Introduction and Information About Becoming a Member
Thank you for checking out howtomakeoboereeds.com!
This website is here to help you learn and improve your reed making. Reed making lessons can cost between $40-100+ an hour with an experienced oboe teacher. In addition, the price of wasted cane, staples, and knives can also be very expensive. But with this website, you will have over an hour of video demonstrations, premium access to blog articles, and reed making diagrams that help explain the process of making reeds.
Learning to make oboe reeds is life long pursuit because all cane, oboes, and oboists are all a little different. The demands we put on our reeds also change with the types of music, venue, and ensemble that we are performing with, so to be a great reed maker you will need to learn how to adjust your reeds for as many different situations as possible. Learning to make reeds in one way is good, but learning a larger variety of skills is even better.
On this website, you will find my process for making an oboe reed. You will see the set up that I prefer (gouging machine, shaper tip, reed tying details) and you will see my scraping process for reed making. Because not all oboists and oboes are the same, the information on this site is presented in a way where you can customize the process to suit your needs. Even though I am sharing specifics about my process, don't look at it like instructions but rather options that you can experiment with. Learning to make reeds is largely a guess and check process, but with this information, you will see what to look for at each stage of the reed making process.
Try changing variables to see what happens!
By experimenting with this process, you will be able to customize your reeds. This website breaks down a lot of the variables that go into making reeds and what you can expect by changing these variables. By showing what these variables are, you will be better equipped to learn how to make reeds and learn how to customize your reeds.
How to navigate this site...
On this website, if you scroll over the member content, you will find several pages that will open up to you if you become a member. You can see the step by step process page, the magic bullets page, and the reed doctor page, but most of the posts in those pages will only be viewable to members. Additionally, members will see a login/logout page, a reset password or lost password page, a my account page, and a cancel membership page.
Under the Step By Step Process Page, you will see posts that explain and demonstrate how to make oboe reeds. The step by step process starts with an introduction page and then goes through cane selection, pre-gouging, gouging, shaping and tying cane, scraping techniques, and a method for starting the scrape. These posts were made for reed makers who are first learning how to make reeds, though more experienced reed makers can also use these pages to hone their process.
Under the Reed Doctor Page, you will find posts on how to solve common problems with reeds such as pitch, response, and the size of the reed opening. These posts are for adding the finishing touches to your reeds.
Under the Magic Bullets Page, you will find information that can help any reed maker make consistent improvements to their reeds. Those articles include finishing scrapes, reed diagrams that show precisely how much to scrape, and strategies and diagrams to learn how to make reeds.
I tried to make these posts as organized and coherent as possible, but there will be some repeat information. For example, in the reed doctor page, you will notice that the posts on how to fix a reed that is too closed will be similar to the page on how to fix a sharp reed. That is because those two problems often require the same set of fixes.
Every adjustment you make to a reed will affect something else. Some information might sound hypocritical (for example scraping more out of the tip will lower the pitch - until it doesn't and then that might even raise the pitch), but try to understand that this site will give you as many different tools to better understand how to make better reeds.
Please send a message if you have any questions or comments!