How Pereira 3D Is Making Clarinets More Affordable

Published on June 21, 2021 by Mikahila L.
3D printed wooden clarinet bell by Pereira3d

While many wish to explore their musicality by taking up a skill like playing an instrument, oftentimes the prohibitive costs of acquiring and maintaining instruments, such as the clarinet with its different accessories and variations, can keep many from taking it up. Applying the benefits of 3D printing to his clarinet expertise, Ryan Pereira launched Pereira 3D in 2014 with the creation of his first after-market clarinet barrel. Using 3D printing in their clarinet products allowed for lower manufacturing costs, resulting in significantly more affordable products, including Pietera 3D’s Balance Barrels which are designed for students and cost only $50 relative to comparable barrels which cost upwards of $200-$300. 

In general, when one plays the clarinet, different barrels can produce different sounds that have their advantages and disadvantages — barrels can create sounds that are somber or whimsical, more or less focused, or change the blowing resistance of your clarinet. Furthermore, with usage, clarinet accessories become worn and require frequent replacement to produce optimal sounds. Using biocompatible 3D Wood materials, such as Blackwood and Mahogany that are currently available in abundance, Pereira 3D makes the case for sustainability in producing clarinet replacement parts and repairs. In addition to 3D-printed clarinet barrels, the company produces clarinet bells, mouthpieces, and ligatures.

Clarinet repair services by Pereira3D

Clarinet repair services by Pereira 3D in Philadelphia, PA USA (Photo Credit: Pereira3D)

Pereira 3D Clarinet Accessories

Growing up in a household of engineers, Ryan Pereira found himself constantly learning about the latest technologies, which led him down the path of discovering a clarinet barrel that produces a clear, centered, and smooth sound. He later turned to 3D printing in order to enhance barrel precision and customization. Pereira, a classically-trained clarinet player, deepened his expertise after spending four years as a clarinet repair apprentice, where he experimented with the different aspects of clarinet performance including testing clarinet bumper materials, barrel tapers, and beveling clarinet cork pads.

From there, Pereira expanded to a full range of products using new materials, including 3D printed wood that promises to never crack, never change its dimensions, and doesn’t require the typical clarinet break-in process. The Pereira 3D workshop is equipped with two FDM machines — the Zortrax M200 and Zortrax M300 Dual 3D printers. Pereira 3D uses wood/PLA filaments and bronze/PLA filaments to create lightweight and durable clarinet repairs and accessories.

Upon graduating with an advanced degree in Clarinet Performance, Pereira took his skills to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania where he owns a full-service clarinet repair shop. 

Man holding clarinet

Ryan Pereira, founder of Pereira 3D. (Photo Credits: Pereira3D)

Music Education

Additionally, research funded by the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Foundation’s Sounds of Learning research initiative, estimates the cost for music education averages to about $187 per student annually in a sample school district in the United States. John Gerdy, founder and CEO of the nonprofit Music for Everyone, which supports music education in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, shared that the nonprofit’s instrument repair program awarded $112,000 in grants in the spring of 2018. However, the group received $250,000 worth of requests. Applying 3D printing to instruments like the clarinet can open more opportunities for students interested in music education but are restricted due to costs. You can learn more about Pereira 3D HERE.

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