Church Music Systems




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Our reed preparation process begins with the repair of all dents, splits, and breaks in the pipe work . The old tuning scroll is cut out and replaced with a new spotted metal insert. The pipes are stripped, cleaned, and finished with a high quality varnish. The inside of the pipes are swabbed, and blown out thoroughly with compressed air . New slots are cut to the proper width and height and a tuning scroll is formed. The picture to the right illustrates pipes before and after the preparation.

One of the most damaging effects to a reed is oxidation caused by moisture. The characteristic white dust found mostly in the pipe's socket can cause instability in tuning and poor tonal quality. Part of our process is to rid the pipes of dust by brushing and blowing out all parts of the reed including blocks, shallots, resonators, and sockets. The socket, resonator, and blocks are then treated with a sealer solution which helps prevent a future build up of dust. The picture to the right shows a socket affected by oxidation.

A successfully voiced reed is usually one which is well prepared. A critical area is the boot or the lower part of the pipe which houses the reed tongue and shallot. Both tongue and shallot must be sanded and polished with a fine emery cloth to assure a perfect seat and the elimination of mechanical noise. We employ hand fitted brass wedges to fix the tongue in place. As opposed to wooden wedges, the brass wedge can stand years of service and hold the tongue firmly in place providing greater stability in tuning and tonal quality.

The tuning wire plays an important role in the reed's stability. It must provide the correct pressure to the tongue. It should not float on the tongue's surface but be able to slide comfortably for tuning. The wire should be made of phosphor-bronze, the most desirable material for spring and tension.



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Church Music Systems - 207-837-2196
110 Fisher Road - Bowdoinham, Maine  04008

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Last modified: September 10, 2015