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Distinguished Member, Forum Contributor 2012-2015
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Discussion Starter #1
Well, I guess this is another one of those reed preparation voodoo questions, as George Garzone calls it. When preparing your reeds, do you rub the flat surface against a plain sheet of paper? If yes, at what stage, and why?
Thanks!
 

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I polish the backs of reeds after I play them, when they are dry enough. By doing so, I can see if most of the reed is flat & flush with the mpc table. If I see cupping or swelling, I sand with 600 grit, to flatten the high spots. Then it's ready for the next performance.
 

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Regularly.

I think polishing the surface of reeds this way makes them less absorbent/resistant on the surfaces--top and bottom--and hence more responsive. In the short term, the moisture doesn't gather up as easily; in the long term, the reeds are less likely to swell/warp.

Also, as noted above, rubbing the bottom reveals swelling (it's shinier) which can be scraped off.

In general, it definitely extends the life of the reeds, IMHO.
 

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Ditto. I believe it prolongs reed life as well.

I also polish the tops with paper - I prefer the feel of a polished reed to one with the fibers sticking out.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks, guys, interesting experiences here...
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member/Forum Contributor 2007
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I did this today after soaking / then drying for a few minutes, so I polished it while slightly damp. Seemed to have flattened out the warped tips on some of my cheapo reeds.
 

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I did this because Joe Allard believes that it pro-longs reed life by sealing the pores so the reed is more resilient against saliva. plus like rleitch said it lets you see the high spots on the back of the reed so you know where to flatten the reed.
 
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