Wood and Materials
We use top quality wood which is stored over a long time to dry naturally (no drying chambers or microwaves!) thus preventing the formation of any tension cracks, as well as any bending or warping of the finished instrument. We also extend the production process from the raw piece of wood to the finished flute over several months to allow the wood to rest.
Boxwood (European boxwood)
We use boxwood from the south of France and the Pyrenees. After careful storage the wood is split ensuring that the course grain runs parallel in the instrument. This painstaking procedure helps to avoid any warping of the finished instrument. Boxwood is actually not a tree but a bush. Therefore any small growths and knots in the wood are unavoidable and have no negative effect on the acoustic qualities of the finished instrument. Boxwood recorders and transverse flutes are characterised by their earthy, striking and colourful but not hard sound.
It originates from South America and is lighter and more evenly grown than European boxwood. Maracaibo boxwood is excellent for making recorders. Its sound is soft and round.
It has been used for woodwind instruments for centuries. It is reddish-brown-black and very resistant to moisture. Even though it is a hard wood, well-cared for grenadilla flutes are less susceptible to cracking. Grenadilla makes the sound earthy, powerful and very carrying.
It comes from Africa and is stored for many years in our wood storage room. Ebony is jet black and brittle making it prone to cracks if it is not treated properly. Nonetheless, ebony is used in flute making. Its sound is very carrying with a wide range of subtle differences.
This very rare and precious wood comes mainly from the Caribbean and South America. It is light brown and extremely hard. It was used a great deal for flute making in the 19th century. Cocoswood flutes are generally powerful and carrying, making them very suitable for orchestral performance.
We use Sycamore Maple from Switzerland and Austria. This very light wood is primarily used for Renaissance flutes which then possess a soft, round and delicate sound.
Our plumwood comes from Hungary and Serbia. In many cases, since modern fruit- growing is now espalier trained, it is becoming increasingly difficult for us to obtain very long and straight wood in the right size for our Renaissance flutes. Plumwood is a truly wonderful wood with a very beautiful reddish-brown colour. It is not only excellently suited for Renaissance flutes, but for recorders too.
We use a substitute material for the rings of our flutes. It is a white/cream coloured resin, cast into rods that perfectly ressembles the structure and colouring of real ivory.
Ivory was used over centuries for rings, mounts and even for entire instruments. Deriving from elephant tusks, species conservation has made it now forbidden and even its import and commerce is subject to tough restrictions. We can offer real ivory from legal traders for restoration work and special models. A CITES certificate is then supplied. Please contact us for further details.
Rubber is a very unusual, individual and decorative material used for rings and mounts. Made from the sap of a rubber tree which is first collected and then prepared, this material is later coloured and pressed under high pressure. We can supply this material in different colours.