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PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2020 1:16 pm 
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Location: Coventry, England
Dan A. wrote:
fatmac wrote:
Tony Dixon used to make brass Trad whistles, then they used nickel, but now they don't seem to do a Trad model any more.

Their present website seems to only show ABS & aluminium whistles & flutes.

Their Web site shows that the Cupro Nickel Trad D, but not the brass Trad D, is available. Hopefully the brass is just out of stock. If it's been discontinued, I'll be compelled to hunt one down. Guess I have WhOAD after all...


Apparently the brass bodied Trads have been discontinued. I can't remember where I read it, but someone contacted Dixons and they replied that that were not able to get hold of the brass stock tubes at the right price any more (or maybe even at all).

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 09, 2020 3:20 pm 
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Two additional thoughts formed in my head. Furst, and less relevant to the matter at hand, I'm going to want a brass Dixon Trad sooner or later. Second, my Generations arrived today. Though I haven't played them yet, the nickel has a slightly slicker feel than the brass. I don't anticipate having difficulty keeping a hold on it. However, my skin tends toward the dry side, so that's something to bear in mind.

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2020 5:02 am 
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Location: Seattle
Hi Michelle,

I've owned several MKs in D and F, both Pro and Kelpie. In my opinion they are slippery, but there are ways to help - here's a current thread on this very topic, and another older one I linked to on page 4.

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=111271

All the MKs I've owned have been matte finish, and I'm sad to hear the glossy option is gone. Years ago, Misha himself wrote me that the glossy was paradoxically easier to grip (also more expensive) and having picked up many aluminum whistles that makes sense to me. I haven't got hold of any recent ones, I didn't know about the corrugated surface for the thumbs (thank you MichaelLoos), that must be a newer feature and I'm sure must help. I've found for MKs and some other low whistles it helps to have a Susato thumbrest which fits pretty well (there's a site that used to sell these separately, I'll see if I can find it).

I don't mean to discourage you from getting an MK; there's a lot to like about MKs. I've found them to be the most air efficient low whistles of all, and pretty easy to get a useful, workable tone from. Honestly I'm not crazy about the tone, it's kind of gravelly, not so smooth, but as pancelticpiper has pointed out to us several times (and after lots of trial and error I have to agree), the best thing about a whistle is not necessarily the tone, but the playability - what you can get it to do for you. The Pros sound nicer to me than the Kelpies and are worth spending extra for. They are also slightly more difficult to play, Misha told me the holes on the Kelpie are a bit closer together to make them easier for beginners, but I think this compromises the tuning a bit.

I should add I have not found any two MKs that play exactly alike. I have several that I like for different reasons, and I'm still undecided which I should keep or sell. That's true for many makes of whistle, although some are much more consistent - Burke for instance. I like the tone of Burkes better, much smoother, but I can't play the low ones - they just take way too much air for me. I can make much better use of my MKs.

Hope this helps.


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 10, 2020 7:59 am 
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Derek Blackwell wrote:
about MKs...I've found them to be the most air efficient low whistles of all...


In my experience they're the second-most efficient Low Ds, my Goldie "medium blower" Low D is a hair more efficient that my "keeper" MK Low D was.

Derek Blackwell wrote:
I have not found any two MKs that play exactly alike.


Indeed I owned six different MK Low Ds (all tunable, all made pre-matte finish, pre-Kelpie, pre-Pro) and all played slightly differently.

The keeper was one that was a hair more focused, giving it slightly sweeter high notes and a slightly stronger Bottom D.

Derek Blackwell wrote:
Burkes...take way too much air for me.


For sure Burkes are among the least air-efficient whistles for a given key. This becomes more of an issue the bigger the whistle gets, with the Low D I could only sustain High B half as long on the Burke as on the MK.

When testing efficiency on a large number of Low Ds I found that the differences were far more pronounced on the high notes than on the low; High B was the most divergent, so I ended up using just that note for comparing efficiency.

With the Burke Low D it was not only the lack of efficiency but also it being less ergonomic than most Low Ds, having a fatter tube and more widely-splayed fingerholes for the upper hand, which combined to make it much less comfortable to hold and play for me than typical Low Ds.

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2020 3:12 am 
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Location: Chertsey, Surrey, England, UK
Anodizing is only a method of increasing the oxide coating on aluminum (this oxide can be coloured). It does not alter the surface finish of the metal, if the surface is textured or rough it will remain so, if polished then so is the anodized surface. The manufacturer can choose what features he wishes, be it groves, rough or smooth or even knurled all will be presented on the finished anodized surface.


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