bass drone problem

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germanpiper
Posts: 7
Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2012 2:35 pm
Real Name: Lutz Berger

bass drone problem

Post by germanpiper » Thu Aug 23, 2012 8:46 am

Hi everyone,

I have some problems with my bass drone. It always did shut down when I started playing in the second octave so I tried to make it a bit harder by gently flipping the tounge of the reed.
It did help - but now when I start the drones the bass drone isn't playing a D but something between fourth and a fifth above that. Only when I give it short "pressure punch" (quickly pressing the bag hard) it goes down to D.

Any advice? :oops:
Thank you very much.

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Mr.Gumby
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Joined: Mon Jun 07, 2010 11:29 am

Re: bass drone problem

Post by Mr.Gumby » Thu Aug 23, 2012 1:15 pm

You may want to try putting a bit of weight on the end of the tongue, a blob of bluetac or wax. The weight will flatten the pitch, sometimes, when enough is added, the reed jumps to a different register altogether. Experiment by adding it bit by bit until the reed jumps back to D again.
My brain hurts

germanpiper
Posts: 7
Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2012 2:35 pm
Real Name: Lutz Berger

Re: bass drone problem

Post by germanpiper » Fri Aug 24, 2012 4:05 am

Mr.Gumby wrote:You may want to try putting a bit of weight on the end of the tongue, a blob of bluetac or wax. The weight will flatten the pitch, sometimes, when enough is added, the reed jumps to a different register altogether. Experiment by adding it bit by bit until the reed jumps back to D again.
I tried it and it didn't work. :cry:
So what exactly did I do:
I added a little bit of "bluetac" (ok, it is white here in Germany but almost the same) and the drone stopped playing altogether.
So I removed all of the stuff and something strange happend. Now the drone is much too low, if it plays at all. It seems to me, that the reed is now "too open" and plays only with a lot of pressure.
I am totally confused.

outofthebox
Posts: 630
Joined: Fri Oct 30, 2009 2:02 pm

Re: bass drone problem

Post by outofthebox » Fri Aug 24, 2012 5:09 am

With drone reeds the aim is to have all three playing at the same easy pressure.

First you need to take the reed out and draw on it with your lips. If the reed is too strong it will be difficult to sound, so the tongue needs to be closed down a little at the bridle - by edging it forward just a touch. If the reed closes down quickly when you draw on it, it is playing too light and the offset of the tongue needs to be a little higher - so the bridle can be eased back a touch. Then flip the end of the tongue upward a few times so that it snaps back into place - do this very carefully - I do this holding a small loop of paper beneath the free end of the tongue and pulling it up while holding down at the bridle end with my thumb - just a quick flicking action is all that is required. This will help get the 'spring' of the tongue to work more freely. Then test it again in your mouth - then in your drone.

It may take you some time to get it right - bass drone reeds have special sensitivities to pressure - so be patient and you will learn a lot. Of course the best way to understand these single beating reeds is by making them yourself. That way you can make them to your own playing preference to create a sound and balance that you like. 8)

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PJ
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Location: Baychimo
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Re: bass drone problem

Post by PJ » Fri Aug 24, 2012 8:30 am

One other thing to try is to adjust the bridle on the reed. I've noticed that there are more than one positions to place the bridle in order to get the right note.

The funny thing about adjusting the drone reed, though, is that as you move the bridle (checking the note regularly as you go), it will suddenly jump several notes (a 4th or 5th), and all you'll have to do is fine tune with the slide section.
PJ

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Hans-Joerg
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Joined: Tue Apr 05, 2005 6:47 am
Location: Germany, near Hannover

Re: bass drone problem

Post by Hans-Joerg » Tue Oct 23, 2012 9:31 pm


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