.00 per hour and materials are what they are. In other words, a full set of generic parts will cost less than a full set of genuine manufacturer’s parts. Ultimately, though, the customer calls the shots i.e. you choose the quality of pad and I will tell you the price of the re-pad. On top of that, I never undertake any work without first consulting, and agreeing it with, the customer. That way, the customer is always in control of the repair and I get satisfied customers.’
Sorry for being skeptical: so according to the above, it takes him 4 hours to do: strip down, clean all rods/screws/through rod keys, clean body and neck(inside and out), replace any springs, remove all pads+old shellac, ensure keywork is tight, possibly swedge a couple of keys, replace all pads, adjust pads' seating, replace all felts and corks (including neck cork), regulate, play test then do final adjustments... and I've probably skipped a step or two... I don't know! I must be doing something wrong! Let me know how it goes, I might sub contract to him!
Btw, did you get a quote from Rupert Noble?