Bassoon Reed Making 2: Shaping

[Music: Flight of the Bumblebee]

Welcome to the video on shaping bassoon cane. For those who use a straight shaper this is the next step in making a bassoon reed. Those with folding shapers will first profile the reed and then shape the reed. I often shape two pieces of cane at a time in order to save my efforts.

The straight shaper is curved in a certain direction. I put in the cane. I align the cane; centering it.

I use a reed knife to shape my cane but most use an exacto knife or a knife with a very thin blade. I find a position with the knife and shaper that I won't cut my fingers.

The first cuts I make are just taking away the excess cane.

Now it is very important to know where the narrowest portion of the shape is. You can see that the shape narrows right in this area, flares out again, and of course flares where the tip is.

Once I have cut away the excess there then I can start my cuts in both directions just going to that narrow place.

Notice that I cut at an angle and sometimes moving back and forth like this to take off the cane.

This process is repeated for all four sides.

If you do this properly it doesn't dull your knife. You never want to cut with the knife into the shaper. Instead the knife glides along the shape.

At a later stage we can clean up the shape a bit with sand paper. Here is the reed that is shaped.

On the screen there is an example of the dimensions of a straight shaper that I recommend to my students. I encourage students to make reeds of a dimension that are common place in the USA. Only after they have considerable experience with reeds should they deviate from normal measurements.

God bless you, thanks.

[Music: end to “Flight of the Bumblebee”]