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Clarinet Repair

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Wood & Professional Clarinets:

Chris Moller does all repair work on site except for some specialty repairs. You can expect the highest quality repair work available. There’s no substitute for talent, tooling, schooling, a six-year apprenticeship under a true master technician, and continued training along with over 24 years of experience. A quality repair job means your clarinet will feel, respond, and resonate as well or better than new. 

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  • Minor repairs done while-you-wait as time and workload permit.

  • Choice of cork, pressed felt, Valentino, leather and Omni pads in stock.

  • Other pads available with 3 to 4-week turnaround including Straubinger Pads.

  • Bass clarinets are padded in high quality leather pads and/or modern synthetic pads.

  • Crack pinning.

  • Carbon fiber banding.



It is extremely important to make sure your rings are properly fit. Many cracks could have been avoided by simply having your rings properly fit.



If the tone hole isn’t free of flaws a pad will never seal correctly.



Oil immersion: As clarinets age the grenadilla wood can dry out especially in the bore. This results in a clarinet being considered “played out” or playing out of tune. Because grenadilla is so dense it can take months for the bore of an old clarinet to begin to acquire its original shape.

Carbon fiber tenon rebuild: Often tenons become too loose to fit properly with a new tenon cork alone. This is most common with the center tenon. I can turn down the center tenon and add a carbon fiber wrap to the tenon. Then the tenon is reshaped to fit the lower joint. The bore remains unchanged, the fit is as good or better than new, the tenon is stronger and there is very little change to the appearance.

Re-pad: Sometimes the key silencers on a clarinet are still in good shape while the pads are leaking.  In this case it may be advisable to replace all the pads while replacing only the key silencers that are questionable. All keys are removed, the body and keys are washed, tone holes are resurfaced as needed, pads are replaced (your choice of pad) and levelled to the same standard as a mechanical overhaul, old oil is replaced with fresh synthetic oil and the clarinet is regulated and play tested until it reaches Agave Music’s standards.


A complete mechanical overhaul includes a cleaning and oiling, tone hole resurfacing, straightening bent keys and steels, choice of pads, key swedging, all new key silencers, all new tenon corks, fresh synthetic oil and a true professional regulation. Additionally, a complete mechanical overhaul can include oil immersion, tenon work, crack repair, chip repair and buffing nickel keys or polishing silver plated keys.

Magnehelic leak check and reading: A Magnehelic checks for leaks by blowing air and measuring the resistance. Because of this I am able to check for leaks in the same way the clarinet is played. I am also able to find very minute leaks that traditional methods have missed. Many technicians(including myself) have found that a lot of leaks weren’t being found. The difference can be night and day once the clarinet seals properly. I use this to check every clarinet I re-pad or overhaul. I can also check your clarinet to determine how well it’s sealing. Professional dent work is performed to minimize work hardening and finish damage.


Lead technician Chris Moller is a Straubinger certified clarinet technician. Chris Moller does all professional instrument repairs on site. Straubinger Clarinet Pads offer an extremely light touch, stability in different humidity/temperatures and can last 10 years or more! A really tight clarinet will also make it much easier to play the higher registers. Please allow up to a month to order pads and fit the clarinet into existing repairs.

Student Instruments:

The extreme precision demanded by professional musicians is not necessary for beginning students but your instrument does need to be clean and play easily without parts sticking or seizing. Most of the time Chris is in the shop and can give an accurate estimate before the instrument is left. All work is done on site with fast turnaround times and loaners are usually available. Please bring everything used to play and care for the instrument including the case and mouthpiece.
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It is important to understand that clarinets do not either play or not. The more they leak air the more difficult they are to play especially in the high notes. If you believe a clarinet is under-repaired I recommend you bring it in and have the instrument checked out(even if another technician has already looked at it). I will let you know what I am able to do to improve its playability, how much it costs and how it will affect the way it plays before any work is performed. 


Done while-you-what as time and workload permit 


This refers to any repair short of a re-pad or overhaul. A play condition can include straightened bent keys, replacing corks or pads and setting key heights.  I may give several different estimates depending on who is playing the instrument, what it is being used for, what type of clarinet it is, what your budget is and so on.


As the clarinet is played or stored the pads age. They can swell, fray, tear, warp, fall out and so on.  Eventually all the pads have to be replaced. At Agave Music a repad refers to replacing all the pads while replacing only the key silencers and tenon corks that are questionable or missing. This includes removing all keys, straightening bent keys/posts, levelling pad cups/tone holes, meticulously levelling all pads, a complete regulation, oiling, play test and so on.  (Only available on certain newer clarinets) 


At Agave Music a mechanical overhaul refers to all work in a re-pad plus a chemical cleaning, all new key silencers and all new tenon corks. Mechanically your clarinet will play better than new. This repair comes with a one year repair and maintenance contract signed by Chris Moller. Additional charges apply if you would also like the keys buffed or polished to restore their original shine. 

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