All profit supporting special needs music education and Help Musicians

Beginner How do I know a read is dead ? - Can they be revived


New Member
Related to the voodoo post but a slightly different thing. So I play vandoren blue 2.5's.
Ive slowly learnt that some reeds are just no good from the off and some of my reeds get choppy/split/wrinkled at the tip (ive murdered them). Some of my reeds seem to just got get a bit lifeless/flat sometimes after ive only been playing on them for an hour or 2 h are these goners or should I just put em away and see if they come back to life another time


ex Landrover Nut
Read the posts on adjusting them. But some(not many) will be goners before you open the packet.


Sax-Mad fiend!
I rarely have a reed that I can't play straight from the box. When they reach the end of their useful life, I tend to get odd squeeks occuring, and the sound is muted. If at this point I put on a new read, the difference in air pressure needed to play the instrument is quite significant.

I always have 2-4 reeds on the go and cycle through them. This means that is one reaches the end of its life, I can start breaking another one in during practice sessions, but still have some comfortably playable ones for performances.

I have a moisture control reed case for my alto reeds, but my bari reeds just live in their plastic case. I have to admit to not noticing a great deal of difference between the two. But at least my alto reeds are all kept together and I can easily cycle through them.


Well-Known Member
I also keep 3 - 4 on the go, also I write the date on the back and number them so I can rotate them daily. :thumb:

Two Voices

Senior Member
I find that most student saxophonists can play all the reeds out of the box. However, the more accomplished you become as a player you might find that suddenly you can only play one or two out of a box of ten! The sign of an elitist! :confused::shocked::w00t:>:);}

Kidding aside; a box of ten is inconsistent but a reed that plays too softly can be firmed up just as a reed that’s too hard out of the box can be softened up. I’ve never had a reed yet that I couldn’t play.

I have 12 reeds on the go and alternate between them as keeps each reed in top condition. I tend to dispose of a reed after 6 weeks regardless of its playability to ensure I have top preforming reeds
Top Bottom