When I'm in a reed slump, it usually turns out that the cause is one of the following:
Knife isn't sharp.
Reed tip is too thin in the middle.
Reed tip not thin ENOUGH everywhere else.
Bad mindset (because I'm under PRESSURE to make reeds.) The pressure causes me to not take my time and THINK about what I'm doing.
But.. I can think of something else that would directly or indirectly cause all three of your specific complaints. If your reed blades are slipped the "wrong way" when the blank is tied, it will cause your reed to be much more open than normal (causing the biting). It might be causing leaks as well, and it COULD be that the thin, whiney sound is the result of your trying to compensate (with the knife) for the absolutely incorrigible nature of a reed which has the blades slipped the wrong way. If you are holding the staple in your left hand and wrapping with your right hand, in a clockwise fashion (as seen from a point off to your right), then the blade closest to you should be displaced to the RIGHT, so that a thin sliver of the far blade can be seen peaking out at you from the left edge of the closer blade. This is true even when you turn the reed over and look at it from the other side.
Sometimes a reed slipped the "wrong way" can work out (and will usually last a long time by virtue of its opening not collapsing until it's quite old, but it will definitely have an "attitude" during the scraping phase.
Hope something here helps.
Last edited by Crispin's Creations (2008-08-12 16:07:46)
Crispin's Creations and Accessories
freelance oboist. Mississippi Symphony Orchestra