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PostPosted: Thu Jan 18, 2018 6:59 am 
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Location: WV to the OC
Well here in Southern California I wear shorts year-round, and my leg suffices.

The problem is that when people hire me for weddings or funerals they often insist that I wear kilts.

I detest playing uilleann pipes in kilts, but he who pays the piper...

Chanters don't seal on wool, as I've found. And hitching up the kilt to get to the bare leg doesn't look good. So when piping in kilts I use a big piece of soft leather (cowhide). There's a certain thickness that seems right to me, neither too flimsy nor too stiff.

About pigskin, I've had pigskin sporrans and they had a pebbled surface and the leather felt stiff. You want the leather totally smooth and flat for a good seal. (In the old days pigskin was a standard leather for sporrans, and many modern sporrans are made from cowhide which has been dyed and given a pebbled surface to imitate pigskin.)

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1978 Quinn uilleann pipes
1945 Starck Highland pipes
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 19, 2018 5:54 am 
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My chanter came with a hinged end-piece. Was this an innovation favoured by certain makers or was it more widespread in the past? (the front of Heather Clarke's tutor has a view of this resting on the knee).

Photos of old pipers (early part 20th century) often shown them playing standing up with one leg resting on something or occasionally a stick fashioned to allow this. The definition is often not good enough to see if a popping strap was present. (They also often used to wear jackets when playing)!

I never got round to playing with this key and favour the remnant of an old handbag cut to fit my leg


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 19, 2018 7:48 am 
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Location: Minnesota, Birthplace of the pop-up toaster
I marvel at folk who can play with a chanter valve! For me, I need the friction of the popping strap to hold the chanter in place while I regulate.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 19, 2018 8:19 am 
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Quote:
Photos of old pipers (early part 20th century) often shown them playing standing up with one leg resting on something or occasionally a stick fashioned to allow this. The definition is often not good enough to see if a popping strap was present. (They also often used to wear jackets when playing)!


If you'd look at them at their original format, large format negatives mostly, instead of a small JPEG for the interwebs, there's plenty of definition. But even at postcard sized depictions, popping straps are obvious in the majority of cases. And jackets, a matter of keeping warm (although I remember at least one piper who according to his wife couldn't, or wouldn't, play without his jacket)

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