Dave Ballard
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Musical Instruments > Reeds > Care of reeds

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Care of clarinet and saxophone reeds

(1) When you've finished playing its always a good idea to wipe the reed carefully from base to tip , with a dry cloth to remove excess moisture. It's also a good Idea to clean the mouthpiece and cap with warm soapy water and a mouthpiece cleaning brush from time to time.

(2) Some children tend to get through reeds at an alarming rate. Maybe they chew them or something. So perhaps parents would be advised to only hand out two at the time and hopefully they may last longer.

(3) Its a good idea to rotate a couple of reeds that you are comfortable with. For example, maybe a 1 and a half and a two or you can experiment with different brands, find the ones you are happy with.

(4) Its important to always use the appropriate size. A beginner will get better results with a one and a half while a more experienced player will be able to use a much harder reed and get a better sound from the lower notes. If a beginner however tries a too hard a reed they will get very little from their instrument .It will be extremely hard to blow.

(5) Keep your reeds in a safe place where they won't get damaged. Obviously you will want to keep them with the instrument but don't leave them to rattle around and get damaged. Keep them in a small container ie a reed box so they retain there flatness.

(6) Keep the ligature on the mouthpiece and slide reed in behind it to prevent chips and cracks along the tip. Keep the cap on ( if the reed is left on the mouthpiece) until ready to start playing. Remember to wipe the reed before placing it on the mouthpiece .Also be careful that don't snag the reed on your hair or clothing.

(7) Remember, reeds cost a lot but if you follow the above your reeds should last you a lot longer.

Enjoy your playing.
Dave Ballard,
27 Albany Road,
Isle of Wight,
PO30 5JA
01983 529903

077 4003 2003