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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 10:33 am 
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I am confused about keys and barrel rotation. Most keyed flutes have a one piece barrel that places the keys under the appropriate fingers. With 2 piece barrels it is a different story? In Casey Burn's "Mine" post, you see a "Nicholsonized" R&R flute. According to Terry Mcgee's page, Nicholson rotated the lower barrel of the flute. It appears that Casey's is the same. What does that do to the placement of the key levers? If you have a 2 piece barrel does that mean that you have to have "custom" keys made?


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 11:48 am 
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When flute players talk about rotating the lower barrel, it usually means displacing the tone holes of the upper vs. lower section by only a small amount. In most cases it's probably not drastic enough to change where your fingers land on the keys, so you don't need special keys made for it.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 1:16 pm 
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Actually the Nicholson style flutes are designed to have the lower body turned quite significantly further out, and whilst that doesn't affect the short F key significantly, the long F key has to have an up-turned touch rather than the usual down-turned shape, so that the touch falls under the tip of the L4 finger conveniently. You can see an example on a Manby flute I overhauled a couple of years ago - photos in this (public) album on Facebook - see photos 106 onwards: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10154754061454271&type=1&l=d4e3550bbf

You can see the Manby flute, including the long F set-up, in action in this video: https://youtu.be/aFtrJjypoYA

Here's another video, of an actual T Prowse Nicholson's Improved, also showing an up-turned long F key: https://youtu.be/qt0GrEwGLi4

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 1:32 pm 
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BTW, rogervj, we usually reserve the term "barrel" for the tuning barrel part of a head with a tuning slide. The body parts aren't referred to with that word. We use "one piece body" for the type with no division between the hands and "upper/lower body" for the respective parts of a two-piece body, with the footjoint tagged on below in either case. And two-piece bodied are historically much more common than one-piece ones. :-)

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 2:54 pm 
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jemtheflute wrote:
BTW, rogervj, we usually reserve the term "barrel" for the tuning barrel part of a head with a tuning slide. The body parts aren't referred to with that word. We use "one piece body" for the type with no division between the hands and "upper/lower body" for the respective parts of a two-piece body, with the footjoint tagged on below in either case. And two-piece bodied are historically much more common than one-piece ones. :-)


Thanks for all the useful info. So if you are looking to buy this type of keyed flute, are you restricted to the 19th century? Are there modern makers out there that feature this setup or do you have to spend big bucks on customization?

Nice video btw :)


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 3:05 pm 
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If you're ordering a keyed flute, easy to specify the up-turned long F touch. If you already have or acquire a flute with a standard shape long F touch, it wouldn't be a huge or too horribly expensive matter to have the touch (only) replaced with one turned the other way (cut off and either the same or new metal soldered back on the other way and shaped to suit, by forging and filing). Or, if you wanted to preserve the original key, having a replacement in the other form made would likely cost around £200 going on prices makers quote for making and fitting keys. It would be a simple matter to swap keys once a new one was made. Nothing else is necessary
to permit you to roll the lower body outwards. If you don't use the long F key much, you could just leave it be and ignore it, even take it off and plug the tone-hole. After all, Nicholson himself supposedly deprecated the long F key, although we know he used flutes which had it!

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 7:09 pm 
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Good to know, I'm surprised that given the popularity of this type of grip, that makers don't advertise the option. I have never seen it on any major makers page, even when they make two piece bodies!


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