How to tie or bind flute, the technique.

Last Revised: Friday, November 30, 2012

..from Quena Flute making guide

How to Tie / Bind your Flute Professionally

Often this is the last stage of flute making... is optional but it'll definitely make your flute more authentic looking.. A good binding technique can help prevent bamboo flute from splitting. You can also use this technique to repair your cracked bamboo flute.

Follow through my steps and do it slowly. You should be able to get a good and tight bind.

Binding Steps:

Step 1: Make a loop like this

(btw this is the back of flute and its thumb hole)
Flute binding Step 1

Step 2:  Hold the loop with your thumb

Flute binding step 2

Step 3: Start the winding. 

Make sure each winding is tight and not overlapping each other.
The yellow arrow shows the winding direction of my thread
The red arrow shows the direction at which you should wind towards (towards the looped end)
Flute binding step 3

Step 4: Tying the ends  

First, Yellow arrow..push the winding end of the thread through the loop
Second, Red arrow.. pull the thread at the other end as tight as you can, this will close the loop and secure the winding end.

I am using a pliers to tighten the bind.
Flute binding step 4Flute binding pliers pulling the thread

Step 5: Trim away the excess ends with a penknife/Xacto knife..

Flute binding cutting the thread

You are done with the binding process!

For additional strength and finish, you may want to apply lacquer on the binds itself.  
Do not over do it. You only want the thread to soak up the lacquer.

The Complete Guide: Make your PVC Quena Flute

Why I started making flutes and a little history about quena flute...

PVC quena flute
Quena Flute Made in Singapore O.o

Let's make Quena!

showing blues clues handy dandy note book
Planning to get a Handy dandy notebk?  
This will be a long post.. step by step  .. on making a quena flute.
I will provide you with my personal secret handy-dandy tips n tricks, hopefully they will be useful for your flute making. And also I've included the making plans and dimensions for my flute.

Don't worry if you do not own any heavy machines or milling machines.. I just find whatever tools I can get around me to make my PVC flute. In another words all the tools that I will be using should be easily obtainable. Yeah!

Why buy when you can make flute?

Last Revised: Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Yoz! Do you like to make a musical instrument?
Of course you do! If not, you wouldn't have landed on this page. Right? 

There may be a few reasons to why you want to make your own flute.. for me I find that is not easy to get a flute here in Singapore ( not talking about western flute). Often hear people asking where can I buy a flute in Singapore?  You can find them, but they are like searching for rare items in a game.. Furthermore bamboo flute may splits when not taken care of properly. Not very durable compared to a pvc made one.. ..For more, here is my article on plastic instruments

Since I love making things out from scratch... why not build my own flute :)
White Black Quena Flute
 White Black Quena Flute 

But First let me give you a short introduction on this flute that I made.

Quena is originated from Andean. It has a distinctive sound comparable to a bird-soaring in the sky. The early materials use for making this flute are from animal bones and condor quills..   slowly wood and bamboos are used instead..
My favourite and very first song I heard played using the Quena would be  El Condor Pasa (The Condor Flew Past), go check it out. You might have heard of the tune before. 

 I dont have a bamboo forest here in my country But I will teach you how to make flutes using PVC pipes.
No bamboo forest
But we have 2 great Pandas
Note: The given dimension could be use for making a wooden one.. provided if you have a bamboo forest near you :P

Hmm.. should I gave this Quena flute a name "The Panda Flute?"..
Ah! Jiajia Kaikai have eaten up all the bamboos.. too bad they dont like plastics..

Ok.. Enough of my stupid blabbering..

How we hear Sound? Anatomy Inner workings of our ear.

Last Revised: Sunday, November 25, 2012

Ink on paper  Ear
Ink on paper: The Ear
Let's learn about how we hear..
Understand why? when a mechanical wave is created by a vibrating body (eg. musical instrument), is being heard as sound.

Sorry for my bad drawing lol. Both are done by me but you can see I didn't put in any effort for the diagram below haha!
The ear diagram
The ear diagram

This is just a simple structure of our ear (excluding the stick man of course).
From my drawing you can see the three labelled parts; tympanic membrane (aka eardrum), auditory ossicles and cochela
They each plays a different roles which contributes to our hearing.
  1. Sound wave reach the tympanic membrane and cause it to vibrate
  2. The vibration will be relayed through the ossicles,
    • the ossicles are like little levers, it is said that the force of the vibrations is being amplified about 20-fold
    • they are three the smallest bones found in our body
  3. Finally it reaches the cochlea
    • inside Cochlea is filled with fluid
    • when the fluid moves the hair cells in the cochlea will be stimulated 
    • which induces action potential signals in nerves cells
    • these signals will then be processed by our brain as sound!    
To summarise: Soundwave>Tympanic Membrane>Ossicles>Cochlea>Brain

So when you play an instrument, it will vibrate. This vibration will cause the molecules in the air to also resonate. Note that sound is a mechanical wave it only travels through a medium(this case is air). When the vibrating air molecules hit your ear you'll hear sound. 

Additional Information: Our ears also help us in maintaining balance.

Soup Master 老火汤 Great Deal

Last Revised: Friday, November 23, 2012

Soup Master Soup With Pumpkin Rice
Soup Master Soup With Pumpkin Rice

I believe most people in Singapore knows what is 老火汤 (lao huo tang aka Soup Master). Over the past one year I've seen them popping out of every corner.

Lotus Root Pork Ribs Soup take away
Lotus Root Pork Ribs Soup
You can't go wrong with soup and I like to drink soup.  This is what I bought yesterday while on my way back home. Yeah.. I dont like to eat out when im alone .. but anyway they offer free soup refills if you dine in. They have a variety of soup for you to choose from a simple and light Pear & Apple Pork Ribs Soup to rich flavourful Buddha Jump Over the Wall.

So what is the Special deal here?

collect 10 chop marks
Collect Card
There see this little card  --->
is all in Chinese which I don't understand why.. 
or maybe there is English version one? dont know..

"Whateva" .. so what this card says is, collect 10 chop marks or stamps and you'll get to have one choice of soup for free. Any one will do and of course I will be picking the most expansive one.

The promotion will last until mid Feb of next year. So hurry and good luck in collecting your CHOPS on the discount coupon.

Soup Master 老火汤 
Reviewed by Simon Ooh on Nov 22 2012
Rating: 4

The Six Elements of Music and its theory.

Last Revised: Thursday, November 22, 2012

Understanding the basic component of music:

It is important to study them when you want to convey your thoughts and show your appreciation toward music. Especially when you are writing a music critique these are the six elements that you would want to know. Most Music Critics don't touch on the playing techniques unless he/she is a professional player in that instrument.

Or perhaps if you compose, these basic elements are essential to look at in order to create a specific genre of music.

The Six Primary Elements of Music:

There are various combinations out there but I will be covering on these Six. You are probably familiar with the top 3 (melody, rhythm and harmony) as they are the most common out of all the elements listed. I had come up with this Fish Analogy so that you can appreciate them better.

Melody (fish bone)

Melody is simply the backbone of the music. Made up by series of pitches. It is also commonly referred to as the tune. It is the main gist of the piece. Therefore the idea for coming up a catchy tune often rely on how well the melody is structured.

Harmony (fish meat)

Backing up the melody is the harmony, they are the muscles and meat of the music. Their main purpose is to support the bone structure. Doesn't this sounds like anatomy studies? haha. They are often known as the accompaniment. If you do play piano you will notice that the right hand often does the melody whereas the left plays the harmony.
Harmony are made up of chords, like the muscles fibres they need to work together. A chord is basically two or more pitches that sound right when heard simultaneously.      

Rhythm (heart beats)

When we talk about beats we know that it has to deal with some form of time measurements. The flow of time. In simple context, the beat is the time measurements of the music. Different types of notes have different beats which will determine how long the notes will have to hold.

Below are some of the notes and their respective beats.
whole = 4 beats
half     = 2 beats
quarter= 1 beat
eight   = 1/2 beat
sixtheen=1/4 beat

Not to mix up with tempo. Tempo determines the speed at which the beats progress.

Texture (fish scales)

When we look at the different species of fish we will noticed that the scales are arranged in orderly rows differently, some are densely compacted and some are spread out. Texture describes they way on how the musical lines are woven.

There are mainly 3 kinds of textures:
  1. Monophnic
    As you can see the prefix "Mono" it means single or one. It is the simplest from of texture, consist of only one single line without any accompaniment.
  2. Polyphonic
    Polyphonic on the other hand consist of two or more lines. The lines are independent of each other. They do not "sing" in unison each go their separate ways.
  3. Homophonic
    As for homophonic is different form polyphonic because the lines are interdependent. They move and change relatively to each other. Often the main melody move in unison with the accompany.

Colour (colour!)

So what is this colour? Just like the colours on the fish. It helps to beautify the fish, if not they will look dull and uninteresting. Colour in music represents the tone quality of sound  produce by an instrument. Different instruments produce different colours.

Form (pattens of the fish)

The arrangement of shapes you can see on the fish. Like our Cute Nemo here with the repetitive stripes all over his body.
In music the composer creates the from by sculpturing the order of events happening. In simple term it is how the composer arrange the music.

I make music for eyes, not ears.. Oops

Last Revised: Saturday, November 17, 2012

Some of you might be very familiar with this quote by Adele "I make music for ears, not eyes".
If you don't know her yet you should go check her out.

Mr Krabs Listens to music with his eyes
Mr Krabs Listens to music with his eyes
Well I will be going to talk about music for eyes not ears.. o.o <-- wow your eyes sure is staring big now. Probably wondering what has music got to do with visuals?.and what is this jerk talking about?

I am talking about Ernst Chladni a physicist and a musician. By the way, I guess most physicist like the vibes of music... like our famous Albert Einstein who loves his violin..

Ernst Chladni invented a technique that allows us to visualise the different resonance on a given surface under a specific given frequency.

Chladni Figures
The technique requires one to draw a bow, like those you use for violin, across the edge of metal plate. The sand or salt covering the plate will resonate and concentrate on the nodal lines.. different frequency will result in the different formations of nodal lines.

Nodal lines are area which separates the opposite directional wave, like the red dots below.

These nodal patterns formations are also known as Chladni Figures.
So why is this important? Ain't they only patterns?

They are useful in the context of acoustic engineering especially when designing a acoustic instrument. A well designed plate will result in a better quality sounding music instrument.

Additional information:
Do you know? Chladni's creation of Cristal Baschet was inspired by Franklin's glass harp.

Comments are welcome and encouraged. :)

Currently viewed

Google+ Followers