When flutist Nancy Shinn decided to take a class in flute repair from Dr. Eldred Spell at Western Carolina University in Cullowhee, she had no idea that it would change the course of her life. Because flutes have so many keys, they are complicated to repair.

People from all over the country send their instruments to Shinn to repair. She also sells flutes that she has bought and fixed to folks as far away as Alaska. She offers free advice via phone or e-mail to those who are researching different brands of flutes.

Most of Shinn’s business comes from her Web site, and she charges $60 per hour, and she doesn’t give quotes until she has the instrument in hand.

Thanks to Chuck Huckaby for the story tip.

Photo by EWART BALL.

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