Lir Whistle Mouthpiece is Loose

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benjaminwilfred
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Lir Whistle Mouthpiece is Loose

Post by benjaminwilfred »

Has anyone else experienced a wobble in their Lir whistle mouthpiece? Mine fits slightly loose on the tuning slide, such that while not in danger of falling off, it does wobble noticeably while playing. I contacted the maker and they said that brass expands and contracts with temperature changes, and to apply beeswax to the slide (which slightly reduced, but didn’t fix the wobble). I haven’t noticed that other brass whistles are similarly affected. Just curious if anyone else has encountered this and what the remedy was.
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Re: Lir Whistle Mouthpiece is Loose

Post by Mr.Gumby »

Next option for a poor fit is Teflon tape. :boggle:
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Re: Lir Whistle Mouthpiece is Loose

Post by Average Whistler »

It's an infrequent problem with whistles made overseas and the tolerances being off (i.e., a quality control issue). The McNeela, for example, is made overseas for them and sold out of Ireland, and has reported loose slides in their C and D whistles. I don't know where Lir is made but the issue is the same: poor tolerances.

My Killarney and Dixon both have brass tuning slides and neither wobble, no matter what the temperature. Other members of this board with various whistles will undoubtedly report the same: the head should not wobble.

Aside from being irritating, I would assume that, while playing, the head will slide up or down and your tuning will change. Teflon tape will work, but it can be difficult to adhere and can bunch up when you replace the head. On a plastic and brass whistle of mine I gave the top of the tube a light coat of clear lacquer and that increased the diameter enough for a tight fit.

On my McNeela, the solution was simpler: I returned it.

My guess is you were the unlucky soul who got a dud, as the Lir is otherwise well-reviewed. I suggest an exchange or return... life has enough irritations without spending €85.00 on a defective whistle.

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Re: Lir Whistle Mouthpiece is Loose

Post by mountainflutist »

For the short term, plumbers tape would be best as mentioned by others.

For the long term (and as soon as possible if you just bought the instrument), I would contact Lir again that you already tried their advice and ask about it being too loose and if the fit can be adjusted.

It’s also possible a local repair person could do it—specifically a professional Boehm flute repair person skilled in resizing metal tenons and sockets. You might ask Lir above covering the cost if you happen to know someone locally who could do that; however, it’s likely they might prefer to have it sent to them to do it.
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Re: Lir Whistle Mouthpiece is Loose

Post by Narzog »

Paying a professional maker to fix the whistle could probobly cost more than the whistle does. And theres no fix anyone can do thats as good as the whistle tolerances actually being good, so that it already fit perfectly.

A lot of whistles that use tape dont need to worry about this because its supposed to use tape. But trying to tape a whistle that wasnt meant to tape will probobly be really hard. If it only fits one turn of tape it usually rips easily or just slides up when you try to put the parts together. I've made plenty of DIY whistles that had this issue. The tube would just barely fit into the slide, but lose enough that I needed tape. But when I would tape it and try to slide it in, the tape would just rip or push up and not go into the slide. VS whistles that are made to use tape, usually use several turns of tape, so it squishes in and works a lot better.

I'd definitely try to return it.
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Re: Lir Whistle Mouthpiece is Loose

Post by Mr.Gumby »

No whistle should require Teflon tape, either by accident or design. But if you're stuck with a poorly fitting one like the OP and don't return it, you may as well try anything to fix the problem.
If the beeswax on its own doesn't do it, you may try a mix of beeswax and vaseline before going to Teflon., This may build up enough to fil the gap. And it will provide smoother tuning action to boot.
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benjaminwilfred
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Re: Lir Whistle Mouthpiece is Loose

Post by benjaminwilfred »

Thanks everyone. I appreciate all the advise. The teflon tape did the trick. Wrapped it twice around the slide and the head's nice and steady now. Just had to feed the head on gently while continually twisting it in the same direction the tape was wrapped. As long as I don't twist it backwards, the tape stays in place. Probably have to replace the tape on occasion; We'll see how long it lasts. Still in contact with the maker, but I acquired this whistle used, so the teflon may be the more realistic fix. (As a side note, the beeswax I tried first made a bit of a mess I had to clean up; I wouldn't try that again).

Really like the Lir whistle, by the way. Very sweet sounding. One of the few whistles who's second octave, when combined with my playing, doesn't chase my wife from the room :D. That's worth a little teflon treatment to me!
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