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Re: Drams and Chanters. To John Duguid.

Hi Donald H:
If you are not easy with the fiddling-about-with-reeds, there is not a huge amount that can be done by writing or even explaining without actually doing.  There must be a piper or two nearby who can go over maintenance with you and show you addtionally the business of manipulating reeds. The new synthetic wood drone reeds are relatively steady and low-fiddle factor so to get a reliable drone sound pretty quickly, I would get a set of Wygnents from the USA  or EZ drones from the UK.  In addition you might consider getting in touch with The College of Piping in Glasgow who can  provide you with any one of their three tutors, the middle one (#2)  has to do with how to set up a bagpipe.
The problem stems from the fact that you are playing 4 reeds at once, and one of them is a double reed and somehow it has all got to mesh. This is not a world to enter if you are a total neophyte.   To add to your difficulties,  the pipes made in the east are often uneven in quality: the drones sometimes sounding rough and the chanters not correctly tuned.  There is a very arcane art to chanter-making and I know men who have devoted their lives to just that --  there seems always to be a 'holy grail'  of sound to chase.  Having bought a practice chanter from Pakistan, I fear the worst for you as I had to re-drill a couple of holes to tune it properly (the high A had was so flat that it had to be brought up nearly 1/8 of an inch.  If this is one of your problems, you can always buy a better chanter without throwing the drones away. 
Let me know if you need addresses for obtaining any of the above info or products.
-----Original Message-----
From: Donald H Sinclair <horace@mb.sympatico.ca>
To: sinclair@matrix.net <sinclair@matrix.net>
Date: Sunday, May 28, 2000 12:37 PM
Subject: Re: Drams and Chanters. To John Duguid.

Dear Pipers, May I butt in here , I have these beautiful far east pipes and I am having a great deal of trouble getting anyone to get them to work properly, Without costing me an arm and leg. Any good advice?  Donald H. Sinclair  Swan River Man.
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Saturday, May 27, 2000 2:00 AM
Subject: Re: Drams and Chanters. To John Duguid.

Welcome, John, to the world of 'agony and ecstasy! There is nothing more frustrating than a set of pipes which won't conform and tune, yet nothing more beautiful to a piper than sweetly tuned pipes which are 'humming'. Better late than never!
John McI.