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Old 05-08-2003, 12:16 PM   #1
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Default Polished drone bores?

How important is it to have smooth and polished drone bores?

How does this affect the sound of pipes?

If one gets a set of pipes with rough spots in the bores, how does one go about polishing them?

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Old 05-08-2003, 02:08 PM   #2
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Default Re: Polished drone bores?

This topic's a bit of a can of worms. No-one really knows; some pipemakers swear by gundrilled bores you could put your makeup on by, and long ago pipes used to be made by sticking red-hot pokers through them. Subjective analysis is difficult.

I don't think they'll hurt, but if your pipe sounds nice the way it is, don't lose sleep over it.

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Old 05-08-2003, 02:42 PM   #3
Dick Huebschman
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Default Re: Polished drone bores?

I have polished drone bores. Using a gun cleaning
rod with cleaning patch, snug fit. First using
pumice mixed with water, then mixing Rottenstone
with water for the mirror finish.
Here is a link for these materials:
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Old 05-08-2003, 03:47 PM   #4
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Default Re: Polished drone bores?

Good question! Obviously you don't won't bores with huge rough chunks in them, but slightly less than "mirrored finish" bores allow the wood to hold tiny bits of moisture better when you are playing in cool and humid conditions. Mirrored finished bores tend to have accumulated moisture "fall down" into the reeds faster (and cause gurgling/other problems) than drones that may not be quite so polished.

But moisture problems are another ball game... And I certainly wouldn't take the sand paper to the drone bores to rough them up a bit...

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Old 05-09-2003, 01:23 AM   #5
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Default Re: Polished drone bores?

How important is it to have smooth and polished drone bores?

The smooth or polished drone bore, don't affect the sound, the only difference are in absorption of moisture and so with problem with in. There is different opinion in this, my are that are better smooth drone bores, that permit to wood the natural movement and permit to solve the moisture absorption problem, above all in the first time when pipe are new-made.
I made medieval pipe, and i use for this boxwood or mapple wood. The tune are G, so bass drone are 50-60 cm longer of Hignlad bass drone. I try to polish drone bore in one pipe, but i see that after 30-40 minutes of playing moisture was accumnulated in reed; with smooth bore the moisture are distribuited on the wood and problem don't exist; for this i think that are better smooth than polished, but i try this of different pipe, i don't know if work also on highland pipe set.
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Old 05-10-2003, 01:00 PM   #6
Gregor Burton
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Default Re: Polished drone bores?

And I certainly wouldn't take the sand paper to the drone bores
So how did you clean your bores out after the Police found your drones in the Garbage can???

This is a joke btw, poor Dan had his pipes stolen right out of his trunk a couple of weeks before a competition (solo and band), but they were recovered in a dumpster.
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Old 06-02-2003, 02:11 PM   #7
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Default Re: Polished drone bores?

Hello, My brother plays a set of Hardies he bought when he started playing in 1980. He also won quite a few competitions at that time with these pipes ( and played for most of the highland dancing competitions on the west coast... a dangerous occupation.)
The bores on these pipes are incredibly hairy but they sound great.
Maybe it's a one off.
But a small quote in a book makes me think... Tha ceol 'sna maidean, Ma bheir thus' as e. (There's music in the sticks, If you can draw it out.)
(Alan Bain, Kintail and Edinburgh)
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