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PostPosted: Wed Oct 28, 2009 10:08 pm 
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Location: Indianapolis, Indiana
I came across Kevin's flutes on ebay,and I was curious about the flutes, which appeared to me to be grossly undervalued. So I bid on a low D flute and a D piccolo and won both auctions. After receiving the flutes I was very impressed with Kevins's workmanship.

Kevin sent me an email and explained a little of his history. Although some sources on the internet say that he is German, actually Kevin was born in the USA. He went to Europe as a government worker working as an instrument repair person, musician, and linguist. Leaving government service he stayed in Europe for a number of years working as a linguist, flutemaker, musician, and jewellery maker. Kevin speaks five languages and is fluent in Russian. While in Europe he became friends with Andreas Rogge, the award-winning Uillean pipemaker/player in Tuebingen, where he learned at lot, he said.

As far as I know, Kevin is currently making low D flutes and piccolos in Cocobolo and Purpleheart woods, and has his shop in Palm Desert, CA. I have the set in Purpleheart, and they are beautiful. Kevin currently does not have a website, but his email address is musikant777@yahoo.com. Here is the link to one of Kevin's recent ebay ads, where he gives the links to two youtube videos of him playing his flutes. Kevin is anxious to meet Jon Cornia who lives nearby in Los Angeles. http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=220491761064&ssPageName=ADME:X:RTQ:US:1123

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 28, 2009 11:58 pm 
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Hi,
I will swing by and see him, the next time I head out to Palm Springs to visit my Mom. Sounds like a very interesting guy!
I will email him and connect with him, thanks.
The purple heart looks lovely! :shock:

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2009 8:21 am 
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We have discussed his flutes here in the past. Several board members have purchased his flutes as well. Here's the first post I remember.

http://forums.chiffandfipple.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=62489

Feadoggie

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2009 9:55 am 
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Referring to the topic listed above, I would like to give my first impressions of Kevin's low D flute in purpleheart. First of all, I think purpleheart makes a beautiful flute. I know that Terry McGee will disagree with me here, but I suspect that flutes made from purpleheart will have a softer tone than flutes made from blackwood. At least, that is my impression of Kevin's flute. I don't have any problem playing the low D, E, and F on the flute (as was mentioned in a previous topic about the flute), but those notes do have a softer tone. This may also be partially due to the smaller finger holes, which I find very easy to cover. I don't see this flute as a session instrument but rather as a instument for playing more quietly for apartment practice, etc. I haven't touched the embouchure on the flute, but I suspect that you could get more volume from the flute by changing the embouchure headwall angle slightly. I mentioned this to Kevin. The only other thing that I find somewhat problematic with the flute is that the flute is head-heavy with the brass rings and tuning slide.

Kevin obviously has well-developed machining skills as evidenced by nicely machined delrin end caps, concave faced delrin stoppers, and well-fitting rings. With perhaps a few design modifications and the introduction of more standard woods, I think Kevin could soon be making world-class instruments. In the meantime I am going to enjoy playing the cute little piccolo in purpleheart.

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 30, 2009 3:19 pm 
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I've looked at these flutes many times on eBay, and I'm glad someone like Doug finally posted a reasonable review of these instruments on the forum. I always hesitated placing a bid in the past, due to the lack of reputation of this maker (not to mention the horrible photography in the auction listings). This might be a good option for a beginner or someone who wants an inexpensive practice instrument.

By the way, do these flutes have a conical/tapered bore, or are they cylindrical?

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 30, 2009 5:02 pm 
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drewr wrote:
By the way, do these flutes have a conical/tapered bore, or are they cylindrical?

The low D flute has a conical bore, while, if I am not mistaken, the piccolo is cylindrical.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 12:41 pm 
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[Thread revival. - Mod]

I play a KDJ low D flute, too. A beautiful gift from a friend. The headjoint has a cylindrical bore, and the body is conical.

I've had to invent some alternate fingerings to adjust for intonation (or maybe just rediscover fingerings that someone else came up with), and there is a very narrow sweet spot for embouchure in each of the 3 registers where the tone is centered and pure. @Doug_Tipple I agree, the lowest notes are quite mellow and guarded. It's nice that you really can't "max out" this flute--it's hard to get an "edge" on the tone like you can with other flutes and fifes.

I'd love to hear of your experiences!


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