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Drone Dimensions on Mike's Page

PostPosted: Fri Jun 05, 2015 3:22 pm
by Natebanton
My name is Nate Banton, I make Scottish smallpipes here in the US. I've long admired Mike's website on Northumbrian pipes and have used some tips from it over the years, but have never had a chance to use any of the drawings, until now.

I'm looking to redesign my low D drone. Over the years my drone reed designs have gotten more and more vibrant, and now my D drone, in particular, is just bit too loud. I thought looking at some Northumbrian pipe drones would make sense to get a little quieter drone design.

I don't know if it's my computer, or what, but I don't see any dimensions on Mike's drone drawings. The chanter drawings have dimensions, but not the drones.

I'm just looking for bore sizes and lengths, and hope you can help.

Cheers!

Nate Banton

PS, perhaps I should start a new topic on this, but I'd love to talk about how drone design and reed design allows for the ability of a drone to play more than one note...

Re: Drone Dimensions on Mike's Page

PostPosted: Sat Jun 06, 2015 11:17 pm
by pipemakermike
Hi Nate

The drawings do have dimensions. I have attached a jpg of the D drone drawing.

D drine standing part.jpg
D drine standing part.jpg (185.05 KiB) Viewed 3621 times

Re: Drone Dimensions on Mike's Page

PostPosted: Sun Jun 07, 2015 6:51 am
by Richard Evans
If you save a copy and view the saved copy, you will see the dimensions.

Re: Drone Dimensions on Mike's Page

PostPosted: Mon Jun 08, 2015 8:33 pm
by Natebanton
Ah! You're quite right Richard. Now I see all the dimensions.

And thanks Mike!

Any thoughts on drone design/ reed design for optimal number of notes, i.e. shortening the distance between notes?

Re: Drone Dimensions on Mike's Page

PostPosted: Mon Jun 08, 2015 8:33 pm
by Natebanton
Ah! You're quite right Richard. Now I see all the dimensions.

And thanks Mike!

Any thoughts on drone design/ reed design for optimal number of notes, i.e. shortening the distance between notes?

Re: Drone Dimensions on Mike's Page

PostPosted: Thu Jun 11, 2015 7:15 pm
by andymay
[quote="Natebanton"
Any thoughts on drone design/ reed design for optimal number of notes, i.e. shortening the distance between notes?
[/quote]

It seems to me that a larger bore to the slide gives a larger tuning range, albeit maybe with some loss of stability/tone. For example the pipes made with metal tuning slides always seems to change pitch more for a given length adjustment. Anyone else noticed that?

I suppose also if you're going less Northumbrian then opening the bore of the moving half of the drone can increase stability and loudness, but at some point probably decreases the effectiveness of the tuning slide?

Interesting question!!!

Cheers
A

Re: Drone Dimensions on Mike's Page

PostPosted: Sat Jun 13, 2015 3:12 am
by Natebanton
I've had trouble for many years getting my SSP Baritone drone (I guess the same as your "Big D" Concert G drone?) to move from D to E with only the slide (no tuning bead). If I make a reed (I have made many many styles!) that I like the sound of, then the reed is almost off the pin for D and almost all the way up on the pin when playing E. This is with a very long pin. It works, but the reed always has to be perfectly adjusted for both notes to sound. This is with a drone design that is bigger than yours. More or less 3/16" bores.

I just today made a copy (well close, i didn't have quite small enough gun drills, but close) of Mike's Big D drone hoping for a better result. I hoped that smaller bores might be the ticket. After making the drone and using an appropriate reed, my tenor (close to the same as your "big G drone"?) reed with a bit of weight on the tongue, I ended up with pretty much the same result. Sounded lovely, and with the volume I was looking for, but still didn't have the short tuning length I was hoping for.

Shot in the dark, rushed the drone reed (doubled over bit of copper wire in the last 1/4 of the bore) and low and behold, there's the short tuning length!

I'm currently using plastic bodied drone reeds with spruce tongues. 3.2mm bores. What size bores do NSP use?