Topic: Good bassoon cane?

Anyone have any recommendations on where someone can buy good cane at the moment?  Something on the hard side, consistent that doesn't do the wave or the twist ;-)  I will take it in tube or gouged form.

Glenn West
Bassoonist US Military Academy Band

Glenn West
Bassoonist, US Military Academy Band
West Point, NY
www.westdoublereed.com

Re: Good bassoon cane?

Oops, I should have asked for cane that's not TOO hard.  More on the medium to medium hard range.  Something like .14-.16 on a hardness tester.

Glenn

Glenn West
Bassoonist, US Military Academy Band
West Point, NY
www.westdoublereed.com

Re: Good bassoon cane?

Hi Glenn,

I'm surprised you haven't received a bundle of responses to this inquiry, but I'll tell you some of the sources I use or have used.

I use Rieger cane and you can get that from a number of suppliers, including Miller Marketing and NJN Bassoon Products. I'm sure there are others since it is a fairly popular cane. Danzi cane is also popular; I like it and find its a little brighter sounding than the Rieger and I have to work a bit harder to "get it right.". Again, Miller Marketing carries it, as does Tony Romano at All Bassoon Cane. And, again, I'm sure there are other dealers who carry it.

Tony Romano (www.allbassooncane.com) carries cane from perhaps the largest selection of growers and is very nice to work with. His sample packs provide an opportunity to try cane from several growers. Tony also took over the graded bassoon cane operation that Bill Roscoe had for many years, and although I don't know what kind of cane is used for the graded stock, I used it for many years when Bill sold it; hardness #9 was always my favorite.

Finally, Justin Miller has a hardness comparison chart on his site and you can get an idea of the relative hardness of several of the more popular canes. Of course, hardness doesn't tell the whole story. How its gouged, profiled, and what shaper tip you use will have a big impact on how the cane responds, not to mention your bocal and instrument.

I hope some of this helps.

Gene Carter, Owner
Linden Reeds

Re: Good bassoon cane?

Thanks for your reply, Gene.  I have tried Rieger from a couple of years ago that was fairly inconsistent.  I am currently trying some Danzi that my section mate has given me with excellent results.  I will be ordering more of this!  I have been using Donatti until now but it is too soft and mushy and the cane won't hold a scrape.  I will certainly look into the sites you mention.  Thanks again!

Glenn West
Bassoonist, US Military Academy Band
West Point, NY
www.westdoublereed.com

Re: Good bassoon cane?

Hi Again Glenn,

I have also found too much inconsistency in some of the Rieger cane; it seems to be the result of the profiling. I buy the gouged and profiled cane and then make reeds of different shapes, depending on the orders I get. Some of the cane I received recently had very uneven profiling in which there were deep gouges down the left edge of the cane. It seemed to indicate the profiler had a dull blade that was tearing the cane, especially against the grain. I imagine several people prepare the Rieger cane and this batch was below par. My most recent batch came from Justin Miller and has been much better.

I like the Danzi cane as well...for me the sound is a little brighter and bigger. I'm going to do some reeds with it in the near future and see how they turn out. Its been a while since I've made some reeds with it and as I recall I found the Rieger a little easier to work with. However, I've changed a lot of things since then and want to give the Danzi a try again. I'll let you know how it works out.

Gene Carter, Owner
Linden Reeds

Re: Good bassoon cane?

I tried some GSP Danzi from Justin Miller and found it to make some of my best reeds.  I'm currently working on some GSP Danzi from Allbassooncane (#1 shape) but haven't tried it yet.  I have also tried Rieger GSP (1A shape) from Justin Miller and found it to be simply too fuzzy.  I also tried a 1 and 1A shape of Gene's reeds and they turned out better than mine did, but the color was still a bit too dark and fuzzy for my particular taste.

(Don't worry Gene, your two reeds you sent me are still some of the best reeds in my box, they're great for quintet!)

I also found the Rieger to be darker in color and the Danzi bigger and brighter.  I personally like the Danzi more so far.

A lot of people I know have had good results with Glotin GSP from Allbassooncane.  They reshape it to a custom shape, but I've had decent results with the #1 shape.

Have you tried the Argentinian cane from http://www.daviecane.com/Pages/Home.html ?  I had some good results with that a while back.

M.M.A., D.M.A. University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign: B.Mus. Lawrence University
Bassoon professor at University of Wisconsin Eau-Claire
Maker of the Little-Jake electric bassoon pickup and Weasel bassoon reeds

Re: Good bassoon cane?

Trent et. al.,

I certainly agree with your assessment of the tonal characteristics of Danzi and Rieger cane. To my ear Danzi cane is brighter, clearer, and easier to get volume out of. However, I have always had a problem taming it to my tastes. Rieger seems to me to provide a darker softer sound and I find it easier to convert into a reed that I like. However, I do think its more difficult to get the volume that many players want.

I've recently abandoned the approach of establishing an inner opening of 3mm. at the first wire of the reed and instead have left the reed at the second wire round as Norman Herzberg specifies. (See Yoshi's post from the IDRS Archives in this section of the Forum.) I am now adjusting the tip opening with the first wire for the most part, although still using adjustments at the second wire to change tonal character of the reed. This seems to open the sound up and, as Mr. Herzburg states, enables one to make very small tip adjustments with the first wire that make big differences in the response of the reed.

Mr. Herzberg has promised a discussion of the use of the second wire in his series of postings and I am looking forward to that and other insight from him. His knowledge and experience stand alone, in my view.

Gene Carter, Owner
Linden Reeds

Re: Good bassoon cane?

Hi Friends,

   That's interesting.  Why would it be supposed that the best way to procure cane from
France is to buy it via another country?  Do you suspect the French really do save the best for
themselves? <grin>

   TIA.

cheers,
Guy Mallery

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/contrabassoon
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/frenchbassoon
BASSON RADIO (24/7)

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Re: Good bassoon cane?

I have been very pleased with the Van Doren cane I have been getting from Charles in NH.  So very consistant.

Steve Welgoss
Long Island, NY
bassoon@welgoss.com

Re: Good bassoon cane?

Isn't it also very expensive?  I talked to a vandoren rep who came to my school this past semester about it (he was there for the clarinet studio) he couldn't tell me much but he did tell me the list price which was like $2.20 a stick... I guess it's worth it if you get more good reeds.

Mike Millard
Repair Technician and freelance bassoonist
Taylor's Music
West Chester, Pa

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Re: Good bassoon cane?

That's exactly the point.  I find it more cost efficient because of the higher ratio of usable or good reeds from each order.  I made 4 blanks yesterday and all 4 are good reads.  I just finished the tip and pronounced the collar and ready to use.  With Glotin, I would be happy to have 2 out of 4 as usuable.  When you figure the cost of usable reads from each batch, Van Doren starts looking pretty good.  Just my $0.02.  Happy Read Making !!

Steve Welgoss
Long Island, NY
bassoon@welgoss.com

Re: Good bassoon cane?

Please forgive me, I guess I cannot spell reed on a Sunday.  I plead temporary insanity.

Steve Welgoss
Long Island, NY
bassoon@welgoss.com

Re: Good bassoon cane?

Dear Reeders,

I know there is a lot to be said for personal preference in terms of the choice of can, but I thought I'd mention that I have had great success with the Chinese cane I have been using in the past 2 years.  I use a Herzberg shape and profile it on a Rieger profiler and, in comparison to several other kinds of cane (Neuranter, RDG, Glotin, Danzi, Davies, Rieger, Rigotti; most of which I find to be good, too) I find the Chinese cane to be quite consistant, free-blowing while at the same time strong enough to support nicely in the high register.  On my setup it makes reeds that I really like playing on.  Several of my advanced students have also expressed this preference.  Midwest used to carry it but they stopped.  Now the place to get it is Singin' Dog (in Texas).  I know they've got a bunch of tube cane and it's reasonably priced and cut to length (also nice). 

Happy reeding,
Jennifer Sadoff
Dallas, TX

Jennifer Sadoff
Bocal Majority Bassoon Camp
Dallas, TX

Re: Good bassoon cane?

I just received 50 pieces of the Australian cane from Bob Williams that Yoshi and others have found to be excellent. I have some soaking tonight and will make up some blanks tomorrow. By next weekend I will make some reeds from it and give you a report on the outcome. I'm going to use a Fox #2 shaper and follow Bob's gudelines on wire placement and cut-off length. Hopefully the results will produce excellent reeds.

Last edited by Gene Carter (2006-08-25 19:07:59)

Gene Carter, Owner
Linden Reeds

Re: Good bassoon cane?

How did it go with the Australian cane, Gene? Regarding Danzi cane -- I definitely prefer it to other cane I've tried regarding tone. It's important to be aware that Danzi cane quality can vary greatly from supplier to supplier, depending on whether the supplier buys Danzi tubes or purchases the cane already split and gouged by Danzi.  I have found that Miller Marketing can be counted on to provide high-quality Danzi cane.

I have been planning to try out other types of cane. (I have also had trouble at times "taming" Danzi cane consistently.) I purchased some Vandoren cane to try, since a ready-made Vandoren bassoon reed worked surprisingly well for a student of mine. Regarding the Chinese cane, I'm wondering if "free-blowing" also results in it having a brighter sound, and/or lighter volume?

Susan

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Re: Good bassoon cane?

Well...this is sort of where I am with it. I've made about 10 reeds with it with it and can report as follows at this point:

(1) It wants to make good reeds and seems to lie somewhere between canes like Rieger and Danzi vs. Gonzalez in the hardness department;

(2) It makes a very robust reed that is well suited for orchestral playing;

(3) It seems to want to sound darker than I normally like so I find you have to take more out of the middle of the reed to get the tone bright; at the same time I have to be careful not to overwork it since my Wolf bassoon is not crazy about reeds that are too soft;

(4) It is very good in all registers; I just finished playing the Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony this weekend on a reed made with it and everyone seemed to like the results, even though I thought the sound a little dark and heavy;

(5) It would be fair to say that at this point I haven't really mastered it but intend to keep working with it because I think it is very promissing.

More on this later.

Gene Carter, Owner
Linden Reeds

Re: Good bassoon cane?

I have had a few pieces of the Aussie cane and find it to be quite good.  The one thing that I have noticed is that it does take a little longer to develop from cut blank to ready for performance.  That's not necessarily a bad thing, it just requires a little more patience. Happy Scraping!!

Steve Welgoss
Long Island, NY
bassoon@welgoss.com

Re: Good bassoon cane?

I much prefer Danzi Cane however its very important to be sure the sides are not to thick  in order for the reed not to play too strong. I've found I can go quite thin on the sides in the back and still maintain a proper opening. Just my 2 cents.

V. Ellin

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Re: Good bassoon cane?

...the Australian cane... I think Steve is correct in his observation that it seems to take longer to get a reed made from this cane to the point you want it. And, I think it is fussier than some other canes to work with. However, if you don't try to go too fast in working it, it really does make very nice reeds. I am using it myself in my own playing now and find it has the following virtues; a full rich and warm tone, responsive in all registers, enough backbone even after you have it where you want it to articulate well and give you good output for orchestral playing, and a very attractive sound overall.

I've found the following approach helpful. After trimming the tip check the reed to see if the middle E is up to pitch; if not trim some more. Then tip profile the reed and check it again. Chances are it will be too difficult to compress top to bottom. If so thin the rails until the tone is what you want and then evenly reduce the profile over the entire reed until you get the top to bottom resistance where you want it. I find that I usually wind up with a very lightly defined spine before its comfortable for my playing style. I'm using the dimensions and wire placement that Bob Williams recommends.

Give it a try; you will probably like it if you have the patience to work with it.

Last edited by IDRS (2007-01-07 20:22:18)

Gene Carter, Owner
Linden Reeds