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 Keep reeds to lengthen lives?
Author: HIROSHI 
Date:   1999-08-24 01:30

Last night I read a booklet by a Japanese pro.He insists that reed's life can be lengthened by drying up them after purchasing for long time. If we keep reeds for one month,its life can be doubled than when we use them just after purchasing,and if we keep 1 year, 4 times longer.Of course he saids reeds boxes should be opened after purchasing and kept flat somewhere dry like on the shelf near ceiling(very dry place).

Does this make sense? Does anyone have same experience?

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 RE: Keep reeds to lengthen lives?
Author: Rick2 
Date:   1999-08-24 03:58

I live in the desert, should I just stick my reeds outside in the 115 degree heat?

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 RE: Keep reeds to lengthen lives?
Author: Jim Carabetta 
Date:   1999-08-24 10:56

I found the perfect way to extend reed life; I switched to synthetic.

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 RE: Keep reeds to lengthen lives?
Author: STuart 
Date:   1999-08-24 21:16

nefore i started buying my own reeds i would hold on to a box for a year or so (sealed) and they would play better than everybody elses. I think i helps just to age them.

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 RE: Keep reeds to lengthen lives?
Author: William Fuller 
Date:   1999-08-25 02:36

Kal Opperman recommends "curing" reed blanks by aging before making them into reeds. He says the resulting reeds last much longer and play better. His articals appear regularly in "The Clarinet," published by the International Clarinet Association. He authored "The Art of Adjusting and Handmaking Reeds."

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 RE: Keep reeds to lengthen lives?
Author: Hiroshi 
Date:   1999-08-25 07:49

Thank you.I will experiment by a box of Marca traditional for one month.
p.s. Sorry to say,I found the Opperman's book is out of print.

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 RE: Keep reeds to lengthen lives?
Author: Margaret Copeland 
Date:   1999-08-25 13:51

I'd like to thank Hiroshi for his tip on using Green Tea. I've tried this on many reeds, especially reeds that are almost shot, and it does revive them. Green tea has some well documented anti-bacterial properties and I'd rather taste Green tea on my reeds than Listerine or Peroxide.
I don't make clarinet reeds but I make hundreds of oboe reeds. I'd say that most cane is too young when it is shipped. Many cane growers leave the cane in the hot sun for a summer to dry out but I'm sure they don't do this with the average cane that goes into a box of clarinet reeds. I inherited my oboe teacher's stash of tube cane and already gouged cane. There is a point in which the cane is too old. I'd say my best and longest lasting reeds come from cane that is about ten years old. I have cane that is only about three years old and it is still too "green". It was worse when it was two years old. I could make reeds but they didn't last and didn't shape well.
The best thing to do to keep a good reed playing is to rinse it thoroughly after playing and let it dry out all the way before putting it away. I have an ultrasonic jewelry cleaner that I use to clean almost-dead oboe and English Horn reeds and it does a much more thorough job.
Once a reed is cut from the tube, the inner plant material is exposed. Reeds have oils and resins that make them play well and those eventually disintigrate with your saliva. There was an article I read in one of my double reed journals about constructing a "reed keeping" box to be left in the refrigerator. It was basically a plastic Tupperware type box with a tray that kept the reeds above a few inches of salted water. Petroleum jelly was smeared above the water line so the salt crystals won't crawl up. The reeds never touch the water but remain in this stable environment. Never tried it myself. A really dried out - almost shot reed - will show the tiny reed channels very clearly. Those reeds can't be revived and they generally play very thin.

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 RE: Keep reeds to lengthen lives?
Author: Becky 
Date:   1999-09-02 21:24

what tip did you give Margaret Copeland on using Green Tea? That sounds interesting.

For reeds, I found that even for used reeds or old, worn-out ones, if you put them in a drawer and age them for a couple months they seem to restore with time and play well again.

Also, Hiroshi, are you asian? ( I'd guess by the name, of course) I'm half korean and chinese and I'm adopted.

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