Re: [Harp-L] Removing Windsavers Question
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Friday, June 03, 2005 1:49 PM
Subject: [Harp-L] Removing Windsavers Question
Removing windsavers from a chromatic would make it easier to bend? Is this
correct? What would I lose on the chromatic by removing windsavers? And
how would I go about doing this? [Obviously I couldn't be more ignorant
about this subject :-)
In the C3 and C4 lower octaves, the unplayed or "opening" reeds open under
the applied pressure and leave very large gaps through which air leaks. In
these holes, the reeds will seem balky and unresponsive. As the reeds get
shorter, stiffer, and higher-pitched this effect is less pronounced. In the
highest three holes, the reed slots are usually unvalved.
This is more important in chromatics because a certain amount of leakage
through the clearances in the slide is unavoidable. Thus an "airtight"
chromatic has no leakage through the unplayed, valved reeds and a small
amount through the slide to adjacent holes.
Because the reed pairs are on opposite sides of the chamber in a diatonic
and side-by-side in a chromatic, the size and shape of the chambers are
different and may respond differently to the sound pressure variations. The
amount of bending is limited by the interval between the reed pitches. In a
Richter-tuned diatonic this interval is a minor third in hole 2 and a major
third in hole three. The maximum interval in a chromatic is a major second..
This will make bending in the chromatic quite different.
Even on a valved chromatic both draw and blow slightly. I find it easier to
bend the blow notes. This is fine for musical effects but usuallu not
sufficient to obtain another note. On my Hering chromatic, I can bend C4
down the Bb3, but cannot do so on my Hohner chromatic.
It wouldn't be too much work to remove the two windsavers in a hole (button
unpushed), see how you like the bending leakage as a result, and replace
them if you aren't pleased. Just pull them off to remove them. Then scrape
away the old glue and glue them back on.
Visit my harmonica website: http://www.Hands-Free-Chromatic.7p.com
Harp-L is sponsored by SPAH, http://www.spah.org
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