The Royal Scots Cap Badge

Drying after playing

by William Lindsey
(Lawton, OK 73507 USA)

Hi Bill,

After playing my bagpipes, is there a good estimate for "air drying" before placing them back in their case?


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Apr 21, 2015
Drying after playing
by: Bill Robertson

Lou has given good advice if into really be very wet which is unlikely normally under reasonable conditions of climate etc.

I would advise after playing in reasonably good conditions and cooler wet conditions, to inspect the stocks, especially the chanter stock always by putting the little finger right in the chanter stock to check. If moisture there dry out thoroughly with a suitable stick/dowel and absorbent cloth, and replace the chanter with reed or in a dry-stock.

Drone check can be done by checking the back of the reeds for any beads of moisture, and if present check by looking up the drone bores for beads of moisture to pull through with a suitable rifle rod or special twine with loop for absorbent cloth, suitable size without being too stiff to clear out the moisture. You might have to blow through the open end of the drone reed if very wet to remove moisture and wipe clean carefully of the reed's tongue. Replace the reeds etc., and as you say pack away in your pipe case.
Any further detail can be given if contacting me via the website contact form.

All the best,

Apr 21, 2015
Air Drying
by: Lou

Try removing the blow stick and chanter each time, using a reed protector cap. This allows air to flow through the bag. If using a zipper bag, open it as well. If wet from playing in rain, pat dry exterior surfacs. If hemped joints are swollen, take apart all joints and let sit overnight. Inspect, re-hemp as needed, and re-stow pipes in your pipe case to retain some moisture - you want them to remain as stable as possible as if "warmed up" for playing the next gig.

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