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 Post subject: Low C / B prototype
PostPosted: Fri Apr 19, 2013 6:16 am 
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I spotted some 28mm (1 1/8") alu tubing with a 1mm thin wall thickness, and embarked on creating a new prototype low C and low B whistle. You see the result in the pic, standard low D on top, low C under the ruler, followed by low B body:
Image
This whistle has a bore of 26mm, so wider than the standard low D, and what I did call standard low C till now, but will now call narrow-bore low C. The 26mm bore is better suited for low C and B, for a fuller sound.

Here are two sound samples:
Low C sample: https://www.box.com/s/ztdtnfyd7q0x6tsmjizk
Low B sample https://www.box.com/s/nrl13j8el4f4atbbmzlq

For my largish hand size I need to use piper's grip for the right hand on the low C, and for both hands on the low B. I still used some hole offsets to make it more comfortable. I am getting used to the low C, but I can't say the low B is sitting comfy yet, but perhaps in a week or two. It is quite remarkable how the fingers get used to being stretched! When I pick up the low D I think "Oh how small!". Holes are quite large: hole 5 is 13mm, hole 6 is 11mm. It was tempting to make hole 6 smaller, and shift it up the body a bit, to reduce R2-R3 distance. But then the second note gets too weak, it already is weaker than its neighbours! So I got R2-R3 on the low C as 53mm, on the low B as 60mm.

I was also experimenting with a new window design, using for the box ears a part of an even larger tubing, and shaping it to form the 3-sided "box". This is similar than what I do for other low whistle keys, apart from the low D design, where I used a strip of alu and bent it into a 3-sided "box", and then carefully fixed it into the outer mouthpiece tubing using a rebate cut into the "box". - For future low C and B whistles the exact shaping of the window box may change a bit, I like to experiment with it artistically, as I do with the shaping of the mouthpiece tubing on my whistles.

I am expecting more of this wider tubing, and will add these new 26mm bore models to my range, both as single whistles and as a B/C combo set (low C whistle with extra low B body). Inline or custom offsets for the finger holes will be available.

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 Post subject: Re: Low C / B prototype
PostPosted: Fri Apr 19, 2013 6:24 am 
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Those sound great!

I'd love to actually try them. You know how it is, you don't really know until you play a whistle.

Hmmm what about low Bb? Low A? Would you have to go to bigger tubing for those?

A set with one head and bodies for C/B/Bb/A would be awesome, if possible.

Richard

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 Post subject: Re: Low C / B prototype
PostPosted: Fri Apr 19, 2013 6:34 am 
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pancelticpiper wrote:
Those sound great!

I'd love to actually try them. You know how it is, you don't really know until you play a whistle.

Hmmm what about low Bb? Low A? Would you have to go to bigger tubing for those?

A set with one head and bodies for C/B/Bb/A would be awesome, if possible.

Richard

Thank you! Yes, one does not know till one tries. I still hope to achieve improvements in sound though. To play decently the holes need to be well covered. If not it squawkes. Maybe it is just about getting used to the stretch and large holes.

I will look into a low Bb, but may find the right hand stretch too large. Or have to deploy my pinky for hole 6. One key step downwards at a time! Ideally for optimum bore size low Bb and A should be still larger in bore. Using the 26mm bore tubing these would be narrow-bore whistles in my understanding. I expect the Bb should work though, as to A I am not so sure. The bottom end will be weaker. And I like my whistles to have a strong bottom note!

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 Post subject: Re: Low C / B prototype
PostPosted: Fri Apr 19, 2013 11:12 am 
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I agree with Richard. The bass whistles are the best. I've made a couple of my own with plumbing pipe. I refused to make B3 small enough to be covered by the ring finger, so I decided I'd use pinkies on both hands AND the piper's grip. That way I could make T3 big enough, too. I also found that a 45 degree angle down at the tuning slide really makes them feel more comfortable--less arm stretch, and a more natural wrist position.

Come on Hans, you wanna do it! :thumbsup:


P.S. I'll be the first to sign up for the Bracker bass Bb/A whistle tour. :wink:

[Edited to add the P.S. and fix a typo.]


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 Post subject: Re: Low C / B prototype
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 12:46 am 
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Hiya Hans,

I'm probably missing something in your process, but if you have 28mm OD tubing, and it has a wall thickness of 1mm, then shouldn't you have a bore dia of 27mm, not 26?

I have an OS Chieftain Low B that is 28mm OD, 27mm bore, and it's a really nice whistle. The fingering isn't bad either-only about 47.5mm between the lower 2 holes, c to c. And the bottom notes are very good too, like most of the OS Chieftains, with no window walls. Inline holes too-my preference if the stretch is doable for me.

I also like to play around with poster putty window walls and see how it affects the playing of my whistles-sometimes it makes a great difference, sometimes not, depending on the whistle design. Like that new look for your widow walls on the Low C/B head!

Good luck with your C/B combo-should be fun getting there-sounds like you may be close to it already. But I don't envy that long stretch for my aged hands. Had a Bernard Low C once, and that was pretty hard to play on a regular basis for me. Still loved playing it though-big old bus exhaust pipe, compared to the seemingly tiny bore of the Low D's! Definitey something in the bass whistles to be experienced, for sure.

Anyway, nice to see you are expanding your whistle base, and putting in the time doing your homework! Good for you and the best of luck!

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 Post subject: Re: Low C / B prototype
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 1:55 am 
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Hi Barry, thanks for your feedback!

28mm OD and wall thickness of 1mm will give 26mm ID, OD = ID + 2 x Wall, not 1 x Wall.
so if your Chieftain is 27mm ID and 28mm OD, it should have 0.5mm thick walls, quite thin really. Burke alu whistles got about 1mm wall, and Overtons 1.6mm wall, and the Chieftains I know got 1.6mm wall too (being made from standard alu tubing with 16SWG walls).

On your Chieftain low B is the 47.5mm distance between R2 and R3 (hole 5 and 6) centre to centre? that would be quite small for that key, and I am intrigued. How big is hole 5 and hole 6? As I said I got 60mm R2-R3, measured centre to centre, with hole 5 being 13mm and hole 6 being 11mm. 13mm is as big as I want it.

I love to hear feedback about hole offsets on low whistles, especially going into the low range below low D. Are inline holes the best answer? Are small offsets for L3 and R3 beneficial (I am working with 3-4mm offsets) even when using the middle of the fingers to cover L1, L2, R1 and R2?

@stanton135: yes I may get there eventually. Low Bb and low A would benefit from a tube of 28mm bore and 29mm bore respectively (using my "optimum bore chart"). So using 28mm bore alu tubing for both these keys is a distinct possibility, and I'd like to try it sometime.

Meanwhile I've drilled a low Bb body using the 26mm bore tubing, and will finish this today. The stretch is bigger than the low B, but it seems to work, and sounds good too!

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 Post subject: Re: Low C / B prototype
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 2:14 am 
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Just a thought, which is applicable to some of us, at least, Hans. I guess you can make these things in whatever configuration you want. For me, if I had one, the holes would have to be inline. I simply cannot cope with offset holes. I tried for a couple of years to play a low D Reyburn with offset holes, and it was completely beyond me. Had to get Ronaldo to make me a new tube with inline holes.

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 Post subject: Re: Low C / B prototype
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 2:46 am 
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Ben, I appreciate that people have different preferences in regards to hole offsets or no offsets. Inline holes are always an option on my low whistles, as is a thumb hole or none. I also hope to get more discussion on these matters as part of the Bracker Whistle Tour, as I included a 6 inline hole body and a body with offset holes, plus thumb hole, for the low D.

I guess the lower we go with whistle keys, the more important it becomes to customise hole placements to individual needs. Or we just adopt the Böhm-system for the whistles :D

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 Post subject: Re: Low C / B prototype
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 2:53 am 
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Go on then. Sign me up for the UK tour if you have one. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Low C / B prototype
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 9:43 am 
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hans wrote:
Hi Barry, thanks for your feedback!

28mm OD and wall thickness of 1mm will give 26mm ID, OD = ID + 2 x Wall, not 1 x Wall.
so if your Chieftain is 27mm ID and 28mm OD, it should have 0.5mm thick walls, quite thin really. Burke alu whistles got about 1mm wall, and Overtons 1.6mm wall, and the Chieftains I know got 1.6mm wall too (being made from standard alu tubing with 16SWG walls).

On your Chieftain low B is the 47.5mm distance between R2 and R3 (hole 5 and 6) centre to centre? that would be quite small for that key, and I am intrigued. How big is hole 5 and hole 6? As I said I got 60mm R2-R3, measured centre to centre, with hole 5 being 13mm and hole 6 being 11mm. 13mm is as big as I want it. ...


I stand corrected: Measured a different way-more precisely (tube is out of round on the bottom exit)-the outer tube diameter is 30mm, and the wall thickness is probably closer to 1.5mm-by eye (your 1.6 for it is probably most accurate), and as before, the ID is the same, 27, maybe 27.5mm. Sorry for being so innacurate-it was a quick measure, and seemed reasonable-but I guess I forgot I was talking to a whistle maker! :wink: Not a very thin walled tube, no, as I lead you to believe.

Yes, the 47.5mm is correct, and center to center for the distance between the 2 bottom holes on the Low B, and hole 5 is 11.5mm, hole 6 is 8mm.

About offsets, I think it's pretty individual, as you suspected. I only have medium sized hands for a man, and not overly long fingers either, and rather average thickness. I don't think I could play your B whistle, unless it had the offset last hole, and then I'd probably have to use my little finger, which is quite short. But in any stretch that I can handle easily, I would always prefer inline, just for the adaptability of piper's grip to any inline spacing.

Offsets are more helpful and necessary for those who are going beyond their reaches, I think. The best way to tell is by trying, either on the whistle itself or a mock-up on a correct sized dowel or other such with holes marked someway. Maybe demo tubing with holes drilled in short pieces for right and left hands just as a starting point? Just a thought.

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 Post subject: Re: Low C / B prototype
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 11:23 am 
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i guess padded keys are an option if the finger stretch or hole size becomes too great.

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 Post subject: Re: Low C / B prototype
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 2:02 pm 
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@Ben: will do when it happens.

@Barry: okay, 11.5mm and 8mm for hole 5 and 6 explains the shorter stretch.
But I prefer wider holes to get more power. My window is ca 17mm x 8mm, whiuch can deliver good power on a low C and B, given that the tone holes allow it.

@dspmusik: I don't think I will even try to fit keys on aluminium whistles. Would be better to do with wooden ones.

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 Post subject: Re: Low C / B prototype
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 3:03 pm 
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hans wrote:
....I guess the lower we go with whistle keys, the more important it becomes to customise hole placements to individual needs. Or we just adopt the Böhm-system for the whistles :D


hans wrote:
@Barry: okay, 11.5mm and 8mm for hole 5 and 6 explains the shorter stretch. But I prefer wider holes to get more power. My window is ca 17mm x 8mm, whiuch can deliver good power on a low C and B, given that the tone holes allow it.

@dspmusik: I don't think I will even try to fit keys on aluminium whistles. Would be better to do with wooden ones.


If you need keys, go for the Alto Boehm flute; they're great, and versatile too-all the way down to Low G! Not a whistle certainly, but a great instrument to play in its own rite.

OK Hans, the Chieftain has a little bigger window, and also has a strong low end. No doubt there are numerous combinations on how to get there. Have a blast!

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 Post subject: Re: Low C / B prototype
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 4:03 pm 
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Yes, sure, Barry!
I am intrigued though, and love to meet some other sub-D low whistles.
Haven't had the pleasure yet.
My Aebi Bb flute got hole 6 with just 6mm.
I guess hole 6 will show a huge amount of variations in size and location among low whistles.
I should try making a smaller holed low B and find out what kind of power reduction it will cause, and if I can compensate it somehow.

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 Post subject: Re: Low C / B prototype
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 5:09 pm 
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hans wrote:
I should try making a smaller holed low B and find out what kind of power reduction it will cause, and if I can compensate it somehow.
Yes, you might want to try that. Notes that low don't really need such large holes I find, YMMV.

Feadoggie

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