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Michael Rath trombones are found in almost every conceivable musical situation: in symphony orchestras and opera houses, in film and television studios, in pop and commercial music groups as well as brass bands, wind bands, big bands, jazz and funk groups, and so many more genres and ensembles.

Widely acknowledged as being amongst the best instruments available, many of the world's leading performers choose to play a Michael Rath trombone. Artists such as Mark Nightingale, David Gibson, Bert Boeren, Marc Godfroid, Dennis Rollins, Michael Dease, Csaba Wagner, Brett Baker, the Black Dyke Band and many others play a Rath trombone simply because they believe it's the best instrument for them.

Versatility is the key to our instrument design across all models in the Custom range. Player's requirements, such as their concept of sound, instrument response, physical makeup, technique and approach, are different; hence creating a unique solution is a logical approach.

Even for players, who initially might consider themselves not technically proficient enough to benefit from the ability to choose components, will, after a few minutes experiencing this for themselves, be aware of the benefits of having an instrument built to meet their own demands.

A Michael Rath Custom trombone creates an instrument which is much more personal and comfortable and, consequently, much more enjoyable to play. Indeed it is often found that players, because they now have an instrument more suited to their needs, are able to achieve more than previously.

Mick and Nick

Of course, this would amount to nothing were it not for the precision, detail and care that go into every Michael Rath trombone. Each instrument is constructed by hand in the Rath workshop in the north of England. Standards are exacting, to say the very least. It's one thing having outstanding concept and design, but manufacturing quality needs to be equally as high, especially for an instrument where client expectations are, rightly, high.

Michael Rath trombones have earned their reputation for excellence because of the concept of flexibility, unique design and the quality of their construction. All of this simply equals excellence in performance.

Meet the Team

  • Portrait of Andy Lowe

    Andy Lowe
    Work Shop Manager

    How Long Have you worked at Rath Trombones:

    • 4 1/2 Years

    What does your job entail?

    • Supervise the production of new trombones and accessories
    • Set weekly schedules for 8 Technicians
    • Manage all aspect of Material and stock control
    • Manage instrument repairs

    What do you like about working for Rath trombones?

    • A great finished product
    • Meeting some of the best musicians in the world
    • Working with an exceptional group of Technicians

    Hobbies outside work?

    • Running a swing band and playing with a dance band
    • Member of our Local Masonic Lodge
    • A day at the races
    • Seeing my grandchildren
  • Portrait of Dave Johnson

    Dave Johnson
    Senior Technician

    How Long Have you worked at Rath Trombones:

    • 13 years

    What does your job entail?

    • Manufacturing Bells from Raw material all the way through the process

    What do you like about working for Rath trombones?

    • Having a “good crack” with the people I work with on a daily basis.
    • Meeting people from all over the world
    • Hearing our instruments played in concerts and seeing the final polished instrument

    Hobbies outside work?

    • Work Hard Play hard!!
    • Football, Golf, Cricket , some walking and a good beer!
  • Portrait of Tim Sidwell

    Tim Sidwell
    Senior Technician (slide guy)

    How Long Have you worked at Rath Trombones:

    • over 10 years

    What does your job entail?

    • Playing slide Assembly
    • Repairs /overhauls
    • Polishing for lacquer
    • Setting up every slide that leaves Rath trombones!
    • Operating Lathe

    What do you like about working for Rath trombones?

    • I really am proud to make the best trombones in the world.
    • I particularly enjoy tailoring trombones for the individual player or helping blend the sound of a section.
    • A great team with a wide range of skills and experience …never a dull moment!

    Hobbies outside work?

    • I am usually in a rehearsal, or preparing or setting up for one.
    • Playing for Hepworth Brass band, and the Holme valley big band.
    • Musical Director for Dobcross Silver Band.
    • On the odd occasion I see my wife!
  • Portrait of Tom Wellings

    Tom Wellings
    Senior Technician

    How Long Have you worked at Rath Trombones:

    • 8 years

    What does your job entail?

    • Assembly Valve sections
    • Custom work repairs
    • Polishing
    • Lacquer spraying
    • Instrument testing
    • In fact just about everything!

    What do you like about working for Rath trombones?

    • Technical challenges in some of the custom work
    • Seeing and meeting people from all over the world
    • Tea break

    Hobbies outside work?

    • Playing Bass trombone in both brass band and Big band
    • Knitting
    • Getting drunk at the bosses expense!
  • Portrait of Shane Colbeck

    Shane Colbeck
    Musical instrument Technician

    How Long Have you worked at Rath Trombones:

    • Nearly 7 years

    What does your job entail?

    • Assembling and polishing all main tuning slides
    • Making all lead pipes
    • Some aspects of Bell manufacture ie spouts
    • Polishing for lacquer
    • Engraving /acid etching
    • Sorting out mutes and accessories
    • Lathe operator

    What do you like about working for Rath trombones?

    • Working as a part of a team
    • Very rewarding seeing the final product
    • Appreciate getting positive feedback (when it is due!)

    Hobbies outside work?

    • Playing Football and keeping fit
    • Socialising with friends and family
  • Portrait of Alan Browne

    Alan Browne
    Musical instrument Technician

    How Long Have you worked at Rath Trombones:

    • 5 years

    What does your job entail?

    • Manufacture of all slide tubes (inner and outer) using a draw bench
    • Production of all slide sleeves and ferrules, lots of polishing
    • Lathe operator

    What do you like about working for Rath trombones?

    • A very interesting and rewarding job. Very proud to be part of a small team making quality instruments at the UK’s only Trombone manufacturer.
    • Great to hear the customers “Wax Lyrical” about the product.
    • Great hands on job and the lads on the shop floor are a fine bunch….Plenty of Banter!

    Hobbies outside work?

    • Listening to Punk Music, Playing drums in a rock Band
    • Trying out my Culinary Skills
    • Going for a long walk in the great Yorkshire countryside “with her indoors”
    • Testing a few Yorkshire ales
  • Portrait of Jozsef Szep

    Jozsef Szep
    Musical instrument Technician

    How Long Have you worked at Rath Trombones:

    • 3 1/2 years

    What does your job entail?

    • Assembly of all tenor and bass Valve sections
    • Gooseneck manufacture, assembly
    • Lathe work
    • Servicing instruments
    • Workshop maintenance

    What do you like about working for Rath trombones?

    • The most exciting job I have ever done
    • Great friends and colleagues
    • Learning a lot from everyone

    Hobbies outside work?

    • Walking in the woods, Exploring new places, enjoying nature
    • Playing my guitar and surfing the internet
    • Seeing my cousins
  • Portrait of Finn Herring

    Finn Herring
    Musical instrument Technician

    How Long Have you worked at Rath Trombones:

    • 12 months

    What does your job entail?

    • Preparing and polishing all component parts
    • Main job responsible for all lacquering

    What do you like about working for Rath trombones?

    • Learning new skills every day
    • A sense of achievement looking at the finished product.

    Hobbies outside work?

    • Playing in a brass band
    • Going out with friends and family.
  • Portrait of Laura Tiffany

    Laura Tiffany
    Trainee Musical instrument Technician

    How Long Have you worked at Rath Trombones:

    • 6 months

    What does your job entail?

    • Training to make and assemble playing slides

    What do you like about working for Rath trombones?

    • Working with a great bunch of friendly guys
    • Producing something that will give pleasure to players and hopefully audiences too!

    Hobbies outside work?

    • Following Rugby league
    • Love the great outdoors
    • Walking the dog
    • Learning golf
    • Nagging the husband!
  • Portrait of Valeria Bogdan

    Valeria Bogdan
    Trainee Musical instrument Technician

    How Long Have you worked at Rath Trombones:

    • 9 months

    What does your job entail?

    • General Workshop jobs and Keeping the workshop and showroom ship shape

    What do you like about working for Rath trombones?

    • Working with a great bunch of friendly guys.

    Hobbies outside work?

    • Qualified Masseuse
    • Walking in the countryside