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 beginner question
Author: Oblique 
Date:   2017-05-28 19:33

First: I am a beginner, but old, and I hate to waste your time, but I have not found any place on line to ask questions.
What causes an oboe to be resistant and how can it be cured?

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 Re: beginner question
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2017-05-28 20:59

Oboes are by nature very high breath resistant instruments due to how narrow the bore is - it's just under 4mm in diameter at the top end of the top joint at base of the reed socket, whereas a clarinet is just under 15mm and a flute is from 17mm to 19mm along the playing length of the headjoint.

You can use softer strength reeds to make things easier for you, but not so soft they're difficult to control the tone, tuning and volume, nor too hard to cause problems starting, sustaining and making diminuendos on long notes easily.

Chris.

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 Re: beginner question
Author: Oblique 
Date:   2017-05-29 03:31

Thank you Chris. Some oboes are more resistant than others,,,why? What can be done to help them? My low E is stuffy. What can be done with that. (I have a wood linton with a low Bb but no left F.) Bob.

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 Re: beginner question
Author: SarahC 
Date:   2017-05-29 04:04

If it is an old oboe, it could also be that one of the keys need adjusting, or a pad is worn out and needs replacing.

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 Re: beginner question
Author: EaubeauHorn 
Date:   2017-05-29 08:38

If it's leaking, that will come across as resistant. If you can find a good repair person, have it gone over.

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 Re: beginner question
Author: EaubeauHorn 
Date:   2017-07-03 19:57

The only way to really tell if your oboe is unusually resistant is to play other oboes.....and have other people play yours. If it's leaking, it will be much more resistant than it should be, and the comparison will tell you.
People check the top joint for leaks by plugging the bottom end, putting down the necessary keys, and sucking on the top joint very hard. If your lip "sticks to it" for several seconds, it is ok in terms of leaks. This is very hard to describe, but it's the first thing a person who knows how to check would do.'
'
Edit: you know, I just went and looked on youtube for a demonstration of this "sucking on the upper joint" leak detection method and was astonished to not find it. Someone here should put up a short video of that!



Post Edited (2017-07-05 03:42)

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 Re: beginner question
Author: mschmidt 
Date:   2017-07-08 02:48

Don't, however, get it the habit (as I did, back when I was young) of assuming that a good "sucking" seal on the top joint is all that is necessary for a well-sealed oboe. A lot of the careful adjustment that is needed on oboe involves what happens when the 1st finger down on the right hand lifts a number of pads on the top joint. The adjusting screws for two of these pads are tested and adjusted DAILY by some professionals. There is also two pads that go down simultaneously with the second finger of the right hand--exactly the finger you use to play that E that you are finding resistant. One of the best things an oboe teacher can do is to instruct you how to adjust these three most important screws yourself. Unfortunately, nobody did so in my first 40 years of life....

Mike

Middle-Aged Amateur


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 Re: beginner question
Author: EaubeauHorn 
Date:   2017-07-10 02:34

yes, I should have stated clearly that that was only to check if the top joint was sealing well. I know less about the bottom joint (less, ha, nothing, basically...) but sucking on the top joint seems to be the first test that every repair person does because so much of what goes on that appears to be happening in the lower joint actually originates in the upper one.

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 Re: beginner question
Author: jhoyla 
Date:   2017-07-13 17:29

In my experience, if you have a single stuffy note it is often an adjustment problem.

Unfortunately as mentioned by Mike and others, adjusting the regulation of an oboe is not a trivial matter - best to take it to a technician who specializes in oboes. If you are brave, and before you take the instrument to your technician, you can try adjusting it yourself.

This Oboe Adjustment Guide is a very good place to start.

J.



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