There is so much choice in the marketplace these days that selecting your bagpipe can be a daunting task. Whether a beginner buying your first set or an experienced player wishing to upgrade it can get very confusing.
To make matters more complicated, pipers are notorious for having many different opinions (especially online) and, as well, everyone is an expert! Select trusted and experienced sources for information.
3) New vs. Used
Bagpipe makers have perhaps never been more competitive. There are a lot of good sets being made by very competent individuals and firms. We at Tartantown would like to think that all the makes we carry are quality products and that really a customer cannot make a poor decision. Where
Consider the history and reputation of various bagpipe-makers and firms. This can be done by speaking with other pipers, searching online and by the good old-fashioned investigation. Historically, for decades, some very poor bagpipes were made. Conversely, some newer makers are putting out very good instruments. They are taking great care making one set at a time and the workmanship and finishing are top-notch. Be careful not to buy extremely light-weight and cheap bagpipes. Essentially they do not work and are best mounted on the wall – preferably with a large nail right through the bass drone!
New vs. Used:
There are pros and cons to either choice. One major pro to new is the makers now have very strong warranties supporting their range – some as long as 10 years. For use, it is definitely “buyer beware”. The hardest thing to figure out when buying old pipes is determining exactly how dry the wood is and how it will react to sudden moisture. The stress on wood changing from dry-wet-dry is pretty incredible. Another point to consider is that (with old pipes) most often the bag is poor (or wrong size for you), the blowpipe is the wrong length or restrictive, the chanter is unbalanced and the reeds are poor (or sometimes rotten!). At the end of the day, there are some very good old sets
Pipes today are so good that
Feel free to contact one of our bagpipe