Things are moving on with Estron as well - the girls are away at University (though they're home now for Christmas) and to fill the void we've acquired a new member for the band - Jess who's a bit of a whizz on the harp has been joining us for the last couple of practices. Of course when the girls are home we've got the full band, but now when they're away we can still do a creditable performance.
Meanwhile things have been fairly quiet on the instrument making front. I still have customers waiting patiently for the pipes they've ordered - and they will be getting them soon, though I'm not as quick at it as I used to be. Just finished this set of pibau cyrn for one customer - it's made from yew sourced in Carmarthenshire, plastic Eezydrone reeds in both the chanter and drone:
Also finished for another customer - Bill Reese in Virginia who plays with the Welsh / Breton folk group `Moch Pryderi' - another set of pibau cyrn, again in yew. This is Bill playing them during a concert:
In my last Blog post I showed you a set of Swedish pipes (sackpipa) I made for myself. It works at a lighter pressure than my pibau cyrn so I've been playing it quite a bit recently - trying to get to grips with the different fingering, and assembling a collection of tunes in it's peculiar scale from various internet sources.
One characteristic is that the bridge and nut are formed from tin, cut and bent to shape over iron nails. Frets are made from staples and are placed just under the melody string, while the tuners are simply screw in eyes which work much better than you might imagine.