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Another Harp Done Gone.

Back to the Maintenance, Repair and Customization Room

Chris C
Jan 22, 2010 9:07 AM GMT

In the early 90's I was playing in a band regularly and I was going through tonnes of Honher harps. I was playing and drinking hard back then so I can only imagine what I must of sounded like. Anyway I kept all those 'Broken' harps from back then and about two years ago I decided to try and revive some. I was broke and also learning a bit about maintaining.

I think some were easily fixed up and worked well. But the rest where indeed crap. The common thread was the blow 3or4 or 5 reed would just break. of course I was surprised at the time that it was the blow reeds that broke. I now know that when you do all that hard bending that newbies often do it is infact the blow reed that is doing all the work.

Has anyone else been succesful in ressurrecting many harps from their bone yard? It really is an indication to me on how much my playing has changed.



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Comments (12)

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Jan 22, 2010 11:19 AM GMT
Boris Plotnikov Replied:

I'm playing professionally usually 3-4 gigs per month (sometimes less, sometimes more) plus 1-2 rehearsals per week. I practice almost every day for 1-2 hours (sometimes more, sometimes less). So when I start playing in 2000 I broke my first reeds for 3-6 month. I was hard on reeds and I had bad control. For 2008 year I didn't broke any reed. For 2009 I broke one reed when I clean my harps. Yes I have about 40 gig harps and play any of them not too much. But I start play twice softer and I play with tiny gaps to produce overblow/overdraw and I almost stop breaking reed.



Jan 22, 2010 5:27 PM GMT
Barbeque Bob M Replied:

I've resurrected harps over the years and saved parts to do things like transplanting reeds, and many times just keeping them clean staves off the need for constant retuning.



Jan 22, 2010 8:05 PM GMT
mike w Replied:

I saved my messed up harps for YEARS and after a session with Howard Levy years ago, he explained basic tuninjg and maintenence. I went home that night and tuned up over $400.00 worth of harps that night. It took me about 8 harps to get get the hang of it. In fact I REALLY messed up those 1st 8 harps honing my technique. I'm fairly proficiant at it now and NEVER throw a harp away unless there is absolutly no hope for it.

I have the Lee Oskar tuning kit a like it pretty good.

I also have the Rupert Oysley 2 DVD set of tuning and harp mainenence. It's PACKED with a bunch of good info. Everyone should have a copy.



Jan 23, 2010 4:48 AM GMT
schaef Replied:

harpaholic, were are you getting those harp?



Jan 23, 2010 3:48 PM GMT
Boris Plotnikov Replied:

I have about 30 reedplates from broken harps and if I blow out reed (very rare) I just have to find reed of closer pith and size and replace the broken with new one. It takes about half an hour, less than going to music shop and new harp customizing.



Jan 23, 2010 7:01 PM GMT
BluEyes Replied:

Harpaholic you can email me the name of the customizer you use for $60 bucks. I have a few Lee Oskars that I may start working on, but like you im the kind of guy that measure 3 times cuts once and will mess the whole thing up.

I cant afford a custom harp, I cant gap my own harp, maybe one day I can play a harp.

abner (BluEyes, In, Out )



Jan 23, 2010 7:11 PM GMT
Barbeque Bob M Replied:

If you'e always in a hurry, something is always gonna get messed up and that's why there's such a long waiting period when ordering customs because they don't rush things.



Jan 25, 2010 8:48 PM GMT
BluEyes Replied:

BB Bob I hear you. And thats my problem not only do I rush but I get frustarated at not knowing what im doing. Or I think I know what im doing and I push to hard. That has always been my problem.. Its funny or not, but I think thats why I had to get a my knee replaced. The pain would grow I would rest then push it even more till it was too too late to come back.

I am going to try and gap, my Lee Oscar one at a time. slowly. what the heck I sound bad anyway who is going to notice.

abner (BluEyes, going to rest )



Feb 09, 2010 1:27 AM GMT
Carl M Replied:

I AM PRETTY NEW TO HARPS, ABOUT 8 MOS.i TRIED TO TUNE MY OWN,{NOT GOOD},BUT NOW WITH LOTS OF STUDY ON TECHNICS AND LOTS OF PRACTISE AND GOING SLOW I AM FINALLY GETTING THE JOB DONE.GREAT SATISFACTION.ALL THANKS TO GUYS LIKE DAVE AT ELK RIVER,BB BOB ,PAT MISSIN, RUPET OYSLER.THE TUNER I HAVE BOUGHT RECENTLY IS A SEIKO SAT800. IT ALOWS CENT READING OF 1 OR -1.VERY EASY TO USE........CARL


flyinga40


Feb 09, 2010 5:01 PM GMT
BluEyes Replied:

Thats another thing I was told, Never throw out a harp you F' up. Save them then one day ( I hope ) I can work on them.

abner ( BluEyes, gone soon )




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