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 My own flutes

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PostSubject: My own flutes   Fri May 23, 2008 10:43 pm

I hate to "toot my own horn", but I am very happy with the progress of my Flute making. I have an unusual method of making ceramic flutes, and a inconvienient limitation that led to it's design. My kiln will only fit a 10.75 inch long pipe if I lay it diagonally across the floor.

This is just coincidentally the length of a D5, as in a fife or tin whistle. But it does not leave room for a head (joint) as is typical of a transverse of cross blown flute. So I don't put one on. I ended up making what looks like a Shakuhachi mouth piece on the end of a quenya. At the time I had a unresolved Spinal Injury in my neck, and could not lift my right arm very far, so a side blown flute worked out just right for me.

All in all it turns out to be very much like a combination of a kaval, a quenya and a shakuhachi. Suites me just fine but so far no one but me and my son can play it very well.
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Thomas Hastay
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PostSubject: Re: My own flutes   Sat May 24, 2008 5:07 pm

I suggest making your ceramic flutes in 3 parts, headjoint/body/foot. This was common in Renaissance and Baroque flutes to change keynotes. A separate mid/body was inserted to raise/lower the keynote. The headjoint, then the top 3 tone hole section and finally the bottom 3 tone hole foot. I have seen a Baroque "Glass" flute made this way. If you make the "slide" connections loose, you can used the method of wrapping waxed thread for a tight seal.

Using this 3 part method, you could even make a 32.25 inch Bass flute with your kiln size of 10.75 in. Maybe a 4 or 5 section Fujara???
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PostSubject: Re: My own flutes   Sat May 24, 2008 5:19 pm

Thomas Hastay wrote:
I suggest making your ceramic flutes in 3 parts,
Several people have suggested that, and it's a good idea. So far, my skill as a player is tested by my little pipes, and my recovery from surgery is challenged by even a slightly larger flute, such as the persimmon fife I got from Cooperman's.

But I am working on it. I have a design in mind that I will get a chance to test soon, using as you suggest, waxed thread. It would only be a two part pipe, but would allow me to test the process. I'm also saving my hobby money for a larger kiln. I probably will still make the same small pipes, but at least I will be able to lay in more than one at a time.

The big problem I have is that I am learning ceramics, flute making and plute playing at the same time. Each part can ony proceed at the rate of the slowest one. At this point, the bottle neck is my ceramic skills more than my playing, which used to be a huge log-jam... Embarassed
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PostSubject: Re: My own flutes   Sat May 24, 2008 6:39 pm

May I suggest the Yahoo Ocarinaclub? I have been a contributor for years. There are many "experts" on ceramics there that also understand the problems of the instrument maker as well. Have a look...

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Ocarinaclub/messages
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Bill
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PostSubject: Re: My own flutes   Sun May 25, 2008 10:07 am

The ocarinas group is a great resource, and I will add it to our "Links" page as soon as we get one!Cool
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PostSubject: Re: My own flutes   Wed May 28, 2008 3:11 pm

Back on topic...Is a "Kaval" something like a Kvetch?

I haven't been able to find too much info on this eastern European Flute. I know it is end blown with a long vented bore. Is it played using the upper registers? I read something about the fundamental was ignored with this instrument?
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PostSubject: Re: My own flutes   Wed May 28, 2008 5:04 pm

The kavals I have looked at are similar to the more common Ney. My understanding is that they are related in origin. They both are side blown, but I believe the kaval is more often a diatonic scale while the ney may be more of a personal or historic scale.

But their relationship to my flutes is minimal. I only heard of them after settling into making them this way. Same with the quena. While top blown, it is more physically similar to what I make than a kaval. But what happened is that I made a flute, then looked on the internet until I found some flutes that looked like mine. Quena, kaval and shakuhachi share some attributes with mine.

I have done some crude duplicates of kavals, based on google photographs, and I would say they work better in the second and third register. My use of PVC for them is probably no real test, but I got odd hysteresis on the first register.
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