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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2019 11:48 am 
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myles wrote:
On top? Not disagreeing with you but what do you think it is about Froment's work that gives it the edge?


I used the word objectively on purpose, because of course we all have our favourite maker who's work we admire, but to take personal opinion out of the equation , Alain Froment comes out on top.If we take his body of work in its entirety he has produced top quality instruments in all pitches, he worked in the most difficult material and from I've seen his instruments are out there, more than any other maker being played by some of the best pipers.

Jeff Cullen wrote:
It's a good thing that a lot of others don't feel the same way, or your request for information about what the value this set might be would have no responses since there would be no information about what they sell for. I find it odd to post such a request on a public forum, but then not want to contribute information that makes the forum more useful for exactly what you used it for.

Well said Jeff

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2019 11:57 am 
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rorybbellows wrote:
If we take his body of work in its entirety ...


Do we know how many sets AF made?

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2019 12:27 pm 
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Do we know how many sets AF made?


I've read (on this forum somewhere) that it's thought that AF made approximately 125 sets in his career.

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 24, 2019 12:32 pm 
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Do we know how many sets AF made?


I've been informed by a very knowledgable and eminent maker that Froment probably made 8-10 sets per year for 20+ years. If Froment started making pipes in 1978 then he spent 30 years making pipes. This would indicate that he would have produced a lot more that 125 sets, prehaps somewhere between 200-250 sets. Maybe even somewhere in the region of 300 instruments inclusive practice sets and chanters.

Froment's instruments seem to be very well made and sound fine to me, but visually I think that they lack the elegance, the style of the metalwork (keys, ferrules, the way the turning of the mounts), that you find on pipes made by Geoff Wooff and Dave Williams.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 24, 2019 3:40 pm 
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Sorry Jeff, it’s like asking someone for a quote or estimation versus asking someone what is their salary.
But I understand your point.
I should have been clearer and said serious offers by PM but appreciate people’s input.
And in reality I had no idea what this set would fetch.
It went in euros for a bit more (not much) than Steampacket estimated.
I purchased the set myself in Sterling and at the time paid a fair bit more in euros than I sold it for when you consider the exchange rate at the time, but that’s life.

I agree with Rory that Alain was outstanding, very consistent. His pipes will give ANY piper all they need and more. The potential they have is endless compared to other nice sets I have played. Not the easiest pipes to play, they take a skilled piped to play anywhere near to their potential. For me it’s the tone from the chanter, volume and tone from the regs, and volume and tone from the drones. All combined with a great build and quality materials. Some pipe makers might match one or maybe two or these things but not many have mastered all.


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2019 5:48 am 
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Lol, yes


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 26, 2019 10:37 am 
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Steampacket wrote:
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That’s a bit personal.


As said uilleannpiperireland that's ok. I think pipes by the big five modern makers Wooff, Williams, O'Briain, Froment, Kohler & Quinn, will always be in demand and command high prices as their quality is proven, and they are in limited supply. Not sure how many sets Froment and Williams made before their demise.



Who was it who decided on who the big five modern makers are anyway?


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 26, 2019 11:55 am 
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m muir wrote:
Steampacket wrote:
Quote:
That’s a bit personal.


As said uilleannpiperireland that's ok. I think pipes by the big five modern makers Wooff, Williams, O'Briain, Froment, Kohler & Quinn, will always be in demand and command high prices as their quality is proven, and they are in limited supply. Not sure how many sets Froment and Williams made before their demise.



Who was it who decided on who the big five modern makers are anyway?


We had a vote. Did you miss the big meeting? :wink:

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 26, 2019 12:05 pm 
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Who was it who decided on who the big five modern makers are anyway? m muir


I think the "big five" (just a name for the five most highly esteemed uilleann pipe makers who started making pipes in the late 70's), were five makers who quickly gained reputations of making fine instruments based on the pipes made by Leo Rowsome, and older Irish makers of pipes such as Harrington, Coyne, the Kennas, and the Taylor bros. These five makers soon had long waiting lists for their instruments and second hand pipes of theirs became very desirable indeed, commanding high prices. The were other makers too active during the 70's such as Dan Down, Brian Howard, Hubert Kwisthout, Eugene Lambe, Howard Roberts, Johnny Bourke, Chris Bayley, and Matt Kiernan but I don't think their instruments were, or are, so sought after as those of the "big five".

I believe today though that there are a number of uilleann pipe makers in different countries making excellent quality instruments who I'm sure will join the select few sought after makers.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 26, 2019 4:14 pm 
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Several professional pipers have gone with makers outside that list of five, mind.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 27, 2019 4:27 am 
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Several professional pipers have gone with makers outside that list of five, mind. Myles


Yes of course, as for the last 20 years or so there are a number of pipe makers making pipes to a very high standard to choose from. Some such as Marcus Coulter, David Lim, Donnacha Dwyer, Andy May, Makoto Nakatsi, Evertjan t'Hart, Tim & Stephanie Benson and Brian Bigley have been inspired by Dave Williams' instruments. Cillain O'Briain has inspired Gordon Galloway and Micky Dunne. Then there's Ronan Oliver, Eoin O Riabhaigh, Kevin Thompson, Martin Preshaw, Burton & Wyatt, Sam Lawrence, Seth Gallagher, Joe Kennedy, Andreas Rogge, Bill Haneman, Michael Hubbert, Martin Banba ...


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 27, 2019 1:18 pm 
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[quoteYes of course, as for the last 20 years or so there are a number of pipe makers making pipes to a very high standard to choose from. Some such as Marcus Coulter, David Lim, Donnacha Dwyer, Andy May, Makoto Nakatsi, Evertjan t'Hart, Tim & Stephanie Benson and Brian Bigley have been inspired by Dave Williams' instruments. Cillain O'Briain has inspired Gordon Galloway and Micky Dunne. Then there's Ronan Oliver, Eoin O Riabhaigh, Kevin Thompson, Martin Preshaw, Burton & Wyatt, Sam Lawrence, Seth Gallagher, Joe Kennedy, Andreas Rogge, Bill Haneman, Michael Hubbert, Martin Banba ...][/quote]

When I was looking, and asking in sessions in the 1990's, four names came up in my conversations for a concert set of quality:- Froment, O'Brien, and Robbie Hughes; the latter not so far mentioned here. Another who deserves a place is Brian Howard.

Since then, the choice has widened, the cost has spiraled. I would like to say that a number of friends play Ginsberg's sets, and he too deserves a mention, not least for there affordability, and also play well too in comparison to some mentioned in the quote, and are well made.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 04, 2019 5:22 am 
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myles wrote:

Particularly interested as Froment is the one maker out of those five whose work I've never seen / heard up close.


Here in Southern California we regularly see and hear a Froment set, the set played by Eric Rigler. Many people have heard this set on the soundtrack of Braveheart and Titanic and innumerable films and shows and albums that Eric has played on.

We also have Jeff's magnificent four-reg set to see and hear.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 04, 2019 1:07 pm 
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You could mention a long list of pipemakers around at the time but the big five were out on their own and way ahead of their contemporaries . A good indication of this being that the five all had waiting times of ten years( Alain's was 15 years) or more when the others makers pipes could be got in as little as a few weeks.

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