Fox Bassoon Shapers
The Fox Bassoon Shapers are a standard option for making bassoon reeds, especially in the American style. These shapers are in the flat or straight style, meaning that the cane is shaped without it being folded. It is intended to be used with cane that has been gouged, but it will accept cane that is profiled as well.
Fox Shapers are made of hardened aluminum, just more than 6 inches long, in two pieces held together at each end by a specially designed screw. Loosen the screws to create enough space for the soaked cane to be inserted gouged side up, center the cane, and then lock it down by tightening the screws. With a razor blade or hobby knife with the small triangular blade, remove cane from the widest parts of the shaper toward the narrowest parts. The shaper lies well in the hand for consistent shaping. One distinct advantage to the flat shapers is that one can shape 4-5 pieces at once, if your cutting blade is long enough.
We carry three Fox options: the Fox K, No. 2 and No. 3 Bassoon Shapers. There are a few subtle differences, and they are referenced in terms of the Knockenauer style of shape. The Knockenauer shape is one made entirely of curves of varying degrees: there is no truly straight portion however small. Both styles can be observed by placing a metal ruler against the shapers to see the straight and curved portions. We also carry one of Eric Arbiter's favorite shapers, the Christlieb Narrow Shape, and we carry George Sakakeeny's SVH shape.
The No. 2 is an "almost Knochenauer" shape. Fox's almost Knockenauer shapes have a small straight portion usually toward the fold, or what would create the tip of the reed. At its widest, before the small notches at the middle of the shaper, No. 2 measures 15 mm. The narrowest measurement is approximately 8.5 mm. At the cane ends, it measures just greater than 9 mm wide.
The No. 3 is a "modified Knochenauer" shape: mostly a Knockenauer style but with some straight segments. In this case the straight portion is from the throat, or the narrowest spot, toward the end of the cane. It measures 16 mm at the fold, about 9 mm at the throat, and just greater than 9 mm at the ends. All else being equal, the No. 3 should produce a reed that is a bit wider in each dimension, thus playing a bit lower than reeds made from the No. 2.
The Fox K bassoon shaper is a true Knochenauer shape. A true Knochenauer shape is comprised completely of curves. There are no straight lines in the contour. The blade always flares outward with no inward curves.
The Christlieb Narrow is a Mechlin Shape. The primary characteristic of a Mechlin shape is that the flare of the tip is reduced by a reverse curve. The resulting contour is often described as goblet shaped.
The Sakakeeny SVH shape is a "modified Knochenauer" shape.
Please select the option for which shaper you would like when ordering.
All shapers and shaper tips have a 30-day trial period. Compare several, choose one, and send back the rest for a full refund minus shipping. Returns after the 30-day trial period will be subject to a 10% restocking fee in addition to the cost of shipping, but must be returned in like new to new physical condition.