Clarinet Getting Repaired
It's been at least a couple decades since my clarinet was last taken in for maintenance and repairs, so this was long overdue.
I know the local high school band director and asked him if he knew of a good repair shop. Today I took my clarinet to the one he recommended and let the repairman know of the specific issues I was having. In addition to the repairs I also asked him to oil it inside and out (the wood needs oil to prevent from drying out and cracking) and replace any faulty corks and pads. It'll cost at least $200, when all is said and done, but that's less than a complete overhaul (full re-cork and re-pad) which costs over $400.
This will be money well spent. It's an old Buffet Crampon R13 and it belonged my father, who taught high school and elementary school band for 41 years. He gave it to me when I started playing the clarinet in 4th grade and it's been my primary instrument all through elementary school, high school, college, and beyond. To say that I have played the heck out of it would be an understatement. So much amazing music has been played on it and it's held up remarkably well – except when I was in college I had to get one of the sections replaced when the original developed a crack that was irreparable.
My son (only child) plays the trumpet and piano. So I'm hoping to keep my clarinet in tip top shape so that one day I can pass it along to a grandchild or someone I am sure will appreciate it and play it. Taking it in for maintenance and repairs is a small price to pay for (hopefully) more decades of musical enjoyment to come.