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 Cracked Loree
Author: oboeplayer2001995 
Date:   2023-02-12 23:32
Attachment:  IMG_4946.jpeg (77k)
Attachment:  IMG_4945.jpeg (56k)
Attachment:  IMG_4942.jpeg (66k)

Hello, this is my first post on here.

Recently, I was at the Texas All-State convention as a student, meaning I was playing my oboe for about 8 hours a day from Wednesday to Saturday. My oboe is less than two years old, and was recently given to me from my director, who had broken it in previously. I don't think he played on it that often after the initial breaking-in process. I think I take pretty good care of my oboe. I warm it up with my hands before I play, and always swab afterwards.

On Saturday at the end of the day (after playing in rehearsals and concert), I was inspecting my oboe when I noticed a crack through the third octave key tone hole and a very long one that ran from the top of the D and C# trill key tone holes down to the first finger tone hole (It's called a tone hole right?). The first crack goes through the third octave key tone hole. The second crack goes straight through the D and C# tone holes, and is only at the top of the first finger tone hole.

I didn't see these cracks earlier in the day when I was inspecting my oboe (about 8 hours earlier). Maybe I just missed it, but I doubt that because of how pronounced they are.

I will talk to my director and private lesson teacher tomorrow (of course!), but I was wondering how bad these cracks look to others, and if it's as big of a deal as I think it is.

Thanks

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 Re: Cracked Loree
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2023-02-12 23:58

That's a very common place for cracks to run through. The 3rd 8ve, both trill and the LH1 (C#) toneholes will all need to be cut out and bushed with plastic or ebonite, the cracks will be filled in and either pinned (steel or carbon fibre pins) or carbon fibre banded.

Only trust that sort of crack repair work to an oboe specialist as they'd be tooled up and experienced to deal with this work. Don't worry as this is a fairly routine repair and cracks are more of an inconvenience and not terminal - they can happen at any point in time to anyone.

It's much better to repair a cracked top joint than replacing it with a new one and chances are the oboe will play much better after it's cracked and been repaired, so long as the repair was successful.

In the meantime, don't use anything to seal or cover the cracks (eg. tape, grease or wax) as that can contaminate things which will cause the repair to fail.

Chris.

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 Re: Cracked Loree
Author: mschmidt 
Date:   2023-02-13 09:22

Whatever you do, do not let a flute player try to convince you that the oboe is ruined forever based on what she once heard someone say about wooden piccolos. On the other hand, don't lose your temper at the flutist, as that can lead to a reduction in chamber ensemble possibilities.

Mike

Still an Amateur, but not really middle-aged anymore



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 Re: Cracked Loree
Author: EaubeauHorn 
Date:   2023-02-15 19:17

This may start a malestrom of comments, but locally very fine cracks (look like a hair on the wood) are simply sealed with super glue and everything is fine, for literally years and years.

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 Re: Cracked Loree
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2023-02-16 02:25

If the cracks don't run across any toneholes, then they can be filled in with superglue. Any cracks that do run across toneholes are best having those affected toneholes bushed so they won't cause any leaks should the cracks reopen.

Some makers (eg. Howarth) bush the 3rd 8ve, trills and LH1 toneholes as standard as a preventative or safeguarding measure on some of their pro level oboes, usually the ones made of cocobolo or kingwood but also some grenadilla ones.

Chris.

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 Re: Cracked Loree
Author: oboeplayer2001995 
Date:   2023-02-16 03:34

Update: Loree and they might take the keys off and put it onto a new wooden bore thingy for a fraction of the cost of a new top joint. Apparently this is because their newer oboes have been cracking much more frequently and they are garnering a bad reputation. That's what my private lesson teacher told me, at least.

Steve

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 Re: Cracked Loree
Author: EaubeauHorn 
Date:   2023-02-16 22:19

A further question --- if an oboe has what appears to be a hairline crack, and it is not repaired, what are the consequences?

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 Re: Cracked Loree
Author: oboeplayer2001995 
Date:   2023-02-17 03:03

I've heard that cracks widen when put under more stress (i.e. playing) and can lead to a more severe situation.

Steve

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 Re: Cracked Loree
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2023-02-17 03:21

Cracks will spread further if not dealt with. Ones that don't terminate in toneholes, pillar holes or slots will need either a blind hole drilled or a saw cut just beyond the end of them so they won't spread any further along the length of the joint. The blind hole or saw cut will then be filled in to hide it (along with repairing the crack).

Chris.

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 Re: Cracked Loree
Author: EaubeauHorn 
Date:   2023-02-17 03:44

I ask about the crack because I minutely examined my oboe and saw a hairline crack (?) that I had never seen before, but I also had never examined the oboe that minutely, and have no idea how long it has been there. My house is quite cool in the winter, but I have been warming the oboe wrapped up in a heating pad before I play, to where it feels warm to the touch (not "hot.") I am quite small, and putting it in my armpit is not really going to do much. Yet here is this hairline thing and I don't know how long it has been there. There is no one local who can fix this. I'd have to ship it off and probably be without it for quite some time, which is not good for my playing life. I live in the SW USA and have no idea where to ship it, or how long a wait I would have. I'd have gotten a Fox and been without this problem except that I can't really reach a Fox.

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 Re: Cracked Loree
Author: oboeplayer2001995 
Date:   2023-02-17 03:55

That's unfortunate. What do you mean by you can't reach a Fox?

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 Re: Cracked Loree
Author: EaubeauHorn 
Date:   2023-02-17 18:22

I have very small hands and the extension for the pinkies is too much. I still use a Hook even with my Rigoutat. A Loree has the same problem for me, difficult to reach the pinky keys.

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 Re: Cracked Loree
Author: oboeplayer2001995 
Date:   2023-02-18 22:35

Ohhh. I thought I had small hands but I guess mine are pretty average if that's the trouble people with small hands face on oboes.

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 Re: Cracked Loree
Author: EaubeauHorn 
Date:   2023-02-27 05:56

Well, I really don't have any experience looking at "cracked oboes," and have no idea if what I'm seeing is a crack or possibly a repaired crack. I bought this used, it still plays exactly as it always has, and I never looked at it this closely before. So, next question is, does a "repaired crack" have a particular appearance? It actually does look like it might have had super glue on it at one point, but when I bought it, I took it to my teacher (EXCELLENT repair guy) and he did not mention anything like that. He found the left Eb key was slightly bent, said, "Oh I bet that's why they sold it," and announced he would gladly perform on it.
(Teacher since moved, and there is no one within driving distance who is an expert whom I could ask.)

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 Re: Cracked Loree
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2023-02-27 16:55

Any crack repairs should be made as inconspicuous as is possible by the repairer, whether that be pinning, carbon fibre banding or simply filling in surface imperfections. Tonehole bushings will only be noticeable once the keys are off and should also be done well and made to look nice and even instead of rough.

Chris.

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 Re: Cracked Loree
Author: EaubeauHorn 
Date:   2023-02-27 20:02

So how would I know if this is a repaired crack that I simply never saw before because I never looked, or a new hairline problem?

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 Re: Cracked Loree
Author: Chris P 
Date:   2023-02-28 00:53

You can use UV light (black light) to show up repaired cracks as the filler will most likely glow a greenish colour under UV light. Open surface vessels or grain lines that appear to look like cracks won't do that.

A new hairline crack won't show up under UV, but it will be more distinctive and defined compared to a surface vessel.

It has been said by some that cracks are always straight lines, only wood grain is rarely ever straight and cracks follow the line of grain no matter how much that meanders. Cracks don't run across the grain.

If you do see what looks like a newly formed crack, mark it with a pencil along its length and also how far along the joint it runs (if it doesn't terminate in a tonehole, pillar hole or slot) to make it easy to find next time as it can close up. Yamaha suggest to mark the crack line with chalk.

Chris.

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 Re: Cracked Loree
Author: oboeplayer2001995 
Date:   2023-03-01 03:17

Update: The oboe has been sent to the proper person, and apparently I probably won't see it again because of how in-demand this particular person is for oboe repairs. I'll probably graduate by the time the oboe comes back. It's ok though, I'm just still a little upset about breaking such a beautiful instrument.

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