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Base Drone Reed Making Me Crazy!

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  • #16
    In my experience, Overtone reeds (Ackland's) can be adjusted for volume/efficiency (and pitch of course if it's needed beyond what the tuning plug provides) by moving the bridle, but larger movements are necessary to affect the same change you might be accustomed to compared to other drone reeds that use different methods for lifting the tongue (shaped tongue, flat tongue on a fulcrum, etc).
    My Piping Blog (recordings, articles, reviews, etc.) - Homepage - Pekaar's Tune Encyclopedia - Convert BMW to ABC

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    • #17
      Originally posted by Angus MacBagpipe View Post
      HI, all. I recently purchased a set of [Ackland, not Atherton] Overtones for my G&M pipes. They sound great! Problem...the base drone keeps cutting off after about 20 minutes of play. I initially thought the bridle needed adjusting, so I started moving it up the tongue in small increments. Each time, no joy, drone kept shutting off. Eventually, I'd brought the bridle all the way up as far as it would go, and it was still cutting out. Okay. Figured the problem might be moisture of something else under the tongue. Brought out my trusty dirty dollar bill and slid it under a few times. Played okay after that...for about twenty minutes. I couldn't see anything under the tongue moisture or otherwise. My PM finally suggested I try a hair under the tongue. I did so, and son of a gun if it didn't work exactly as advertised! Problem? Now I can't shut the drone off at all, no matter how far down I bring the bridle. Also, now the reed growls most of the time, so that is not solving the problem. I'm out of ideas, other than to spring the tongue, which I am loathe to do... So, any other tips or tricks I might try?

      Thanks in advance.
      Bill
      I feel the need to mention that Bill was refunded his money on return of my reeds. I have included an image of the returned reeds and the damage suffered. Both tenor tongues were badly scratched and one was split almost through.IMG_4632 (1).JPG

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      • #18
        Sheesh. That looks rough.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by T.Ackland View Post

          373609}[/ATTACH]
          Because the issue was with the bass drone reed....I’d like to note that in the photo of the returned reed the bridle appears fakhakta to my eye.
          I’ve found in my experience these type of silicone band bridles need to be carefully ‘massaged’ around the whole circumference of the reed body to bear down uniformly and be of uniform width ....not skinny stretched parts versus adjacent fat ( normal) wide or thicker parts. Any inconsistencies are begging for instability issues and otherwise.
          No matter the reed type...spending a bit of time to always ensure the bridle is consistent eliminates any discrepancies ...to eliminate the bridle as a performance issue.
          The leading edge of the bridle should be exactly parallel to the rear edge. Any bridle position adjustments should also be ‘re-paralleled’. With ‘thick’ silicone bridles they should be stretched by thumbnail here or there to ensure consistent thickness and width.

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          • #20
            Actually, a slice of highly stretched soft silicone tube only needs to be perpendicular on the leading edge that covers the tongue. It matters not, around the rest of the circumference when adjusting for pitch on my reeds.
            Unlike harder O-rings with a small contact area which can roll, if not as you say, be "re-paralleled"

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            • #21
              Originally posted by T.Ackland View Post
              Actually, a slice of highly stretched soft silicone tube only needs to be perpendicular on the leading edge that covers the tongue. It matters not, around the rest of the circumference when adjusting for pitch on my reeds.
              Unlike harder O-rings with a small contact area which can roll, if not as you say, be "re-paralleled"
              ..yes...agreed it’s the leading edge determining the tongue length...but I feel the width and thickness ...on some wider bridles..is best made symmetrical in all aspects.. It’s just me....not you.
              To me it limits possibilities to go awry. Meh.

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