Topic: ReedGeek tool and new Marcus Bonna MB-2 case

I was wondering if anyone has had any experience with the new Marcus Bonna (MB-2) bassoon case? I need to replace my current backpack case and it caught my eye.

I would also love to hear from someone who has some experience with the new ReedGeek scraping tool. I am fascinated by the idea of it but it looks rather impracticable and non-ergonomic to actually use.

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Re: ReedGeek tool and new Marcus Bonna MB-2 case

The Marcus Bonna cases have been some of the most popular bassoon cases on the market for about 10 years in the US at least. If you attend an IDRS conference it's a sea of mostly black but sometimes multi-colored nylon Bonna cases. They are lightweight, well built, and can accommodate almost any bassoon. The #1 complaint most people have about them is how the bocal storage works, with two removable pouches squashed under the instrument. The Kolbl company makes a case that is incredibly similar but a bit less expensive and it's square instead of the oblong hexagon design of the Bonna.

I used one for a very long time and eventually wanted a hard case with better bocal storage. I'm not 100% happy with what I have, but I don't regret the decision.

I don't use a reedgeek so I'll let someone else chime in on experiences with that one.

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: ReedGeek tool and new Marcus Bonna MB-2 case

Hi Trent,

The current case I am looking to replace is the Marcus Bonna you described. I had a Kolbl case a while ago that was not very good, I assume their quality has increased over the last few years.

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Re: ReedGeek tool and new Marcus Bonna MB-2 case

Oh that's interesting. I did not know that there was a new version out.

Looks like it's a clam shell style design with the bell kept on the lid. Interesting concept. Looks like a lot of wasted internal space but it will make the exterior of the case appear smaller since the joints aren't all laid out in a single layer.

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: ReedGeek tool and new Marcus Bonna MB-2 case

geobassoon wrote:

I would also love to hear from someone who has some experience with the new ReedGeek scraping tool. I am fascinated by the idea of it but it looks rather impracticable and non-ergonomic to actually use.

The ReedGeek is a useful tool--it allows you to easily remove material 'in the channels'. Mostly it's for the end stages of reed finishing, when you want to take off tiny amounts of material. I also use it for scraping 'windows' in oboe reeds.

The slightly-radiused tip works best for both of these operations. My complaint--and I've expressed this to the guy who makes and sells them--is that there is only one rounded tip on the tool, so when that gets dull, you have to send it back to be re-sharpened. This really is best done by the manufacturer or a machine shop, not hand-held by yourself on a stone.

Simple solution would be to radius or round all (4) tips, but they haven't caught on to that yet. I don't know why--the straight-across, flat tips are useless for scraping in the channels or making windows IMO.

Christopher Brodersen
Maker of Historical Keyboard Instruments
Reviewer/contributor - Fanfare Magazine
Amateur bassoonist, baroque oboist, baroque bassoonist

Re: ReedGeek tool and new Marcus Bonna MB-2 case

Hi C.B.,

Thanks for the info on the sharpening issue. That was what I was wondering about. When reading about it I came across the single curved edge as well (which is what really caught my attention). However just looking at the design it seemed like a tool that was not very owner-sharpening friendly. I have several curved knifes that I tend to switch back and forth between depending on my mood. None of them quite fit the role I need them for (small precise adjustments to the tip and channels).

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Re: ReedGeek tool and new Marcus Bonna MB-2 case

The MB-2 is different than the regular Bonna - It has I believe the joints in both the lid and bottom- like a Wiseman or Yamaha, so it is more or less square.  Very different than the other Bonna. 

I currently have a new Kolbl (got from Trent) and am pretty happy with it. Nice backpack straps for my bike riding with bassoon into rehearsals.

Mark Ortwein
Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra
OrtweinWoodwinds.com

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Re: ReedGeek tool and new Marcus Bonna MB-2 case

I can't say I am thrilled with the idea of the bell being held by a velcro strap and Trent brought up the unused space in the case as a result of this layout (which I had not considered).

Orteed, can you tell me if the Kolbl has the option to be used with a traditional shoulder sling strap or is it similar to the Bonna where it is only set up to be used as a backpack style case? I do  a lot of travelling with my bassoon and some trips it is better to have it in a sling set up than a backpack.

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Re: ReedGeek tool and new Marcus Bonna MB-2 case

Yes it is set up to be able to use that type of strap too.

Mark

Mark Ortwein
Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra
OrtweinWoodwinds.com

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Re: ReedGeek tool and new Marcus Bonna MB-2 case

Hi Mark,

That info pretty much seals the deal on which case to get. I think I will skip the Bonna and order the Kolbl.

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Re: ReedGeek tool and new Marcus Bonna MB-2 case

I know this is old, but now there is a DoubleGeek tool out specifically for double reed players. It might not replace the conventional reed knife but it is great for traveling and for students like me. I recommend the DoubleGeek with the longer handle it looks like silver rather than the shorter black one as it feels more like a real knife with the longer handle.

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Re: ReedGeek tool and new Marcus Bonna MB-2 case

Short comment on the new stainless steel handle for the DoubleGeek reed tool, both available at Supérieure Cane Processing. Inc. www.oboemn.com

This is an upgraded solid weighted stainless steel removable handle designed to replace the smaller plastic handle of the DoubleGeek reed tool. A longer handle model for double reed players that really want to use the tool like a traditional knife or gain even more familiarity/leverage in your hand.  2 5/8” long (5 ¼” total length), weighs 2.3 oz.

This DoubleGeek double reed tool has quickly become an industry leader and is used by the world’s top woodwind professionals.

Don Werdick
Supérieure Cane Processing. Inc.

Re: ReedGeek tool and new Marcus Bonna MB-2 case

I think everybody here has covered most. I am a student and find the DoubleGeek to be very useful. I do have some complaints however. As you know, the shape of the "knife" part is boxy like a rectangular prism. This block my vision when I am scraping the reed which is very annoying. Also, I would recommend that the longer handle model is better as said above. I still think the traditional knife would be better to finish off as the DoubleGeek is not as sharp as a traditional knife.

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