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  1. #1
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    Chanter - technical question

    First of all, excuse me for my ignorance on this field. I was playing with some mathematical background of chanter and reach to the point where I need some clarifications.

    Chanter is regarded to be one-end-closed wind instrument, right? So... the length of such pipe should be 1/4 of tone wavelength. If the chanter is G tuned (around 400 Hz) it should be less then 11 inch long. But as much I look at it, it's more then 17 inch long. (the part from reed to bell)

    Where I'm wrong?

    Thanks

    Mipi
    I like the breeze between my knees

  2. #2
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    Re: Chanter - technical question

    The chanter is open at both ends - a reed on the end you blow and open at the other end. Diameter probably matters. They are generally tuned to A. I have looked at a long and a short chanter that have the same pitches and note that the finger holes are in the same place on both instruments.

  3. #3
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    Re: Chanter - technical question

    Actually I still believe chanter is closed on the side where the reed is inserted. From acoustic perspective this is true It's like clarinet, on both side open is flute or whistle.

    What I think is, that the reed is tuned around A (which is first hole on the chanter). So the chanter is "operating" around its first harmonic. This is only explanation I can think of.
    I like the breeze between my knees

  4. #4
    FreddyBeachPete is offline Oops, it seems this member needs to update their email address
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    Re: Chanter - technical question

    You may wish to post your question on another forum specific to piping like:

    http://forums.bobdunsire.com/forums/index.php

    I am a novice piper but my understanding is that pipe muisc is written in the key of D but the sound is actually E flat. So, for example, when a piper and guitar player collaborate, the guitar is played in D at capo 1. Also the pipe chanter is not necessarily at the standard 440 - depends on the day. Not sure if that helps at all !

  5. #5
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    Re: Chanter - technical question

    The length of pipe determines the frequency; the diameter the amplitude.
    ________________________
    Laird Sugach Fearann O'Searcaigh
    Reverend Doctor Eccliastica Indefferentia, PhD, MPH, CHt, MPG, DEI

  6. #6
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    Re: Chanter - technical question

    Quote Originally Posted by Mipi View Post
    First of all, excuse me for my ignorance on this field. I was playing with some mathematical background of chanter and reach to the point where I need some clarifications.

    Chanter is regarded to be one-end-closed wind instrument, right? So... the length of such pipe should be 1/4 of tone wavelength. If the chanter is G tuned (around 400 Hz) it should be less then 11 inch long. But as much I look at it, it's more then 17 inch long. (the part from reed to bell)

    Where I'm wrong?
    11 inches sounds about right, if you measure from the bottom of the reed seat to the top of the tone holes. There are a few inches of pipe that extend down past the tone holes.

    Keep in mind the chanter is tapered from a few mm at the reed end to big enough to stick one's thumb into at the other end.

    (currently fingering a ruler) the distance between the low A hole and the high A hole is about 9 inches.

  7. #7
    highland mafia is offline Oops, it seems this member needs to update their email address
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    Re: Chanter - technical question

    Well I would guess and this is just a guess. That the distance the holes are from the reed is more important for pitch then the length of the chanter itself.. If I put tape on my F for example I thereby more or less move the hole further from the reed. And this causes my F to flatten. As far as pitch goes most modern chanters are tuned to about the 480 range.. My chanter sits nicely at 479/480 ish during the winter and probally gets as high as 486! during the summer games.. But I shot for 482 to 484.

  8. #8
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    Re: Chanter - technical question

    Quote Originally Posted by O'Searcaigh View Post
    The length of pipe determines the frequency; the diameter the amplitude.
    QUite correct, though I'm used to working with electrical waves instead of pressure waves, the concepts are the same.

  9. #9
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    Re: Chanter - technical question

    To start with, I've been piping for about 10 years or so, and have done some research myself - though not very detailed/scientific.

    The Great Highland Bagpipe (which is what I presume we're talking about) has a chanter with a conical bore. Depending on the maker, it may be a stepped bore or a smooth bore - most are smooth.

    Without getting into a lot of very detailed measurements - I need to go to bed soon:
    The overall length of my personal chanter - a 2001 Naill - is 14 3/8 inches, or 35.9 centimeters. The top 4 centimeters - where the reed seat resides - appears to be a cylindrical bore. There is a slight taper near the top before the High A, then the chanter widens again before the top projection & reed seat. The distance between the bottom of the High A (the first open hole at the top on the back) and the top of the Low A (the last open finger hole before the two tone holes on the sides) is only 7 inches (about 17 centimeters).

    Most modern chanters tune to A = 475-483 Hz (standard concert pitch is A = 440 Hz). The A in question is the next-to-lowest note played. If 'x' is used as a closed hole, and 'o' is used as an open hole, the fingering for that note looks like this: x x x x x x x o (with the first x being the hole at the top on the back of the chanter - the High A). The actual pitch achieved on any given day is influenced by humidity (both in the air and moisture in/on the chanter reed), temperature and barometric pressure, in that order, to varying degrees.

    I'm sure you could find much more by doing a little Internet digging. I've read that there have been some formal studies done on the various aspects of bagpipes (size, shape, materials, playing conditions, etc.), but I don't know if/where they've been published.
    John

  10. #10
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    Re: Chanter - technical question

    Thank to all.

    I was googling a bit end I'm pretty sure the reed is prone to oscillate on certain frequency (440-480Hz) and this can be shifted a bit with the chanter.
    I like the breeze between my knees

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