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PostPosted: Tue Jan 07, 2020 9:21 am 
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This is my first post, so I apologize in advance if I post it the wrong place or repeat something that has been rehashed a thousand times before.

Anyway ...

I recently bought a bag of old generation tin whistles from a friend, that used to belong to his now deceased father. Turns out there is a complete set of pre-80s nickel whistles (blue mouthpiece) plus a brass high d one (read mouthpiece).

A life long guitarist I am new to the tin whistle and I had no idea that there was this 80's vintage thing going on. But I do think they sound particularly sweet compared to my other whistles, particularly more so than the new generations, although they're a bit quiter.

I am not going to sell these, as I really enjoy playing them, but does anybody have a ballpark idea of what they might be worth in terms of a price range? The nickel ones are pretty mint, although the high D ones have been modified with thumb holes that I just taped over - and it looks to me to be a full set.

I based the dating on the oval protrusion on the underside of the mouthpieces and the short round shape of the plastic reinforcement on top of it. The head is smaller than a modern generation, more like a green standard feadog, allowing for a narrower air stream than a couple of new generations I bought for comparison.

Cheers guys


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 07, 2020 11:22 am 
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Whatever anyone is willing to pay. But I'd say a range of 5-15 each would be a reasonable and realistic guess.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 07, 2020 7:10 pm 
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Thing is, it's impossible to put a commensurate value on a whistle until you play it.

You can have a 1970s Generation that's poor and a new one that's wonderful.

True that older ones tend to be better. In spite of that, old Generations often go for only a few dollars on Ebay.

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Last edited by pancelticpiper on Wed Jan 08, 2020 6:34 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 5:05 am 
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Very true. One of my newer models plays the same if not slightly better than my vintage one.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 8:10 am 
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I think I paid about £1.25 for most of mine - in 1975. :)

No idea what they're worth (to someone else) now, sorry!

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 12:51 pm 
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I bought a complete set (with an extra D whistle making 7 whistles) of unused "old style" Generations on Ebay back in August (2019).

I got them for £40, that's £5.71 each. No-one else seemed interested, and I think that both the seller and me got a good deal.

Commensurate with my seeming luck with Generation whistles, they're all great players, as are the couple of others I've picked up.

Bear in mind that I like Generation whistles anyway, and I was not expecting them to be better, but different. I grew up playing the old style Generations, so there's a bit of a "coming back home" feeling when I play them. They're the whistles I tend to play now at home and sessions, though for gigs I've got a modern Generation D that I use.

The two old style D whistles are indistinguishable in sound and play, as basically are the three old style Cs that I now have. The C whistles are among the best tin whistles I've ever played (multiple criteria, a lot to do with their solid playability).

If I could get more of the B flats, I'd be happy ... that is, if they are as loud and true as the one I got in August. The D whistles are slightly quieter and lighter/sweeter than the modern Generations, this B flat certainly is not.

I could go on, but I'll stop there with the examination. The conclusion on price is that, with the prices I've seen and paid, the old style Generations do not hold a price premium.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 1:16 pm 
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The two old style D whistles are indistinguishable in sound and play, as basically are the three old style Cs that I now have. The C whistles are among the best tin whistles I've ever played (multiple criteria, a lot to do with their solid playability).

If I could get more of the B flats, I'd be happy ... that is, if they are as loud and true as the one I got in August.


I have a fair few of these and pick up the odd one when the mood takes me. I usually get them somewhere between €5 and €10 at the max.

I do find them variable I have four Cs and they're all distinctly different in their sound, the best one by a long shot is a post 1983 one (thought still from the 80s). The Ds vary less but are far from indistinguishable. A Bb from the early sixties is probably the worst Generation I ever came across, it barely plays. Which probably goes to show the older models are as variable as the current although if you get a decent one, the voicing will be more balanced between the octaves than the later models, certainly for the Ds and Ebs.

The best D I ever played resided in the flutecase of the late husband of a dear friend of mine. He was a highly respected flute and whistle player in his day and my friend wanted me to have a look at the flute, which Paddy Killoran had brought over for him from the US. The whistle, a pre eighties nickel Generation D was just absolutely gorgeous, a real dream to play and it had a clear, singing voice. I didn't let on because my friend treasured her late husbands instruments and I knew she'd give me the whistle if I told her how much I liked it. She's long gone now too.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 4:59 pm 
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Peter, you were quite a gentleman by not letting on about the gem of a Generation you played. Really, I'm serious.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2020 3:12 am 
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Thanks a lot guys that all makes sense - I guess the price is about the same as a new one then.

The brass D one of the bunch has a few dings and it's even ever so slightly bent in one place, but I still think it sounds great, and as far as I can tell it's not out of tune or anything.

But it made me wonder how crucial the state of the bore is to the sound and functioning of a whistle and if these are things can be repaired (or if it is worth having a professional do such a repair?).


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 10, 2020 8:07 am 
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Quote:
But it made me wonder how crucial the state of the bore is to the sound and functioning of a whistle and if these are things can be repaired (or if it is worth having a professional do such a repair?).


We all know a few whistles that got mangled in one way or another and still played great music but if you want to fix it, carefully working a dowel as close to the tube diameter as possible through the tube will probably do the job. Just sticking the head on a new tube is probably cheaper than involving a woodwind tech. On the other hand, if it plays well as is, it plays.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2020 8:11 am 
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That's good advice thanks. My only experience is from guitar, where I am usually of the persuasion that if thing plays fine don't mess around, and only do mess around if the thing used to play fine but doesn't anymore ...

I did consider doin something like the dowel thing and I may try it yet, I am just always a little apprehensive about bending tubes, it's like once you fix it in one place you may well have created trouble in another. I'll probably just leave it as is.



Cheers


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