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Subject: Re: Reed adjustment/scraping for new Pipes?

Harold Cook
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Date Posted: 22:57:49 01/26/02 Sat
In reply to: Eric R. Gagne 's message, "Reed adjustment/scraping for new Pipes?" on 13:50:43 01/22/02 Tue

Yup, we've all been there/done it. Yeah, they're $6 - $8 apiece, but chanter reeds are consumables; you keep shaving and sanding and replacing them until you find a good one. Then you keep that one forever. Yep, a moist reed is much easier to blow than a dry one. And in most bagpipes, they're soaking wet the whole time they're being played. Wet your reed well before your start tooting. Chris Reed's book is excellent and cheap. Pick one up and read it. It'll get you manipulating reeds logically. I also like Bruce Liberati's booklet, but it's out of print. His wife sometimes has copies on eBay. Clanryes don't work well in all chanters, or even in the same brand of chanter. I've got one in a Naill B/W and I wouldn't change it. My other chanters have cane, and none of them will use a Clanrye acceptably - matter of fact, they sound really lousy. My belief is that if you bought one, you'd be unhappy with it, unless you happened to have the one-in-ten chanter that "works" with the plastic reed. If you're dead set on trying a Clanrye, I'll let you borrow one. Email me.
The "Easy" Wygent, Hardie and Soutar reeds will get you going, too, but I've never had a Soutar last all that long. That may have been because of my habit of scraping reeds before they're blown in sufficiently. I'm not real patient with reeds. Some of them ALWAYS blow like a 2x4 and I don't care to expend a lot of energy just to find that out.


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[> Subject: Re: Reed adjustment/scraping for new Pipes?

Steve Smith
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Date Posted: 16:01:20 03/14/02 Thu

I just followed this line of notes, and found it very interesting, especially in light of the fact that I used to play oboe for many years, and had been making my own reeds since the 6th grade. In the beginning, I wanted to have a store-bought reed or two around because I never knew if mine would turn out. I did try the plastic reed in the beginning, but even though it was easy to blow, it just never felt or sounded right. Once I got the hang of making the reeds, I never wanted one that I hadn't made. Of course, oboe reeds rarely last more than a week, so you're continually making them, but I agree with the folks here, when you've got a great one that you've made yourself, it's a tremendous feeling.
Nice to see that holds true in the world of bagpipes as well!!

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