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PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 4:10 am 
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Hi whistlers!
Had a wee heads up about this post...
The "narrow bore low D" whistle is a very rare beast, only a couple of them around currently, Colin tells me! They are very particular to voice and time consuming to make, hence why there are not more of them around. I really hope Colin can find a way to get more out there, as they are a really interesting alternative to the classic low D sound.

The body of my particular one was turned down from a thicker piece, so the rings actually havn't been added, but are what is left from the thicker tube. The "rings" (chimney height) really help perfect the tuning, especially consistency in the octaves, of these particular notes. Because the bore size of the narrow bore D, is actually the same as an F/E/Eb, it requires a very particularly voiced head joint. In my case, Colin to re-voice my Eb head joint to work really nicely on the narrow bore D body AND Eb. Ideally one day the Eb and D will have their own heads. But voicing heads for the narrow bore D can be a dangerous thing Colin explained to me, as you need to push the head right to the edge, to get the unique sound from the narrow bore. One too many scrapes, wind way a touch too wide, or an angle a mm too sharp, means the head joint is ruined, and unusable for any pitch whistle. Given the time it takes to make a head joint, it's a risky adventure!

The narrow bore D is a wee bit quieter that a regular low D Goldie instrument; It's not loud, but I don't need it to be. I find that it has it's own thing going on sonically that doesnt need to compete with louder instruments. So in smaller groups, or close to a microphone it's perfect.

Why narrow bore? I have regular bore and narrow bore Goldie low Ds, and often find myself going back to the narrow bore for a few reasons - it might be the particular head joint/body that Colin made for me, but I find the air expenditure / playability / phrasing really intuitive. It's excellent for faster music as it is very responsive, whilst really expressive in slower tunes without being that cliché sound. It's sweet sounding and has some really interesting higher frequency overtones that I enjoy... something different and a really tasty alternative that allows different playability, and suits some music really well!

Cheers folks, Calum

PS Yes, new album out now via my website and http://www.musiqueceltique.fr/index.php/produit/calum-stewart-tales-from-the-north/, and Yes... hope to see some whistling buddies in London in January!! Come and have a play on the narrow bore yourselves after the show!

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 4:27 am 
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Joined: Fri Oct 08, 2010 6:33 am
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Location: Out On The Western Plain
Hi Calum, thanks for the infos.

How would you compare this Low D (and your Goldie's in general) to your Grinter's?


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 5:26 am 
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Calum Stewart wrote:
The body of my particular one was turned down from a thicker piece, so the rings actually havn't been added, but are what is left from the thicker tube. The "rings" (chimney height) really help perfect the tuning, especially consistency in the octaves, of these particular notes.


Ah, and now at last the mystery is well and truly solved! Body machined down, much like a (very) old style flute or clarinet.

Thanks Calum for satisfying everyone's curiosity!

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 7:22 am 
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Thanks for the info!

I had heard about chimney height having an effect on the octaves, interesting to apply that to Low Whistles.

It was standard procedure in the 18th century on wood flutes, after the bore was reamed to come back with files and special chimney tools to make all sorts of subtle perturbations and chimney adjustments to correct octaves and crossfingerings.

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1978 Quinn uilleann pipes
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Goldie Low D whistle


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