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Mammoth with custom mouthpiece
Full mounted bagpipe, in African blackwood with mammoth ivory ferrules, projecting mounts, ring caps and bushes.

The bore design is the Kron Standard, and the profiles and shapes are as described here, only even more of a departure from my previous shapes. The projecting mounts are smaller. The wood profiles are also slimmer (except for the tuning pins), because the ferrules are ivory (silver ferrules requiring a bit larger wood sizes.) The ferrules are made with a little step in the bead, similar to those made by Donald McDonald. The shapes of the projecting mounts are very nice and compact, as can be seen in the pictures. The combing and beading is of course first rate. Overall the look is very much 19th century Edinburgh.

All the ivory parts are fitted according to proper tightness for type of part. For instance, the ferrules are fitted so that the wood closely (but not tightly) touches the ivory most of the way up. The mounts are fitted so the threads touch closely only at the bottom, where the tenon meets the ivory. From there the taper in the ivory thread moves away from the wood as it approaches the end where the combing and beading is. This helps to prevent cracking by having no outward pressure on the mount where the mount is thinnest. It is details like these, which are repeated throughout the pipe (and every other pipe made here) that set my products apart from those made by all other makers.

As with all my standard sets, everything on the pipe is made in this shop. Such control of materials allows me complete control over the quality of the final product.

The ivory is strikingly colored, with interesting variations in each piece. I kept the silver to a minimum, using exposed metal only where necessary for strength.

The metal is all in the blowpipe/mouthpiece assembly. The blowpipe is the "no-touch" brass sleeved system I invented a few years ago, with a brass tube connecting the brass tenon and aluminum tip at each end. They are sealed against moisture and air leakage, so the ivory and wood are protected from attack by moisture. The mouthpiece is sleeved mammoth with ferrules at both ends. The aluminum bead and silver ferrule on the mouthpiece help prevent cracking due to outward pressure from the sleeve (when the blowpipe and tip are screwed on.)

I made this pipe with a single large chunk of mammoth tusk. The tusk was strangely colored, with no consistent texture. I knew it would pose a challenge, and had to fight for even the small pieces I did get, working around rotten bits and cracks. I also knew, however, that because of this the coloration would be very striking. I just hoped to squeeze enough ivory out of that chunk for a full mounted set. There are a few little imperfections in the ivory, from a little pit to a tiny crack. The density also varies, but does not affect the look or feel. These tiny imperfections are why I offer these pipes at a good discount. The usual price for this set is $7700.

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