Erik's carbon low d flute or Bansuri carbon flute ... opinions?

The Chiff & Fipple Irish Flute on-line community. Sideblown for your protection.
User avatar
oldteche
Posts: 11
Joined: Sun May 29, 2016 9:40 am
antispam: No
Please enter the next number in sequence: 8
Tell us something.: I am retired, and have been interested in whistle and flute on and off for many years. Unfortunately, I cannot carry a tune in a paper bag, but I keep trying.
Location: Mount Vernon, WA USA

Erik's carbon low d flute or Bansuri carbon flute ... opinions?

Post by oldteche »

I'm basically a beginner, and have been interested in carbon low d flutes for irish music. I currently own Dixon's 3-piece flute. The Carbonys are to expensive, and at this stage in my learning I shouldn't even consider. There are two carbon flutes that I have found, that may be reasonable. One is Erik The Flutemaker's carbon flute, and the other is a Goldenfrequency's carbon Bansuri G flute (low D irish tuning). The link to it is: "www.ebay.co.uk/itm/124544623932" .

Does anyone have any knowledge or experience with these flutes. I have very limited knowledge in this area, and would appreciate your knowledge, expertise, and opinions regarding these carbon flutes.
Thanks in advance
User avatar
Geoffrey Ellis
Posts: 475
Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2012 1:15 pm
antispam: No
Please enter the next number in sequence: 8
Tell us something.: Crafting fine quality folk flutes from around the world since 1997, my goal is to create beautiful instruments that have the best possible voice, tuning and response by mixing modern methods with traditional designs.
Contact:

Re: Erik's carbon low d flute or Bansuri carbon flute ... opinions?

Post by Geoffrey Ellis »

I have no experience with carbon fiber flutes, but I did take a close look at the photos of the flutes you mentioned. I would hazard the guess that if you are focusing on trad-style flute playing, neither of those instruments will be ideal. That's not to say that they won't work, or that they don't sound nice or any such thing. The bansuri is quite a different animal than the types of flutes that most players here would choose for trad. Bansuri tend to have a wider bore for a given key, bigger finger holes and an embouchure that is larger and rounder. Taken together, you will be getting quite a different response than you would get from a flute designed for trad-style play.

As for Erik the Flutemaker's offering, it looks quite nice, but again it has a very round embouchure cut--virtually a big circle. I also didn't see anything indicating whether he has done something to introduce a taper in the bore to help with the second octave tuning. I'm guessing not. It has a very bansuri-esque look to it so I'm guessing you would have tuning issues in the second octave.

I don't know that any of that is a deal-breaker, necessarily. But if you are set on a carbon fiber flute within a certain budget, you may not have a lot of options. I don't know how important it is to you to get something that is carbon fiber (since you might have to compromise on some other desirable characteristics to get it) versus another material with design features that are more ideal for the style of music you want to play.
User avatar
kkrell
Posts: 4405
Joined: Mon Jul 29, 2002 6:00 pm
Please enter the next number in sequence: 1
Location: Los Angeles
Contact:

Re: Erik's carbon low d flute or Bansuri carbon flute ... opinions?

Post by kkrell »

oldteche wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 3:31 pm I'm basically a beginner, and have been interested in carbon low d flutes for irish music.
Why? There are other options for durability. If you are interested in a lighter flute, forget it. The Carbony flute is a weighty monster, unlike their whistles. If I have a chance, I'll put one on the scale.
International Traditional Music Society, Inc.
A non-profit 501c3 charity/educational public benefit corporation
Wooden Flute Obsession CDs (3 volumes, 6 discs, 7 hours, 120 players/tracks)
http://www.worldtrad.org
jim stone
Posts: 17005
Joined: Sat Jun 30, 2001 6:00 pm

Re: Erik's carbon low d flute or Bansuri carbon flute ... opinions?

Post by jim stone »

If you wish to tell us what sort of music you want to play and also roughly
what you can pay, we can make suggestions. Also, may be worth counting that
if you buy wisely the flute can one day be sold--it's money in another form.
User avatar
Sedi
Posts: 865
Joined: Sun May 01, 2016 6:54 am
antispam: No
Please enter the next number in sequence: 8
Tell us something.: Practice, practice, practice. You're never too old to learn.
Keep on fluting.
---u---o-o-o--o-o-o--
-----------------------

Re: Erik's carbon low d flute or Bansuri carbon flute ... opinions?

Post by Sedi »

My guess is that neither of these will be as suited for Irish traditional music as the 3 piece Dixon you already have. I have that one, too and it's great.
The video by Erik is so drowned in reverb that it's impossible to say how it really sounds.
The bansuri looks great. I think I'll buy one just for fun.
I don't think BTW that you can say much about the playing characteristics just by the shape of the embouchure. I designed my flutes particularly for Irish music and they all have a round embouchure. But the huge finger holes are another issue. Also the size of the embouchure - looks like maybe 11mm or more, if one can tell from the pic. If it is that big, the stopper needs to be rather close to the embouchure and that might also influence the sound as to not be all that suitable for Irish music.
RLindner
Posts: 104
Joined: Tue Aug 16, 2016 5:03 am
antispam: No
Please enter the next number in sequence: 8
Tell us something.: I've been playing whistle for 2 years now and I'm always looking for new instruments.

Cheers and greetings from Germany
Location: Germany

Re: Erik's carbon low d flute or Bansuri carbon flute ... opinions?

Post by RLindner »

Roughly 3 years ago I owned one of Erik's carbony flutes. I was at the same stage and found the material and sound sample quite impressive.
Finally I couldn't get the same dark sound out of it. The tone was rather pure, which darkened a bit after installing a lip plate as on the flute you linked
on ebay. The most drawback IHMO is the very weak low E note.
User avatar
Sedi
Posts: 865
Joined: Sun May 01, 2016 6:54 am
antispam: No
Please enter the next number in sequence: 8
Tell us something.: Practice, practice, practice. You're never too old to learn.
Keep on fluting.
---u---o-o-o--o-o-o--
-----------------------

Re: Erik's carbon low d flute or Bansuri carbon flute ... opinions?

Post by Sedi »

The E note (especially in the 1st octave) is the biggest issue with the cylindrical thin-walled design. If you want to keep the size of the lowest three holes within "normal" dimensions, the E will be rather weak and breathy. Or you need to increase the hole which will increase the stretch (as on the bansuri and on low whistles). Or you also need to increase the size of the other two holes of the holes for the lower hand.
I solved the problem for my home made flutes by increasing the E hole to 9mm. So the lowest 3 holes are 11.5, 13.5 and 9mm. Sounds great but doesn't look very symmetrical. And you need thick fingers to even be able to play it.
Other makers solved it by increasing the wall thickness at the E hole with either a collar on the outside like Gary Somers on his practice flute or by an insert on the inside, like Ricard Vallina did with his PVC flutes.
User avatar
Geoffrey Ellis
Posts: 475
Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2012 1:15 pm
antispam: No
Please enter the next number in sequence: 8
Tell us something.: Crafting fine quality folk flutes from around the world since 1997, my goal is to create beautiful instruments that have the best possible voice, tuning and response by mixing modern methods with traditional designs.
Contact:

Re: Erik's carbon low d flute or Bansuri carbon flute ... opinions?

Post by Geoffrey Ellis »

Sedi wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 11:58 pm I don't think BTW that you can say much about the playing characteristics just by the shape of the embouchure.
Really? That statement surprises me a little bit because I have found that the shape and size of the embouchure have a pronounced effect on the playing characteristics. There are a lot of talented makers out there creating flutes for playing ITM, and I don't think you can find very many professionals who opt for a round embouchure cut! I'm not saying they don't exist, but I've perused the websites of many of the maker's whose creations get mentioned here routinely, and I see a lot of elliptical embouchure cuts (and even some rounded rectangles), but never one of those big, round bansuri type cuts. It doesn't mean that a player cannot learn to work with it, but how many trad flute makers use a round embouchure cut? Probably a reason for that. On my own flutes I can tell the difference if the dimensions of the ellipse travel too far outside the elliptical boundaries and approach "roundness" by even so much as half a millimeter. I think there is a size range that constitutes the "sweet spot", and one can push that boundary (some players like larger embouchure cut), but things start to change once it gets past a certain size. Certainly Baroque flutes often have a round embouchure cut (which is also quite small), but they don't get used for trad play very much I'm guessing. And the OP did mention that he was interested specifically in Irish music. You can play trad on a bansuri, but it doesn't mean it will be as effective as using a flute that is designed for the purpose.
User avatar
Sedi
Posts: 865
Joined: Sun May 01, 2016 6:54 am
antispam: No
Please enter the next number in sequence: 8
Tell us something.: Practice, practice, practice. You're never too old to learn.
Keep on fluting.
---u---o-o-o--o-o-o--
-----------------------

Re: Erik's carbon low d flute or Bansuri carbon flute ... opinions?

Post by Sedi »

You haven't played one of mine then. Obviously, since so far, nobody has, except me. However mine only look round. I drill them at an angle and make the edge very sharp - it's more modeled after a quena, just sideways. Works great. And I did compare them to at least 3 other well known makers. Unfortunately, there's not too many shops around in Germany that actually carry "Irish" flutes. And I can't buy a whole lot, just to compare.
User avatar
Sedi
Posts: 865
Joined: Sun May 01, 2016 6:54 am
antispam: No
Please enter the next number in sequence: 8
Tell us something.: Practice, practice, practice. You're never too old to learn.
Keep on fluting.
---u---o-o-o--o-o-o--
-----------------------

Re: Erik's carbon low d flute or Bansuri carbon flute ... opinions?

Post by Sedi »

A few pics, since pics say more than a thousand words.
This one I made with a clear acrylic lip plate. The lip plate is 2mm. Wall thickness 1.5mm. Bore 2.2 cm. Embouchure 9.5 mm. Stopper set at 18mm. It's blown in an open style, not covering the embouchure, just slightly touching the lower edge. The far edge is in line with the holes, since it's a one piece design. I wanted to make an extra thread about it. Maybe next weekend.
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
User avatar
kkrell
Posts: 4405
Joined: Mon Jul 29, 2002 6:00 pm
Please enter the next number in sequence: 1
Location: Los Angeles
Contact:

Re: Erik's carbon low d flute or Bansuri carbon flute ... opinions?

Post by kkrell »

kkrell wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 7:41 pmThe Carbony flute is a weighty monster, unlike their whistles. If I have a chance, I'll put one on the scale.
12.40 ounces
International Traditional Music Society, Inc.
A non-profit 501c3 charity/educational public benefit corporation
Wooden Flute Obsession CDs (3 volumes, 6 discs, 7 hours, 120 players/tracks)
http://www.worldtrad.org
User avatar
Sedi
Posts: 865
Joined: Sun May 01, 2016 6:54 am
antispam: No
Please enter the next number in sequence: 8
Tell us something.: Practice, practice, practice. You're never too old to learn.
Keep on fluting.
---u---o-o-o--o-o-o--
-----------------------

Re: Erik's carbon low d flute or Bansuri carbon flute ... opinions?

Post by Sedi »

That's heavier than the Dixon 3-piece, which has 270 gr, about 9.5 oz.
User avatar
kkrell
Posts: 4405
Joined: Mon Jul 29, 2002 6:00 pm
Please enter the next number in sequence: 1
Location: Los Angeles
Contact:

Re: Erik's carbon low d flute or Bansuri carbon flute ... opinions?

Post by kkrell »

Sedi wrote: Tue Apr 13, 2021 10:23 am That's heavier than the Dixon 3-piece, which has 270 gr, about 9.5 oz.
For further comparison, my Garry Somers 5-piece Rudall in Delrin w/slide is 12.00 ounces.
International Traditional Music Society, Inc.
A non-profit 501c3 charity/educational public benefit corporation
Wooden Flute Obsession CDs (3 volumes, 6 discs, 7 hours, 120 players/tracks)
http://www.worldtrad.org
User avatar
Sedi
Posts: 865
Joined: Sun May 01, 2016 6:54 am
antispam: No
Please enter the next number in sequence: 8
Tell us something.: Practice, practice, practice. You're never too old to learn.
Keep on fluting.
---u---o-o-o--o-o-o--
-----------------------

Re: Erik's carbon low d flute or Bansuri carbon flute ... opinions?

Post by Sedi »

kkrell wrote: Tue Apr 13, 2021 11:02 am For further comparison, my Garry Somers 5-piece Rudall in Delrin w/slide is 12.00 ounces.
But that's the one with the long foot and extra 2 holes, right? The Dixon doesn't have that. So it's probably quite a bit shorter. The Carbony has one extra hole in the foot, I think.
User avatar
kkrell
Posts: 4405
Joined: Mon Jul 29, 2002 6:00 pm
Please enter the next number in sequence: 1
Location: Los Angeles
Contact:

Re: Erik's carbon low d flute or Bansuri carbon flute ... opinions?

Post by kkrell »

Sedi wrote: Tue Apr 13, 2021 11:22 am
kkrell wrote: Tue Apr 13, 2021 11:02 am For further comparison, my Garry Somers 5-piece Rudall in Delrin w/slide is 12.00 ounces.
But that's the one with the long foot and extra 2 holes, right? The Dixon doesn't have that. So it's probably quite a bit shorter. The Carbony has one extra hole in the foot, I think.
The Carbony has a short foot (actually, integrated with the lower hand toneholes, with no extra holes. Ends at where the C# hole would be.
International Traditional Music Society, Inc.
A non-profit 501c3 charity/educational public benefit corporation
Wooden Flute Obsession CDs (3 volumes, 6 discs, 7 hours, 120 players/tracks)
http://www.worldtrad.org
Post Reply