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PostPosted: Sat Nov 09, 2013 5:29 pm 
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Location: Ottawa
I thought some people here might be interested in a new instrument I’m making called the Saxinet (aka “Backpack Sax”). It’s a keyless instrument with the same basic fingering as saxophone and recorder.

I’ve made a few videos of the Saxinet backed by other instruments. I apologize in advance for the imperfect playing, especially in intonation (the player’s main challenge on such a small instrument, but great for practice). You’ll see right away that I’m neither a horn player nor a jazz player, although I have played professionally on other instruments in other genres for about 21 years. The main point is to convey a rough idea of the instrument’s potential:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HAIW6LoFo3c
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ze6xUWBwEUI
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n0TJrAccRUs
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tfXSf6CnBng

The Saxinet is available in Bb and C, and in a choice of three colors, silver, gold and two-tone. I’m hoping that it will have uses for experienced players as a compact travelling instrument, as well as for kids to learn on a couple of years earlier than they could with sax or clarinet, or as an alternative to recorder. The Saxinet is my sincere attempt to make a better “pocket” instrument than any other on the market.

I’d be glad to answer any questions or comments, either here or by email.

All the best,

Duncan Gillis
http://www.Saxinet.com


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 09, 2013 6:30 pm 
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Does the instrument overblow to a second register, or is it restricted to a compass of a 9th as in your demo vids?

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 09, 2013 6:57 pm 
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The website says it plays chromatically from Bb to c, so a ninth. If it overblows, I expect it'll overblow a twelfth, like the clarinet, as it's a cylindrical instrument open at one end. I like the sound, but it would be nice to get more range.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 09, 2013 7:05 pm 
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So it fingers the same basic scale as the saxophone or recorder. What about the in between notes? I noticed the double holes on the lowest two holes, but what about cross-fingerings? The same as a recorder? German or Baroque? If not, how are they different? Thanks!


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 09, 2013 7:20 pm 
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It does overblow at a 12th. This requires quite a bit of control from the player and isn't something I personally feel compelled to focus on with this instrument. There's a vast amount of music that fits perfectly within its range; Jack Campin's done a nice job of compiling some of it.

It's a simple instrument for simple music. I can understand developing a desire for an easily accessible greater range, but it's just not possible on this type of instrument without a whole new level of complexity (and cost), hence the clarinet.


Last edited by gillis on Sat Nov 09, 2013 11:55 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 09, 2013 7:21 pm 
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The cross fingerings are virtually identical to those on baroque recorder. I'll see if I can find a way to post the fingering chart.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 09, 2013 11:50 pm 
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Duncan, what's the difference between the Saxinet and your Highland Hornpipe? As I understand it's the fingering and market positioning.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 09, 2013 11:53 pm 
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Hi Roman!

Different fingerings, different pitches and different voicing in terms of tone-hole diameters.

The Saxinet uses common woodwind fingering, the Highland Hornpipe uses GHB fingering.

The Saxinet is pitched in Bb or C with all fingers down.

The Saxinet has smaller tone-hole diameters which gives it a different harmonic spectrum, ie. fewer upper harmonics, a "purer" more refined tone, the Highland Hornpipe having a more rustic wide open tone.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 20, 2015 7:03 pm 
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Thread revival. - Mod

Gillis, I have two questions:
1. The Northwind Instruments site isn't actively responding to emails. Are the instruments now available through distribution to retailers? If so, who are the retailers?
2. I played GHB for several years and am attracted to the Hornpipe for the fingering, but the tone of the Saxinet on the clips presented on the Northwinds excellent website seem to have better tone for solo playing. If that is an accurate depiction, is the transition of fingering from GHB to Saxinet difficult?
Thanks
Jim


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