Antigua Winds
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  1. #1
    Distinguished SOTW Member shmuelyosef's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003

    Default Pointed key arms

    Do these make any functional difference? I have seen several nice older flutes recently that are 10-20 year old flutes from Sankyo, Muramatsu, Miyazawa that are fairly reasonably priced from reasonable vendors, but have flat keys with 'Y' arms.

    "When I read about the evils of drinking, I gave up reading" --- Henny Youngman

  2. #2
    Distinguished SOTW member/Official SOTW Sister bandmommy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Lake Odessa, MI


    From what I've read Y arms are supposed to be stronger and help prevent the key cups from being bent. Most of the student and intermediate flutes have these. I don't know from personal experience it this is true or not.
    As I said before, It is only what I have read.

    Gordon may have better information for you on this subject.
    Old reed players are like fine wine. They only get better with age. Tom Hagen

    Play the Music, not the instrument.

  3. #3
    Distinguished SOTW Member/Technician
    Join Date
    Dec 2003


    In theory the french arms should place the pad down evenly but I can tell no difference. I would need to look at the flute I am playing to tell the difference. I make them both ways and the french arms cost about $250 more to make due to the soldering and clean-up. I will say that the arms look nice. I use a pointed cup with Y-arms and it looks a little more "upmarket". If you are buying a flute costing over $5K, then go for the fancy stuff. There is nothing wrong with those old Y-arm flutes from Japan.

  4. #4
    Distinguished Technician & SOTW Columnist
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Auckland, New Zealand


    The type of arms, if well made, are totally irrelevant.

    In theory, the pointed ones may be a zillionth of a mm more stable, but that is meaninglessly small. The pointed arms are done like that only for prettiness. Ignore the marketing BS.

    The cheapest flutes have non-pointed arms. (not because that is stronger, but because it is cheaper to make) The fancy flutes with pointed arms still have (i.e. have to have) non-pointed arms on the 5 key cups the fingers directly press.
    Contentment is not the fulfilment of what you want, but the realisation of how much you already have.

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