In reply to dick
I also believe the problem is fatique because this is known to
involve cracking which is obvoiusly going to reduce pitch.
When you asked "have I tested my theory" if you mean the theory that
the other reed vibrates in bending and is not limmitted in its
amplitude the answer is yes. If you mean the theory that this will
cause the reed to fail the answer is no.
When I visitted Hank Bhanson a couple of years ago he showed me a
vidio he had made looking at the reeds of a harmonica through a fiber
optic lapriscope through a hole drilled in the back of the harp.
Howard Levy was playing. When he hung on the bottom of a bend the
amplitude of the opening reed (the blow reed as these were draw
bends) was astounding - like almost the whole airway size! This is
when I formed the theory about why bending damages reeds. But I am
surprised that harpers seem to be replying that it is the draw reeds
Please note that we are basically talking about brass reeds. Brass is
not a spring material. The new harps with bronze reeds are presumably
being made to address this problem but as I have said before, Hohner
at least, appears to be having problems rescaling their reed design to
suit the new materials.
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