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Disinfecting drone reeds?

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  • Disinfecting drone reeds?

    Last night at practice one of my tenor drones was howling upon strike in. I figured I would deal with this later at home since it sometimes behaved just fine. Our pipe major is a very dedicated guy and one to leap in and git 'er done so he started working on my drone reeds after I'd set my pipes down for a water break. Before I could ask him to guide me through doing this myself, he had the drone out and the reed in his mouth. He did indeed correct the howl but, reflecting on how he shockingly blew off a practice one to attend a tea party meeting, I suspect he doesn't take covid as seriously as others of us. Not wanting to create a scene, I thanked him kindly and soon afterward left to go home (it's a long drive and I'd been planning on taking my leave soon anyway). As always, when I got home, I took my pipes apart to let everything dry out. Will this be sufficient against any covid bugs that may be loitering on the reeds? The pipe major shows no symptoms but that is no indication of the absence of the virus. I just want to be careful. What are your suggestions, kind fellow pipers?

  • #2
    Covid does not linger on surfaces, so having let everything dry, I wouldn't worry. I certainly wouldn't share mouthblown objects, but frankly the bigger risk is the airborne transmission of the Delta variant, which is significantly more transmissible than previous iterations of the virus. If you are having indoor practices that is what I would be worried about.
    http://www.callingthetune.co.uk
    -- Formerly known as CalumII

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    • #3


      johnsog,

      We all do--and indeed--live in critical times--and much--can
      quite suddenly--jump up!!--and from--un-expected sources.

      Viral capsids--the little protein "houses" in which they live and
      travel--are oft times quite easily disrupted--and killed--by the
      merest of conditions.

      First Good Bet--Lay your reeds--out in direct sunlight--for
      a couple o' three hours--turning them over--time to time.

      Second Good Bet--if--you are comfortable with it--any mild
      disinfectant spray--(but not chlorine based) and an hour or
      so later--rinse them off with a water spray--leave them in that
      direct sunlight to dry--and--Bob's Your Uncle!!--and Safe!! :-)

      Wishing for You--the Best of Good Fortune!!--with it all!!

      Regards, (And Stay both Vigilant--and Safe!! :-)

      Pip01


      Pip01
      Holy smoking keyboard!
      Last edited by Pip01; 09-01-2021, 07:09 AM.
      My friends all know,
      With what a brave carouse...

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      • #4
        You are wise to be overcautious, especially with your PM's nonchalant approach to the current state of the world.

        That said, Calum is correct, there is no evidence to support the surface transfer of COVID19 once things have dried off. Pip01 also makes a good point that a mild disinfectant wouldn't hurt your reeds, but UV light is more than capable of destroying the protein capsule that surrounds the virus.

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        • #5
          Thanks so much, all!! That information does bring me comfort. I will set the drone reeds on a sunny window sill when I get home and also consider applying a mild disinfectant. Most of our group are vaccinated and we do have face masks to use. We physically distance and some have socks rubber banded over the end of our tube traps With the exception of our pipe major, we no longer swap reeds or allow others to blow on our pipes, a practice which never seemed a good idea to me. Again, thanks!!

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          • #6
            I have used Hydrogen peroxide to disinfect reeds- both chanter reeds and drone reeds.
            Slainte Leibh/ Slan Leat, Bob Cameron

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Klondike Waldo View Post
              I have used Hydrogen peroxide to disinfect reeds- both chanter reeds and drone reeds.
              I don't think hydrogen peroxide would hurt most synthetic reeds; but I'd be concerned about the effect on cane, whether chanter or cane drone reeds. Although I like my Tone Protector on my chanter reed, I'd concur with the above advice of exposing them to sunlight for anyone concerned. That said, I'm not concerned with my own reeds as long as they're in my pipes and not in others' mouths.

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              • #8
                Unfortunately Covid has a long life outside of the body. Warm moist cane is probably the ideal environment for it to last a long time. Here is an old article, latest studies have extended most of these times. It will give you some idea though. I use a product called RiegerClean at the School of Piping. Hydrogen Peroxide is recommended by many reedmakers as it is cheap and doesn't damage the cane.
                Studies that have been done to determine how long the new coronavirus, known as SARS-CoV-2, can live on surfaces, shows that it can live for varying lengths of time on different surfaces. It lasts the longest on plastic and stainless steel surfaces. It’s less stable on cloth, paper, and cardboard.
                www.schoolofpiping.com

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                • #9
                  Quite right, Brett, but it's also important to add that there are still as far as I'm aware no cases where the transmission route has been via surfaces, rather than through the air, and at something like 200 million cases globally so far, if it is possible it is certainly rare.
                  http://www.callingthetune.co.uk
                  -- Formerly known as CalumII

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                  • #10
                    Not to be controversial.....

                    However I would suggest directing the OP to the CDC/Health Department (for your respective locale) website, and leaving it at that. Anything else could be misconstrued as misinformation.

                    These conversations are like a powder keg at a fireworks party.


                    *Edited to revisit: I am not for or against anything. Just pointing out that even within this thread there seems to be 2 contradictory schools of thought. Just suggesting that we be careful here.

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                    • #11
                      Good point, sjcavy. More the issue, however, is that the practice of critical thinking seems to be rare in the general public (I'd like to think that our specific population on this forum is an exception). No matter the source of information (or misinformation), it should always be questioned...i.e., using critical thinking.

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                      • #12
                        Hi, I am a Microbiology doctor (PhD) and work on disinfection. The following site has some decent advice:

                        https://www.nfhs.org/articles/covid-...ng-guidelines/

                        Anyways - off hiking in the Scottish Highlands for the weekend. Have a good weekend, will

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                        • #13
                          Wow; great information, will103!! I will share this with my band mates. Delightful hiking to you

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Klondike Waldo View Post
                            I have used Hydrogen peroxide to disinfect reeds- both chanter reeds and drone reeds.
                            Yes, this is a great way to go I believe. Chris Apps uses this for his chanter reeds and has even made a video on it.

                            Originally posted by EquusRacer View Post
                            Good point, sjcavy. More the issue, however, is that the practice of critical thinking seems to be rare in the general public (I'd like to think that our specific population on this forum is an exception). No matter the source of information (or misinformation), it should always be questioned...i.e., using critical thinking.
                            Right?! What happened to critical thinking in the US?? Blows my mind and saddens me at the same time.
                            Happy Piping

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              As an--Afterthought--but still in the mix...

                              There are now small and hand-held--UV Wands--readily available
                              at about $15 U.S.--that also--disinfect. (I use them on mail. :-)

                              (For the above--"critical thinking"--lucky if there is any thinking at all. :-)
                              Pip01
                              Holy smoking keyboard!
                              Last edited by Pip01; 09-08-2021, 09:09 AM.
                              My friends all know,
                              With what a brave carouse...

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