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Reeds Rico vs Vandoren Reed Cases


Well-Known Member
Durham, NC, USA
I'm having a problem with reeds molding in my Vandoren 4-reed tenor case


but its never happened once with my Rico 8-reed alto reed case

in the 2 years that I've had it.

Has anyone had similar experiences? Is it that the 8-reed cases open up fully to the air or that the Rico crystal packet works better than the Vandoren charcoal tube?

I have the same problem. It appears that when the reed is wet and swollen (that sounds a bit obscene!), and is wedged into the slots in the case, the fit is of course snug. However as it dries and shrinks slightly, the reeds loosen their fit, and start to slide pretty severely.

I've started making my own cases from hardwoods with glass bed plates inside as a result. One less handy with tools could of course procure one of the more secure (albeit much pricer) cigarette style cases on the market. The Selmer ones are good.

I honestly don't see much use for the desiccant cartriges where I live, but that may be a necessity for those who live in very humid climates.
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Hi AndyB,

I've had the exact same experience as you and quickly ditched the Vandoren case. I rinse my reeds after use so they go in moist, but not wet, and the Rico has held it's end of the deal well, But...

...when I got my tenor, Rico only did the case for alto and clarinet reeds so as a stop gap I got one of those cheap Rico/La Voz reedguards. The reeds go into that and then into my sax case and I've had no problems with it at all, and so I've not bothered to look for a better alternative.

All the best,

Thanks folks. I need to go shopping for another tenor reed guard.
I used to have the same problem 20 years ago so I stopped using those. The LaVoz I recall having trouble with the reeds soaking through. I have a preference for the Selmer cases, but TBH I find that the little plastic single reed guards that the LaVoz or Vandorens come with work just fine. A bit messy to organize your reed rotation, though.
I also found my reeds went mouldy & now just use the plastic covers the reeds come in - to sort out reed rotation I write numbers on the reed with a permanent marker & just rotate them.
Isn't one supposed to dry out the Vandoren tube fairly frequently, same as most dehumidifyers?
I've never had a problem with the Vandoren cases which I use on Soprano, Alto and Tenor. I do chew gum and brush teeth before playing and soak the reeds in mouthwash before playing and wipe dry before putting them back in the case.

It may be worth checking your own routine as mould has to have something from which to develop, I would have thought.........:shocked:;}

Have a good day

BTW I play the Button/Reed free tenor sax, which has no mould problems, needs no sling & only weighs 1.3 kg! Brilliant!:thankyou:

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