Back D, and sharp 2nd octave

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teslapiper
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Back D, and sharp 2nd octave

Post by teslapiper » Wed May 22, 2013 3:45 pm

i was trying to search the forum for back d issues but theres so much its hard to sort through. anyway, i have made many reeds of multiple designs. a common problem i run into is my back sounds like a train horn, it creates a multi-tone sound. sometime its weak and bends up and down.

and secondly all of my reeds the e f# and g in the 2nd reed are about 30 cents sharp. any ideas?

outofthebox
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Re: Back D, and sharp 2nd octave

Post by outofthebox » Thu May 23, 2013 5:04 am

If your reed is sharp in the second octave (30 cents is very sharp), my guess would be that you need a narrower staple - or you could try to reduce the internal volume by more flattening of the staple you are using. As for the back D - this sounds like it may be a problem with the lips being a little too thin and so is not resistant enough to your bag pressure. You can try to strengthen the lips by holding the reed upside down and drawing it gently across some well worn fine grade sandpaper - maybe just two or three passes would be enough - but don't put any pressure at all on the lips when doing this or you will tear them. Drawing on the reed with your mouth from the staple is a good way to assess the pressure resistance of the reed.

billh
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Re: Back D, and sharp 2nd octave

Post by billh » Fri May 24, 2013 4:38 am

The breaking back d can also be aggravated by a sharp second octave. Try a narrower staple.

The sandpaper trick for shortening a reed will not work unless the blades are fairly thick. It's better to trim with a cut-throat razor or double-hollow ground knife on an end grain block. However the breaking back d is not always best fixed by stiffening the reed - if the reed pressure and aperture are reasonable, the problem is elsewhere.

outofthebox
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Re: Back D, and sharp 2nd octave

Post by outofthebox » Fri May 24, 2013 5:22 am

Drawing the lips across the sandpaper (emery cloth would be even better if you have it) is not aimed at shortening the reed, but just to thicken them up a tiny bit and even them up. At the first pass the lips of the reed will probably feel quite ragged. So only the tiniest amount of cane is removed from the reed, and much much less than can be done by trimming with even the sharpest of blades.

billh
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Re: Back D, and sharp 2nd octave

Post by billh » Fri May 24, 2013 5:57 am

outofthebox wrote:... much much less than can be done by trimming with even the sharpest of blades.
I have to disagree, at least with thin-lipped reeds. I am not speaking out of ignorance, either - I used to employ this sandpaper method on occasion but abandoned it in favor of the knife (which is extremely sharp and thinner than a scalpel blade). I found that I did not like the results even with 800 grit sandpaper.

teslapiper
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Real Name: Joshua Bailey

Re: Back D, and sharp 2nd octave

Post by teslapiper » Fri May 24, 2013 10:22 am

Thanks i have been using hobby tubing, i just order some copper sheet to roll some staple, though i think i will need a smaller mandrel for a smaller staple. i have never really rolled any staple before so i hope it goes well. i have been watching Benedict Koehler's reed videos. thanks for your help again.

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PJ
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Re: Back D, and sharp 2nd octave

Post by PJ » Tue May 28, 2013 1:16 pm

billh wrote:The breaking back d can also be aggravated by a sharp second octave. Try a narrower staple.
Before changing the staple, you could also try removing the binding and withdrawing the staple 1mm from the reed head. This might flatten the 2nd octave. But if not, then try a narrower staple.
PJ

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