The Royal Scots Cap Badge

Pipe chanter reed

by Brian
(Illinois)

I am new to playing the pipes. I'm very good on the practice chanter, but would really like to know why, with an easy reed do I hear so much air passing through the reed without engaging it?


Also is it normal to have to put a great deal of pressure into the bag before it engages the reed?

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Mar 21, 2014
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Pipe chanter reed
by: Bill Robertson

Hello Btyan,

I think that your chatre reed is far too strong for your blowing reasonably comfort zone, allowing for some extra pressure for a new reed, but not excessive as appears to be the case -- FAR TOO STRONG perhaps.

You should test the chanter reed on its own blowing through the reed itself to test how strong it is in the amount of air pressure needed to make a full sound. When buying you should test that way to find a reed that is reasoanbly suitable allowing for some playing in initially. If ordering chanter reeds tell the supplier/maker (preferrably)the kind of strength you want such as a begginer fairly easy reed, a reasonable easy reed, medium, and so on. Ask about initial squeezing and very slight moistening of the reed when playing in, and any other relevant help.
With the rreeds you might have, if too strong return the redds and ask for the strength you want. If not able to do that, try each time before playing squeeze the chanter reed blades about the middle of the blades to easy it, much as in the other similar question of today you can see in my reply.

I hope that helps --

Bill


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