Profiling and Scoring

I use two profilers. The first is the one made by Rieger ( which cuts a very neat shoulder into the cane and profiles the thicker part of the blade just how I want it. I follow this by using one that was made for me by Dominic Weir and it has been a trusty companion for many years now. It is phenomenally accurate in the thinner part of the blade. If you own a profiler and have it set up how you like it, never lend it to anyone – ever. If the adjustments are changed, you’ll never get it back to the way it was. If you have invested a substantial sum of money in a profiler, then also invest your time in setting it up to produce a profile that is as close to what you want to end up with as is possible.

Scoring the cane:
Before the reed is formed, the unscraped part of the cane (the part that will form the ‘stock’) needs to be prepared to avoid the risk of the cane splitting. The most common method is to make a series of five or six cuts right through the cane at least half way towards the first wire. I’ve always thought that this must jeopardise the air tightness of the reed so I prefer to make deep scores and I use a gadget for spacing these evenly that I learned about from the great Stephen Maxim. It is a thing called a tap and is used by engineers to cut the thread on the inside of a metal pipe. One 10 mm in diameter with the threads 1.00 mm apart seems about right and I’ve mounted mine on a wooden handle. Place the cane on the easel and drag the cutting edge very firmly from the shoulder digging deeply into the bark. Do this several times so that the whole width is scored. You can buy these taps at good hardware shops or on line you could try: (search for Metric Tap Plug M6 X 1.0mm).