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 To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Julian ibiza 
Date:   2023-07-03 23:26


This is the question that the " Alternative bore oils" thread seemed to end up sliding into, in what I feel somewhat inclined to describe as a " theological debate".
Given that the moisture expansion of the wood surrounding the bore is behind some of the most severe maladies a clarinet can have , from cracking to performance losses broadly termed " blow-out". I for one would like to have this matter better resolved from the angle of physics , science and solid facts .
Surely this deserves more than a " Is the world round...or flat ?" sort of standoff now that we find ourselves in 2023.

To try to start things off on what I feel is the right track, I would like to offer this study conducted by the Conservation Analytical Laboratory of the Smithsonian Institute in 1982 , entitled " The effect of moisture on the performance of woodwind instruments ".

Aside from detailing and explaining the damages from moisture to bore and tenons in no uncertain terms . In the introduction they refer to the " historic evidence about the original surface treatment" ( of very old flutes bores) , which suggests that treating bores against moisture absorption is a practice with a longstanding history .

https://www.conservationphysics.org/flute/flute.html

Julian Griffiths
Tel. 34 696 798 853

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: ruben 
Date:   2023-07-04 12:53

Julian; Seeing as all agree that moisture causes the bore of a clarinet to swell, maybe there is something to be said for reboring now and again: taking a fraction of a millimeter off the bore in a lathe so as to bring it back to its original dimensions. Boxwood, historically informed instruments undergo this as standard practice. Even the modern Buffet boxwood clarinet is sold with a couple of free rebores (included in its astronomical price). Reboring seems to have gone out. I think I'll use the topic of reboring for a new thread.

rubengreenbergparisfrance@gmail.com


Post Edited (2023-07-04 18:23)

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: donald 
Date:   2023-07-04 13:38

Buffet did a slight re-bore of my first R13 2 years after I bought it. Small bits of black wood shavings fell out the bottom and I was shocked, imagining the horn being ruined. Far from it, the instrument played beautifully afterward, and when I sold it 8 years later (after being played for 4 or 5 hours every day of the year) the teacher who bought it to on-sell to a student commented that it was the best R13 he'd ever played.

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: symphony1010 
Date:   2023-07-04 13:40

Peter Eaton clarinets are rebored before reselling.

https://www.eatonclarinets.com

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Micke Isotalo 2017
Date:   2023-07-04 15:35

Actually the study referred to by Julian tells of the wood shrinking due to repeated exposure to moisture, not swelling. Thus an enlargement of the bore, where a reboring wouldn't restore its original dimensions.



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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: ruben 
Date:   2023-07-04 18:31

Micke: So that is the question: does the bore swell or shrink? I'll ask around: will ask people from Selmer, Buffet and JL Clarinette, a small handcrafted clarinert maker. If humidity makes it shrink, as you said, there's not much that can be done. That said, condensation is warm; at body temperature so it would stand to reason that heat makes things expand.

rubengreenbergparisfrance@gmail.com


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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Julian ibiza 
Date:   2023-07-04 18:57


Thank you for your feedback guys!

I was beginning to think this topic was going to drop off the page leaving me as the bore oil bore of the century.( I probably still am!).

It's just that I rather get the impression that those who believe in using bore oil and those that don't seem divided into two faiths. This baffles me a bit because we are dealing with a practical matter the facts of which must surely derive from known laws of physics.

I used to assume that one should oil the bore periodically.... After following the
" Alternate bore oil" thread....frankly.... I don't know what to think .

Where you get two " authorities " making contradictory claims , I think it's time for a bit of facts and rational argument showdown between the two sides.

Preventing the damages to the bore( and perhaps cracking) resulting from moisture expansion seems like an eminently good thing for all , and yet apparently most leading manufacturers don't recommend bore oiling . What is the reasoning ? Can anyone explain this ?

Julian Griffiths
Tel. 34 696 798 853

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: m1964 
Date:   2023-07-04 20:36

Julian ibiza wrote:

>" ...Preventing the damages to the bore( and perhaps cracking)
> resulting from moisture expansion seems like an eminently good
> thing for all , and yet apparently most leading manufacturers
> don't recommend bore oiling . What is the reasoning ? Can
> anyone explain this ?..."

Perhaps, they treat the wood differently than it was done in the past (autoclave process vs. natural drying) and so surface application of bore oil that is not injected under pressure probably would not make a difference.

I follow Buffet's recommendation not to play a new clarinet for over 30 min. during the first month. I do the same if I get an old but dry instrument.

And I oiled any clarinet that I bought, new and old, "just in case".
So far, had not have one crack on me...



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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Micke Isotalo 2017
Date:   2023-07-04 20:50

Ruben, according to the study - and as I believe we all know - wood is expanding from moisture. What was new to me however, as the study tells, is that the uneven distribution of the moisture (wet inside the bore, dry at the outside of the body wall) crushes the wood cells closest to the bore - as their expansion is resisted by the dryer layers of the body further away from the bore. When the wood dries out, those crushed cells doesn't regain their original size but remains diminished. Thus the shrinkage.

However, the study was made on baroque flutes of softer wood than grenadilla - so don't know how applicable this is on grenadilla clarinets. A way to check would be, as is done also in the study, to compare measurements of the bore of a new clarinet to the same one after some years of playing.

A comparison could also be made between regularly oiled and non-oiled clarinets.

Lohff & Pfeiffer says swabbing is altering the bore with time, which I'm a bit doubtful about. That would however mean an expansion of the bore (not the body wall, which would shrink). If that's what they have found from their measurements of used clarinets, the mechanism of crushed wood cells would make more sense at least to me - as an explanation to the bore enlargement.



Post Edited (2023-07-05 09:15)

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: kdk 2017
Date:   2023-07-04 21:23

Julian ibiza wrote:

> It's just that I rather get the impression that those who
> believe in using bore oil and those that don't seem divided
> into two faiths.
>
> Where you get two " authorities " making contradictory claims ,
> I think it's time for a bit of facts and rational argument
> showdown between the two sides.
>
Reframing the competing sides, there are those who believe that (1) a clarinet is more likely to crack if it isn't oiled periodically or (2) oiling does not prevent cracking - it the wood has flaws in it that will encourage cracking, it will crack regardless of oiling the bore. One side cites anecdotal experience, the other draws from conjecture based on physics and botanical sciences. The conjecturalist says oiling will reduce cracking (the science they cite says so), while the empiricist (based on anecdotal evidence) says most instruments, unless made from flawed lumber, won't crack anyway.

So the debate is between those who insist bore oiling prevents cracking and those who insist that it solves a problem that doesn't exist. Of course, I haven't read of controlled studies to test either of these hypotheses. A formal test would be very hard to set up. I'm not sure there's a genuinely fact-based showdown possible between those two positions without lab testing that would be expensive to do. It's easier and ultimately much less expensive to let everyone pick a side and do what they want to do, especially since no one that I've heard claims that regular oiling is 100% effective in crack prevention.


> Preventing the damages to the bore( and perhaps cracking)
> resulting from moisture expansion seems like an eminently good
> thing for all , and yet apparently most leading manufacturers
> don't recommend bore oiling . What is the reasoning ? Can
> anyone explain this ?
>
Probably the manufacturers can, though I suspect the explanation would be empirical (they'd get the complaints if their instruments cracked regularly). They also know how their wood is prepared pre-production. I once had the chance to tour the Selmer-Elkhart factory, where among other things I was shown the tubs where the billets they used were left to soak in an oil bath for quite some time, so that the manufactured clarinets as they came off the production line were pretty well saturated. So, the best explanations for the manufacturers' recommendation might best come from them.

The discussion reminds me of a very old joke I barely remember, but here's a version of it:

A man is sprinkling a powder all over the streets, when a policeman walks up to him and asks what on earth he is doing. The man replies saying keeping the elephants away of course! It’s elephant repellent!
The officer replies, don’t be absurd, there are no elephants here. The man replies saying
then it must be working!

Karl

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Julian ibiza 
Date:   2023-07-05 00:37

Thanks guys !......those were just the kind of replies I was hoping for.

I hold with the belief that if the wood has a weak point it will probably crack, bore oil or not . I do still wonder however about bore deformations that result in loss of performance and the condition referred to as blow-out .

m1964 ( the year before me !) If manufacturers are indeed using the impregnation methods you suggest , then that may well explain why they consider the continued use of bore oil unnecessary .

Micke , I think your observation about the study being made on flutes which were no doubt made of softer woods is well observed, and whether Blackwood
suffers similar " compression set" being such a hard wood is a good question . I believe that Chris P associated the condition of " blow-out" principally with deformations in the upper part of the upper joint ( please forgive/ correct me if I remembered that wrong Chris). What nature these deformations take , shrinkage , ovaling etc. might shed some light on the matter of moisture related maladies and the possible remaining roll of bore oil to prevent them, even if we are to discard the cracking angle .

Thank you all again for the well considered answers .

Julian Griffiths
Tel. 34 696 798 853

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Julian ibiza 
Date:   2023-07-06 10:47


So ,to just try and bring this topic to some level of synopsis, including the comments and opinions starting on the " Alternate bore oil" thread . It does indeed seem to be the case that " To bore oil...or not to bore oil " basically comes down to which of the two opposing beliefs you plump for . On the one hand oiling the bore suggests itself rationally as offering at least some protection to the bore, although how effectively and with how much longevity seem to remain vague .

On the other hand, most leading manufacturers aren't recommending oiling although the reasons for this are not forthcoming.

Both sides in this debate claim that their practice offers tone beliefs .( between musicians at any rate ....I don't know if this angle is part of the manufacturers reasoning).

Empirical data as to how to best preserve the performance of your instrument
appears to be rather weak in this matter, although the potential damages to the bore from moisture absorption suggest themselves as being the most severe issue a woodwind can develop .

Julian Griffiths
Tel. 34 696 798 853

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: SunnyDaze 
Date:   2023-07-06 12:55
Attachment:  bore focus stack by Charles Brooks.png (1437k)

Hi Julian,

The current issue of the International Clarinet Association has an amazing photo on the cover, which is a focus stacked image of the bore of a clarinet, taken by Charles Brookes. I attached a screenshot.

The thing that keeps striking me when I look at the picture is that the bore is full of groove and pits and holes, where the natural grain of the wood has resulted in pot holes all over the place.

I keep wondering whether the holes are a problem that would be better filled in, to avoid kicking off eddy currents in the movement of air, or whether they are an important element in creating the lovely sound.

Thinking about oiling complicates it a bit more, as presumably these pits will hold more water even after swabbing, and would hold more oil if the bore was oiled.

I wondered if this might fit into this discussion somehow?

As a botanist, I know about plants but not much about the effects of water on timber construction, except when dry rot sets in, which is a whole other problem.

(I hope it's okay to attach that cover with attribution. If not I will remove it.)

I also wondered if you had seen this thread about lining the bore of instruments, which I found interesting:
http://test.woodwind.org/clarinet/BBoard/read.html?f=1&i=501013&t=501002

Jennifer



Post Edited (2023-07-06 13:01)

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: ruben 
Date:   2023-07-06 15:54

Dear Sunny: You have, as usual, raised some very appropriate questions. The "eddy currents" you have mentioned may be something that contributes to harmonics and richness of tone, as you have postulated. A clarinet that is all of a piece: ebonite or metal, has fewer harmonics and tone is deprived of complexity. I

rubengreenbergparisfrance@gmail.com


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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: donald 
Date:   2023-07-06 16:12

The bore in the photo is an Buffet RC Bass clarinet that belongs to my friend Maurice Reviol (he apprenticed at Schreiber making bassoons, under the tutelage of Francois Kloc, and has worked on bass clarinet prototypes with Jochen Seggelke etc).
If you look into that bass (I've played it many times, and used it for a season of Phantom some years back) the bore looks "normal", the process that Charles uses involves layering a series of HD photographs, so the "field" in "Depth of field" is quite... deep... This has the effect of highlighting texture, and making the bore look more grainy than it does to the naked eye.

Re the "merits" or otherwise of grainy wood... I wrote THIS in another post...

"I was told many years ago by more than one USA College professor that they deliberately looked for the clarinets with grainy wood because they sounded better.
My experience confirms this prejudice, in fact the best Eb clarinet (tone wise) that I have ever played, AND the best R13 Bb both had quite grainy wood. On the flipside, I've twice been disappointed by clarinets with mirror smooth bore and quite dense wood.
Of course, this is just my experience- but even if it doesn't prove "grainy wood is best", it at least proves "grainy wood won't hurt""



Post Edited (2023-07-06 16:15)

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: SunnyDaze 
Date:   2023-07-06 17:43

Thank you, that's really interesting.

I just looked inside my two clarinets and they are really different inside.

The 1918 E. J. Albert with the intoxicating tone, is very grainy inside. It is almost unplayable as it is very leaky.

The new Yamaha is mirror-smooth inside, and doesn't have an intoxicating tone. It plays impeccably.

Do you think it's possible that the grainy ones have a lot more air-spaces deep within the wood as well as in the surface, and that helps them to ring like a bell? I can kind of see how that would be.

I think if that's what it is, then that would be totally unconnected with bore-oiling, as that only affects the surface.

Just out of curiosity I put together my Yamaha but with the bottom joint and bell of the Albert. The result is amazing because the mixed instrument has the beautiful tone of the lower chalumeau of the Albert, but the bottom notes sound easily and clearly, as it's not hampered by the leaking throat keys. The flip side is that all the notes that are played with left hand keys only are very very flat.

Jennifer



Post Edited (2023-07-06 17:53)

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Mark Charette 2017
Date:   2023-07-06 17:56

SunnyDaze wrote:

> I just looked inside my two clarinets and they are really
> different inside.
>
> The 1918 E. J. Albert with the intoxicating tone, is very
> grainy inside. It is almost unplayable as it is very leaky.
>
> The new Yamaha is mirror-smooth inside, and doesn't have an
> intoxicating tone. It plays impeccably.

Be careful about mixing correlation with causation, especially with a sample size of 2.

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: SunnyDaze 
Date:   2023-07-06 17:59

Yes I was thinking that. :-)

The answer is to rough up the Yamaha inside with sandpaper, but I won't.

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2023-07-06 18:59

ruben,

Quote:

A clarinet that is all of a piece: ebonite or metal, has fewer harmonics and tone is deprived of complexity.


Are you sure about this?

Fuzzy
;^)>>>

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Julian ibiza 
Date:   2023-07-06 21:35


While on the exterior of the instrument the open grain grooves suggest a greater weakness to cracking , this same open grain characteristic around the bore may well act to buffer outward expansion pressures.

Like if you have bubbles of air in your brake fluid, the pressure of your foot on the peddle doesn't transmit well to the breaks .

That small irregularities inside the bore create a more complex tone, I have no idea ....could be true !

Perhaps soon we'll all want bores like the blue jean with all the rips.... I always thought it was time to throw away your jeans when they got like that .....ho-hum!...So long as they don't bring back those drain-pipe jeans you had to have surgically removed . Was that the 80s ?..... Cars that were square and jeans you couldn't wear !?

Julian Griffiths
Tel. 34 696 798 853

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: ruben 
Date:   2023-07-06 23:00

Sure about this? No. But this has been my experience, albeit subjective.

rubengreenbergparisfrance@gmail.com


Post Edited (2023-07-06 23:01)

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2023-07-06 23:30

ruben,

Hahaha! I was hoping you had a chart or something showing the harmonic differences. I can't hear the difference you speak of - but that isn't to say it doesn't exist...I know we each hear things somewhat differently.

Fuzzy
;^)>>>

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Julian ibiza 
Date:   2023-07-07 00:02


Hi ruben,

Hope you didn't think I was mocking what you said....I wasn't !....I was just going on an old git ramble .

I rather like your rough bore claim, and it wouldn't surprise me if you're onto something there .

Julian Griffiths
Tel. 34 696 798 853

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Ed Palanker 
Date:   2023-07-07 04:14

From everything I've read over the years in moderation it's fine to do with a good bore oil. It's even good to do in a dry climate. I've done mine over many years now and then and never noticed any ill effects, and never had a crack in my over 50 years as a symphony player.

ESP eddiesclarinet.com

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: SunnyDaze 
Date:   2023-07-07 09:57

I was reading this book last night:

https://www.lesliecraven.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/Instant_help.pdf

It recommends on p7 making a trickle of oil down the bore to form a path for condensced water to follow, so that the water avoids going into the tone holes. It says it's very fiddly making the oil form a path right through the bore without it going into the tone holes itself.

That seems like a really different idea from the one being discussed here, but still kind of makes a lot of sense.

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Julian ibiza 
Date:   2023-07-07 10:13


I do wonder a little wether the leading brands don't recommend using bore oil because they regard that their wood treatment impregnation will protect the instrument for the period of time that they have decided SHOULD be its working life .

I would hope that they have other reasonings which better favor the consumers interests, but without an explanation I'm not sure what they would be.

Nobody seems to be advocating entirely untreated wood , which in my mind rationally bring the whole matter down to how long protective treatments work for, either factory impregnations or subsequent periodic applications of a bore oil.
Clearly some pieces of wood will better endure the trials of being made into a woodwind than others, but when you buy an instrument, that's something you can largely only hope to get lucky about .

Julian Griffiths
Tel. 34 696 798 853

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: ruben 
Date:   2023-07-07 10:31

Julian: Maybe not "rough bore" but at least wooden bore, which implies grain and fibers. Selmer now coats the bores of the upper joints of their clarinets with a kind of resin (or ebonite?). I don't know whether this alters tone. It does limit cracking though.

rubengreenbergparisfrance@gmail.com


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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: SunnyDaze 
Date:   2023-07-07 17:10

Hi Ruben,

I wondered if I could ask about an idea I have?

The "grain" that we see, must be the xylem vessels in the tree. The xylem vessels carry the water from the roots to the leaves, through the wood of the trunk.

I have the impression that xylem vessels are wider in a tree that has grown slowly under ideal conditions (non-crowded), and smaller in a tree that has grown quickly in crowded conditions, in a battle reach sunlight.

That implies that the grainy clarinets are made from wood that has grown slowly, in ideal conditions. If that's right, then there may be a lot of other structural differences to that wood, which are perhaps responsible for the tone.

I would think, for example, that the presence of loads of huge, hollow xylem vessels right through the thickness of the wood, would be a big factor.

What I mean is that grainy wood might just be a visible sign of the clarinet wood having grown slowly and well, while a smooth bore is a sign of the tree having grown fast and under pressure to compete with other plants round about.

If that's right, then the tone should persist following resin-coating, and this is at least something that we could test.

I wondered if it would be interesting to put a resin coating on an old clarinet like mine and see if the lovely tone stays?

I would be happy to resin-coat the bore of my Albert clarinet if it would be useful, to see what happens to the tone.

It has a really bewitching tone, but is high pitch and almost unplayable, so it would not be a huge loss if it all went wrong.

I don't know how to resin-coat and instrument, but if anybody could tell me how to do it, then I could try.

Jennifer

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Julian ibiza 
Date:   2023-07-07 18:27

Hi Ruben,

I know just what you meant( a bore with open wood grain ) and I'm sorry for referring to it as " rough bore". I retract that crude and inappropriate description.....sorry for responding like a plonkers.

Hi Jen ,

As I understand it , large xylem vessels are characteristic of rapid summer growth in a tree, creating lower overall density in the timber , however, I suspect that some moderation in the density of Blackwood for woodwinds may buffer tensions in the wood, as moisture expansion in the bore pushes outwards against the unexpanding exterior wood .

This is just a speculation based on the notion that wood with more hollow xylem vessels is likely to be more compressible than a denser wood with less .

I grew up in the world of wooden boats, in which the timber varieties ,growth locations ,times for felling( often moon related ) and methods of seasoning are frequently the subjects of great discussion.

Wood is indeed a remarkable and far from simple material, with a huge bandwidth of utilities. Houses, boats spreading man through the constellation of the Pacific islands ,then there's Lignum Vitae, so hard it can be used for machinery bearings, string instrument soundboards for which it seems the tone qualities of wood are as yet irreplaceable by other materials .....and then you can just throw a log on the fire and enjoy all that energy stored up by the most efficient collector of solar energy as yet known.

Julian Griffiths
Tel. 34 696 798 853

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: SunnyDaze 
Date:   2023-07-07 19:11
Attachment:  EJA-stack-2--cropped.jpg (848k)
Attachment:  Yamaha-stack-6-cropped.jpg (515k)

Hi Julian,

That's great that you know all about wood. Why is it that tree rings are wider in some years and narrower in others? I thought it was something to do with the weather, but I have forgotten what it is.

I photographed the bores of my two clarinets. I have attached the photos here. The 100 year old E.J Albert is really grainy and the new yamaha is really smooth.

I wish I could record the sound difference so you could hear. It is amazing.

I totally get that it may be correlation rather than cause and effect but it's very interesting.

Jennifer

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: kdk 2017
Date:   2023-07-07 20:57

Hi, Jennifer

What model is your Yamaha?

Karl

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: SunnyDaze 
Date:   2023-07-07 21:20

Hi Karl,

It's a Yamaha Custom YCL CX, bought new in 2019.

Jennifer



Post Edited (2023-07-07 21:22)

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Julian ibiza 
Date:   2023-07-07 21:25


Those are great photos Jen ! The Albert bore photo is fit for printing and hanging on the wall .

Julian Griffiths
Tel. 34 696 798 853

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: SunnyDaze 
Date:   2023-07-07 22:17

Thanks Julian. :-) The Yamaha was weirdly difficult to photograph. It has no features, so I was literally photographing a black hole.

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2023-07-07 22:23

Quote:

The Albert bore photo is fit for printing and hanging on the wall


I agree! Neat photo!

Fuzzy
;^)>>>

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: kdk 2017
Date:   2023-07-07 22:33

I don't know enough about the Yamaha line to know what the relationship is between your CX and others in the YCL series, but apparently a few of their models have "ABS resin injection-molded upper joint inner bore." Could yours be one of those?

Karl

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: SunnyDaze 
Date:   2023-07-07 22:41

Gosh! I hadn't thought of that.

I think it doesn't have resin in the top because I just looked inside is has the grain grooves inside it.

I video'd myself playing both, and the Yamaha sounds better on video. I think maybe the Albert just sound better inside my head (!?)

https://youtu.be/W_vzzf2WCmI

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Julian ibiza 
Date:   2023-07-07 23:10


Only with Yamaha can you start off by looking for a musical instrument and end up buying a motorcycle." Forget ABS injected!....this here baby is fuel injected !"

Ha-ha !

Julian Griffiths
Tel. 34 696 798 853

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: SunnyDaze 
Date:   2023-07-07 23:55

True. :-) It's this one here:

https://uk.yamaha.com/en/products/musical_instruments/winds/clarinets/ycl-cx/specs.html#product-tabs

It's not ABS resin injection-molded.

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2023-07-08 00:12

SunnyDaze:

I have to laugh at myself. All this time when you mentioned the E.J. Albert clarinet...without even thinking it through - I was envisioning an Albert fingering system clarinet. I had to chuckle and shake my head at my wrong assumption(s) while watching your video.

Chalk up yet another thing I learned today: E.J. Albert does not equate to Albert system.

Fuzzy
;^)>>>

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: spikey1973 
Date:   2023-07-08 03:10

I just read through the entire thread and read some interesting things and thoughts on the issue at hand.. additionally I had my own thoughts ofcourse, more focused on trying to understand what is happening inside the wood and it's grains when it's getting 'wet'.. and when getting oiled. I will make some 'stating the obvious' comments here.. just to trying to think of the full picture here, as a though experiment (nothing more)

1) Wood is originally "wet" before it dries out to a humidity that fits its surroundings (air).

2) surronding humidity fluctuates, so inherently the humidity of the wood fluctuates accordingly (albeit it with a delay in time and in depth).

3) depending on the kind of wood, dried wood has a variaty of natural oiliness, not only differing between the kind of wood, but also the oily substance and also a grading between the grains thickness of the wood.

4) when wood comes into contact with a fluid (oil or water based, bore side or outside side) this fluid will be drawn into the wood, but will only slowly seep deep into the wood untill it reaches a balanced state a of being, which will still have a slight difference between the grains and between the depth due to variation of the surroundings (because of the time delay).

5) The means of drying (autoclaving vs natural drying) will have an impact on the what happens in 4) as an non-natural dried wood will have less time to settle, this the settling of the fluids will differ, and over time the wood will settle in a different way then when it was just made to shape.

6) oil floats on water.. and water is a polar fluid of smaller molecules the oils (mostly tryglicerides). This has an inherent effect that when a water based fluid seeps into the would, it will move some of the oil to the surface, ready to be 'cleaned' out when wiping the bore after playing, leaving the wood less oily over time.

7) Wood wet with water, will dry out much quicker (to the air) when compared to wood 'wet' with an oily substance, hence there will be a lot more expension and contracting when water gets into the wood then when the wood is oily and therefor limits the absorbtion of water.

8) When ading oil to the wood it will likely 'lock in' some of the water that is in the wood at that moment, inhibiting the natural settling of the fluids as there are barriers created.

9) When a ring shaped item expands, the outer diameter grows, the inner diameter gets smaller as the (relative to volume) middle diameter of the ring stays the same.

10) When wood dries it dries more rapidly on the surface, then deep within.. so afterwards.. it will relatively shrink to a larger bore then before it would grow.

This all would make me tend to conlude that unless I missed something in my reasoning. (which is quite likely, as it is a very complex matter and I have hardly any practical experience in the field, remember this is just a thought experiment)

that unless, you would (very) regularly maintain the grade of oiliness of the wood
(specifically inside the bore as it is the most vulnerable due to rapid changes in envirnment between rest time and playing time and compared to the outside)
with SMALL amounts of oil, to keep the water barrier "up", it would be better not oil at all. In time this will likely create a rought inside of the bore.

It also seems to me that, wood that is likely to crack, will crack eventually, no matter what treatment.

about the beautifull pictures of the bores (thank you Jen)

I believe that the inner roughness of the wood is a representative of the wood used for the instrument and the vibrations of the wood (and therefor it's inner makeup) make the big difference in sounds.
Not so much the roughness of the bore itself. I Believe that the roughness will have only a minor influence on the sound (beyond most of our sound recoqnition skills).
This because the air 'traveling' through the instrument, is already vibrating..
(as much as it does travel, but that is a different discussion)
And being forced through a narrower opening then the bore's diameter, does not have a lamilar flow to start with.

If I remember correctly, eddy currents develope at the locations where the lamilar flow breaksdown, which it can't as there isn't 'any' (there will be some ofcourse) to start with.

While the kind of wood that comes with that grain will have a great influence, due to it's internal vibrations, maintaining and altering (in there way) the vibrations of the air colomn within, it will not be due to the roughness.

On the otherhand, when you would coat the inside of a wooden bore the reversed reasoning comes in. it will smoothen the inside, but it will also change (a little) the overal resonance of the material (wood + coating) so it will have an influence, just different then expected and not necessairly be an improvement like an ABS instrument sounds less the a wooden one, on the otherhand, it might be very preventative against cracking.. which is definetaly a big plus.

As said before..the above is just a though experiment, so I am looking for additional reasoning to take in account that I have missednd , and also, as Jen said.., always remain weary of mixing correlation with causation (it is a tricky pitfall)

kind greats

Matthieu

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Julian ibiza 
Date:   2023-07-08 10:51

Hi Matthieu,

The link I offered at the beginning of this thread would seem to offer the most thorough scientific analysis available to date on the physics and deformation tendencies of moisture absorbed into the wood surrounding the bore of a woodwind instrument. They imply that guarding against this moisture absorption is fundamental . As Micke pointed out, the only angle of possible difference between these findings and those that could be claimed to concretely relate to Blackwood clarinets, is that the flutes they were testing on, we're likely made from other less dense woods . I would venture that the moisture related bore deformations this test highlighted also apply to Blackwood instruments, but probably to a more moderate extent.

Julian Griffiths
Tel. 34 696 798 853

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: spikey1973 
Date:   2023-07-14 13:39

@ Julian,

Although I completely agree with that this research offers a very thorough scientific analysis of the physics and deformation tendencies of moisture absorbed into the wood surrounding the bore of a woodwind instrument. It is (just like any other research article) focus on just this on topic and therefor has it's inherent limitations (although it was very well performed).

As you said this offers the most thorough scientific analysis up to date. With the above post I felt it was important to look at all the factors involved even if it's just a thought experiment. So what Micke pointed out.. is true. but it's definetely not the ONLY possible difference.

There are many more differences between woods other then just wood "density", and even within this density, there would be a lot of difference between wood that could lead to similar densities but still lead to different internal qualities of that wood (types and even locations of the piece from the part of the tree)

Other then that, One that comes to mind instantly, is that this wood clearly has a rough or no finish. This leaves the wood grains more open and receptive to moisure. Any handling (oil) and/or (fine) finish, will have it's impact on the effects of moisture on the instrument (penetration depth, penetration rate, drying speed).

Again, in my scientific mind, this was a good research.. but all reasearch is focussed and therefor limited and we need to look at the whole to get a real thorough understanding.

Kind greats

Matthieu



Post Edited (2023-07-14 13:57)

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Julian ibiza 
Date:   2023-07-15 23:50

Hi Matthieu,

ALL woods expand laterally when wet, the only variable being the degree of expansion between them . Hence I think that we can reasonably assume that the effects of moisture expansion within the bore as detailed in the Smithsonian study are only questionable in terms of their degree as relating to different wood types.

If there is one wood characteristic that offers resistance ( thinking logically) to the studie's "compression set" effect ....then that would be wood density, because the less you can compact something, the less it can end up remaining compacted.

Hitting woods of different densities with a hammer serves as a pretty good scientific test of that.....and is also a good excuse for hitting things with a hammer!... which is most likely man's most effective problem solving practice anyway (let's be honest),and all too frequently given up for an attempt at thought...Ho-ho!

Julian Griffiths
Tel. 34 696 798 853

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Fuzzy 
Date:   2023-07-16 03:37

I am curious whether the amount of water/oil plays a role.

I guess an easy experiment would be to weigh a wooden instrument before playing, then weigh it again after a set duration of playing.

It would be interesting to compare the variations of oiled clarinet vs. non-oiled clarinets.

Fuzzy
;^)>>>

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: spikey1973 
Date:   2023-07-17 19:21

@Julian and Fuzzy.

Of course will all wood expand leterally. What I ment is degrees of expansion,
the difference of this expansion per
- wood type / per
- depth of the water penetration, hence wood circumference
(this could depend on wood type, temp, means of drying, finishing techniques)
- and of COURSE, the topic of this thread, The differences between oiled and non oiled wood..

And even then:
- how long ago was it oiled,
- how much oil was used,
- how long of time was it offered to be soaked in,
- what type of oil was used.

All these variables WILL have an influence on the outcome, some neglative small, some less small, some may buildup over time, some could be good for example keeping water out for a long time but be less good for the wood.

So all should at least be considered before you can give an outcome to the question of this thread.

If you look at only one or a few of these factors alone, the answer can never be really conclusive. and possible the reason for remaining difference of opinion.

So Fuzzies test would be good.. but lets then expand on that. and merge all the seperate conclusions at the end.

On the other hand.. smashing wood with an hammer, will indeed always have a positive outcome, no matter what :D, when do we start?

Matthieu

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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: ruben 
Date:   2023-07-18 20:23

"to bore oil"? I wouldn't want to bore oil, but rather to maintain oil's interest!

rubengreenbergparisfrance@gmail.com


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 Re: To bore oil ?...Or not to bore oil ?...That is the question .
Author: Julian ibiza 
Date:   2023-07-18 20:41


Indeed Ruben !....when you bore oil it tends to get that glazed look.

It might even end up becoming subnoilmal.

Julian Griffiths
Tel. 34 696 798 853

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