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Drones Cutting out

PostPosted: Wed Feb 22, 2012 2:48 pm
by SqueezyJoe

I have a set of Burleigh pipes that are about 6 years old. 3 of the 4 drones only work at a low pressure and cannot be played with the chanter. What is the reason for this and can anything be done about it?

This is my first set of pipes and I am still learning how to play them, with very limited success!!!


Re: Drones Cutting out

PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 6:43 pm
by RobSay
Hello - there may be a number of reasons for this and I'll leave the pipemakers to argue over them all

But what is happening is that drone reed tongue is clamping shut. The first step is to try is flicking the tongue to try and reset it a little higher. If you've not been inside your pipes before and had someone show you how to do this then it is somewhat risky (and not a little daunting).

You don't say whereabouts you are in the World but I would strongly advise seeking out your nearest friendly piper or piping group to get someone to demonstrate this sort of thing. Failing that there a couple of books which go into a fair bit of detail on reed construction (which is half maintenance anyway).
- Colin Ross's Reedmaking booklet (available from Julia:
- John Liestman's book is an excellent resource (and free):



Re: Drones Cutting out

PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2012 11:09 am
by SqueezyJoe
Hi Rob,

Thanks for that. I understand there is a Yorkshire group (I live near york), so I think it may be wise to contact one of them!!


Re: Drones Cutting out

PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2012 1:53 pm
by Julia Say
Joe - Nick Hopkinson (Tockwith) or Steve Campbell (York) should be able to help you.