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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000802.txt from 1997/09

Subj: warped!
Date: Tue, 16 Sep 1997 11:46:30 -0400

Bill Fogle wrote;

>If you determine that the flat bottom of a dry reed is warped (by rubbing
>it on paper, etc.), and you sand the back to the point where it is again
>flat, then you wet it and put it on the mouthpiece, doesn't wetting it
>simply cause it to warp again? Stated another way, aren't one's chances of
>playing with a flat reed just as good by skipping the sanding?

I was taught to do all the sanding on *wet* reeds, because you are really
concerned that they be flat during playing, i. e., while wet. If they are
slightly warped when dry, but flatten when wetted, that's OK.

So, my view is that if you do the sanding dry, the reed might very well warp
when wetted, but you *should* sand wet rather than give up sanding.

Also, during the sanding, flattening, drying process, the reeds should be
dried bark side *down* with the flat area open to the air (rather than with
the flat side against glass). My experience is that this process produces
extremely stable, non-warping reeds. Any reed that has once played well and
seems to "have a bad day" can generally be corrected by a few strokes on well
used 600 grit papaer, *while wet*.

Don Yungkurth (

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