Thursday, March 19, 2009

New flute garden

Spring officially arrives tomorrow, Friday March 20th, and when I think of spring I think of gardens. I've currently got about 2 dozen flutes in the works, going through their myriad finish coats, and when they're on their racks drying it looks I've sprouted a flute garden. It takes a rather long stretch of attention as I deal with them all (and starting the sanding processes on the blocks for them, yet a whole other little garden in itself!) minor result is that I'm simply not at the computer writing as much as I normally might, not with this activity.

There is a wide range of flutes in keys and styles coming out. I'm no fool given this economy, so I'm beefing up my supply of more affordable flat-bottomed Half-Pipes...some are really compact and perfect for taking rafting down the Colorado and playing in the caves and slot canyons you can explore as you go. One day, Bob, one day...

I'm using the last of this stunning board of Cocobolo I picked up a couple of years ago. Cocobolo can be a risky wood given it's oily nature, so not only did I do multiple pre-glue wipes with Acetone, but I used polyurethane glue (not my favorite, but the strongest) and left the walls a bit thicker than I normally would, all in hopes that this will undergo no seam separation. The only 'down' side to it is that it's a heavy flute (low E), which makes no difference to me, only whiny players (HA!).


I am creating a Thunderbird flute (mid G) from some gorgeous figured Walnut and crafted a bird-head motif at the end of the flute. There are also several turquoise inlay patterns all over the flute, the 'feathering' ones in the picture...

figured Black Walnut

One of my Half-Pipes is a big ol' mid F# that I felt led to do a relief burning of a large Kokopelli at the foot...the wood was unmarked when I got itm though I think it's a more dense Mahogany species...

This flute is a special order flute that is already spoken for for 'dibs'. It's a mid G in Black Limba that has, among other design elements, 5 turquoise paw inlays. It's a Coyote flute, and my first job this morning is to hone in on the special composite block I'm designing for it. For any and all of these flutes I'll take special pictures once they're completed.

Black Limba

And now for turning lemons into lemonade...

One of my specialty ultra-high A flutes (~22" long) for some reason got banana-itis and curled significantly (not the flute pictured, but one like it)...

So what more natural thing to do than to whack off the aesthetic parts and create a cute, fun stubby flute about 8.5" long! Here it is minus the little block I need to make...another great little hiking flute that will fit in a pocket!

And that's what's had me tied up of late...and sneezing my fool head off at times, too!

Happy last day of winter, all y'all!

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