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PostPosted: Mon Apr 27, 2020 6:22 pm 
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I've got a couple of Goldie whistles and, like you, struggled to know if I wanted a medium, soft, or hard blower. I think air consumption is just one part of the equation. My mezzo 'A' is a medium to soft blower which means it really wants to be pushed at the top of the range. My high 'D' is pretty much even throughout and is a medium-hard, as was my low 'F', which was a hard blower. The A is the loudest but really needs some force at the top end and, oddly enough, clogs like a ba$tard while none of the others do. I've found my preference is more for the medium to medium-hard, as the really hard-blowing F had so much back pressure I didn't feel I could blow through the instrument and was always choking up a bit on it. If you get the chance to try several Goldies you'll see right away which one feels best.

-Peter


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 28, 2020 7:13 am 
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Sedi wrote:
Most people I know prefer the soft blowing Goldies...I'll have to visit Colin and try them...only a 4 hr drive from where I live.


How fantastic to be so close to The Master! (I think I'm safe calling him that.)

Colin used to make three different blowers I believe, soft/medium/hard. My Goldie Low D was made at that time, it's stamped M for medium.

Now he offers a range of windway heights and they're marked with the specific measurement in mm.

I picked up a Goldie Low C, and the head is interchangeable with my Goldie Low D. The Low C head has a higher windway, more open, "softer", so I can switch the heads back and forth and experience the difference between a soft and medium blowing Goldie Low D.

With the softer-blowing Low C head, the Goldie Low D plays very much like the Lofgren Low D that I used to have.

Comparing the Lofgren/soft Goldie Low Ds on the one hand, to the "M" Goldie Low D on the other hand, I experience these differences:

-the "soft-blowing" Low Ds have a nice freeblowing open feel

-the "soft-blowing" Low Ds give a wonderful combination of a strong low octave, powerful bellnote, sweet easy 2nd octave, and nimble "action"

-the "soft-blowing" Low Ds have considerably greater air consumption

When all is said and done, I prefer playing the Goldie "M" blower. It has more resistance/backpressure and the 2nd octave is a tad stiffer, but the air consumption is much less, meaning fewer breaths.

When I recently chatted with Colin over the phone, and he played a number of alto Fs, it was a Medium blower that we settled on, and it's super, really one of the best whistles I've ever owned.

What I'm very curious about is the Narrow Bore Low D that Colin has spent considerable time developing. I would love to try one. In general I prefer the way whistles play when their bore is a tad on the narrow side, but I've never had the chance to play a Low D with anything other than the standard bore that most makers use.

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1978 Quinn uilleann pipes
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 28, 2020 11:18 am 
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Richard, so interesting! Do you notice any difference in tone between the soft and medium? I get a louder and edgier tone from my Overton low D compared to the Chieftain Custom, but the Overton isn't nearly as efficient. As is so often with whistles I wish I could combine the playability of one with the tone of the other. But back to the OP, when you picking a low D your lung capacity is a much bigger factor in choosing compare to higher keys.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2020 1:29 pm 
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fatmac wrote:
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The Howard low D does also not take much air but not everybody likes the organ-pipe sound. (I do.)


Yep, I like my Howard too, almost as easy to play as my Tony Dixon one piece ABS. :thumbsup:

I love my Howard low D as well as it's sound. I have had positive comments from neighbors when playing outside. I was able to get a B stock and save even more money. He does free world wide shipping. I got it in 2 1/2 days.

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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2020 11:25 am 
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pancelticpiper wrote:
I've never had the chance to play a Low D with anything other than the standard bore that most makers use.


I know the quote is not particularly pertinent to my question, but I'd love to hear your feedback on the Sweet Onyx low D whistle Richard. I find the tapered bore makes the finger spread small enough for me to use finger tips for the most part, but I have been mostly concentrating on flute, so don't have a good comparison basis. It certainly doesn't have the "cosmic drainpipe" sound that many people like, and might even be perceived as being to recorder like. I'm curious if you ever got a chance to try one.

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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2020 6:38 pm 
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Sweet as in Ralph Sweet?

I played a rosewood Low D combination set he made many years ago, basically one of his standard Irish flutes (which I really like) with a Low D whistle head also.

With the flute head it played like his rosewood Irish flutes usually play, big bellnote etc, but with the whistle top the low notes were too wimpy for me. I don't know why it played so differently with the different heads, but then again I know nothing about whistle making.

That was a long time ago. Presumably he got the Low D whistle head design dialed in later.

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1978 Quinn uilleann pipes
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PostPosted: Wed May 06, 2020 6:07 am 
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No, the Walter D Sweet Onyx Low D whistle is a whole different animal, as far as I know: https://wdsweetflutes.com/onyx.php

I think Ralph and Walter are related, but can't remember which one is the son...

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PostPosted: Wed May 06, 2020 2:48 pm 
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Latticino wrote:
No, the Walter D Sweet Onyx Low D whistle is a whole different animal, as far as I know: https://wdsweetflutes.com/onyx.php

I think Ralph and Walter are related, but can't remember which one is the son...

Walter is the son of the late, lamented Ralph. Ralph's shop has been taken over by Joe Morneault of Music Morneaux.

Best wishes.

Steve

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PostPosted: Thu May 07, 2020 10:35 am 
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Here's a new Onyx low D video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sSET5MQfenw


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PostPosted: Thu May 07, 2020 12:24 pm 
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pancelticpiper wrote:
With the flute head it played like his rosewood Irish flutes usually play, big bellnote etc, but with the whistle top the low notes were too wimpy for me. I don't know why it played so differently with the different heads, but then again I know nothing about whistle making.

I guess it might have to do with the flute head stopper position. It has a big influence on the bell note. Moving it further out will strengthen the bell note (but might weaken other notes). But the further out it sits, the more you'd either have to increase the hole size or the taper of the flute to get the octaves in tune. So more taper can still mean "fatter" sound on a flute. But that will reduce the volume and "oomph" of the instrument when used as a whistle. For me a whistle/flute combo seems like too much of a compromise. Might work on higher keys like A or G though.
It might be possible that there are tapered low Ds out there with a fat sound though. Maybe when constructing the mouthpiece accordingly. My loudest low D (not tapered however) is the Qwistle, which has a tapered windway and very high backpressure. I wonder how such a mouthpiece would sound on a tapered bore body.


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PostPosted: Fri May 15, 2020 2:26 am 
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I read a few comments on the "organ pipe" sound of the Howard Low D and I'd like to inform forum members that now Howard Music offers an alternative version of the mouthpiece, that delivers a less reedy and more Breathy/chiffy sound. I have it and it is fantastic.


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PostPosted: Fri May 15, 2020 6:47 am 
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Yes, I have been thinking about upgrading mine with the new mouthpiece. Guess I should buy one. But I do like the "organ pipe" sound :D .


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PostPosted: Fri May 15, 2020 12:35 pm 
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gerardo1000 wrote:
I read a few comments on the "organ pipe" sound of the Howard Low D and I'd like to inform forum members that now Howard Music offers an alternative version of the mouthpiece, that delivers a less reedy and more Breathy/chiffy sound. I have it and it is fantastic.

Here is a YouTube review of the new Howard low D where she plays using all three heads. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NCZaV4_deEU It is done by CutiePie. It helped me decide which head I liked best.

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