Options & Information
An overview of the options and services available through C.B. Reeds & Tools
Options & Information
All of our reeds are made with select cane and crafted by hand from start to finish. The cane and blanks are stored in a climate controlled environment anywhere from 3 to 8 months to ensure stability and longevity.
Cane Selection: Standard, Premium, or Custom
Every reed is slightly different from tone and intonation to resistance and response. Here at CB Reeds & Tools, we strive to offer the most consistent and playable reeds- this begins with selecting the proper cane.
Our cane comes from leading manufacturers then aged in house for 3 to 8 months. The material properties of each piece are determined. Of the gouged cane that does meet our requirements, the top 25% of the batch is considered Premium Cane and the rest is Standard Cane. An example of results from the materials test is below.
Custom Professional Reeds — Fewer than 3% of the reeds made per year are considered Custom Professional. These reeds tend to have a longer break in time, extremely stable intonation, rich tone, meet the highest performance requirements, and have a lifespan of 2 to 3 years when rotated regularly.
Typical Batch Testing of 100 Pieces of Gouged Cane
1 — 2 reeds made from this batch will be considered Custom Professional
15 — 20 will be of exceedingly good quality, Premium cane
50 — 65 will be of Standard quality
70 — 80 meet specified parameters of quality and 20 — 30 are unusable
Overall quality changes from year to year and this example is a best case scenario. When CB Reeds & Tools was considering a new cane producer, we checked 500 tubes of cane, and only 25 even met critical requirements. After changing the parameters, trying different gouge thicknesses, and modifying the constraints of the tests, the cane just did not meet our requirements and was considered unsuitable. Evaluating cane before production has increased our quality and turnaround, decreased our product costs, and provides you with consistent, affordable, and great playing reeds!
In the future, we hope to add a source chart and release information on cane quality from year to year as well as Vintage years and Premium Select cane.
Ability Level: Student, Standard, or Professional
Selecting the best reed for your ability whether you are just beginning or a seasoned professional is an important aspect of playing any wind instrument. All of our reeds are handmade, and you have the option to choose from Student, Standard, or Professional Level reeds as well as other options such as reed strength, shape, and thread color. If you would like further customization, please contact us.
Student Reeds — Students reeds are for beginning students and younger players, typically pre-high school aged students and beginning players through sophomore year. They have a slightly different resistance than the Standard or Professional Reeds which is necessary for younger players. The reed is left a little heavier in critical areas for further adjustment by an instructor.
Standard Reeds — Standard reeds are made for advancing students, amateur, and musicians for all-round performance including practicing, rehearsals, and concerts. They are very consistent, in tune, resonant, and play the extremes of the instrument quite easily.
Professional Reeds — Professional reeds are made for advanced and college aged students, the discerning amateur, and regularly performing musicians. They easily play the entire register of the instrument, have a clear response, are extremely well in tune, and finished for an increased dynamic range, and flexibility. The Professional Reed are finished to be performance and recital ready.
Specialty Reeds — In some cases, special requirements are necessary, from pianissimo low register attacks, extreme register, or projection. Let us know if we can help with your specialty needs, some common options we make are below:
High Altitude Reeds — For musicians performing above approx. 4,000 ft.
Twilight Reeds — For mature players cutting back on playing, ie. extra soft, light, or free blowing
Register Specific Reeds — High Notes or Low Notes
Dynamic Specific Reeds — Piano ppppp, Forte ffff, or Wind Band
The Hobbyist Bassoonist — older players who are new to the instrument or getting back into playing
Reed Strength: Medium Soft, Medium, Medium Hard
Selecting a reed strength is a good way to gauge timbre, resistance, and response. You can choose from three of the more common reed strengths on all of our reeds or contact us for custom made reeds of your preference.
Softer Reed Strengths — Softer reeds tend to have a darker tone and are made thicker to offset certain characteristics of the cane including Density.
Medium Reed Strengths —Medium reeds are the most standard or all-around selection and preferred by many players. Medium strength reeds also allow a player the most flexibility of tone.
Harder Reed Strengths — Harder reeds have a brighter more open tone and a thinner blade profile to offset the stiffer cane.
CB Reeds & Tools offers common shapes (Rieger 1A and Fox 2), pedagogical reed shapes (Winstead and Herzberg), and a new reed shape (Fox BL Shape).
Fox BL Shape — Characterized as a Mechler style blade with a reverse radius that reduces tip flare. The waist and tube of the shape are above average, a slight flare towards the back of the tube reduces reaming during the forming process. This reed shape is free blowing and helps with projection.
Services, Modification, & Design
CB Reeds & Tools provides services for profilers and micrometers including assessment, cleaning, adjustment or modification, and custom designed parts. Much of the modifications do not require intensive labor or materials cost and many parts are installable on your own. We also sharpen blades, modify and refurbish reed making tools, and can help with your custom reed tool design.
The cost of a service or modification depends on the job requirements and time. Below are a few estimates of what to expect. Some accessories and options are readily available on Micrometers page. If you have any questions, please Contact Us!
Profiler Service Estimates
Replacement Profiler Blades - Coming Soon!
Blade Sharpening - $25.00
Adjustment - $50.00
Modification - $75.00 & up
New Profiler Template - $100.00
Overhaul - Great for Universities - $75.00 & up
- Includes cleaning, adjustment, and any necessary modifications
- $50.00 each additional Profiler
Reed Micrometer Service Estimates
Micrometer Overhaul - Great for Universities - $75.00 & up
Micrometer Oops! - Dropped your micrometer? No worries! - $35.00 & up
Micrometer Cleaning & Adjustment - $25.00
Micrometer Modification - $50.00 & up
Replacement Stylus - $75.00
New Stylus & Adapter - $85.00
New Stylus, Adapter & Adjustment - $100.00
- Includes cleaning, adjustment, and necessary modification
- $25.00 each additional micrometer
- Includes damage assessment, cleaning, and adjustment
- New parts and any modifications to get your micrometer up and working again
Shipping, Services, & Policies
1. A Shipping and Handling fee for the purchase of a Micrometer is $15
2. I'm in a hurry! - Rush orders are available. Please add the Rush My Order! Fee before check out.
3. Orders are usually processed and shipped within 1 to 5 days. If I am unable to ship the item within five days, I will contact you.
4. If you have a specific shipping preference or would like a tracking/confirmation number on any individual purchase, please contact us. All micrometers and larger orders come with both insurance and tracking. Please consult http://postcalc.usps.com/ for current rates and costs.
II. International Orders
1. Rush My Order! is not available for orders outside of the United States.
2. International orders may need to pay additional postage. Please consult http://postcalc.usps.com/ for current rates and costs.
III. Refunds, Returns, and Exchanges
CB Reeds & Tools accepts refunds, returns, and exchanges of items that are unused and in the condition that we sent them. To receive a full refund, please return items intact and free of any signs of wear.
Just follow these steps to get your return started and your money (or credit) back.
1. Contact us via email within the 14-day trial period in order to process a return.
2. Return the item using a USPS Flat Rate Priority Box with tracking and insurance for the purchase amount.
3. Confirm a shipment of the return item within three days of the trial period. Please confirm shipment of the return by emailing us the USPS tracking number.
Terms & Conditions of Refunds, Returns, and Exchanges
Original shipping and handling fees are nonrefundable. Returns are at the discretion of CB Reeds & Tools. CB Reeds & Tools is not responsible for damage to products in transit. Please note: CB Reeds may refuse any return if it does not meet these guidelines. If you have questions or concerns before returning items, please contact us via email.
1. Refunds, returns and exchanges are at the discretion of C.B. Reeds & Tools. Considerations can be made depending on the situation.
2. Reeds are nonrefundable for obvious reasons. However, considerations can be made depending on the situation.
3. All reeds and custom orders are nonrefundable.
4. The 14-day trial period starts on the day of delivery.
5. All items are subject to a restocking fee.
IV. Custom Reed Orders
1. Please contact me before placing your order so we can discuss your reed and measurements.
2. Custom Reeds are the same price as the Custom Professional Reeds however price may vary depending on your order.
3. It may take up to two weeks before your Custom Reed order ships because all custom reeds start from gouged cane.
4. In some cases, I will ask that you send two or three reference reeds before placing the order. This option is typically for customers who do not have the time to make reeds themselves or for those who are switching from other reed-makers to CB Reeds.
5. Another Custom Reed option which is slightly more variable is to place your order for the quantity of Custom Professional Reeds and immediately email me as many of the specifications you can, including:
a. Reed Shape, please keep in mind the shapes CB Reeds & Tools offers (Winstead, Herzberg, Fox 1, Fox 2, Fox BL, Fox H, Rieger1A, Rieger 6, and Rieger 14)
b. Overall Length (in mm.)
c. Tube Length and Blade Length (in mm.)
d. Distance between the first and second wires from collar (in mm.)
e. Distance between the third wire and end of the tube (in mm.)
f. Collar Definition: No Collar, Some Collar, Well-Defined Collar
g. Gouge Thickness (in mm.)
h. Cane Quality: Soft or Hard cane
i. Any other specifications including factors that could affect your playing, humidity, type of instrument, bocal length, the pitch of your instrument, etc.
Yes, these micrometers work and many oboists and bassoonists are currently using them. You will most likely never need to purchase another micrometer!
1. If you are purchasing a dial indicator, please understand it can take up to two weeks to process due to the dial indicator manufacturer. I usually have one or two dials on hand, but it is easier for me to order the dial and set up the indicator after initial interest.
2. All Micrometers and micrometer accessories are nonrefundable because of the labor and time placed in manufacturing. I have modified and replaced parts for very little cost.
3. If your micrometer has fallen out of adjustment or becomes finicky, CB Reeds can setup or refurbish the micrometer for $25.00 plus shipping. If the dial indicator itself breaks or fails in your possession, you will need to purchase another one through the manufacturer.
4. If you are having a problem with your dial, please contact me.
5. The Shipping and Handling fee for a Micrometer is $15.00. This fee covers tracking, insurance, and packing fees.
CB Reeds & Tools can modify micrometers by replacing the stylus, contact points, and has designed a custom stand around a faithful dial indicator. Much of the modifications do not require intensive modifications and many parts are installable on your own. We also sharpen blades, modify and refurbish reed making tools, and can help with your custom reed tool design. Please contact us if you have any custom projects in mind.