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Old 05-02-2017, 07:45 AM   #1
mpage
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Default Decent Smallpipe Bellows Makers

Looking to get another set of bellows for my smallpipes. Any recommendations on who to go with? Anyone found which maker's seem more air efficient than another? I know it's all about your technique and such, but I am manipulating my bellows arm a lot more than seems necessary to keep things going.

Thanks,

Mike
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Old 05-02-2017, 11:40 AM   #2
zarb
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Default Re: Decent Smallpipe Bellows Makers

When that happens, its generally a leak. That leak could be in the bellows, or in the blowpipe tube or connections, or in the pipes themselves. It would be good to rule out all the other issues before getting bellows, simply from a financial point of view. A decent bellows test for the common suspects is to blow against a wetted fingertip in the outlet. Often you can hear a hissing, at the clack valve (admits air to the bellows on out stroke) and that is the problem. Sometimes you can hear hissing elsewhere. There are some tricks to sealing such leaks, and its a good idea to investigate from time to time (as you use your set), even if you are not flapping like a demented one winged bird.
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Old 05-02-2017, 01:28 PM   #3
calecm
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Default Re: Decent Smallpipe Bellows Makers

Whenever anybody complains about their pipes taking too much air, the first thing I always address is the blowpipe check valve. I find it's the culprit more often anything else -- maybe more than the next three thing put together.
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Old 05-03-2017, 06:23 AM   #4
Rob Felsburg
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Default Re: Decent Smallpipe Bellows Makers

Check with your pipemaker. There may be a leak in the bellows/bag/valves that could be an easy fix for them to diagnose. I'd also check your reeds for efficiency. The bellows should never be a struggle to play. They are just used to supply air to the bag.
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Old 05-04-2017, 05:43 AM   #5
David D.
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Default Re: Decent Smallpipe Bellows Makers

http://www.kellehertrad.com/bellows.html

Kelleher in Ireland make very nice bellows.
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Old 05-04-2017, 02:38 PM   #6
Lightningstorms
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Default Re: Decent Smallpipe Bellows Makers

Check out Simon Hopes bellows, well padded, efficient
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Old 05-04-2017, 03:06 PM   #7
Green Piper
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Default Re: Decent Smallpipe Bellows Makers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lightningstorms View Post
Check out Simon Hopes bellows, well padded, efficient

I'll second the Simon Hope bellows........but I have not tried any others whatsoever!
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Old 05-04-2017, 04:08 PM   #8
Steve Bliven
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Default Re: Decent Smallpipe Bellows Makers

Last I heard, Simon Hope had gone out of the bagpipe business. http://www.hopepipes.co.uk/

Too bad 'cause his bellows were very nice and at a good price, too.

Best wishes.

Steve
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Old 05-05-2017, 08:53 AM   #9
Steve Law
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Default Re: Decent Smallpipe Bellows Makers

Simon is apparently now focussing on his other successful business interests and is seeking a buyer for Hopepipes....He sold me a set of smallpipe plans and explained this. I asked him for bellows plans too but they are part of the sale contents so he wouldn't release them. Disappointing but understandable.

If he'd reconsider or the new eventual owner would sell a set I'd snatch their arm off, but Simon says he made bellows for a good number of other smallpipe makers, so I imagine there will be a growing shortage as time goes by...

Anybody know of anyone prepared to sell bellows plans so I can make a one- off set?

I've tried a couple myself but with limited success, so there's more to it than meets the eye.....a bit like piping really
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Old 05-11-2017, 12:10 AM   #10
replicant
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Default Re: Decent Smallpipe Bellows Makers

I love my Hope bellows for smallpipes but I wouldn't recommend them to run a set of borders ..
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