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Date Posted: 21:16:50 12/17/01 Mon
I have the same Caldwell for the past 3 years! So yes, I agree with you totally, it's all in the cane. I have a Shepherd going for just under two years, and a Megarity Ross that's coming in real sweet, only a month old though. But I can vouch for Caldwell and Shepherd, the cane is far superior. And I can assume the Meg Ross will stand well judging by its performance so far. I too tried other reeds, including the ridgeback, and they lasted only a few short months. An old instructor of mine used to scoff and say reeds were consumables. He would just grunt and say "Use it up! Reeds are made to be used up, thrown away and replaced! Until you find a good one, then you keep that reed forever." I know what he means now after three years with the same reed and two years with another.
To keep with the thread, I have my Caldwell in my Naill BW and the Shepherd in my Sheperd poly band chanter. The Meg Ross I plug into the Naill for the hell of it, and it's sounding very sweet. Good cane and the skill to manipulate it will make any reed, no matter who made it, sound smooth as silk. But 99% of it all is good cane.
>From more than one quite reliable source/professionals
>in the field. Good cane is good cane. And it doesn't
>take a genius to figure out that a manufacturer will
>blame bad cane for problems with their reeds. When in
>fact, if they took the time to choose good cane to
>begin with, the reeds would perform well. Like I
>said, I judge reedmakers on their ability to choose
>the best quality cane. I don't judge my reeds on the
>manufacturer's design, since we all carve them up to
>suit our needs anyhow, thus altering any revolutionary
>design they can come up with.
>Just look at the Apps ridgeback. Supposed to increase
>volume without increasing effort. What innovation!!!
>But they still last about 15 minutes because of the
>quality of cane used. And I am not a pinch-crazy
>beginner, I have a few years experience with reed
>manipulation, and that reed just doesn't last. Yet I
>have a Caldwell that's been going strong for 2 years
>now, and a Shepherd for just over a year. What do
>they have in common? Good cane. Can I tell a
>discernible difference when I place them in the same
>chanter? Nope! Both are bright, both are strong,
>both are balanced. Both are excellent quality reeds,
>because of their cane. And I cannot say it's their
>designs that make them different because I cut them
>all the same. The true mark of a good reedmaker is
>his choice of cane, and the care he takes in putting
>them together. These reeds are going strong, and are
>showing no sign of their age in the least.
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