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 Post subject: Modern pibgorn makers?
PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2015 11:07 am 
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Hi,
I have a strong Welsh heritage, and I think I'd enjoy doing a bit of Welsh trad on the side. I'm not rolling in expendible income, and web searches seem to turn up a lot of antiques.
Does anyone have any leads on any modern makers of pibgorns?
Also, are most still made of horn, or have luthiers started to gravitate towards wood or delrin/acetyl?


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2015 3:04 pm 
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Location: Ystradgynlais, Cymru
Gafin Morgan makes plastic pibgyrn, with plastic/carbon fibre reeds:

http://www.pibgorn.co.uk/

I'm not sure if John Tose is making now. His are wood and horn. He always used to use natural reeds for his pibgyrn, although I seem to remember he may have been experimenting with artificial reeds:

http://johntose.blogspot.co.uk/

John Glennydd doesn't have a website. Not sure if he's making but I can inquire - I should see someone who knows him this weekend. Wood and horn for him too.

Keith Lewis may be making. His are wood and horn, and he uses eezeedrone reeds. I can ask him if he's making, if you want, but I know he's been moving house so may have issues with space. He has no website!

There are a a few other makers outside Wales whom I've come across - one in France or Brittany, I believe, and one in Spain. I could look them up if you wish.

There's more info here, on the Moch Pryderi page:

http://www.mochpryderi.com/Pibgorn.html

More particularly, John Tose's 200 tunes arranged for pipes/pibgorn are on that site. Most useful.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2015 10:43 pm 
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Thank you!
I downloaded that tunebook, and the instruments on the first link certainly seem of good quality and modestly priced.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 07, 2015 12:14 am 
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If he was anywhere about, Jemtheflute might be yer man - not as a maker, but he knows about they noisy, whiny things. :wink:

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 07, 2015 12:36 am 
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He just friend-requested me on Facebook, plus I have one of his piccolos. I'm sure we'll be conversing soon. :)

EDIT : Jem, that is.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 07, 2015 1:05 am 
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Hi, Casey. I see you've already found the FB Pibgorn Group. Besides what Geraint has written above and you can find by scrolling through that Group's timeline, I've little to add. Jonathan Shorland makes pibgyrn from time to time, but is also moving house at present, I believe. There's a maker in France who was reported on on the FB group recently, one of whose pibgyrn was acquired by an acquaintance of mine this summer, but we haven't yet met up for me to try it. And a Google search will find you just about all there is to find (including lots on an animé character!).

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 07, 2015 6:20 pm 
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Jem, do you have any experience with Gafin Morgan's instruments? I rather like the aesthetics and the price point.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2015 6:59 am 
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I'd make a general point that they can ALL be awkward, as far as tuning goes. Natural reeds - cane or alder - will get wet pretty quickly, of course. The artificial reeds will get just as wet and can still be awkward, although I've got some of Gafin's reeds pretty well in tune. You might well have to tape the holes and so on, with any pibgorn. Single reeds can be a pain.

The best reeds I've seen are Basque alboka reeds with carbon fibre tongues, made by Osses. They are pretty expensive though I think they were around 80 Euro a couple of years ago.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2015 10:20 am 
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I've had several brief tries of Gafin's plastic pibgyrn in the past. A friend of mine acquired one fairly recently and I've had a couple of goes on that too. They're a great idea and the actual instruments are/should be just fine (though I don't like the way you have to insert the reed with the wind-cap horn on rather than putting the reed into the body and then placing the top horn over it), but I'm not too sure he's really cracked the reeds yet, at least consistently and reliably. (Reeds, of any kind, consistent and reliable???? :o ) The second reed he sent my friend (because the first one wouldn't behave, either as set up by Gafin before delivery or with tweaking) seems to be doing fairly well, but I wouldn't say these are yet beginner-pick-up, work-out-of-the-box idiot-proof, which is kinda what Gafin hoped to produce. If you can actually get one of John Tose's, they're probably the best value and John's cane reeds are very good. I echo Geraint's comment that even all-synthetic reeds remain somewhat erratic in response as condensation on them or in their bore affects their playing behaviour.

The French maker mentioned previously is Guy Jaillard. His website appears to be offline for a make-over at present. I still haven't met the recently imported one of his in my area. My one reservation about the Jaillard ones is that they have a turned wooden funnel, not a horn for the top wind-cap. It won't affect their function in any way, but it's the look.....

Or there's always the DIY approach following Gerard's destructions: http://pibgyrn.com/chanter

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