Advertising and Web Hosting on Woodwind.Org!

Woodwind.OrgThe Oboe BBoardThe C4 standard

 
  BBoard              
 
 New Topic  |  Go to Top  |  Go to Topic  |  Search  |  Help/Rules  |  Smileys/Notes  |  Log In   Newer Topic  |  Older Topic 
 What would you do?
Author: EaubeauHorn 
Date:   2020-01-30 03:14

After another couple years of illness (it seems to be a repeating pattern) I again went and got my oboe put into good playable condition and bought a couple reeds from the person who fixed it, because she is the ONLY person I have found within 200 miles who can make reeds that work for me.
So, I'd like to see if I can get in shape ... again. I have a place to play if I can manage to play. But the problem remains the same, that I am apparently unable to learn to make usable reeds. I'd assign it honestly to clutziness. There is a reason why I find the tuba the easiest instrument to play.
So what would you do, having tried a plethora of online sellers and not having or apparently able to develop the skill to do the fine tuning that is required for a reed to play well? My only idea at this point is to just get a couple of Legere reeds and see if I can make them work. Anybody else? I live at 2500 ft altitude in extremely dry conditions, and reeds made in humidity and lower altitude simply do not work here, and my inability to adjust them is now accepted by me after hundreds (literally) of ruined tries.

Reply To Message
 
 Re: What would you do?
Author: Hotboy 
Date:   2020-02-01 12:19

You didn't provide enough information about why you are having the problems you are. What are the symptoms of the reeds that don't work for you?
- Too open or closed?
- Too easy or stiff?
- Too flat or sharp?
- Too bright or dark?

I don't buy the "clutziness" diagnosis. In my experience, often the problem is lack of patience or the willingness to try new methods. Either that, or you are using a dull knife.

If you live in any decently populated area, there must be a professional oboist/teacher fairly nearby from whom you can take some lessons. He/she will help you with the following:

1) How to really sharpen a knife. Without an extremely sharp knife that is properly sharpened for reed-making (different than sharpening a kitchen knife), the chances for success adjusting a reed can be quite low.

2) How to select a knife that you can sharpen. There are many knives that are nearly impossible to put a good edge on without automated equipment.

3) How to select cane with a hardness, density, diameter, and shape that will play well for you.

4) How to select a scrape style that works at altitude.

There are YouTube videos that show what to do to adjust reeds, like these:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zirrVds90Ck&t=61s
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sruDRdzEUhU

There are also some great videos by Pierre Roy on YouTube that show you how to make reeds from scratch, like these:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4q-2DRZMWVM&t=28s
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=06xYFxAWZmQ

If all else fails, buy reeds from somebody who specializes in high-altitude reeds, like https://kharawolf.com/buy-oboe-reeds/. I bought reeds from Khara a few years when I needed to play a wedding at 4500 feet (I live at sea level and my standard reeds collapse at altitude). With a little playing in and hand adjusting, Khara's reeds worked great for me. There are also some other high-altitude reed makers inked to on her site.

Dane
Bay Area, California

Reply To Message
 
 Re: What would you do?
Author: Jim22 
Date:   2020-02-03 07:35

I'm actually struggling with this too. Today, i sort of hit rock bottom, i am unable to get the last few reeds i purchased to play. Usually i can sharpen my knife reasonably well, its a single bevel knife, but recently i also bought a double hollow ground knife and i may have upset my sharpening skills by swithching back and forth. i think i can overcome this with a ittle practice, but its not helping me get some reeds running. Actually, the last dozen or so reeds i have purchased from several different makers have all been miserable. I am more than willing to take the blame but i really need a few reeds that play, i have orchestra rehearsals starting in a couple weeks. I did discover today that i had a severe adjustment issue with the oboe and have made an attempt to adjust it. That may have solved some of my issues.

So, i feel your pain! Make sure your oboe is ok. I actually overhaul flutes for fun, but oboe adjustments are very complex. If you can, take it to an oboe technician to make sure its not contributing to your problem. Then, maybe meet with a teacher who is willing to help you adjust the reeds.

Jim

Jim C.
CT, USA

Reply To Message
 
 Re: What would you do?
Author: EaubeauHorn 
Date:   2020-02-03 20:31

Thanks for joining in. My oboe is a high level pro instrument that has an excellent scale, and it plays fine when I have a reed that isn't trash. I'm seriously considering just getting a couple of Legere reeds and see if I can make them work. Since I'm not playing in a pro orchestra, I think the difference in sound quality isn't going to be that important; there are people who play in local groups here who are off pitch so far I can't even tell what note they are playing.....way worse than a little harshness in the sound.
The first responder didn't seem to understand that my problem is that I cannot do the fine tuning at the end....which is why buying reeds and adjusting them doesn't work. It's the adjusting I can't do; all else is fine, and my former teacher would take one of my reeds, say "Oh it's just not finished" and make it into a fine reed in about two minutes. But I was never able to do that, and in other ways I'm not an idiot, so I decided maybe the Universe is just saying Go Do Something Else.

Reply To Message
 
 Re: What would you do?
Author: Hotboy 
Date:   2020-02-03 22:25

I understood your point about not being able to adjust reeds. I'm guessing that you have not taken any lessons on reed adjusting and/or knife sharpening from a good teacher, and you seem to be be resistant to learning.

Since the Legere are so expensive, I suggest that you buy only one right now because they last quite a long time. Also, you might find that the Legere reed will be too stiff to play at altitude. Legere reeds can be adjusted, but just like regular reeds, if you scrape some material off them, they will likely be too closed to play.

Dane
Bay Area, California

Reply To Message
 
 Re: What would you do?
Author: EaubeauHorn 
Date:   2020-02-03 22:33

Thanks for the insult.

Reply To Message
 
 Re: What would you do?
Author: Jim22 
Date:   2020-02-04 03:31

You sound closer to being able to make and finish your own reeds than i am. If you still have access to your teacher, see if you can make up half a dozen reeds and spend an hour with the teacher, it will be worth it to have your teacher finish them for you.
Jim

Jim C.
CT, USA

Reply To Message
 
 Re: What would you do?
Author: Hotboy 
Date:   2020-02-04 20:07

**Thanks for the insult.**

Really? How old are you? You sound like a petulant 14-year-old who asks for advice with no intention of even considering it.

Dane
Bay Area, California

Reply To Message
 
 Re: What would you do?
Author: mschmidt 
Date:   2020-02-05 03:37

Let's all try to avoid personal attacks, ok?

Mike

Middle-Aged Amateur


Reply To Message
 
 Re: What would you do?
Author: gohpeds 
Date:   2020-02-06 01:33

Well, Have you filled your bucket of reeds?

Remember that reed making and adjusting is a skill, starting with choice of cane, gouge, shape. On to tying technique and scraping and finally finishing take time and a lot of duds. Any faults in any step, will show at the end. Hence the Bucket.

If you have problems in any of these the best advise has been given.
Get a teacher that will show you. That way your bucket may need to be smaller before you get good reeds.

You tube videos are informative but in no way can replace actual work and feeling of the reed.

Also, if you get used to a very good reed you will think that the other ones are not good. You have to play and make the reed work for you. Don't play only on one reed, get used to different ones.

I enjoy your questions they keel the site alive and help others.

Gustavo.

Reply To Message
 
 Re: What would you do?
Author: EaubeauHorn 
Date:   2020-02-06 03:08

Dane, I do not know who you are or what personal problems you have that cause you to speak the way you do. I do know who I am, and that I don't want these verbal gifts you have given me. You may keep these gifts for yourself. To everyone else, thank you for the discourse.

Reply To Message
 
 Re: What would you do?
Author: GBK 
Date:   2020-02-06 03:48

[ To all: Please get back on topic, or the thread will be closed ]

...GBK

Reply To Message
 Avail. Forums  |  Threaded View   Newer Topic  |  Older Topic 


 Avail. Forums  |  Need a Login? Register Here 
 User Login
 User Name:
 Password:
 Remember my login:
   
 Forgot Your Password?
Enter your email address or user name below and a new password will be sent to the email address associated with your profile.
Search Woodwind.Org

Sheet Music Plus Featured Sale

The Clarinet Pages
is sponsored by:

For Sale
Put your ads for items you'd like to sell here. Free! Please, no more than two at a time - ads removed after two weeks.

Reeds
Great reeds available from around the world

Service
Instrument repairs, restorations, adjustments, and overhauls.

Music & Books
CDs, Sheet Music, and some of the greatest reference books ever written!

Accessories
Accessories that every clarinetist needs - reed makers and shapers, ligatures, greases, oils, and preservatives ... and more!

Miscellaneous
Services and products too varied to categorize! Repair, recording, news

Instruments
Retailers and manufacturers of clarinets, both modern and early replica

Mouthpieces & Barrels
Fine makers of mouthpieces and barrels, from wood to crystal to hard rubber and plastic

Events
Major events especially for clarinetists

 
     Copyright © Woodwind.Org, Inc. All Rights Reserved    Privacy Policy    Contact charette@woodwind.org