The reed and the instrument must form an angle of approximately 45º with our body. Since the reed is so thin it can easily chip or crack from even slight trauma. Most professional oboists rotate reeds not only to make them last longer, but also because they know different reeds may act differently from day to day. I have spent thousands of hours lurched over a reed desk on a search to understand how to make oboe reeds. They will last longer if stored in a proper reed case. Clip the reed (about 1 mm), insert the plaque, and continue thinning the tip. The Roy Double Radius Oboe Gouger Version 2.0 is an almost complete revamping of the original design. 2. The Response of the oboe reed is not a measurement of how much energy is needed, but how quickly the reed reacts to the energy that is present within the system. Take a slow and deep breath through the mouth and then blow strongly to produce a robust sound. 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The final goal in reed making is to strike a delicate balance: You want a reed solid enough at its base to remain sturdy, but thin enough at the tip that it can vibrate. The reeds get smaller as the cane diameter becomes smaller. Make a fist with your thumb on the exterior of the hand (as if thumb wrestling). The reed is probably not well balanced in this case, and where to remove wood should be visibly obvious. Reed won't vibrate. Ribbon style holds the reed in place at the thread. If the reed chirps, the tip is too thin of long for the rest of the reed. Each one is thoughtfully put together to help provide you with the best tone possible, and the only use the highest quality Arundo donax cane available to help ensure the best handmade oboe reed. The student may benefit from having two reed cases. Shake= shake the wrist while holding the oboe reed. Scrape more from the heart and back, and possibly corners. The fact that the oboe reed is double indicates that both sides of it must vibrate equally. They'll last longer if kept in a proper case that is made for a reed. The general pitch of the oboe is determined largely by the quality of the reed and the player’s control of the wind. The fingers should be right up against the oboe, pushing against it even. Try this quick reed test to determine if an oboe reed is suitable for playing. If the reed is not vibrating well, scraping the whole tip, including the center, is seldom a good idea. Scrape more from the heart and back, and possibly corners. I am not saying this to feed my ego, but to provide you insight into how I view my craft and art form. The blank is held with the bottom of the tube in the palm of the hand with the index finger extended to support the reed. If the reed is not vibrating well, scraping the whole tip, including the center, is seldom a good idea. Oboe reeds should be stored in a reed case and not the vials or small containers that the reeds are packaged in. The favorite reed of one day may not work the same way the next day. Please feel free to contact me if you would like a few lessons on oboe reed care or any oboe related topics. Take more out of the heart and back, and possibly clip. But too often, reeds are too thick, too long, too open, too closed, too sharp -- you name a problem, and it's a possibility for an oboe reed. The heart acts like a valve between the tip and the back. They then must put saliva around the reed and in the reed for several minutes. Saliva will break down the oboe reed quicker than water, so I advise you favor soaking oboe reeds in water. The oboe is a very rewarding and beautiful instrument to play. Oboe reeds soaked in water will last longer than reeds soaked with saliva. 3. It takes THOUSANDS of hours to understand how to make relatively consistent and good oboe reeds, I mean that sincerely. I hope this takes some of the guesswork out of oboe reed care for people just coming to the oboe. Changes in the pressure and humidity of an environment may cause oboe reeds to vibrate differently. It helps produce easier articulation and response from the instrument, The reed tends not to vibrate as much as it did in lower altitudes. Put a small amount of super glue on the thread where the reed is loosening. Cork grease can also be used to lubricate the cork which may allow easier removal, just be aware that it may also decrease the ability to get a firm grip on the cork. Although the spine is very important, too much of it will keep the reed from vibrating. Rubbing the oboe reed on clothing, getting it tangled in hair, hitting it on a tooth, or storing it improperly in a case can all lead to damage. Sounds like the reeds to me, and this is usually the result of 1. the tip being too thin in the center and thus collapsing on itself. I usually tell people to expect a reed to provide around 10 hours of playing. This is assuming my oboe reed care suggestions are followed. Affected by the length of the tube, this vibrating air in turn affects the reed’s vibrations. • The articulation is usually easy and clean in all registers except in the lowest register of the oboe – these notes speak clearly with some embouchure adjustment however. The thinking is that the student will only destroy one reed and not three. If your reed is not vibrating correctly, check and make sure there are no obvious mistakes or thick pieces of cane in strange spots. As with most things I write, these are not rules but perspective gained from my own students, professional dialogue, and customer feedback. Check that the thinnest areas are the top corners of the tip. If the reed is sharp because it's still too thick, scrape more off. Ribbon style holds the reed in place at the thread. It is a good idea to sterilize oboe reeds after the player has been sick. Both types have different ways of scraping. It looks like your browser does not have JavaScript enabled. Be careful not to put more spit in the reed. Double reeds. Gouged, Shaped & Profiled Oboe Cane. Excess moisture should be shaken or blown out of the oboe reed before it is stored. The cells of the cane must become hydrated for the reed to vibrate correctly also. A reed can be expected to last a 2-3 weeks in a situation like this with proper oboe reed care. Under-Scraped - if a reed is too heavy or has too much cane on it, playability will be very resistant and the reed will be sharp in pitch. The reed should not ever be removed by grabbing the thread. To “rotate oboe reeds” means one reed is not played until it is dead, but several reeds will be played in a rotation of some sort. The fact that the oboe reed is double indicates that both sides of it must vibrate equally. This special blend of metals ensures that the wire is not too malleable or brittle to allow the reed to vibrate correctly. If it is too hard to get a sound, thin everything more (the tip, the heart, and the back). A great reed allows one to play for hours and not become exhausted. I feel that a reed maker will have more respect for oboe reeds than someone not knowing what goes into the process and follow a more serious oboe reed care regiment (Just in case you are curious here is the process “how to make oboe reeds step by step”). I get a bit nervous seeing the reeds being grabbed by the thread and wiggled back and forth as if extracting a loose tooth. Sometimes a student will not have access to water or a cup for soaking reeds. If the reed is flat, the reed is too long or there is too much taken out of the heart. This information will help students and customers to understand how to take care of their oboe reeds and ensure they have a long and vibrant life. A chipped or broken tip will cause the reed to stop vibrating well and may sound odd or … The tip of an oboe reed can be thinner than a hair! Academic Student Resources: University College. After sculpting each half of the reed, Josh drops it into a dish of water and we pop out for lunch. Oboe Reed Thread. Student:    “Aaron, I know you said not to , but I grabbed the reed by the thread to remove it and now it is starting to unravel”. Work on the tip of the reed to get the tip vibrating and slowly work your way across the inception point (all referred to … Use a pushing motion with your knife rather than a rocking motion and scrape All THE WAY over the edge of the reed to ensure the tip is the thinnest part of the reed. The result will be a reed … The thread will loosen over time and become unraveled if the oboist consistently pulls and rotates the thread. good luck with your oboe reed care and Happy oboe-ing, Interested in purchasing oboe reeds? beginner-3 years = one student oboe reed every 2-3 weeks, 3-6 years= one professional oboe reed every 2-3 weeks, serious high school student= one professional oboe reed every 10-14 days, college oboe major=  one professional oboe reed every 5-10 days. As an artisan, I take great pride in my craft and it hurts me a little to see my reeds being mistreated in any way. Lots In Stock. Make an X from that line up to the end of the reed. I offer live online video lessons on oboe performance, reed making, and performance strategies (these lessons deal with mindfulness for performers,  where we look at the mind-body-emotional connection during a performance and how to establish a friendly relationship with our thoughts and emotions). However, the bassoon's reed gets placed on a bocal, which is a fine metal tube that is placed in the instrument. A dry reed does not have the same flexibility as a soaked reed so any pressure placed on a dry reed will make it split. When traveling from a lower altitude to a higher one, generally two things happen to oboe reeds: 1.The opening becomes more closed which tends to cause sharpness. Also, carry a small vial - the plastic ones that regular camera film comes in are good. As you get above 5,000 feet, and often into a dry climate, the reeds will vibrate less. Scrape two windows in the back up to the 61 mm. Gently scrape the V (the lower section of the X above the 66 mm. 10 hours is the actual time spend playing, not sitting and listening to the band director talk, not time spent looking out the window while it should be played, but actual playing time. The majority of oboe reed cases will fall into one of these categories; Mandrel style holds the reed by inserting a small tube into the bottom of the reed. The larger cases will allow a student to hold onto reeds and see if they may regain some life later. When the thread comes unraveled it is not a defect in make, it comes from operator error. This area should be thicker than the corners of the tip, but thinner than the heart behind it. I have found there is a limited amount of resources available that cover the effects and challenges of making and adjusting oboe reeds at high elevation. oboe reeds can be sterilized with Hydrogen peroxide,  Alchohol or mouthwash. There is also a bit of a personal intention in writing this article that I would like to share. Oboe reeds are expensive, delicate, and temperamental. Congratulations!​. If the reed is too stuffy or resistant, scrape the reed gently all over. I think anyone who makes their own oboe reeds will naturally take better care of their reeds than people without the understanding of what goes into making oboe reeds. If the reed responds easily, plays in tune, and has a nice tone quality, you’ve made a great reed! The plant in its harvested form is usually referred to as “cane”. The majority of oboe reed cases will fall into one of these categories; I sell a couple Ribbon Style oboe reed cases on my website, you can see those by clicking on the links below. I attribute this to changing seasons. If the reed is very sharp (and not too short), it is not vibrating correctly. A private teacher will be able to share more information than is provided herewith your young oboist about oboe reed care and other oboe related topics. Many oboists will use one or both of these products to patch leaky reeds, so they may already be in the oboe case. No product can replace proper oboe reed care, no matter how well it works. Care should be taken  not to hit the reed on anything, Blow= Put your lips on the cork end of the reed and blow the excess moisture from the cane. oboe, making the instrument more virtuosic to match the flute and clarinet.1 The reed went through its own evolution together with the oboe. Clip. In the case of an un-vibrant reed, it is usually better to try to get more vibrations by scraping the heart and even the back, as well as the sides and corners of the tip. Even if you are not interested in the reed cases I sell they will give you an idea of what the Ribbon style Oboe reeds cases function. There are some products out there that claim to prolong the life of oboe reeds. I advise the student be given access to at least three reeds at a time. Reed Drying Boards. A band class may be an hour-long, but the oboist may play for a half-hour of that time. Scrape the cane parallel with the fibers of the reed, but with the knife at the angle of the X, to avoid scraping much out of the middle of the tip. Double reeds play an essential role in the resulting sound quality and playability of orchestral wind instruments like the bassoon, English horn and oboe. The oboe is enough of a challenge without being in the dark about oboe reed care and maintenance. My goal is not to try to convince anyone that my ideas are the rule of the land, but the oboe reed care suggestions are what I share with my own students and interested customers. The reed will literally stop vibrating because they are blowing so much air, the tip of the reed will collapse. Your jaw may have just dropped if you are new to this. used to tie the cane to the oboe staple which helps to keep the reed stable and airtight. The reed being squeezed or bitten and thus sounding pinched. Scraping the Tip Thinner: Easier response; Creates more vibration - 'bright' sometimes shrill sound; Lower resistance; Flat in pitch, decreased stability Yes dead, worn out reeds can gain a second life. A high-level high school student or college student may be going through 3-5 oboe reeds per month, which is okay if it is due to usage with proper oboe reed care and not neglect. The reed vibrates when air is moved through the opening, causing the two blades vibrate from the changes in air pressure. Oboist and oboe reed maker Aaron Lakota shares his thoughts on oboe reed care. Oboe reeds are made from a plant called Arundo Donax. An oboe and bassoon both use a double reed that consists of two pieces of cane that vibrate against one another. There is more leverage turning the oboe than the reed. Make a line across the reed at 66 mm. If it's too thick, the tip vibrations will not continue, and the reed will feel stuffy and resistant. Always use a sharp knife! Find handmade oboe reeds at A.Lakota Reeds, Find high quality student oboe reeds and student bassoon reeds at MallarReeds, /*