Oboe/Oboe questions


hey geoffrey, i hope you are very well.I have some questions for you:

1.I want to buy some oboes for my school.Is ebay a proper and safe place to do it?
2.Which reed template Ramon Ortega has and use for his profiling machine rieger?
3.Do you know which cane thickness use different players like Nicholas Daniel,Ramon Ortega,Ivan Podyomov,Holliger,Leleux,Mayer and Maurice Bourgue?
4.Which way of oboe reed making is priceless and effective and with which way you can control more your reed making-with profile machine or making reed using dial indicator?

Thank you very much and I'm waiting for your answers!

Best regards!

Dear Patrick

I am not a huge fan of eBay bought instruments I am afraid. If they are cheap and intended for students to start on then maybe worth looking at but make sure that you can return them if they are not what you think they ought to be.

2. The reeds that Ramon showed to me looked very much like the standard Rieger template with a 10-11mm length of scrape and not a very pronounced spine. They looked just like the profile that comes off my Rieger. He gouges to around 57/58.
Most people take off a little down the sides of the spine - such as it is - and finish the tip and its blend with the heart by hand.

3. Cane thickness I know that Nicholas Daniel uses 57/58, Ramon as I say also 57/58, Leleux likes a 60 gouge, Holliger uses a variety of canes and reed makers but he used to tie on Neuranter gouged and shaped some years ago - no idea how thick. Bourgue uses 56/57 and Mayer 58/59. I have no idea about Ivan's gouge. He uses a long reed about 73/74 mm and a short scrape 10mm. That's all I know of his reeds. Plays Rigoutat Classique oboe.

Don't forget that all oboists who make their own reeds change the gouge according to how the cane is behaving. So none of these details are "set in stone".

4. Making oboe reeds with a profiler is a great start but I think probably that you back off the machine to leave a little working with a knife.
Even with thicknesses measured carefully on a dial indicator does not unfortunately take cane quality into consideration. That is why play and scrape for the final stages is the best method I feel.

I hope that answers your questions

Best wishes



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Geoffrey Bridge


Professional oboist with many years experience. Former pupil of Leon Goossens. Solo artist for Arts Council of Great Britain. Freelance recitalist/broadcasting/orchestras. Former Head of woodwind teaching in Hampshire, England. Questions on repertoire, playing styles, reeds, cane selection and processing.


St Andrews University Royal College of Music, Aberdeen College of Education Licenciate of the Royal Academy of Music General Teaching Council certificate Broadcast solo recitals/performed with major symphony orchestras/Music Club recitals/writings on double reed matters

Chairman and Trustee of the British Double Reed Society International Double Reed Society Association Hautbois Francais Orchestral Manager of Southern Pro Musica Orchestra/Aberdeen Sinfonietta

Double Reed News/Australasian Double Reed Society magazine/International Double Reed Society

LRAM, Cert Ed

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