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Flute with bis key

3710 Views 16 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  bruce bailey
As sax player and flutemaker I have always wanted to have a bis key on the flute. I made up a few adding it and while I was at it I made some other changes to the left hand. I did it with the offest G leaving the cups covered in the left hand and open in the right hand. This way the left hand is free to angle at a comfortable position without worry of not covering the holes. I used a smaller lower G hole positioned higher in the body to eliminate the need for a split E or donut in the lower G. With this alteration, the G# lever is elongated and more sax-like in feel. Having the A pad covered also has a small advantage of making F#3 a bit more stable. It feels pretty natural to me. Photos:[email protected]/tags/bis/
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I have an old guy in Elkhart that does the engraving and trademarks. I still make them the normal way but offer this for the sax players.
I really would like a for F# but it is too much junk. A well known Elkhart musician worked at Armstrong in the 60s and had them make up a flute with an articulated G# since his clarinets had it. He loved that flute until a "real" flute player tried it and found that Eb3 was non-existant. Powell made 3 closed hole flutes (Victor Goldring brand) that were closed hole with pearls.
The photos are free to try out!
Actually it is a patented design. I get parts from a guy who has paid for the patent use so I get it for free. I am more interested in the G# key angle than the actual hole placement and size. By using existing parts here and there, I can keep my costs as low as possible. The flute in the photos is sterling but the keywork is plated. Gold Springs, felt kickers, 14K gold riser, modern scale, etc. and I can keep the wholesale dealer price a bit above $2,000. I never set out to build flutes but I needed something to sell in that price range. My main objective was to make a C foot piccolo but of about 95 built, about 70 are flutes.
The open/closed G# has been done. McCannless in Iowa makes them that way. It is like an open G# flute that has a double spring set up like a sax. If anyone wants an open G# flute, they can be made easily but there are so many deals on ebay it is good to buy one there. I have a really nice 20s US Selmer all sterling open G# cheap.
That one is pretty much like the Dorus. I use the donuts on standard flutes and while it is not quite the effect of a split E, it is less complicated, cheap ($.15) and can be removed.
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