new thing about the Nissen Tube compared to what you already use, technically
speaking, is this bit of plastic. The brass/nickel silver part of any
tube is kept, only the cork is removed.
an animation of the 'conversion' from standard tube to Nissen Tube.
Inspect the tube in Realtime 3D
demands has been met in the design of the plastic part:
- all brands of conical
tubes must fit inside
- the reed, when
finished, must fit tight in any oboe reed socket
- there must be a
seal at the bottom to send all air into the oboe
- the rubber rings
used must be standard items (called o-rings)
Plastic vs. hardwood
If you have
read the article from Alex Lubell through one of the other pages, you
already know why plastic has been chosen. I have recently tried tubes
made in solid brass from another 'alternative tubes' manufacturer,
and like in the case with Alex Klein found them too trumpetlike, the oboe
sound characteristics suffer. From my experience, a staple/tube in metal
only takes out the "airiness" from the oboe sound. The delicacy
of the oboe sound is lost.
As far as hardwood is concerned, it is much more expensive
to purchase. It can't be manufactured to close tolerances, and it is simply
not as durable as high-density plastic.
Plastic in classical
music instruments turns many people off, but for this particular use it
is just perfect. A small revolution in oboe tube design.
There is a limit to ready-made rubber rings in the sizes required for
the tubes, which at the same time allows the tube to fit in different
oboes. This fact has a great impact on the design.
have very different reed socket diameters, so one size ring will not satisfy
all 'customers'. Therefore, with each tube there are four sets of rings
in different sizes.
- The thick rings
are 'carrier' rings, i.e. they are the main support for the tube.
- The thin ring is
a sealing ring, it will prevent air from going the wrong way. You only
need one rings of this size.
Use the ring size
that fits your oboe best. If you have a narrow socket, you start by mounting
the smallest rings, if too loose you take the next size. Vice-versa for
The reed should fit tight in the socket, without being uncomfortably difficult
to insert or remove.
each with a set of rings
the rings are mounted, you will never want to change them again, unless
you buy a new oboe, which has a different size of socket. In that case
use some of the other rings (so keep the unused rings, they might be useful
or Nissen Refit
The metal part of traditional oboe tubes from Glotin, Lorée
etc. differ in length, diameter, conicity and thickness of metal.
To adapt to this fact has also influenced the design quite a bit.
For the Nissen Tube I have chosen to use *only Glotin style or Lorée
47 mm tubes in brass or NS. Otherwise I would have to carry a stock of
15 different brands in various lengths and materials.
December 2006, I use Chiarugi's Glotin style tubes instead of Glotins
own. These years Glotin makes their tubes rather badly, and I find they
can't be trusted - no two tubes are the same - and they are still expensive.
of the biggest tube manufacturers makes a design (no. 5) which is perfectly
done and has the same dimensions as the "real" Glotin staple,
or extremely close to. I would say Glotin taken to perfection. If however
you still want the tubes from Glotin, it is of course possible. My advice
though is: try the Chiarugi made version.
other brands and lengths are also available. For orders below 10 items
an additional charge may apply. Please inquire. See also Buy
insist on using a specific brand, and only want to try a few, it is not
a problem at all. The solution is then the Nissen Refit.
Nissen Refit is cheaper, because you send me your favorite tubes,
even old ones, and I convert them to Nissen
Tubes. In other words - you only pay for the plastic part and the rings,
not for me purchasing tubes here in Copenhagen.
The plastic part must both adapt to a metal tube inside and the
oboe reed socket and rings outside, and the whole thing is no bigger
than 30 mm. This sets high demands for exact machining of the plastic
this though: Cork tubes are worn with time. Usually their life can be
prolonged by using cigarette paper or heating the cork. But not for long.
After a while it has to be discarded.
Nissen Tubes do not break apart, only the rubber rings will have
to be changed, if they are worn.
may cost twice as much as ordinary cork tubes, but they last a life time.
If you fancy them, it will probably be the last tubes you'll ever buy!