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Technique & Instrument Related to techniques, to the instrument, to the components, to maintenance.

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Old 11-11-2020, 04:50 PM   #1
Tom Frasher
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Default Adjusting drone reeds to chanter strength

I know I read on here some thread about doing this the right way, trying to get my Kinnaird Drone reeds dialed in.... donít really care about the O-rings to adjust the bridle ...It seems a little cumbersome to me but if someone can point me in the right direction I would really appreciate it, cheers
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Old 11-11-2020, 05:03 PM   #2
Jim Fogelman
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Default Re: Adjusting drone reeds to chanter strength

Youíll need to move the o-ring bridles to adjust the strength of the reed. Toward the plug end to make easier, toward the drone end to make harder.
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Old 11-11-2020, 05:19 PM   #3
Tom Frasher
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Default Re: Adjusting drone reeds to chanter strength

OK that part I understand but I want the drone reeds to all shut off at once, I donít want one taking in more than one taking less air etc. etc.
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Old 11-11-2020, 05:43 PM   #4
Patrick McLaurin
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Default Re: Adjusting drone reeds to chanter strength

I don't believe having all the reeds shut off at the same time is actually that good of a metric. First, the bass is a different instrument than the tenors: it has two tuning chambers versus the tenors having one and the reed is different. Furthermore, every time someone has insisted I set my drones to shut off at the same time when overblown, they ultimately get set at the point where they won't even START if I hit the bag just a little too hard.

Rather, simply set them up so that they play efficiently. You can do this without trying to get them to shut off.

Pick a tenor drone. Move the bridle to shorten the tongue. Strike-in and play. Does the reed continue to sound? If so, repeat the movement until the reed either cuts out because the strike-in make it cut out or your chanter cuts it out. Then back the bridle up one step and double check to make sure that setting can handle the variances in your blowing and striking-in and you're set. Do the same with the other tenor reed or measure/eye-ball the bridle setting and set it the same. Do the same for the bass.

So the goal is to set the reeds so that they *play* most efficiently without cutting out, not to cut out on overblowing.

Last edited by Patrick McLaurin; 11-11-2020 at 05:50 PM.
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Old 11-11-2020, 07:12 PM   #5
William McKenzie
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Default Re: Adjusting drone reeds to chanter strength

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick McLaurin View Post
I don't believe having all the reeds shut off at the same time is actually that good of a metric. First, the bass is a different instrument than the tenors: it has two tuning chambers versus the tenors having one and the reed is different. Furthermore, every time someone has insisted I set my drones to shut off at the same time when overblown, they ultimately get set at the point where they won't even START if I hit the bag just a little too hard.

Rather, simply set them up so that they play efficiently. You can do this without trying to get them to shut off.

Pick a tenor drone. Move the bridle to shorten the tongue. Strike-in and play. Does the reed continue to sound? If so, repeat the movement until the reed either cuts out because the strike-in make it cut out or your chanter cuts it out. Then back the bridle up one step and double check to make sure that setting can handle the variances in your blowing and striking-in and you're set. Do the same with the other tenor reed or measure/eye-ball the bridle setting and set it the same. Do the same for the bass.

So the goal is to set the reeds so that they *play* most efficiently without cutting out, not to cut out on overblowing.
x2.

It's fun when they shut off at the same time but should be more of a coincidence. Set them to where they feel comfortable, where ever that is. Some set them very high because they like that, others have them on a knife's edge.

I do set mine with a manometer but more to get a sense of where each reed is relative to pressure in the bag. The ultimate goal is how it feels against your arm.
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Old 11-15-2020, 07:45 PM   #6
MichiganGaidar
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Default Re: Adjusting drone reeds to chanter strength

I agree with Patrick's approach. Start by setting the bass so it gives optimal feel and stability against the chanter reed and adjust the tenor drone reeds for tuning/pressure stability against the bass and each other.
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Old 11-15-2020, 10:32 PM   #7
Garry
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Default Re: Adjusting drone reeds to chanter strength

Do you mean all shutting off together with the chanter at the end of your set? If so, it is a matter of technique. You know when your last tune is to finish and shortly before that you allow your bag to reduce until the pressure is almost spent. Then stop blowing and release your arm on the last note. You may need to add a couple of puffs as you get there. Unless I'm missing something
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Old 11-16-2020, 07:58 AM   #8
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Default Re: Adjusting drone reeds to chanter strength

Quote:
Originally Posted by Garry View Post
Do you mean all shutting off together with the chanter at the end of your set? If so, it is a matter of technique. You know when your last tune is to finish and shortly before that you allow your bag to reduce until the pressure is almost spent. Then stop blowing and release your arm on the last note. You may need to add a couple of puffs as you get there. Unless I'm missing something
No I think he means shutting off when overblowing. This is done as a means to check the strength setting (and air efficiency) of the drones.

I like to use a manometer and set the tenors to shut off about 10" H2O above my chanter reed's sweet spot, and the bass about 5-10" above the tenors. I like a chanter reed at about 30" so I shoot for about 38-40" for my tenors and 45"-ish for my bass.

Tom, you said you don't want to mess with the bridles but that's the only way to do it. Make micro-adjustments to the bridles until you get it. Usually if you can see how much you've moved it, you've moved it too much. Yes it's very fiddly to get the tenors to shut off at the same time, but it does get a little easier with practice.

Last edited by Raibeart; 11-16-2020 at 08:33 AM. Reason: a few extra details
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Old 11-16-2020, 08:09 AM   #9
el gaitero
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Default Re: Adjusting drone reeds to chanter strength

Quote:
Originally Posted by Raibeart View Post



Tom, you said you don't want to mess with the bridles but that's the only way to do it. Make micro-adjustments to the bridles until you get it. Usually if you can see how much you've moved it, you've moved it too much. Yes it's very fiddly to get the tenors to shut off at the same time, but it does get a little easier with practice.
Yes....micro adjustments...and always ensure the front and rear edges of the bridle band are parallel ....and the bridle is concentric around the reed body.

As an added bit of paranoia I try to ensure the front edge of the tongue binding bridle is also concentric and parallel to the rear edge of the adjusting bridle.
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Old 11-17-2020, 04:36 PM   #10
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Default Re: Adjusting drone reeds to chanter strength

It is a lot more important to get the reeds to change together when you increase or decrease your pressure. When you have to use some intonation to get your pipes to stay as one, you don't want to have your drones moving in different directions.
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