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Hey, i started soaking my reeds in vodka about 2 months ago becuase i like my reeds wet and my previous solution with the diddario reeds case made my reeds mold. Everything was fine and all till latly when my reeds started getting this really werid white stuff on them. kinda looks like mold buts its white and smells some what like Yeast. I mean it cant be mold they are laying vodka 24/7 nothing can grow in that. Do you guys no what it is and what are your solutions for keeping reeds wet? thx
 

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Congratulations! You have upgraded from mold to yeast! This may be candida albicans.

Both grow in and outside the human body and apparently the vodka solution is not good enough to prevent this (try higher alcohol concentration).

I don't think that it is dangerous since you are, probably, the source of the " Infection" but you may be growing an extra souce outside which then enriches the flora inside your mouth. May be a problem.

I'd recommend to use a mouthwash containing a low 0.1 or 0.2 % of Chlorhexidine

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chlorhexidine

you can squeeze your reeds dry before you store in a ventilated reed holder which is , in my experience a better way to keep the reed.

If you use a very aggressive chemical you may prevent the forming of mold or yeast but remember they line in your oral cavity and you are the source of the infection.

https://jb.asm.org/content/192/19/5002

Over 600 organisms live in your mouth..... people don't realize this especially those whom have a bottle of water (always the same and never really cleaned) from which they drink all the time.

What do you think it happens to that water especially in summer?

 

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I don’t do anything special to them( nor do I keep them forever).

I squeeze dry and hold them in an open reed holder (which ventilates somewhat).

Occasionally I may soak them in a mouthwash as described above.

If you really want to use vodka ( you may use pure alcohol diluted with water which is what vodka is minus a bit of sugar) use 70% Vodka.

Think of it, we don’t recommend to put a spoon in food and then keep it without expecting it to show sign of contamination, why would reeds not “ go off” even if kept in vodka (which you probably have diluted to a point that is not able to kill candida (tough stuff).
 

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Probably yeast, feeding on the sugars in the vodka. Really, all this is not needed. We need to have moist reeds in something like a Reed Guard in order to have reeds ready to play. This is inviting mold. What I found was washing the reeds in hydrogen peroxide removes the mold and seems to make them play better than just water. It has been theorized that the HP cleans the build-up in the fibers of the reed from saliva. Whatever, this strategy has worked for me for many years. Moreover, I never 'soak' a reed in anything. I buy reeds that mostly will play without any soaking. I moisten the reeds before I will need them and put them back in the Reed Guard for at least 30 minutes and that is sufficient. Naturally you have to clean the Reed Guard too, or whatever it is you're using. I found out many years ago that soaking reeds just made them stuffy.
How I wash reeds is to put a few in a flat saucer and pour enough HP on to float them. Then I just use a toothbrush and scrub with the grain, doing the same on the back, and watching out for the tip. Reeds actually get dirty and this cleans them like new. Then I just wipe them off and put in the Reed Guard. They will typically play for so long that the pith in the tip between the fibers degrades. This is when I will discard them if they haven't already died. I wash my synthetics the same way and I also keep them in a Reed Guard or other way to keep them flat, but of course there's no need to prepare them for playing.
If you do this to the reeds that are yeasted-up, it'll take care of the problem. I think I'd find something else to do with the vodka. :)
 

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So much ridiculous voodoo about reeds. You like playing vodka-logged reeds huh? No thanks.

My favorite ridiculous anecdote is reading about people who take a bunch of reeds, play them for 1 min the 1st day, 2 min the 2nd day, 3 min the 3rd day etc to gently break them in. Who got time for that? Crazy. If I wanted to have so much headaches with reeds I would be a bassoonist.

I take a reed that is 1-2 sizes too hard out of the box, sand it down a bit, try it, sand it down a drop more (takes about 2 min total), play it for 3-4 weeks. 90% of my reeds become players.
 

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So much ridiculous voodoo about reeds. You like playing vodka-logged reeds huh? No thanks.

My favorite ridiculous anecdote is reading about people who take a bunch of reeds, play them for 1 min the 1st day, 2 min the 2nd day, 3 min the 3rd day etc to gently break them in. Who got time for that? Crazy. If I wanted to have so much headaches with reeds I would be a bassoonist.

I take a reed that is 1-2 sizes too hard out of the box, sand it down a bit, try it, sand it down a drop more (takes about 2 min total), play it for 3-4 weeks. 90% of my reeds become players.
I don't even bother with sanding and scraping anymore unless the reed is really out of whack and obviously in need of some adjustment. The most I will do is rub the face on some wet dry sandpaper a few times after wetting it and then on the back of the paper to seal it. Then when it's on the mpc, I use the heel of my thumb to press down from the heart to the tip to make it flex and open up. I read years back that Dexter and Bean used to do this and it does work. Opens a balky reed right up. As to soaking, the most is a few minutes in a glass of tap water. Often I just suck on them a bit and stick them on. I mean when you are at a jam and drinking beer what you gonna do, go ask for a glass of water to carry around? Been there did that and gave it up as silly. Saliva is just fine and dandy, not vegan but whoTF cares?

I rinse my reeds, mpc and neck after playing and let them dry overnight.
Occasionally I soak the reed in H2O2 and wait for the fizz to stop.
Doesn't change the performance.
Hydrogen peroxide is an all around disinfectant for things you put in your mouth like toothbrushes etc. So why not reeds?

Why do people soak reeds at all? I don't get it. I just play them and put them away ?*♂
I often left them on the bedpost overnight when I was playing every day. Why bother taking your setup apart if you have a V? I mean what is the V for anyway if not to protect the reed tip?
 

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This white stuff is sort of like what happened to me back when I read about putting them in jars with vodka to keep them moist. I don't drink vodka and never have so I went to the corner grocery and bought a half-pint of some unknown brand with a phoney Russian-sounding name notable only for being alcohol and cheap. I put a few reeds in a jar to soak in the stuff and put it on a shelf under the sink. We must have had a vacation that week because I didn't remember the jar till a week and a half later. It was unreal. The reeds were all practically translucent white and looked like dead fish bellies. Drying them out didn't change anything much and I tossed them and decided all this reeds bottles stuff is a dumb waste of time.
 

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That doesn't look like mold, rather some salt (or minerals) crystallizing as they are drawn out from the reed. And I would use chlorine dioxide.
Chlorine Dioxide! Holy *****! That's very powerful and toxic stuff. When I worked in the paper making business, it was made on-site since it was so unstable, and excelled at breaking down wood fibers. In fact, we had a small leak one day, and I was coughing up bloody lung tissue for days. It would be the last thing I would ever expose myself or my reeds to.

I recommend you read this before using it again. You're really doing a lot of harm to your body by using toxic chemicals, breathing the fumes then putting the rest in your mouth.
https://ecosensecompany.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/ClorDiSys-SDS-Chlorine-Dioxide-Gas.pdf

Rather than don a haz-mat suit and gloves, I prefer to simply wipe off my reeds when I'm done playing and put them in a reed holder where they dry naturally in a couple of hours. When I'm ready to play again, I'll wet them 5 minutes ahead of time. This has worked fine for me for decades.
 

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I think there's some confusion about the purpose of soaking the reeds. It's not so that they're wet when you need them; rather, the wetting-drying cycle is what causes the reeds to warp and become unplayable (there's actual data on this). Soaking them prolongs the life of the reeds and alcohol is typically chosen because microbes don't grow that well in it.
 

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Chlorine Dioxide! Holy *****! That's very powerful and toxic stuff. When I worked in the paper making business, it was made on-site since it was so unstable, and excelled at breaking down wood fibers. In fact, we had a small leak one day, and I was coughing up bloody lung tissue for days. It would be the last thing I would ever expose myself or my reeds to.

I recommend you read this before using it again. You're really doing a lot of harm to your body by using toxic chemicals, breathing the fumes then putting the rest in your mouth.
https://ecosensecompany.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/ClorDiSys-SDS-Chlorine-Dioxide-Gas.pdf

Rather than don a haz-mat suit and gloves, I prefer to simply wipe off my reeds when I'm done playing and put them in a reed holder where they dry naturally in a couple of hours. When I'm ready to play again, I'll wet them 5 minutes ahead of time. This has worked fine for me for decades.
That's funny, chlorine dioxide is the active ingredient in Closys Mouthwash which is probably the best product out there:

https://closys.com/products/closys-ultra-sensitive-mouthwash
 

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reeds don't warp if you dry them against a flat surface. Plenty of people have written about this.

Chlorhexidine is the main ingredient (used in different concentrations) in many mouthwashes and also used after oral operations. It is cheap, effective and harmless in the useful low concentrations.

Other disinfectants may also be effective but remember , if one uses a disinfectant that is not suitable to kill some agents, it may kill all their competitors leaving the field free to some tougher pathogens to grow. Competition in the microorganiscms world is fierce, leave space open and wil be occupied by something strong, getting stringer with each generation until it gets too strong to be eradicated by anything.

One of the reasons why our oral cavity is so rich in microorganisms is exactly to protect us from other microorganisms attempts to colonize from the outside out insides, they work as a barrier.

Same things happen in anything that comes in constant contact with the many strains of bacteria, viruses, yeast and mold living in our oral cavity. What do you think it happens to your reed once you kept it for an hour or two soaked in the saliva containing all these things? They transfer to the reed and live there too. Most of these organisms thrive in liquid environments and don't do so well in dry ones. Kill only some weaker ones and the stronger ones will spread.

Ideally you want homeostasis .

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2094854/

follow the links that I give, I publish them for a reason


"...The oral cavity is also the gateway for a wide array of antigenic challenges . These are represent by the substantial bacterial colonization that exists in the oral cavity. Many species of the complex oral microbiota maintain a symbiotic relationship with the host (10 - 12). To maintain homeostasis within the oral cavity, the host has two distinct but interrelated immune response systems: the salivary immune system (13-16) and serum immune system (17,18). The changing balance of conditions in the mouth influences the stability and integrity of the oral mucosal tissues. The balance may be disturbed by either an increased local stress or a decreased innate immunity....."


Another thing

PEROXIDE is bad for cellulose (which is the main component of reed)
 

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[That's funny, chlorine dioxide is the active ingredient in Closys Mouthwash which is probably the best product out there:

https://closys.com/products/closys-ultra-sensitive-mouthwash
That is indeed funny. They list "stabilized" chlorine dioxide with some trademark name. Of course that's vastly different due to the low concentration and the presence of sodium chlorate. I think it's more responsible to recommend "mouthwash" than the deadly chemicals in it which are rendered harmless due to their tiny concentrations and stabilizing agents. If you ever are exposed to actual chlorine dioxide gas, you'll change your tune.
 
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