Dear Mr Bridge

Please, what the time, the oboe reed is build with cork on tube?

Since 1900? Or before?

I have a original Triébert oboe with 6 reeds with line and no have

the cork on the tube.

Please reply me.


I do apologise for not answering your question more quickly. I had been away from my desk for a short time and then your question was overlooked!

The oboe staple (or tube in the USA) came into use in the early part of the 18th century. There are records as early as this of an oboe made by the Milanese maker Anciuti  dated 1718 and also Stanesby Junior of London that had staples found with them.
These were made of brass. The Anciuti overall length was 43.7mm top inner dimension 1.2/2.7 and the bottom inner dimension 5.13mm. There is no way of knowing if these staples were actually used on the oboes they were found with but it gives an indication that the brass tube has been used for a long time. I have no knowledge however of the covering of these reeds although I suspect twine would have been used.

Some fashions were maintained in the covering of the brass tube. Binding used instead of cork to form the seal between oboe and staple lasted until well into the 20th century. But not all reed makers used it of course. Even Triebert used a corked staple - I have picture of one from 1850 using cork.

It is as today at the taste and wish of the player of the 19th Century. Some would go with tradition and use twine instead of cork. Today for example there are lots different materials used for staples including brass and plastic and these rely on the O-ring to seal them to the oboe reed well.
Indeed the new Legere Plastic Oboe reed goes right back to the beginning of reeds for the oboe by binding together the pieces of plastic material as a whole - forming the tube and the scrape in one piece from the material and using O-rings to seal. Have you tried one?? Interesting!!

An interesting question. Thank you.



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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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