Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Riddle me this, riddle me that....


What's black and black and, uh...black all over?
The answer will now be posted....

Ya know, Bill had a great idea with the oil spill....what a hiddeous Medusa that situation is becoming! No, nothing along the lines of injuries or things negative...just the production of my first Ebony flute.

Now, you may not be aware of how unusual that is, an Ebony flute. First and foremost you're talking $$$ as good Ebony starts at $75/ board-foot. Too, setting aside the expense, the sound you get from such a dense wood is in it's own little category.

And you may think Ebony is pure black, but that's not the case. Most Ebony has chocolaty ribbons in it, but when oiled and finished most of it goes very dark, indeed.

Meet "Nighthawk", named for the actual bird. This mid "A" (A4) is 20.5" long with a composite block of 3 thinner Ebony strips, with the end result being a bird silhouette that for me resembles a nighthawk.

The pictures are with the flute sanded and finished with one coat of Walnut Oil....I may re-oil and finish with wax, or may try a shiny poly coat on it, though Ebony can be fickle with finishes.

I suppose I need to qualify a 100% Ebony flute...the block actually has a 1/16" layer of Poplar on the bottom to help absorb a little moisture, as Ebony simply doesn't....should help this flute avoid super-fast 'wet-out' since Poplar will absorb some moisture. I coated the edge with a Sharpie to darken it!

The 'video' below is simply my means of attaching an MP3 file for you to hear the flute. My laptop speakers are horrid, so I will have to assume the sample sounds fine on your computer...just something I threw together and added in a little 'echo' for effect. Enjoy!



5 comments:

Bill said...

Can I guess? Is it the heart of the health insurance companies? Or the oil industry? Heck, the Gulf of Mexico now. Thanks to BP, we can run our cars on water!

Bill said...

Hey Bob, I like your answer best. Beautiful flute and perfectly named! Nice sound too. I hope it finds a good home.

Lori said...

Beautiful flute and song. I can see some brownish color in the flute. It really does look like chocolate.

Rita said...

Cool, Bobaloo! Don't make it shiny later. I love the way it looks right now. By the way, ebony flutes are not at all unusual, but maybe you mean it's unusual for Native American-style flutes?

Bob Child said...

Thanks Bill and Lori! Yes, Rita, per the NA style flute it's seen rarely. Plenty of other world flutes and high-end whistles use only Ebony, Rosewood, Penwood, etc., and most are tunable to some extent....but you already know that! :-) Working on #2 right now, one step higher (B4). Wheeeeee!