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Technique & Instrument Related to techniques, to the instrument, to the components, to maintenance.

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Old 11-18-2019, 02:58 PM   #1
Piper McScrooge
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Default When to use a Gauge to check the Strength a Chanter Reed

When checking the strength of a pipe chanter reed. Should it be checked before you play (dry) or after you've play some and put moisture in the reed?

Thanks,

Steve
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Old 11-18-2019, 03:16 PM   #2
el gaitero
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Default Re: When to use a Gauge to check the Strength a Chanter Reed

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Originally Posted by Piper McScrooge View Post
When checking the strength of a pipe chanter reed. Should it be checked before you play (dry) or after you've play some and put moisture in the reed?

Thanks,

Steve
Rule of thumb is the reed will drop about 2” h2o strength and steady off after a bit of playing ..several tunes/sets ( and in my own experience) ...so you’ll want to know the reed strength after playing it in.

The benefit of having a manometer is helping you establish the strength of the reed you want to play,...reeds you receive fresh, unknown reeds, reeds for students or band members ( if you do) ...and to know what strength parameters suit you...so you can ask for that when ordering reeds. Some makers only provide hard-medium- easy designations and consider manometers and their use as tosh. But,... it seems to me that more makers lately ( the past 5-8 years) are now willing to elaborate “h2o strength for their reed range...to enquiring customers.
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Old 11-20-2019, 11:36 AM   #3
Shawn Husk
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Default Re: When to use a Gauge to check the Strength a Chanter Reed

I'd recommend checking the strength after the reed has been warmed up. Also be sure to take the reading while playing the high A note as this is the pressure the entire chanter should be being played at. If you check any other note the pressure required to sound that note will be lower.

As a reedmaker if a customer tells me they need a 32" reed, I will check a brand new dry reed on high A and look for a reading of 36" and send that out. Minus 2" for warm up time, and 2" for break in, thus dropping from 36" dry and new to 32" warmed up and broken in.

Just some fyi.
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Old 11-21-2019, 11:56 PM   #4
William McKenzie
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Default Re: When to use a Gauge to check the Strength a Chanter Reed

I feel like you can get some indication when the reed is dry but chanter reeds change a lot as they warm up and get moisture, especially the HA which is so important like Shawn pointed out.

I second El Gaitero and Shawn about the manometer. They are one of the most powerful tools in piping both in terms of blowing steady and in testing and properly setting all reeds.

These are the two I put together-







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Old 11-22-2019, 08:31 AM   #5
Matt Weasner
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Default Re: When to use a Gauge to check the Strength a Chanter Reed

Nice Will! Where did you pick up the gauge for the one?
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Old 11-22-2019, 09:24 PM   #6
William McKenzie
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Default Re: When to use a Gauge to check the Strength a Chanter Reed

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Originally Posted by Matt Weasner View Post
Nice Will! Where did you pick up the gauge for the one?
Thanks! The gauge I found after some research, it's a Kodiak Controls. The really nice thing about it that sets it apart from others is that it is 2-1-2% percent accurate. So in our range around 30in, it is at its most precise. The other important bit is it is user adjustable so it will always be properly zerod and it's easy to verify this with any manometer since water is constant. You can get it different places but I purchased it from Amazon for convenience-

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
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Old 11-24-2019, 08:12 AM   #7
KeithAlex344
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Default Re: When to use a Gauge to check the Strength a Chanter Reed

Very nice set up! I like the idea of being able to calibrate the drones! Looks like you custom machined the middle section. What material did you use and were would a person buy it?
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Old 11-26-2019, 12:51 PM   #8
William McKenzie
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Default Re: When to use a Gauge to check the Strength a Chanter Reed

I got sick of making a minute adjustment, hooking up the manomenter, blowing up the pipes, playing for 5 seconds, sitting down, undoing everything, make a small adjustment, rinse-repeat etc. Obnoxious.

This way I can hear what reeds sound like, at what pressures, and dial everything exactly with no other variables. I am able to play reeds as they play in the stocks (since the dimensions are the same). Great for setting everything and even better for setting chanter reeds. Can be played like a practice chanter to dial in notes before put into the pipes.

This was the design I came up, sorry for the poor scanning quality. My pipe maker produced this for me from the same polypenco bar stock as my stocks.

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Old 11-26-2019, 01:03 PM   #9
Randy McIntosh
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Default Re: When to use a Gauge to check the Strength a Chanter Reed

This already exists from Chris Apps




https://appsreeds.com/collections/re...pressure-gauge
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Old 11-27-2019, 08:48 AM   #10
KeithAlex344
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Default Re: When to use a Gauge to check the Strength a Chanter Reed

Thanks Will!

I've seen chris apps rig before. I jimmyed something together out of a chanter cap and mouth peice tapped some pipe threads for an h2o gauge off amazon, but doesn't have the depth for drone reeds. Just stock poly you say... I may look into this. Thanks Will and Randy!
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