Home Forums Saxophone Reeds Fiber carbon reeds, hemp and Onyx. My personal comments

This topic contains 26 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by Tim56 Tim56 6 months, 2 weeks ago.

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  • #50602
    William Cingolani
    William Cingolani
    Participant

    Lately I’ve been blowing a Java 2.5. The medium soft Hemp works for me. There is some warbling with the hemp reeds. The soft hemp folds up when going to the fork and on up. With the medium soft hemp reeds I can go from low Bb to high F#, but the fork was a thud some times.
    I didn’t like the carbon Onyx. The soft Carbon onyx is close to a java 2. I couldn’t get the fork and other high notes. The Medium soft carbon Onyx was too hard, like blowing a 2×4. So the medium soft hemp is the closest to my liking.
    The selection of fiber reeds were compared with Rico reeds. I don’t like Rico Reeds. I prefer Java Reeds. I think I have all brands of reeds in drawers here in the music room and I prefer Java 2.5. The fiber carbon medium soft I tend to like if I could control the warbling on the low end. In the meantime I’ll be blowing Java 2.5 in the green box. Cane reeds seem to seat better on my mouthpiece. I don’t get that suck-pop with fiber reeds like I do with cane reeds.
    I’ll check reeds out again when my fiber carbon fatboy arrives

    #50608

    Anonymous

    Interesting comments – thanks for sharing. My daughter uses a fibre reed on her clarinet, and they last for years, great for students, she sounds ok on a fibre reed. Most people i know who use fibre reeds, usually have a settling down period before they get used to them.

    Interesting comment about the suck-pop. Over the past year i have has a weak suck-pop, and i put it down to the rails on my mouthpiece not being even.
    Then this week i got my sax back from being repaired and serviced. They replaced the tiny pad on the mouthpiece neck and now i get a cracking loud suck-pop, turns out it was pad slightly leaking.

    #50634

    Anonymous

    Hi William, I am also using Java reeds #2 and #2.5 and find their quality pretty good. Would you please explain what you mean by the term ‘suck-pop’. I’ve not heard that term before. I guess reed strengths come down to the type of music one is going to play. I don’t see someone playing hard rock with a soft reed or the unplugged mellow tunes with a hard reed. It’s just like choosing sails IMHO, for high winds one requires much more tension on the sail, than for softer gentle breezes ie. breath velocity will dictate which reed strength is required.

    #50638

    Anonymous

    @jeff – suck pop test, i’m sure Johnny mentioned it somewhere.

    It tests the mouthpiece.
    Just put a reed on the mouthpiece, place the mouthpiece base on the palm of your hand, and then suck the mouthpiece.

    When you take your mouth away, the reed should stick to the mouthpiece, and eventually make a popping noise as it comes away from the mouthpiece.

    The test can highlight two things, if you have a crap mouthpiece where the rails are uneven, then the reed won’t seal to the mouthpiece properly so it wont pop. Secondly if you haven’t warmed up the reed enough before playing, the stiffness of the reed can make it harder to seal. This is reason some players press the reed down on the mouthpiece to get it to play better, instead of messing about with the reed and fileing it down. Another reason for fileing uneven reeds, however in the process you could make it worse and wreck the reed or make it more uneven.

    If you play in an orchestra, you have to play from extremely soft sounds to extremely loud sounds using the same strenght reed. One of the reasons for going up reed strength is to get a better tone and timbre range, it also makes altissimo notes more stabler than weaker reed strenghts.

    With the suck pop test, you can also do it with the neck attached to the mouthpiece – which can indicate if the pad on the mouthpiece is not sealing properly and leaking air as in my case.

    #50663

    Anonymous

    Oh! Okay, interesting, I’ll try that.
    I thought it may be an abbreviation for ‘It SUCKS when you have to POP out to buy more reeds and TEST them.’
    That’s become an expensive shopping trip these days.

    #50674
    saxjohnny
    saxjohnny
    Keymaster

    I stopped doing that pop test because I’ve had reeds play perfect but didn’t pass that test. it is a good way to see if the reed seals with the mp.
    as for the synthetic reeds, I’m still getting used to them and they perform differently on different mp’s so it all depends what I’m playing on and what music I’m playing and even how I’m feeling that day.
    Some interesting point William. it’s all so personal and we don’t know till we try.
    I won’t compare a synthetic reed to a perfect Vandoren but like I said, finding and maintaining it can be a headache at times and quite an expense. it has been very handy to have the onyx and hemp to just slap on and ready to go.

    #50696
    William Cingolani
    William Cingolani
    Participant

    I am keeping the med. soft hemp and soft carbon onyx handy to try on the carbon fiber mouthpiece with a 7* tip opening. I do like the hemp reed. I need to get rid of the warble in the low notes on the hemp reed. Probably not enough air supply

    #50716

    Anonymous

    I recently swopped from using the Rico cork wax-stick to a local natural bees wax lip balm. The bees wax product lubricates the cork better and it has made the cork much cleaner. The cork now shines like a varnished table. After fitting the MP I usually wipe the excess wax around the brass neck insert. This has made the neck connection very smooth and now has a tighter seal with minimum movement.

    #50742
    William Cingolani
    William Cingolani
    Participant

    Good idea Jeff. One of my sax techs told me that cork grease desolves the glue that keeps cork on the neck. He recommends wax. I have wax but it’s hard so I’m heading on over to the CVS pharmacy to get some of that Burts Bees wax lip balm. Thanks for the info re bees wax lip balm.

    #50761
    William Cingolani
    William Cingolani
    Participant

    Jeff, I bought some Burts Bees wax for my Cork

    #50828

    Anonymous

    Hi William. My Selmer S80 and silver C* MPs fit quite a bit tighter on the cork than my Std plastic 4C. When using the Rico cork grease the MP pushed the grease up the cork as it went, hence difficult to slide up the neck cork. The bees wax seems to penetrate the cork and is a better lubricant which protects and seals the cork. Also rub a little wax on the brass insert end of the neck as well, which protects the brass from uneven wear from chafing.

    #50834
    Pete
    Pete
    Participant

    Johnny
    Any news on the Fiber Onyx reeds availability and
    what strength will be available if any.
    They are not available here in UK only the hemp
    and carbon fiber available, not the onyx.

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