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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2018 3:41 pm 
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MadmanWithaWhistle wrote:
We probably hear, and actively search for, different things in our flutes.


Absolutely. Reading CnF through the years has lead me to that conclusion too.

Best, Keith.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2018 6:16 pm 
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Isn't it incredible that we have makers commenting on the "behind the scenes" and "nuts and bolts" about the art and craft (and economics) of flute making? This site is a treasure for players to have a glimpse into what the artists that make our instruments think about and do to make these finely crafted gems come to life.
Thank you, thank you...


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2018 5:59 am 
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I started making flutes a few years after I began making tools for violin makers and then lutherie tools in general. One of my first experiences of seeing the instrument making community other than Portland was at the Violin Society of America convention which was held in Salt Lake City in 1981 or 1982. There I became aware of all of the different camps, the "Secrets of Stradivari", the secrets and secret societies sometimes rife in that industry. Not too many were hiding their trade secrets but it was enough to be somewhat stifling. Everyone to this day has their pet theories of what and how the Cremonese makers in Strad's time made such great instruments.

Afterwards I headed to Fort Collins on the bus to visit a former housemate. We drove all night. The person sitting across the aisle from me said he was at the conference. It turns out that he was also a kind of a former housemate of my friend's back in Oregon. We talked all night. He was a biochemist researching these Cremonese varnishes and methods and had discovered Strad's secret. They went out and bought the varnish from a furniture varnish company that is still in business producing the same products. Reversible biochemical tests revealed the identity. The varnish really made no difference. It was the processing of the wood. Both top and back were carved much thicker, then covered in foil, then molded with plaster molds. Then the foil is removed and the wood is crushed into the mold using a polished agate burnisher. He discovered that some sort of process was used to mechanically compress the wood by examining some Cremonese violin wood in cross section (from instruments damaged beyond repair).

Few violin makers believed him. They are all frozen into their belief systems, camps, etc. To my eyes his discovery was as obvious as day.

When I entered the flute making world, I found a community of folks out here on the West Coast who were more than eager to talk shop, share their secrets and get me started. Doug Steinke, the late Baroque Oboe maker first got me going making keys then took me through the flute making process. Mark Minkler and Sand Dalton up in the San Juan Islands both welcomed me into their workshops. Actually, with Sand it was a little different at the beginning of the visit. He said to just get off the ferry and walk south and you will hear the oboe playing. I found him and he was about to take a break and a soak in a "hot tub" made from a large oblong galvanized tum with a fire right underneath it. So we spent the first hour of my visit talking shop submerged and fully naked! I also met Michael Hubbert and Rod Cameron soon after, and moved to Mendocino. My initial workshop there was one of 4 - next to me the wood turner and now great chef in Louisville Lynn Winters, cello maker Tony Rose and finally Rod Cameron.

Rod and I became close had this geographic peculiarity for many years: my mother-in-law lived next door to his current workshop for several decades. Whenever we were visiting I would spend much time next door, with Rod eager to show me his latest. Margaret passed away a while back but Rod and I are in almost daily contact. My wife and I hired him to perform our wedding 31 years ago on the Mendocino bluffs.

The generosity that I experienced of these Left Coast wind instrument makers while I was getting started overwhelmed me and propelled me. I remain kind of an open book willing to help others get started and share ideas, and describe here what this life is like sometimes in all its gory detail. This generosity was very refreshing compared with what I had observed in part of the violin making community. The Portland makers and fretted instrument luthiers in Portland were exceptionally open, however, and many have remained life-long friends, especially Suzy Norris who nudged me into the direction of making violin sound post setters which led to Doug and flute making.

It seems that the farther from this Pacific Coast one gets, the more secretive the makers. However, I have an abundant interchange of data and discussion with the Galician wind instrument makers, especially Oli Xiraldez, and can't wait to visit there someday soon!

Casey

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 24, 2018 11:56 am 
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Yeah, I think secrecy is overblown these days as far as traditional instruments go. The only thing I'm unwilling to give out currently is the actual STL file of my whistlehead, cause heck, someone could go print that and put me out of a job! (hand finishing aside).


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2018 6:35 pm 
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I didn't see it mentioned above, but the meeting of the CITES Standing Committee SC70 in Sochi discussed exempting finished musical instruments of dalbergia, a revision of Annotation #15 of CITES.

https://www.atibt.org/en/news-from-the- ... c70-sochi/

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2018 9:03 pm 
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pancelticpiper wrote:
I didn't see it mentioned above, but the meeting of the CITES Standing Committee SC70 in Sochi discussed exempting finished musical instruments of dalbergia, a revision of Annotation #15 of CITES.

https://www.atibt.org/en/news-from-the- ... c70-sochi/

I'm hoping they'll also exempt Brazilian rosewood (in CITES I) in finished musical instruments.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2018 12:12 am 
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Brazilian Rosewood will always be CITES I. As far as the delisting of oter Dalbergias, I have only heard that it oertains to African Blackwood and no other rosewoods. It is still only a proposal by the Standing Committee but has to be voted on an agreed upon at the May meeting in Sri Lanka, according to my CITES inspector who I saw Thursday. He hinted earlier in the fall that they were considering this.

Keep using your permits everyone. Don't take chances.

Casey

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2018 3:50 am 
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Casey Burns wrote:
As far as the delisting of other Dalbergias, I have only heard that it oertains to African Blackwood and no other rosewoods. It is still only a proposal by the Standing Committee but has to be voted on an agreed upon at the May meeting in Sri Lanka, according to my CITES inspector who I saw Thursday. He hinted earlier in the fall that they were considering this.

Keep using your permits everyone. Don't take chances.

Casey


What's interesting is that it's being hailed by the leading pipemakers in Scotland as a done deal:

https://pipingpress.com/2018/12/06/cite ... t-licence/

About your warning about not taking chances, I've taken that to heart with my Highland pipes. I've sold off my beautiful ivory-mounted vintage pipes and I now only play ivory-free vintage pipes. The Ivory Age is over, let the Catalin Age return!

But many Highland pipers are still playing their ivory sets for which they have no CITES permits. Unless Obama's Executive Order has been lifted these pipes are subject to seizure.

And by the way Casey thanks for that wonderful post above!! The memories it brings back of those wonderful people you mention. I visited Rod Cameron's shop, what an amazing thing it was. Speaking of CITES as we are, incredulous now to recall that Rod was turning a flute out of solid ivory when I visited! He said it was to be played in concert in Japan in a week's time.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2018 11:53 am 
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What a wonderful thread. Thank you, all.

As testimony to the openness of some makers... A few years back, maybe 8 or so, I had one of Casey's folk flutes that I had purchased from a member. The seller said he simply could not get it to play well. On receipt, I also noticed some challenges in playability. I discovered a crack in the headjoint. I have the good fortune of living less than an hour from Casey. I contacted him and asked what it would take to get a new headjoint. He invited me up to his place. I went.

He inspected the flute. Spent a couple hours showing me his shop, his process and some incredible flutes. Then we stumbled on to another mutual passion. Guitars. He invited my wife and me to join hI'm and his wife for a cup of tea. Another hour or so flew by. He broke out a beautiful guitar that a friend down south had made for him. He let me play it for quite awhile. It was a wonderful and wonder filled day. One that I will always remember.

Anyway, Casey asked me to leave the flute with him. A little later, I received a new headjoint in the mail. It was perfect. I called and asked what I owed. He refused any payment. Wouldn't even let me pay for the postage.

Casey, I don't know if you remember, but I will never forget and always cherish your hospitality, your kindness, your artistry and great heart. Thank you.

We now return this thread to its normal programming.

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the truth is not lost. do not search for it.
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