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Go Back   Bob Dunsire Bagpipe Forums > Other (not GH) Bagpipes > Uilleann, Northumbrian, Smallpipes +
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Uilleann, Northumbrian, Smallpipes + For all types of (non GH) Bagpiping discussions.

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Old 01-14-2015, 01:19 PM   #1
LeoBenHan
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Default Gumtree NSP Restoration

In the summer (2014), I optimistically bought a set of Dave Burleigh Northumbrian Smallpipes from a seller on gumtree for £300ish. They were a wreck; the stocks had been tied in with the aid of blue-tack, all the mounts were off, the drone stock wasn't original (possibly bubinga), the drones were all wedged in and were chipped where a previous owner had tried to lever them out, and the main section of bass drone was unoriginal too (again, bubinga). What's more, a previous owner had also fitted a HUGE bellows inlet pipe, which is both of too large a bore to plug into any bellows I've ever seen, let alone own, and too long to accommodate a comfortable playing position. To top it off, the neck of the back-which I presume should be more like a 'swan-neck'-had been cut off so that it more resembled a GHB bag.

I've ditched the bag, ditched the original reeds, reattached the mounts, and freed the drones from their stock, rehemped everything so that all the parts work smoothly, and i'm about to embark on oiling the chanter and drones.

So, to cut a long story long, how expensive would it be likely to be to have a new inlet pipe, drone stock, and bass drone section made from blackwood by a maker?

Thanks.

Last edited by LeoBenHan; 01-14-2015 at 01:32 PM.
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Old 01-15-2015, 02:08 AM   #2
Rob_Say
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Default Re: Gumtree NSP Restoration

Hi - without seeing them, it's hard to determine whether the stocks you are describing are replacements or not. It is relatively common practice in NSPs to make the stocks out of non-tone woods and I've seen many Burleigh sets with brown drone stocks. However; a replacement standing part and the other changes suggest an 'interesting' history.

Replacing two stocks & a non-mounted drone part is a straight forward job - as is the bag. The bag should be a swan neck - I play mine naked so you can see it here: http://milecastle27.co.uk/rob/2014/1...day-silliness/ There's also a picture of a chap playing a Burleigh set there and you can see the brass ferrule on the drone stock - is yours like this or different?

FWIW £300 is a reasonable price for a non-working set like this in the current market. I would consider taking something in at that price to restore and get playing for someone. I would offer to do the job but I'm currently latheless and short on time. I will however forward to some people who don't have these challenges.

cheers

Rob
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Old 01-15-2015, 02:41 AM   #3
Julia Say
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Default Re: Gumtree NSP Restoration

would need to see them for a detailed assessment. Am not prepared to do online quotes, but would be willing to look at them.

Julia
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Old 01-15-2015, 05:54 AM   #4
Francis Wood
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Default Re: Gumtree NSP Restoration

Just to clarify the above . . .

Rob wasn't actually playing the pipes totally naked.
It being Boxing Day and high on a Northumbrian hill, he was wearing a hat.

As for the drone stock, I'd advise against anything as hard as blackwood. Historical and contemporary sets usually use something less dense. There are two reasons for this - firstly that's quite an expensive lump of wood to end up mostly as drilled debris, and secondly a softer substance is better from an engineering point of view, since the slight compressibility and elasticity is likely to survive accidental damage much more robustly.

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Old 01-15-2015, 05:54 AM   #5
LeoBenHan
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Default Re: Gumtree NSP Restoration

Hi Rob,

The inlet pipe+stock are almost definitely unoriginal; the ones ive seen on other burleigh sets are much more delicate and have a brass mount, which mine doesnt. There isnt a hemped section at the end of the pipe either, which i thought was odd.

I dont think the drone stock is original either because, although it does have an original brass mount (with the same style pattern as all the other brass parts, and matches the one in your picture), it doesnt have the same pattern (two very thin parallel lines) engraved into the wood of the stock.

The bag of mine clearly had a longer neck; it had just been 'hacked off', leaving the frayed ends of the bag stitching visible.

Thanks for your interest,

Leo
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Old 01-15-2015, 05:55 AM   #6
LeoBenHan
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Default Re: Gumtree NSP Restoration

And thanks Julia

Leo
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Old 01-15-2015, 05:59 AM   #7
LeoBenHan
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Default Re: Gumtree NSP Restoration

Thanks Francis,

I understand about the blackwood. My biggest beef is that I think the holes in the stock have been drilled cockeyed, so that the drones either lean against or away from each other. Also the hole for the bass drone is slightly oval, which just seems completely wrong to me haha

Leo
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Old 01-15-2015, 09:45 AM   #8
Steve Bliven
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Default Re: Gumtree NSP Restoration

Quote:
Originally Posted by Francis Wood View Post
Just to clarify the above . . .

Rob wasn't actually playing the pipes totally naked.
It being Boxing Day and high on a Northumbrian hill, he was wearing a hat.
Which leads to the question—Where was he wearing the hat?

Best wishes.

Steve
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Old 01-15-2015, 12:36 PM   #9
Klondike Waldo
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Default Re: Gumtree NSP Restoration

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Bliven View Post
Which leads to the question—Where was he wearing the hat?

Best wishes.

Steve
On a hill in Northumberland as I read it, Steve.
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Old 01-15-2015, 12:51 PM   #10
Julia Say
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Default Re: Gumtree NSP Restoration

Quote:
I think the holes in the stock have been drilled cockeyed, so that the drones either lean against or away from each other. Also the hole for the bass drone is slightly oval, which just seems completely wrong to me
Sounds like they've been "serviced" or adapted by a well meaning, but not highly skilled, amateur at some stage. (there are some very highly skilled amateurs, I hasten to add - nothing wrong with being an amateur in the strict meaning).
Making the drones lean is not intrinsically a problem: some sets are splayed outwards in this way. But from your description its been done badly - that is an issue.

I'm with Francis on the use of blackwood as a drone stock for some sets: David B usually used stained cherry or other fruitwood on his sets, AFAIK.

PM if you want me to look at them.

Julia
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