My Favorite Reed Making Tools Right Now…

The candy shop.

For a panda, it’s bamboo. For my cat, it’s the treats sitting on my kitchen counter. For a bookworm, it’s the used book store down the street. For an eight year old, it’s literally the candy shop. And for an oboist it’s the double reed supply store. ☺️

I am in SO much trouble when I walk into a double reed supply store so it’s probably a good thing I don’t have one nearby! I love trying out new supplies (there are some really great ones out there) so here are a few that I am in love with right now and why they I find them useful.

1. MusEcho Burnishing Rod


Burnishing rods have been around for quite awhile but I never really saw the need to use one. I use crock sticks and was doing just fine with them. Then one fateful day, at a Double Reed Day (nerdy I know), I walked by Bocal Majority’s booth and was attracted to the design of this one. As I examined it my conscience kept telling me I didn’t need it. I was still torn when I was eventually was talked into buying it by a fellow oboist but thought “well, I’ll try it out.”

It has changed my life!

Ok I might be exaggerating just a little, but seriously I don’t know how I got along without it. Burnishing rods generally do not take off steel from a knife, instead they re-align the burr on the knife. So it allows you to reset your knife angles quickly. This one is designed to collapse for traveling AND it’s also magnetic allowing you to pick up plaques!


The moral of the story is don’t listen to your conscience…..just kidding!

2. MusEcho Ruler/Radius Gauge


Not only is this ruler handy for tying on your reed but it doubles as a radius gauge. It’s value really shines because english horn measurements are on it as well! Paul Covey made some similar tools awhile back but he stopped making them a few years ago so it’s nice to have a similar product on the market.

MusEcho products are not only beautifully designed but also clearly designed by an oboist. Mingjia Liu, the Principal Oboist of the San Francisco Opera, has several other products available that I can’t wait to try out!

3. TaoTronics LED Lamp


Last but not least is the TaoTronics LED lamp which I found on This light is perfect for reedmaking. I find it very helpful to be able to examine my reeds (and cane) under different types of lighting; sunlight, stand lights, yellow light, etc. This light not only has adjustable brightness but also has seven different color temperatures ranging from cool to very warm lighting. Also the light is able to swivel in different directions so that you can look at your reeds at different light angles. An added benefit is a USB outlet attached so you can charge your phone!

Well that’s it for now. I love trying new supplies so this is a ever fluctuating list. I hope it helps you in your quest to make the perfect reed!

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