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PostPosted: Wed Aug 30, 2017 1:23 pm 
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Hello All.

A number of years ago I finally purchased my primary instrument: A 5-keyed Sam Murray with all the usual suspects except the short F. There are times when I wish there was a short F for one reason or another, as in certain passages requiring F naturals it would seem to make sense, but I've so far gotten by engaging the left hand pinky.

I've often wondered if it would be worth it to have a maker do a pin-mount job to add the key, as there's no block for it. But then of course I run the risk of mutilating an otherwise lovely flute, I suppose. Any thoughts on this?


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 30, 2017 1:38 pm 
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My thought would be not to mutilate the flute. I'd rather have a short F than a long F, but you haven't the choice.

Now, in the guitar world, if a guitar is a "player" and resale, etc. is not an issue that would come up, many players would perhaps customize to their liking.

For a Murray, which aren't made anymore, you'd have to either hack away with puncturing the tube for a pin mount, tonehole & seat, or have wood grafted in to turn for a block (plus tonehole & seat anyway). Jon C. would be a choice for a block mount, assuming possible to get a good, invisible wood match (probably not if it's boxwood).


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 30, 2017 2:30 pm 
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I would not put a pin mounted key on a block mounted flute. Aesthetically it would look off to me.
For myself I have no idea why a person would elect not to have a short F unless there was a physical limitation to warrant it and there was a cost savings. I personally use the short F more than the long F.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 30, 2017 2:40 pm 
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Gosh, if I had a lovely Murray flute, I wouldn't risk it. :o I'd rather learn how to live with the flute as it is. Every flute has its limitations, but, if it's anything like some of the keyed Murrays I've met out there, playing Irish music wouldn't be one of them.

But you've obviously lived with the flute for some time. It must be like an old friend. What if having something done to it made you like it less? For those rare times when you might really need a short F, I'd be more inclined to buy another flute than to risk damaging the instrument you've got.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 30, 2017 3:56 pm 
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benhall.1 wrote:
What if having something done to it made you like it less? For those rare times when you might really need a short F, I'd be more inclined to buy another flute than to risk damaging the instrument you've got.

I agree, another flute sounds appropriate. Although...I'd think a new key would have minimal if any effect on sound, as at least it's a hole that is normally in the closed position. One could always plug it. Also, I've seen some key configurations where an additional key merely lifts the current key pad (for the long F), with no additional/alternate tonehole required.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 30, 2017 8:17 pm 
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Short F key makes my life easier, I use to alternate with the long F depending of the tune. Generally I play long F when going up on the scale, from D or E to F, and the short one when descending on the scale, from G to F.

But I donĀ“t like the idea of adding a new key to a Sam Murray flute, take note you have a very valuable instrument, Sam Murray almost does not make any flute and you will have a museum instrument in a few years.

The easy way will be to buy a new flute, and the hard one will convince your wife that you need a new flute.

D


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 30, 2017 11:13 pm 
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kkrell wrote:
benhall.1 wrote:
What if having something done to it made you like it less? For those rare times when you might really need a short F, I'd be more inclined to buy another flute than to risk damaging the instrument you've got.

I agree, another flute sounds appropriate. Although...I'd think a new key would have minimal if any effect on sound, as at least it's a hole that is normally in the closed position. One could always plug it. Also, I've seen some key configurations where an additional key merely lifts the current key pad (for the long F), with no additional/alternate tonehole required.

I understand from talking to flutemakers that any new hole, closed or not, alters the properties of the flute. That has always made sense to me, because there is a hole on the inside, i.e. a disruption in the bore. My understanding is that a flutemaker might make other holes differently if there was going to be this hole in the first place. I was thinking of your second option all along - personally, I wouldn't dream of having someone make a new hole; but even a new post and key would be too much of a risk to me. It's bound to change the playability and aesthetics at the very least, and who knows whether that would be for the better? Also, however good the person making the new key, there's bound to be some element of risk to the flute itself, just as there is in even the most minor operation on a human. But at least humans can heal themselves, our bodies repairing damaged tissue - flutes can't do that.

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 31, 2017 1:19 am 
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I agree with all of the above posts, I wouldn't do it.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 01, 2017 3:56 pm 
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Well, I'm gonna go against the grain here. If I felt I needed it on my preferred main flute, I'd get it done. (Personally I use both F keys, though probably the long one more than the short, at least in flat keys). Provided the craftsman chosen is top-notch, I don't think there's any major risk either structurally or to the playing qualities. Although on boxwood it can't be done near-invisibly, I'd prefer and advise getting a block grafted on, if feasible (space might be a problem and if so a second hole might be inevitable), rather than more noticeably inconsistent and greater crack-risk-entailing pillars. I don't think an extra hole would be a huge issue, but it isn't necessary and having the new short F as a Tromlitz lever lifting the existing long F would be the best bet. Done really well I think it would be unlikely to affect current or future value and more likely to enhance than reduce it.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 08, 2017 7:04 am 
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That's going to be up to you. I use both since I have both. But if you are at home with your flute you may or may or not notice much. If you can wrangle the loan of a flute with both long and short f keys give it a week of using both and see if it makes much difference to you. I would get a block mounted key on a block mounted flute. The problem with this fix is you will be without your flute for sometime. In the states Jon Cornia might be your contact. I'm not sure where you are. The Cities II shipping regulations may make it hard to send out of your home country.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 9:43 am 
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I'm sure a good flute maker could add a block for the F short key. They can create a socket and then add the block on the flute. I've seen this made by Hamilton and it works great.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 11:53 am 
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I just wish to report that I've had a C nat thumb hole put in on a number of
flutes, it cost between 20 or 30 dollars, it takes the maker about an hour,
and the results have always been entirely fine--at least to his ear and mine.


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