A forum to discuss the arcane art of making uilleann pipes, reeds, and set maintenance.
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I have a reed I didn't play for over a year, which developed a very weak back D during that time. I shaved a hair or two off the lips which has strengthened the back D, although weaked bottom D a bit and made the reed stiffer (requiring more pressure to play). I suppose a next step would be some sanding somewhere? Any advice appreciated.
I would suggest that you get a piece of well-worn fine sandpaper and work gently along the sides of the reed to the corners of the lips. It shouldn't take very much - try ten passes along each side, back and front. You can judge the stiffness of the reed by how easily the crow note sounds when you draw on it - try it before you start sanding and then you will feel how it is changing as you go along. But also try it in the chanter after each sanding. Patience is the key - you might want to do this refinement over a few days as the lips of the reed will become less stiff with playing and it is a good thing to have a chanter reed just a little on the stiff side.
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