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PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2019 6:21 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jan 20, 2019 1:40 pm
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Hi All,

I tend to pick up musical instruments that are interesting, but the usually revolve around violins, guitars, mandolins, ukuleles, etc. I've never actually played a flute. But it had way too much character to pass up and I figured at worst I could sell/trade it for something that strikes my fancy harder.

Anyways, I've done some googling and while there's plenty of info about Firth Hall & Pond, I'm having trouble learning about things like the type of flute this might be. For instance, most of the FH&P flutes I see don't have keys while this one has 4. Also, is these even complete?

I'm having trouble figuring out the hosting format here, so I made an album on imgur. Here's the link: https://imgur.com/a/WhkvIzH

Am I holding onto a piece that's best left on a shelf? Worth repairing? In addition to the crack as shown where the wood wants to separate, only one of the keys' spring mechanism is functional. Is it boxwood and ivory? Any info or opinions would be greatly appreciated. I kinda jumped into this and haven't had a ton of luck researching on my own.

Thanks in advance!


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2019 9:45 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 03, 2007 7:19 pm
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Location: Hood River, Oregon, USA
The flute you have is probably a D flute. It looks very similar to the one I have here.

It should play at modern pitch standards, but, at least going by my experience with a similar flute, will probably have flat foot notes (Eb and D) and
F#, and will likely play in better tune with itself if the head socket (or tuning slide, if it had one) was pulled out 4 mm or so, which is far enough to
start to cause problems if you don't have a slide.

The big issue your flute has, though, is the damage to the socket that connects the head and left hand body part. That definitely needs a major repair
for the flute to be useable, and such a repair is difficult to do without it being unsightly. Given the location of the problem, I think this presents an
opportunity to have the flute modified to add a tuning slide. A competent maker could do this by cutting the bottom portion of the head off (thats the
part that has the cracked socket), and replacing it with a barrel and a tuning slide that partially lines the head. They could even reuse the existing ring.
If you did that, tweaked the flat foot and F# notes, and had the flute restored (new pads, new stopper, new thread wrapping, cleaned, polished etc) it
could probably end up being a decent, 4-key boxwood flute that would be fun to play at modern pitch. With such modifications it would perhaps not
be of much interest to collectors anymore, but these 4-key American flutes are not particularly collectable anyway, and are generally only worth a few
hundred dollars even without the damage yours have.

So, that is one option, but its worth bearing in mind that such repairs would cost significantly more than the current value of the flute. Your other
option would be to sell it and try to recoup the money you have already spent. Which approach is better really depends what you want to get out
of this, in my opinion.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2019 10:06 pm 
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Location: just outside Xanadu
Nice looking flute. Here's a link to more info: http://www.mcgee-flutes.com/Firth&c.htm

Bob

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 6:05 pm 
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Location: N.E. Wales, G.B.
One for Jon Cornia's tlc. Very repairable. Nice flute.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 22, 2019 12:50 pm 
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I love your handle. I’m a longtime listener to Toots and have seen him a couple of times.

In fact, the last pic here: https://whorfinwoods.com/my-shop/ shows my love of the Maytals.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2019 4:15 am 
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Thanks for all the info and advice! It sounds like it might make more sense to let a new owner make the repairs/modifications they would want.


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