Any well made set, whether "beginner" or "top of the line" produced by a reputable pipemaker should last a long time. The big difference between a "beginner" set made by a reputable pipemaker in the UK, Canada, the US or elsewhere and a "top of the line" set made by the same company is the amount of decoration on the wood (beading and combing) and of what the mounts, ferrules, and drone caps are made. Again, any reputable pipemaker should exercise the same craftsmanship and quality control on a "beginner" set as on a "top of the line" set...the higher the price, the more decoration.
To my understanding the only decorations which impact the sound produced by the bagpipe are the ivory or silver soles which might be put on a chanter. Supposedly ivory soles give the chanter a warm sound while silver gives the chanter a brassier sound.
>3. From my past as a sax player and my experience on a
>practice chanter I know I want a water trap system
Water traps/tubes can be easily made for just a little money with materials found at a decent hardware store...electrician's tape, plastic plumber's tubing, a cork, and an exacto-knife.
>4. The local pipe band is closely associated with the
>St Andrews society and wants us to have Scottish made
If you do a bit of research, I think you'll find that Gibson, Dunbar, Kron, and MacLellan pipes (and maybe others), although made in the US or Canada, are, in fact, made by people trained in Scottish bagpipe companies. Aren't these instruments then Scottish made, regardless of where they're made?
Date Posted:21:22:35 04/14/02 Sun
Hey have you found your pipes yet? For $1500 you should be able to get just about any brand you want. As has been said many times before, the basic pipes sound the same as the more ornate ones, the price is different is all. The thing about silver verses Ivory (or plastic?) soles on the chanter is the first I've heard. Intertesting, I'll start paying attention to that now. See if I can hear it.
My only contribution to which brand to buy is .... There is no such thing as no/fault bagpipe buying, you pay your money and take your chances. Who knows what you will like 10 or 20 years from now, or what will be popular.
Anyway, post back when you get your pipes, and tell us the end of the story.
Date Posted:21:54:17 07/30/02 Tue
Yes, I have ordered some pipes. I looked for a long time and went to 3 different highland games to listen to soloists. I could not really tell much difference in pipes standing in a field. The only difference I could hear seemed to be more with technique of the piper. Another student of my piping instructor ordered some Fletcher pipes and I also did after seeing and hearing them. I ordered some 1/2 silver with a zoomorphic pattern, probably more than I should have spent but since I am in my 40's I figured this will probably be my first and last pipes. I have not got them yet but I keep hearing from the person I ordered them through that they are worth the wait.