advice for a beginner buying simple flute?

Flute History and Instrument Purchase

Moderators: Classitar, pied_piper, Phineas

Post Reply
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2009 10:32 pm

advice for a beginner buying simple flute?

Post by toaster »

I'm used to playing the recorder and pennywhistles, but I can't get the mellow "flute" sound I'm going for so I want to branch out and give flutes a try.

I want a 6-hole type flute with a deeper, mellow sound that would be easy(ish) for a beginner. After a lot of googling and looking through old threads here, I've pretty much narrowed it down to one of these:

a bamboo flute from "Erik the Flutemaker"
a bamboo flute from Windsong
or a pvc flute from Doug Tipple

Any preference between those three makers? Price is definitely a factor, as is ease of playing. And what key would give me the deep mellow sound I'm after but still be comfortable to a guy with small hands (alto recorders are uncomfortable to me)

Thanks for the advice.

caitlin i
Posts: 12
Joined: Thu Apr 17, 2008 6:02 pm
Location: Coxsackie, NY

Post by caitlin i »

I have a student who plays Irish flute. Her's is wood (not bamboo) and in D. I didn't realize people make flutes out of PVC. I must say, if you are looking to produce a warm, mellow tone, you should go with a wood flute. Are these transverse flutes that you are looking at?

I play a modern silver flute so key is not an option. Sorry I can't help there. Talk to the flute makers and get their advice.

Posts: 3
Joined: Mon Sep 07, 2009 8:34 am

Post by mrcharly »

I followed Doug Tipple's advice and made a low D flute.

It's good for getting an idea of whether you like playing this sort of instrument. Also, good for getting a feel as to the hole spacing - I can manage ok, have fat palms and short fingers. Wife can't reach, even though her hand span is actually greater than mine.

I'd say to try this first. My 1st home-made job sounds nice and mellow, just very difficult to get the 2nd octave. Probably because I undercut the embouchure.

Post Reply