Title:
Reed of cane, plastic, or any other material for clarinets, saxophones, and like musical instruments
United States Patent 2287529


Abstract:
This invention relates to reeds of cane, plastic, or any other material for clarinet, saxophone and like musical instruments, and has for its object to provide an improved reed which will render the harmonics of a sound and thereby enhance the tone value of such reeds. As is generally known...



Inventors:
Mario, Maccaferri
Application Number:
US39794841A
Publication Date:
06/23/1942
Filing Date:
06/13/1941
Assignee:
Mario, Maccaferri
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
84/383R, 984/142
International Classes:
G10D9/02
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Description:

This invention relates to reeds of cane, plastic, or any other material for clarinet, saxophone and like musical instruments, and has for its object to provide an improved reed which will render the harmonics of a sound and thereby enhance the tone value of such reeds.

As is generally known the harmonics of a sound of a musical instrument or of the human voice are dependent upon freedom of action, which is acquired only by years of skillful practice. An ordinary full surfaced reed of plastic or other material provides a sound, but is poor or free from overtones or harmonics. Even with bamboo reeds it has been found that some produce such harmonics and others do not. It is assumed that this is due to the arrangement of the fibres of the respective reeds.

The invention consists in providing in a reed made of plastic material one or more notches on the upper surface thereof, preferably transversely across the reed, though not extending entirely across, these notches having a depth not to exceed the centroid line of the reed, and not to extend more than about a third of the length of the reed at either side of the longitudinal center of the reed. The thinning of the material of which the reed is made enables the vibrations, whether sympathetic or resonant, to set up overtones or harmonics, and also to lighten or make more brilliant the fundamental tone produced. The invention will be more fully described hereinafter, embodiments will be shown in the drawing, and it will be finally pointed out in the claims.

In the accompanying map: Figure 1 is a plan view of my improved reed.

Figure 2 is a vertical longitudinal section of Figure 1 taken on line 2-2 of Figure 1.

Figure 3 is a vertical transverse section of Figure 1 taken on line 3-3 of Figure 1. Figures 4, 5, and 6 are plan views of various forms of cutouts.

Figures 7, 8 and 9 are detail views of various conformations of the bottoms of the cutouts.

Figure 10 is a plan view of a modifying form of reed.

Figure 11 is a vertical longitudinal section taken on line II-11 of Figure 10.

Similar characters of reference indicate corresponding parts throughout of the various views.

Referring to the drawing: A reed, 10, is shown in Figure 1, in which the front end II, is very thin and is vibrated by the air column emitted by the player, and then tapers to its peak in thickness at 12, which thickness is in general maintained to its rear end 13.

The reed tapers from its front to its rear, laterally considered, as is seen by the sides 14 and 15.

The rear portion extending from the rear end 12 to the central portion 12, is held by the mouth piece of the instrument, well known and not shown in the drawings. The shape just described has a median line 16, shown in dot-dash, which extends from the tip I to the rear edge 13. This median line is the line of stress and strain. The bottom surface of the reed is flat or in a plane and seats itself upon the plane surface of the mouthpiece.

After considerable research I found that the desired harmonics or overtones are produced mostly by the back half section of the vamp of the reed. The manner in which the reed is applied to the mouthpiece, and the way in which it vibrates, does not leave the back portion of the vamp of the reed free to vibrate. Also, inasmuch as this section is the thickest part of the vibrating reed, and since it is the portion attached to the mouthpiece, it is not possible to produce the natural harmonics or overtones.

I concluded to apply the principle that the larger the body the deeper the tone, and the lighter the body the higher the tone. In following out this principle I found that I could not reduce the volumative proportions of the reed, since if carried out I would deepen or lighten the tone, but still fail in the production of overtones.

By cutting down the volume of the reed by a cutout transversely across the reed and at a point or points within either side of the center of about a third of the reed, that is, one sixth at either side and above the median line, I have found that overtones are produced with the basic tones.

These cutouts, of which one is indicated by the reference 20 in Figures 1, 2 and 3, do not extend clear across the reed, but are short of the sides, allowing lateral portions 21 and 22 to remain.

The cutout has vertical walls 24 and 25, and a bottom wall 23, which, as seen in Figure 2, is above the median line or plane 16. The reduced thickness from the bottom 23 of the cutout to bottom of reed, indicated by the double pointed arrow 26 enables the vibrations to be reduced to that thickness, and the remaining shoulders formed by the sides 24 and 25 have a freedom of vibration. Thus rigidity is combined with freedom of movement.

The cutout need not necessarily have the form shown in Figures 1 to 3. They may be crescent shaped as shown by the two crescent shaped cutouts 28 in Figure 4, one at either side of the transverse center line 27. Or they may be angularly shaped, as shown by the two angular cutouts 30 in Figure 5, one at either side of the transverse centre line 27. Or they may be of lentil-like shape as shown in Figure 6, three cutouts, being two on one side and one on the other side of the transverse center line 27 and indicated by 31. Instead of two or three cutouts, four may be used, as in Figure 10, as indicated by the cutouts 32, and as shown in section in Figure 11, where the free corners or shoulders 34, 35, 38, 37, 38, 39, 49 and 41 are clearly visible. The rule applicable to these and other embodiments is that the cutout portions must not extend below the median plane 16, and not be beyond about one-sixth of the length of the reed at either side of the transverse center line 27, and that the lateral portions 21 and 22 must remain uncut, though the inclined sides 21 and 22 as shown in Figures 1 and 3, are not essential, since other forms of remaining lateral sides may be used, as shown in Figure 10 and referred to by 21 a and 22a.

The cutouts shown in Figures 4, 5, 6, and 10, may have bottom surfaces such as shown in either Figure 7, 8, and 9. In Figure 7 a circular bottom 28 is shown; in Figure 8 an angular bottom is shown; and in Figure 9 a wedge shaped bottom 31, is shown.

Longitudinal limitations of the cutouts are shown by the boundary arrows 45.

The use of such cutouts has produced a reed with an entirely plane bottom surface 46 and one which renders when in use, overtones and harmonies.

From the foregoing it will be seen that the invention consists in a plastic reed for musical instruments tapering at one end to form a vamp and having at the other end a mouthpiece attachment portion forming a heel, the combination of a cutout extending generally transversely to the longitudinal axis of the reed but not entirely across the same, and having no part of the cutout below the median plane of the reed, the longitudinal width of the cutout being smaller than its transverse length, said cutout being spaced from the longitudinal center not more than about one-sixth of the length of the reed measured from said center, shoulder portions flush wtih the upper surface of the reed extending longitudinally along the lateral margins of the reed and bounding each of the transverse ends of the cutout, and an uncurved bottom of the plastic reed in a plane parallel with said median plane the bottom wall of the cutout being above the median line and in a plane with the inner edges of the longitudinal shoulders, said cutout remaining open and unfilled, whereby the pitch tones are enabled to sound with their harmonics. From the foregoing it is believed that the construction and advantages of the invention may be readily understood by those skilled in the art without further description, it being borne in mind that numerous changes may be made in the details disclosed without departing from the spirit of the invention as set out in the following claim.

I claim: In a plastic reed for musical instruments tapering at one end to form a vamp and having at the other end a mouthpiece attachment portion forming a heel, the combination of a cutout extending generally transversely to the longitudinal axis of the reed but not entirely across the same, and having no part of the cutout below the median plane of the reed, the longitudinal width of the cutout being smaller than its transverse length, said cutout being spaced from the longitudinal center not more than about one-sixth of the length of the reed measured from said center, shoulder portions flush with the upper surface of the reed extending longitudinally along the lateral margins of the reed and bounding each of the transverse ends of the cutout, and an uncurved bottom of the plastic reed in a plane parallel with said median plane, the bottom wall of the cutout being above the median line and in a plane with the inner edges of the longitudinal shoulders, said cutout remaining open and unfilled, whereby the pitch tones are enabled to sound with their harmonics.

MARIO MACCAFERRI.