In order to find the right gap quickly play the overblown note and the blow note repeatedly.
You need to look for a gap where both notes sound equal. When playing the notes one after the other the difference in response will become clear.
Below are three examples.
The first example is played with a gap that is too wide. The blow note will sound long in comparison to the overblown note. The overblown note takes too long before it sounds.
Gap too wide
The second example is played with a gap that is too small. The opposite happens, the blow note sounds short compared to the overblown note and it is slow.
Gap too close
The third example is played with a good gap, both notes sound equal in length and take about the same time to start sounding.
The tip should be as straight as possible for the reed to close the slot when choked.
What angle should the tip be set at? Straight with the rest of the reed or does it come up a bit?
2. for the hole five I suggest you isolate the reeds to see if it is the blowreed or the drawreed that is giving you trouble.
Part 2. Hole 5 is a problem, I can OB ok on this hole but it takes more force. The reed doen't sound like it is resonating easily and produces a rather dull unexpressive note. Any ideas or observations. Thanks, Kieron
I am sagar from India.your videos are very good.my question is that the harp you are playing is customized to get all the notes you are playing?if so let me know how to adjust my harp reeds to get all the notes you are showing in your video.
it is not my technic i am an advanced and play on stage.
but your text made me notice that i closed well the bottom of the reed near
the rivet and the gapped was open.
i arced the reed to open the bottom by reducing the curve
i messed with the 2 and 3 draw reeds(lee oskar A):
these isolated draw reeds are playing choked on
light air draw, and when drawing with more air they are bending down
whithout intenting to bend them, i tried the other holes(cheking my playing)and they are healthy
-is it the curveture or the offset?(the facing blow reeds are fine and gapped for 1/4 bending down when isolated)
also my 3 draw hole is bending down 3 half steps easily
but hardly 2 half steps to be controled.
ik houd van vele talen te spreken, maar het Nederlands is hard, moet u tinus bekennen
Also the drawreeds in 1,4 and 6, i.e. the holes that can only bend down a half step, are also gapped to bend down a quarter step. the drawreeds in hole 2 and 3 are gapped so that the drawreed bends down about 3 quarter tones, so that it bends at least past the half step bend.
By the way I am not German so if you want to write anything in my native language try Dutch :)
you wrote above that the isolated blow reed should bend a 1/4 tone
-is that true for hole 1, 2, 3, 4, 6 or just the 2 and 3?
how far the isolated draw reed should bend? same for all?
Das eines KÃ¶nigaufstellungsortes
Great site! It seems that the soundfiles can't be found on the server.
The blownotes bend down in the upper register simply because the blownotes are higher than the drawnotes. So if you want to reverse it you have to retune the harp so that the draw notes are higher than the blow notes (just like the lower end of the harp. There are many layouts where this happens. Check out the chord and scale finder for some of these all draw bending harps
That is a very unusual problem. Most people have the problem that their overblows are too low. You are the first to have it too high. The only solution I can think of is to play the overblow with an isolated drawreed and then learn to play that relaxed an work on getting it up and down. I hope that helps.
Also practice bending the isolated reeds so you can get a feel for the overlap.
I have not been able to get hole 10 on my C harp to blow bend a half step (to B). David Barrett says in Building Harmonica Technique, "Don't worry if you're unable to get the half step bend, the 10 hole pretty much just snaps into the whole step bend and there isn't much you can do to control it." But I know there is, because I've heard it played. :)
Could this possibly be solved by gapping?
By the way, great website :-) thanks
I was always very carefull when it came to gapping and arcing so I didn't damage the reeds too much. Gapping is something of an iterative process, changing the offset of the reed in tiny increments and testing it each time to see if it is right. Going to far and then going too far back is also part of the process. There is an optimum somwhere, but you can only tell if you have reached it by going past it.
When you were 1st adjusting your harps, did you ruin alot of them? My A harp for example, I was trying to adjust so I could overblow but i messed up the reed so bad that i had to settle on adjusting it so I can only get the 4 blow and not the ob. I dealt with it at first but I'm probably just going to throw it away and try again.
What harps do you recommend ?. Thank you for any information.
Thanking you David Godman from New Zealand .
I remember reading somewhere that the draw reed should also be gapped closely to the reed plate in order to make the overblow easy. Is this true? I recently have started to incorporate OB's in my playing and any advice you have would be appreciated.
I am interested in the kind of wax you used. Does it have a brand name?
If you can't get the blowreed to sound after you have choked the drawreed you might want to try with an open harmonica. Block the drawreed completely and try to overdraw the note on the blowreed alone. If you can do that you should also be able to find the overdrawn note with two free reeds.
I'll keep trying...
If you can choke the reed you should be able to find the spot where the overdraw sounds, give it some time and be carefull not to rely on force to get the blowreed to sound. Just take some time to find that spot where the overdraw just drops in on you and remember that you need more and more presicion the higher up the harp you get.
Now I'm working on 7 - 10, primarily 7. Choking the draw reed is actually pretty easy for me and I haven't had to modify the reeds much here, but the OD note isn't sounding, just a high pitched squeal. I'm assuming this is an arc/gap problem on the blow reed since I'm able to choke the draw.
Still working at it... Luckily so far I don't have to chuck this harp due to a mistake, but I'm keeping my fingers crossed...
I usually gap the blowreeds while keeping the drawreed close with a finger. I try to get the reed so close that I can bend down the blownote approximately a quarter tone before it chokes. That way I can overblow the note comfortably without the blow reed getting stuck.
I think that you just need some practice, both with gapping and overblowing, to find out the right gap for you. There is an optimum somewhere and sometimes it is difficult to find.
Thanks for the input on waxing. I'm trying to modify my first harp and I've spent what seems like forever on a single reed. If you can help at all, I'd appreciate and feel free to email me directly.
On the 2 blow, I've been attempting to emboss, arc and gap, in that order. The problem is, and it's the same for the 1, 2 and 3 blow, it seems to take a lot of air to get the reed to vibrate, even for a standard blow note. After messing with the 2 blow for the last few hours (yes, hours), it just doesn't seem to change. In fact I notice now that the harder I blow into the hole, the longer it takes for the reed to vibrate. I could be crazy or just a newbie (which I am), but I just don't expect to hear as much wind coming through the blow notes as I am. Also, I notice after adjusting the reed and getting an overblow on it, the reed will then get stuck and I can't blow it out, I have to readjust it which obviously changes the OB ability yet again.
Any chance some of this is familiar to you and perhaps you have some advice? Thanks for your time and help, and again for the website.
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