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Old 12-21-2019, 07:05 AM   #11
pancelticpiper
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Default Re: Drilling C Nat Hole?

Yes the reason it's become fairly common to drill the C natural hole in Scottish Smallpipe chanters is because cross-fingering doesn't work.

On full-size Highland chanters

x xxx xoxo

usually gets a good C natural, but on Smallpipe chanters it hardly changes the pitch.

Seems to me the best thing would be to use a drill press, set so the drill doesn't go in too far. That's the biggest danger I see from doing it by hand, having the bit go through the bore and into the opposite wall.

BTW there's nothing "false" about C natural. C sharp is the false note, if the tune requires C natural.

As an aside, Uilleann chanters also are more resistant to cross-fingerings than Highland chanters; the equivalent note, F natural, can't be got by cross-fingering, hence all the uilleann chanters you see with F natural keys.
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Old 12-21-2019, 11:47 AM   #12
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Default Re: Drilling C Nat Hole?

Quote:
Originally Posted by pancelticpiper View Post
Yes the reason it's become fairly common to drill the C natural hole in Scottish Smallpipe chanters is because cross-fingering doesn't work.

On full-size Highland chanters

x xxx xoxo

usually gets a good C natural, but on Smallpipe chanters it hardly changes the pitch.

SNIP
BTW there's nothing "false" about C natural. C sharp is the false note, if the tune requires C natural.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pancelticpiper;1342027
As an aside, Uilleann chanters also are more resistant to cross-fingerings than Highland chanters; the equivalent note, F natural, can't be got by cross-fingering, hence all the uilleann chanters you see with F natural keys.[/QUOTE
I believe that would be because Uillean chanter bores are less conical than GHB chanter bores, thus do not support the cross-fingering that conical bores do ( and why Clarinets overblow at a 12th rather than at the octave).
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Old 12-21-2019, 12:18 PM   #13
Patrick McLaurin
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Default Re: Drilling C Nat Hole?

I dunno, I think it better to distinguish an inability to cross finger from cross fingering that results in a note thatís out of tune. No?

C and C# are easy enough. My crossfingered F on the uilleann is only 45 cents sharp, iirc, haha.

I have a Swayne border pipe that relies on a back thumb hole for the bottom hand accidental, so perhaps itís not so easy to get two octaves and accurate cross fingering out of one chanter?
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Old 12-22-2019, 07:37 AM   #14
CalumII
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Default Re: Drilling C Nat Hole?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick McLaurin View Post
I dunno, I think it better to distinguish an inability to cross finger from cross fingering that results in a note thatís out of tune. No?

Crossfingering (in terms of bore physics) arises from a physical process - specifically, the air in the hole being too massive for the sound wave to drive it, so the wave terminates further down the tube. So only certain designs of hole and bore configurations can cross-finger, and other sounds come from second order effects.
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Old 12-23-2019, 11:03 AM   #15
Scot Kortegaard
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Default Re: Drilling C Nat Hole?

I've got wayyy too many practice chanters at home. Might be a neat experiment to try with one of these crappy poly chanters ....

Scot.
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Old 12-26-2019, 12:32 PM   #16
pancelticpiper
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Default Re: Drilling C Nat Hole?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick McLaurin View Post
the bottom hand accidental...
Low G
Low G#
Low A
Bb
B
C
C#
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Old 12-26-2019, 01:29 PM   #17
Patrick McLaurin
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Default Re: Drilling C Nat Hole?

Considering the title of the thread (and therefore the context), I figured itíd be obvious enough which bottom hand accidental I was referring to. But for clarity:

A smallpipe/border pipe = C
Uilleann = F
G Swayne = Bb
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Old 12-30-2019, 10:22 AM   #18
Dan Bell
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Default Re: Drilling C Nat Hole?

Quote:
Originally Posted by pancelticpiper View Post

BTW there's nothing "false" about C natural. C sharp is the false note, if the tune requires C natural.
Exactly. No note is "false" if it's in-tune... I hate that too many musically-illiterate GHB players use that term to describe F-naturals and C-naturals. There's nothing "false" or "wrong" about using cross-fingering to produce those notes as long as they're in-tune. Being able to use them makes it possible to play more repertoire. That's all.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pancelticpiper View Post

As an aside, Uilleann chanters also are more resistant to cross-fingerings than Highland chanters; the equivalent note, F natural, can't be got by cross-fingering, hence all the uilleann chanters you see with F natural keys.
Some border chanters also cross-finger well and some don't. How conical the bore is, how long the bore is, how big the holes are and the design and strength of the reed are all factors.

Some smallpipe chanters/reeds produce a good C-natural and F-natural by taping down the holes. Some don't. You'll have to experiment.
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Old 01-03-2020, 03:08 AM   #19
pancelticpiper
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Default Re: Drilling C Nat Hole?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Bell View Post
Some border chanters also cross-finger well and some don't. How conical the bore is, how long the bore is, how big the holes are and the design and strength of the reed are all factors.
Interesting.

My Border chanter experience is limited, I've only owned three chanters (Hamish Moore, Jon Swayne, and Nigel Richard) and all three gave perfect cross-fingered C natural, D sharp, F natural, and High G sharp.

Where they varied was B flat x xxx xxox

As I recall only one of the three chanters gave that note in tune, not that it's a note you need much, unless you're into playing music in the Hijaz mode A Bb C# D E Fnat Gnat A
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Last edited by pancelticpiper; 01-03-2020 at 03:11 AM.
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Old 01-03-2020, 01:35 PM   #20
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Default Re: Drilling C Nat Hole?

I might drop a line to a few makers who do bore that hole to see if they're willing to divulge their secrets. I feel bad asking for a freebie though, so maybe offer to buy plans? Thoughts?
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