Andrew Roberts Clarinet Service  Latest News

During the summer months we have been lucky enough to receive a stock of the last remaining unused Leblanc instruments from the factory in France sadly, now closed. Check out the listing of new instruments available, whilst most are still awaiting the ARCS upgrade some are ready to go!

There is quite s long waiting list for ARCS overhauls with the latest generation of pads proving enormously popular. News travels fast and over the last few weeks we have had two top players from Italy visit the workshop to have the Mk5 pads fitted.

Gabriele Sinforini has just travelled from Sicily to have his Buffet clarinet given the ARCS full overhaul with the new pads here is what he has to say about them:

“I have been playing my renewed Buffet Prestige clarinets for the last three weeks since having them rebuilt in the ARCS workshops, and I am more and more convinced that flying from Palermo to Liverpool to reach Andrew Roberts has been an excellent thing to do for my clarinets and as a personal experience.

Before Andrew’s service, my clarinets were not in good condition at all, especially the mechanics and pads, however I could realized this only after Andrew’s work.

His accuracy and attention to details gave me better clarinets than when they were brand-new.

I think that this is thanks to the new pads designed by Andrew. In the first days I played my “new”  clarinets I was really amazed by the facility to play legato and the cleanliness of the staccato.

I finally want to say that I had the opportunity to attend Andrew’s work in his amazing workshops, which has been a fantastic experience thanks to the kindness, professionalism and availability of Andrew Roberts.

Thanks a lot for everything ones more Andrew…”

Gabriele Sinforini


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Chicco helping out in the ARCS workshop                             Gabriele with Andrew in the ARCS workshop

ARCS Clarinet Academy 2015

Saturday 1st August saw the first and very successful one day ARCS Academy Clarinet Day take place thanks to the support of Hope University’s Ann James. Peter Glenville and Sandra Roberts were on hand to help with the groups and workshops making the day an enjoyable experience for all. Look out for announcements of more single day events to come.

Here are some photos from the Clarinet Day

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Following on from Dallas

See the latest articles to have been published in the recent CASS magazine by clicking on the articles link above A great deal of pain without much gain  there will be further articles in this series to follow soon with advice on reducing the effort required to play the clarinet and avoid injuries from too much practice and poor technique as part of the work Andrew does with BAPAM

The second  is titled Should there be a Suzuki Clarinet School? Let me have your thoughts on these articles and any other areas you might like to see included on the site



Andrew Roberts Clarinet Service” developments

ARCS is always seeking to improve and we are pleased to announce that the latest version  of the ARCS pads, Mk5, is available now!

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As each pad takes considerably longer to produce there is a premium charge to pay which means a full or haul including Mk5 pads will now cost £460, but if you demand the best these pads are a significant improvement over the existing models and can be resurfaced very easily reducing on going costs. Email aroberts@theclarinet.co.uk for further info or to book your overhaul, remember, there is quite a long waiting list so book early

C#/G# improvement

Continuing with the development of the clarinet ARCS can now offer some significant upgrades to most clarinets. The improved C#/G# is achieved by repositioning and enlarging the tone hole making the note much clearer and less sharp. Please call for details of this customisation option.

Further Bass clarinet developments

Having discovered a crack in the middle tenon of a  25 year old bass clarinet( surprising after such a long time) a solution has been provided by sleeving the joint in metal (see pictures below).

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The result was not only to avoid the crack spreading but a significant improvement in the resonance of the whole instrument. This is quite a big job but one I can recommend, call if you would like more details.

If you own a Selmer Bass clarinet and like me, you have been annoyed by the register mechanism only being sprung open on the crook key, then we have a solution! A spring and catch have been successfully added to my instrument and it is now possible to make faster transitions from notes in the upper register and across the break. Makes me wonder why the manufacturer hasn’t done that yet?



Read the latest testimonial from a very recent customer below

It is my belief that a good repairer studies the problem from both within and independently of context in order to work a solution. Andrew Roberts is one such example; being a consultant and lecturer on behalf of the British Association for Performing Arts Medicine (BAPAM), as well as an experienced and most meticulous clinician for players and instruments, means his results are borne of an holistic approach.

Such is the case with me; whilst I may be a life-long musician and competent clarinettist, there were aspects of my technique which were impacting my instruments beyond the usual wear and tear expected from playing.
Where a previous repairer has in fact denied there was any problem (by refuting my abilities and knowledge of my own instrument) Andrew has worked with me, discussing with me everything from the fundamentals the physics of the clarinet through to the very music. As a result, my understanding and fascination have grown; my instruments have changed beyond all recognition for the better; most importantly, however, my enjoyment of playing my instruments has also been greatly enhanced.

You would be hard-pressed to find anyone as knowledgeable and scrupulous as this gentleman; to find those same attributes in someone as personable as Andrew Roberts is rarer still.

Kat Browning RNCM post graduate student


 Silverstein Ligatures

We are pleased to announce that ARCShave the latest CRYO4 models of the outstanding Silverstein Ligatures, check out their site here http://www.silversteinworks.com/ligature/



These ligatures have proved so popular that they are almost out of stock again….

My good friend Les Craven wrote an interesting article on the Silverstein ligatures which you can read here CASS-article-copy

 Reserve reeds

The New Reserve and Reserve Classic reeds are now available through this website. After a period of substantial trials with many players around the UK involved, Reserve reeds now have a new profile and are proving very popular. Why not try them for yourself? Check out the D’Addario website here

 Advertise your second hand instruments

Want to sell your second hand instruments then advertise your second hand clarinets somewhere that will attract interest. With some many hits our website offers the perfect place to add you instrument, include a picture and make it sell quickly. Why pay too much commission? Our initial commission rate of just 5% is the lowest available and will mean you get more cash from your instrument sale. Ask about our enhanced sales offer, you can’t lose! Contact us at sales@theclarinet.co.uk for further details.


I first met Andrew, just after I joined the Ulster Orchestra three years ago, having tried his clarinets during a rehearsal I realised that my ageing Buffet clarinets were not performing as well as they could. This was mostly due to the wear over 15 years since I had never been brave enough to allow any repairer to work on my instruments as I was scared that they might change in the wrong way. Andrew worked on my clarinets in an emergency and it was clear to me that he understood my demands for the instruments. I eventually got the courage to take my instruments to the ARCS workshop in Liverpool and stayed with them to check that everything was done to my satisfaction. I was so happy with the work that was done to my instruments that meant I could play with so much more security and control, this is important to me as the clarinet sound should be flexible and easy to change colours and dynamics. I also found that legato was now much easier to achieve than I had thought possible. During our work together in the Ulster Orchestra I began to trust Andrew’s tuning ability, which is unusual as most repairers cannot play to the highest levels you need to change the tuning of an instrument for another player. I now feel I have the right tuning and setup with my clarinets for the first time in my life, I don’t know anyone else in the UK or in Europe that I trust in this way. My friends, many Principal clarinets around Europe, have been made to try my clarinets and they were all shocked as to how well they worked and how quiet the ARCS pads were. The ease of legato which no other pad has allowed before was a big surprise. I now send my friends and students to ARCS to find out for themselves what they have been missing in their clarinets! A huge thank you to a friend that has made my life easier Francesco Paolo Scola Principal Clarinet Ulster Orchestra

More testimonials…