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Uh, maybe buy stock in a company named Rico? Seriously, IMHO anyone who is spending time making their own reeds is wasting valuable practice time. With all that is available in the reed market, it just seems like it would be hard to handmake something that would be better. I know double reed players (e.g oboe) sometimes manufacture their own reeds all the way down to growing their own cane, but I think it's not very common for sax players. However, if anyone does, they probably read this forum.
 

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Additionally, I dont know that you would do any better than getting a good quality reed and doing some custom hand work on it. Even if you learn to make your own reeds you are not going to have full quality control as it may be difficult and just as expensive to buy good cane blanks. Most of the variables in quality reeds is in the cane, not the cutting.

I can relate to the interest but I too feel it is rather esotreic in comparison to other ways a player can spend his or her time...practicing, listening, encountering other forms of art and expression/experience that eventually feed into music...the list goes on.
 

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Ahhh, how we will do anything to sound better

Personally the idea of making reeds from scratch is insane, but your posted has a time of 3:00am on it and most oboe players I know make their reeds at that time of the night so maybe your up for it.

I agree with the other post that finding a reed that is harder than you like a wittling it down is probably the easiest. (Actually my first thought was that if your so discusted with commercial reeds that your willing to waste your time making them by hand you probably just need to stop using Vandoren.

If your really interested in learning about reed making the best book I have found is "The Clarinet and Clarinet Playing" by David Pino. Although centered on the clarinet it has alot of good ideas that apply to all woodwinds. He is an advocate of making his own reeds, however his Masters degree in woodwinds has probably given him alot of experience with double reeds.

Even if you do not make reeds from scratch the study of reed work is definitely necessary and will payoff in a bid way over time.

Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Making your own reeds

Yeah, I was just inquiring as to if any of y'all do it. My private lesson teacher and my band director said that I shouldn't do it. Now what about reed knives? Do they fix warped reeds? Is it easy to damage your reed using a reed knife?
 

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Use a reed guard. I use the cheap Lavoz ones that hold 4. Ive never had a warped reed. Only use a reed on one mouthpiece. They learn the curve. Some of my mouthpieces will not play a reed that was broke in on a different mpc AT ALL. Well maintained reeds should not need much work other than initial tuning if it is stuffy, unresponsive or the like. Perhaps the occasional clip and sand (though Ive never had much luck extending life doing that). Buy Alexanders. They last a long time if you care for them.

Yes, its easy to ruin a reed doing most anything to it. Practice on cheap junkers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Reed guard

I use a La Voz reed guard I got at the music for only like $2, I think it really does prevent warpage.
 
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