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Adult Pipers Related to Adult piping or pipers, this is the place.

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Old 09-01-2018, 12:24 PM   #1
piperken
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Default Cold weather playing

Im wondering how long a piper can pipe, going from room temp after tuning to outside playing at say 0 degrees. You warm up and everythings in tune inside and then step outside and play at 0 degrees. Im guessing at 0 degrees you should be able to get 5 minutes before your pipes start reacting to the cold and your fingers. Anybody had experience in this. I used 0 degrees as an average. thanks piperken
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Old 09-01-2018, 12:48 PM   #2
el gaitero
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Default Re: cold weather playing

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Originally Posted by piperken View Post
Im wondering how long a piper can pipe, going from room temp after tuning to outside playing at say 0 degrees. You warm up and everythings in tune inside and then step outside and play at 0 degrees. Im guessing at 0 degrees you should be able to get 5 minutes before your pipes start reacting to the cold and your fingers. Anybody had experience in this. I used 0 degrees as an average. thanks piperken
...I dint think anybody should be playing upside at 0 F.

Not with bagpipes anyway.
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Old 09-01-2018, 12:52 PM   #3
Klondike Waldo
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Default Re: cold weather playing

I have played outside at 0˚F a couple of times, for funerals. When it's that cold, I Wear layers under my doublet and kilt, fingerless gloves and Wristies on my hands, a fleece balaclava under my bonnet and handwarmers between the gloves and Wristies, tucked into my hosetops, toe warmers on my toes within socks and hosetops and spats. That's so I'll Last. I have on a couple of those occasions also tucked a hand/body warmer on the back side of my plaid behind my spare reeds and another hand/body warmer stuck to the bag cover or tucked in between the cover and bag. I lasted over 20 minutes at 0 to 2˚ F at the cemetery.
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Old 09-02-2018, 08:13 AM   #4
CalumII
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Default Re: Cold weather playing

At 0C, a bagpipe will last a while. I'd normally expect 20-25 minutes with a non-easy reed (easy reeds will go south quicker).


At 0F, you could get through a tune on a warm instrument, but I would need a very, very good reason to consider risking my instrument.
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Old 09-02-2018, 10:13 AM   #5
Shawn Husk
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Default Re: Cold weather playing

As a youngster I accepted a gig on St. Pat's day to play all the arriving guests into a restaurant. I was told there would be about 3 or 4 bus loads of people arriving at a specific time and they wanted me to play as they walked in.

I arrived an hour early to the event to warm up and get ready. I was sitting in the front waiting for the buses arrival and the owner comes over and says to me "I'm paying you good money to be here, go outside and play until the buses arrive." Being young and naive at the time I did what he asked and went out in the freezing temps and played a bit till my fingers were numb. Then I would come back inside to warm up and back out. Of course the buses were not on time and I ended up doing this routine for the next hour or more. Finally the buses did arrive and instead of 3 or 4 there were about 11. Big giant tour buses full of older people who took their time to walk in to the restaurant. Needless to say I was playing about 45 min constantly in 30 degree (F) weather. By about the 8th buss my chanter reed was acting wildly and I'd lost my bass and a tenor drone. So I boarded the next buss that arrived and played in the aisle for a quick second then lead them out and played as long as I could till my chanter reed simply stopped. It had frozen shut. lol

The owner was thrilled with my performance afterward and said it was a huge hit and would I agree to come next year. I told him yes at the time but the following year I turned him down. And never again did I accept a gig like that. Thankfully my pipes were fine but that was a miserable experience and the money was not worth it. I learned a lot about gigs and how to approach them from that experience.
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Old 09-02-2018, 09:14 PM   #6
Linz
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Default Re: Cold weather playing

One of my instructors accepted a gig for a wedding. It was to be held at a ski resort at Mammoth Mountain, CA. He got there, tuned up and then was told, no, not in the Lodge, at the cafe at the top of the ski lift... So there he was, 11,000 ft, at several deg below zero. Needless to say, he didn't play long...
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Old 09-04-2018, 11:36 AM   #7
jedburgh
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Default Re: Cold weather playing

I don't pipe in -20C any more, too many frozen parts from my younger days that go numb way too soon.


I do; however, play in our Nov 11th parades (N of the St. Lawrence) and have found that now, before my fingers, ears or pipes decide I'm being stupid, my grip on the blowpipe fails.


I've taken to covering my mouth and cheeks during the service so that when we're required to start up again, I can actually blow the beast.


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Old 09-04-2018, 03:18 PM   #8
Dan Bell
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Default Re: Cold weather playing

Do not warm up and tune indoors and then take your instrument out into the freezing cold, unless you want to expose it to the greatest possible amount of stress.
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Old 09-04-2018, 04:24 PM   #9
Andrew Lenz
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Default Re: Cold weather playing

Here where I live, cold weather playing is about 40F! I think I'd die in the weather some of you guys play in. Kudos!


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Old 09-10-2018, 06:46 AM   #10
Jim Fogelman
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Default Re: Cold weather playing

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Originally Posted by Andrew Lenz View Post
Here where I live, cold weather playing is about 40F! I think I'd die in the weather some of you guys play in. Kudos!


Andrew
Same. People tend to wear parkas and pea coats if the weather drops below 60F here.
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