Every collector at some time comes across fragments which, fascinating as they might be, would be even more so if we could only see the complete instrument.
Crowley's music shop on MacCurtain St. was a Cork city institution for many, many years until it closed in 2013. From a traditional musician's, and indeed woodwind enthusiasts point of view, the story is enriched by the knowledge that the father of the owner was the renowned uilleann pipe maker Tadgh Crowley (1899-1952)
I got to know Mick Crowley in the early 1980s, initially I think, in connection with buying some African blackwood, and other timber that had survived from the old pipe making workshop, which had closed in 1966. Many of the pieces weren't suitable for flute making, but we struck up a relationship which lasted until his untimely death in 2010. Mick was a legend in Cork music circles, and you can read more about his shop and its famous customers here.
At sometime in the 80s, Mick showed me an old flute, which presumably had also come from the pipes workshop, and which would probably have ended up in the hands of a traditional player, were it not for a combination of it's unsuitability for trad music, and a scarcity of flute players in the Cork city of the time.
At that stage I was really only beginning my journey in the flute world, and all I could tell about the instrument was that it was a "frankenflute" made up of bits of different instruments. The body and the head, were that of Rudall & Rose #12...and before you all have heart attacks I have to tell you that it was an 1832 Boehm system, but of course a very early one of those as well.
The foot however is what I'm taking out of the Cabinet to show you today.
The solution in this case was to move the holes, not in a flat plane, but around the circumference of the bore, ( as at A ) meaning that they now meet the bore without distortion. The following images attempt to show this.