The Royal Scots Cap Badge

Tenor drone problem

by Thomas
(Pittsburgh)

Hi Bill,


When I strike in my pipes sound fine, but when I get the chanter going sometimes the tenor drones stop producing sound. Is this a reed problem?

Thomas

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Feb 23, 2016
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Tenor drone problem - Thomas
by: Bill Robertson

Hello Thomas,
I could not find your e mail address in our request pages. If wishing to have the pages I mentioned in my submission today - here is my e mail: bagpiper1@slingshot.co.nz

Regards,

Bill R

Feb 23, 2016
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Tenor drone problem
by: Bill Robertson

Hello Thomas,
It appears that the problem is quite simple to mend by adjusting carefully a very little at a time the bridle (the ring around the drone reed tongue) until you reach the point of testing the strength to suit your over all air pressure. At the same time be careful not to make the tough adjustment too much and cause the tone in the drone to be too rough and varying in pitch when mouth blow testing into the drone itself with the reed.

I'll send to you by e mail some few pages on the subject from my interactive comprehensive tutorial that should help in more detail.
Any questions on the followup,simply ask.
It so important to have drones well set with good reeds adjusted as necessary, then well tuned to a well balanced chanter.

I trust that helps, and all the best,

Bill R

Feb 23, 2016
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Drones Cut Out
by: Anonymous

Yes, the reeds are not calibrated. The pressure of a comfortable and well tuned chanter will dictate the overall pressure. Start by selecting a comfortable chanter reeds.

The drones might warble or double-tone at a pressure too low for the chanter to sound correctly. They should pop-in, or resolve, to the correct tone upon reaching playing pressure for the chanter. If the same chanter is overblown a bit, the drones should cut out - all at about the same degree of over pressure.

If any of the drones cut out too early or unexpectedly at the correct chanter pressure, then the tongue is likely too low on that drone reed and the bridle should be moved very slightly away from the open end of the tongue.

If the drones howl or continue to double tone at the correct chanter pressure, then the tongue is too high and moving the bridle toward the open end of the tongue should help.

Adjust the drone reed seat with hemp and use the tuning pin on the reed to have the drone tuned to show one or two winds of hemp at the tuning slide,

Re-check drone reed calibration each time you start your practice session or as you tune for a gig. Soon, there will be no adjustment needed at all and you can play confidently knowing the drone will not cut out unexpectedly.

Drone reeds thusly calibrated at the same pressure as the chanter gives the best sound with the most efficient use of air supply.

Of course, if playing in a damp environment for a long time, you may also experience drone that become unsteady and eventually will cut out due to droplets of condensation forming on the tongue and in the drone body. If this is the issue, consider seasoning the bag or using one of the moisture control systems on the market today.

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