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Renaissance Workshop Company
The foremost manufacturer of early musical instruments worldwide

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Finished and Kit Renaissance Bagpipes


Sp: Gaita; Fr: Cornemuse; Med. Fr: Estive, Pibole, Saccomuse; Ge: Dudelsack, Sackpfeife; It: Cornamusa, Piva, Zampogna; Ga: Adharcaid cuil, Pibau; Cat: Coixinera; Lat: Utricularium

The development of the bagpipe can be traced through the ancient civilizations of Persia, Greece and Rome to Europe where it has been in common use since the ninth century.

During the Middle Ages a sheep skin (or a goat skin) made into a bag and fitted to a reed pipe was often all that was used for an instrument

But by the 13th century one or two drones were commonly being used to accompany the chanter.

By the start of the Renaissance bagpipes typically had two drones to accompany the chanter producing a loud, vibrant sound suitable for dances, marches and other outdoor occasions. Three drones became more commonplace towards the end of the period.

Perhaps as a reaction to these loud bagpipes the Renaissance saw the emergence of quiet 'indoor' pipes such as the Hummelchen or Smallpipes that produced a muted tone entirely suitable for both indoor use and performance with other instruments. [more about the Bagpipes]

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Finished and Kit Medieval Bagpipes


RWC Bagpipes
Our Bagpipes are available in four versions.

Our rustic bagpipes do not have any drones, being in the true sense of the word a bag pipe. We use top quality tanned leather for the stitched bag into which are tied the stocks for the blowpipe and chanter in g.

Our Medieval bagpipes follow the description of English pipes with a single drone found in Chaucer's prologue (1386). It has a single drone in G, the chanter in g and a blowpipe fitted into stocks tied into a quality tanned leather stitched by.

Our Renaissance Bagpipes is based in the treatise Syntagma Musicum by Praetorius where clearly shows a set of bagpipes with two drones in several sections with the chanter flared suggesting a conical bore. It has two drones, one in 3 sections (d) and one in 4 sections (G), a conical bored chanter (g') and a blowpipe.

Our Smallpipes are based on the Hummelchen in Praetorius' Syntagma Musicum which shows a mouth blown set of small pipes with a small parallel bored chanter and two drones. We have scaled the chanter to the key of d' and the two drones to d & G. The three plastic reeds for both the chanter and the drones are set to operate on a light bag pressure making our smallpipes easy to play and particularly suitable for the first time player.

Each instrument is hand built to special order by in house craftsmen in our own workshops in Toledo (Spain) and comes with 12 months warranty.

A soft padded bag or fitted hard case are available as optional extras if required.

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Finished and Kit Rustic Bagpipes


Bagpipes Kit
The same range of Bagpipes are offered in kit form for home assembly. The price includes the license to build one instrument for private use.

A fully dimensioned plan and instruction manual take the builder through the construction of the instrument in a clear and concise manner, with 'step by step' photographs further illustrating each stage.

All the kits Include free access to our customer 'Helpline' should you need any advice on construction, setting-up or playing.

The Renaissance, Medieval and Rustic Bagpipes kits contain everything you need to build a set of bagpipes. English sycamore turned, bored and reamed for the stocks, drones and chanter. Top quality tanned leather, yellow hemp thread, cobblers wax, awl, needle and handle are provided so that the builder can make his own bag in which is dressed with a traditional bag dressing. Cane reeds (with the option of plastic) give the finished instrument a full sound.

The Smallpipes - Hummelchen in D kit includes everything you need to build your own smallpipes ready for assembly in this our most popular bagpipe kit. Most of the work is straightforward stitching of the leather and tying in of the turned wooden stocks. The hardwood chanter has a parallel bore and the two drones are made up from sections to play d and G. Drilling the fingerholes in the chanter is a simple process using the template and drills provided.

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Finished and Kit Smallpipes


Bagpipes Plan
You can make the same range of instruments from scratch, following detailed step-by-step instructions through the construction process in a clear and concise manner. A fully dimensioned plan and a set of photographs illustrates each stage.

The price includes the license to build one instrument for private use.

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Copyright © 1999 Renaissance Workshop Company Ltd.
Last modification: 17 de septiembre de 2010
Phone & Fax:(+34) 91 450 30 50