SPECIALIZING IN HAND FITTING SAX NECKS AND FLUTE HEADJOINTS
Offering a full range of services for woodwind players,
from minor adjustments to major repairs and overhauls.
See specific services on the page for each instrument.
Flute, Oboe & Clarinet
Bassoon & Saxophone
Recorders and other miscellaneous winds
Every instrument is given a thorough inspection before a recommendation is made. There is no charge for repair estimates.
Repairs as needed:
Most frequently that would include minor adjustments, replacing a few pads and/or corks, or addressing immediate problems (such as a broken spring).
Clean, Oil and Adjust:
When it’s necessary to take a major portion of the instrument apart, the recommended service is a “clean, oil, and adjust”. There is a set fee for this service for each type of instrument (with a lower cost for student models).
The instrument is completely dismantled and cleaned, including all the pivot points that will later be oiled. All of the corks and felts are inspected and replaced as needed, all of the needed adjustments are made, and all of the keys are oiled. The only additional charge is for pad replacement.
Unfortunately there’s no “industry standard” for the terms “repad” and “overhaul. The Woodwind Shop offers overhauls as follows:
As the instrument is dismantled, each key is hand fit so there is no excess motion. Any bent keys are straightened, binding keys are freed. Tone holes are leveled as needed.
All of the pads and corks are stripped off and the keys are washed. Sax and flute bodies are washed (and polished, if silver or gold); wood bodied instruments are cleaned and oiled.
The correct size pads are fit to the cups. For saxes, the old pads are saved to determine the correct size for the resonator. A selection of resonators are available.
As the instrument is reassembled all of the corks and felts are replaced. For saxes and clarinets a generous portion of glue is used so the pads can be “floated” into position. Thus very little pressure is required to properly seat the pad. This insures a stable and long lasting repair.
Fine tuning includes fitting the flute head and foot joints, and fitting sax necks.
SAX NOTE: It is common for sax necks to fit poorly, resulting in an uneven tone quality through the second register. Most noticeable is that the second register D, F#, and A are somewhat stuffy. That is corrected as part of the base overhaul price.
CLARINET NOTE: it is common that the rings are too wide and prevent the sections from joining without a seam. That is corrected. It is also common that the bore in the upper joint does not precisely match the barrel on the top and the lower joint on the bottom. That is also corrected.
Overhaul prices available on request.
I would like to acknowledge the late Bob Gilchrist as the Master of flute tenon fitting. I was privileged to work with Bob in the San Francisco Bay Area in the 70’s.