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

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Old 10-24-2020, 04:45 PM   #1
Big Tone
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Default Cutting The Tip Off Reeds

I've been experimenting with sanding reed over the last few months. The only thing I haven't tried is cutting the tip off a reed.
I'm thinking something like this would so a job:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Cutter-Purp...-12&th=1&psc=1

There's ones with a fixed blade rather than a razor blade but I thought a razor blade would be thinner for cutting tiny amounts off. Only a blade on one side but I thought the base would give you something solid to cut against. Scissors maybe would move more easily when you're cutting too.

What do others use?
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Old 10-24-2020, 05:22 PM   #2
Andrew Lenz
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Default Re: Cutting The Tip Off Reeds

My worry with a tool like that is that it's very hard to resharpen . . . if it's even sharp enough in the first place to do the job. I have one at work and I'd never use it on reeds, it's not designed for the fine job of trimming a wee bit off the end of a reed. I'd want a very, very sharp blade for that. But maybe others have had success with a particular brand of said tool that's particularly sharp.


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Old 10-24-2020, 06:15 PM   #3
EquusRacer
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Default Re: Cutting The Tip Off Reeds

What Andrew said! And I'll add that I think it would be a disaster.
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Old 10-25-2020, 12:58 AM   #4
William McKenzie
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Default Re: Cutting The Tip Off Reeds

What these two said.

I use these for this purpose and general helping, zip ties, etc: Flush Snips. Very sharp and accurate up to the tips.
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Old 10-25-2020, 03:08 AM   #5
Big Tone
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Default Re: Cutting The Tip Off Reeds

That one comes with replacement blades. They're like blades on a Stanley knife. Others have a solid non replaceable blade which I discounted as if it did get blunt how could you sharpen it.

I might try both, those and the snips mentioned, see what works better. I have enough old reeds lying about.

And rather than start a new thread, mandrels, the piping ones seem to either be pointy ones or like Chris Apps' screwdriver like, push in and twist. I've been using a couple out of a small screwdriver set I got for tightening the screws on my glasses. Ones very small, I can push it in and it'll open most staples a tiny amount. A slightly bigger one works if I need not, push it in and twist. I don't think I'm missing anything not having one made for piping?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Lenz View Post
My worry with a tool like that is that it's very hard to resharpen . . . if it's even sharp enough in the first place to do the job. I have one at work and I'd never use it on reeds, it's not designed for the fine job of trimming a wee bit off the end of a reed. I'd want a very, very sharp blade for that. But maybe others have had success with a particular brand of said tool that's particularly sharp.


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Old 10-25-2020, 07:25 AM   #6
el gaitero
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Default Re: Cutting The Tip Off Reeds

Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Tone View Post
I've been experimenting with sanding reed over the last few months. The only thing I haven't tried is cutting the tip off a reed.
I'm thinking something like this would so a job:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Cutter-Purp...-12&th=1&psc=1

There's ones with a fixed blade rather than a razor blade but I thought a razor blade would be thinner for cutting tiny amounts off. Only a blade on one side but I thought the base would give you something solid to cut against. Scissors maybe would move more easily when you're cutting too.

What do others use?
A 5 pack of sturdy IRWIN utility knife blades sells for about 3$ at a hardware store; ...and does the job very well for both blades contemporaneously on a hard countertop;
because it’s fully self manual...you’ll have excellent control over the <1mm bit you’d take off each time...maybe 3-4 times a year on various reeds...if not just getting another reed. Google a video by Chris Apps ( iirc) doing this.
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Old 10-25-2020, 10:34 AM   #7
CalumII
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Default Re: Cutting The Tip Off Reeds

Reedmakers tend to use either a well sharpened flat (butt) chisel on scrap wood or a thing called ratchet pruners/anvil cutters which have a flat bed the blade works against:



https://www.amazon.co.uk/WOLF-Garten...dp/B000RLJED6/


The ones I have are these:


https://www.amazon.co.uk/Draper-3447...dp/B00023T8YE/


The only qualms I'd have about your mitre cutter is the gutter is quite large and I think a blade would push cane into that channel before it started to cut. Flat bed cutters support the cane right through the cut.
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Old 10-25-2020, 01:29 PM   #8
Big Tone
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Default Re: Cutting The Tip Off Reeds

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Originally Posted by CalumII View Post
The only qualms I'd have about your mitre cutter is the gutter is quite large and I think a blade would push cane into that channel before it started to cut. Flat bed cutters support the cane right through the cut.
The base is movable so you could twist it slightly so it the reed would cut down on the flat.

Actually just thinking, would shaving razor blades work? Just remembered I have a pack of 100 somewhere in the back of the bathroom cabinet.

Might try some flush snips mentioned. Cheaper option. If they don't work, I'll try the mitre ones.
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Old 10-25-2020, 02:54 PM   #9
EquusRacer
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Default Re: Cutting The Tip Off Reeds

I have to ask how often does one need to be cutting the end off a reed? (Unless one is a reed maker). In over 40 years of piping, I think I've done it once or twice.
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Old 10-25-2020, 03:52 PM   #10
el gaitero
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Default Re: Cutting The Tip Off Reeds

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Originally Posted by EquusRacer View Post
I have to ask how often does one need to be cutting the end off a reed? (Unless one is a reed maker). In over 40 years of piping, I think I've done it once or twice.
Youíre right.....only once or twice..on the same reed...or different reeds only maybe a few times over a Year if at all.
Unless youíre a professional reedmaker who might justify having an exotic tool to do the deed Iíve had satisfaction using an Irwin untility knife replacement blade. A 5 pak for <$3. They work swell for trimming pc reeds also.
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