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Author Topic: Something to talk about...the "ProRange"  (Read 133550 times)
MedicineMan
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« Reply #135 on: August 27, 2016, 03:10:09 am »

Fingers crossed for good news and good luck on Aug 30th.
I've been absent from the MO world for quite some time; have to admit it is exciting to return
and see this new model on the cusp.


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EriChanHime
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« Reply #136 on: August 31, 2016, 06:15:48 pm »

These are very exciting developments. I'm new to the ocarina world in general, and I get to pick up my basic poly C & G from MO today after work (so thrilled, by the way). I'm hoping that by the time I get used to playing the inline style, maybe this new expanded style will be ready! Lots of luck. Smiley


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Bunjiro
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« Reply #137 on: September 13, 2016, 06:49:23 pm »

I was listening to my ocarina albums when Mountain Myst came on and I remembered how much I love the sound of mountain ocarinas (I got my warmstone models many years ago), so I thought I'd check the forum out - and I find this thread! I know you've had many false starts with the ProRange, Karl, but I look forward to seeing what exactly it is that you've come up with, and I'll be waiting patiently. Will definitely order one once they are available!



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RW_eagle
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« Reply #138 on: September 21, 2016, 01:57:18 pm »

Thanks for all the updates Karl.   I hope everything works out with the new design direction.  I still enjoy my Mos, after many years.   I look forward to more successes in your products.


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« Reply #139 on: October 27, 2016, 03:25:08 am »

Any updates?  I know it takes a while to cut molds, but I am still excited at the chance to owning one.


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Karl
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« Reply #140 on: October 27, 2016, 08:35:14 pm »

Still moving ahead! I'll post an update in the next day or two.


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RW_eagle
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« Reply #141 on: October 28, 2016, 03:26:31 am »

Thanks for the tease,  Karl.   Look forward to hear what's been happening.


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Karl
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« Reply #142 on: November 02, 2016, 10:03:03 pm »

Where should I begin to try to describe my progress over the last few months?

First, I have to say that I've been having a wonderful time lately playing my accurate (with a bit of expert tweaking) but very expensive 3D printed prototypes. "Pro-Range's" extra range has allowed me to enjoy playing music that I couldn't previously. For instance, I've been playing a lot of gorgeous Turlough O'Carolan tunes that require most or all of "PR's" two-octave range. Delightful, stimulating stuff!  (FYI, some time ago I compiled a book to include with "PR" which will introduce you to playing it in a step by step manner. The book has about 66 beautiful tunes, many of them in 2, 3, or even 4 different keys, including a bunch of Carolan tunes.) I'll try to make some sound samples soon.  Maybe even a video.

And I'm thinking about posting some photos soon. Up to now, I've been hesitant to post photos for a few reasons. The biggest reason is that this has been a long, ambitious process with many twists and turns, and I wanted to be very close to launch before getting too much excitement going. Along those same lines, the photos would give away the flute's actual name, which I've always planned to reveal at the time of launch. (But you guys wouldn't tell anybody, right?) In addition, as we move through the pre-production process, "PR's" outer appearance has been undergoing slight changes, and I hate to show you inaccurate or underwhelming pictures. In other words, the real thing will look better than my prototypes.

Alright, alright! You've convinced me. After talking it out with you guys (thanks for not interrupting!), I've decided to try to post some photos in the next week or so.

As I believe I've posted before, the challenge has been to take a very complex, precise design, which I first prototyped in hard stable materials such as micarta and then later through precision 3D prints, and adapt it so that we could we could affordably* and precisely reproduce it, so that you could afford to buy it.

(When I say affordably*, I'm referring to per unit costs. The expensive up front costs of development, tooling, and the incredible amount of time I've put into this are... well... they are what they are.  When all is said and done, this is the instrument that I've always wanted, the one that I used to wish I could buy somewhere, so we've just kept plugging along through one challenge after another.  It's something I believe in.)

So, what's the latest hold up? Well, since my last substantial posting, we've had four sets of precision 3D prints made. Each subsequent print represents changes we have made to improve and test the moldability of our design as much as possible before the tooling is made. To provide an example, we recently made tweaks to a windway assembly so that it would mold more precisely. So far, I have been working with my tool designer to convert this wonderful pocket-sized flute into something that could be precisely injection molded.  I have just signed off on the design, so now my mold designer will begin to plan out the actual injection mold with all its features, such as gating, cooling, inserts, etc. He tells me that it will be about two weeks before the mold is designed. Then I get quotes on the tooling, and soon (hopefully) we begin cutting steel. I've already had a few meetings over the last several months with the Connecticut company that I hope to work with to build our tooling and then mold our parts.

In truth, I could have signed off on a mold design a couple of months ago, but I have previous experience with four other sets of molds, and I'm just not willing to settle for a pretty good design. I am determined to have an excellent end result, a precise, concert-quality flute that you'll enjoy playing and carrying with you wherever you go. Despite some popular lore to the contrary, engineering grade plastics can offer several advantages over materials such hardwood, clay, or metal, PROVIDED THAT THERE IS AN EXCELLENT DESIGN AND PRECISE ADHERENCE TO THAT DESIGN. That's what I am after.

By the way, if you've been to the Mountain Ocarinas website recently, you'll notice that we are sold out of all our instruments except for our polycarbonate Gs.  Sorry about that!  Some time ago I decided to go out on a limb and cease production of our other instruments so that I could focus on "Pro-range."  While that's been a challenge because it has reduced our sales quite a bit, I'm excited that we're finally drawing close to the finish line with "pro-range." Did I say the finish line? It's actually the starting line.


« Last Edit: November 02, 2016, 10:28:48 pm by Karl » Logged
RW_eagle
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« Reply #143 on: November 03, 2016, 03:38:58 am »

Good to hear things are progressing.  Would you mind sending along a 3-d printed extra for a beta test Wink Cool
I wait with baited breath for pics, and music clips.

Rob W.


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« Reply #144 on: November 03, 2016, 06:00:28 am »

Thank you very much for the update.   I know that the project has been your baby for a long time It seems like forever to me, I can't imagine what it is like for you.  I would also like thank for not settling for good enough like so many others do when they send a new product to market.


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ubizmo
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« Reply #145 on: November 04, 2016, 01:46:38 am »

The level of precision needed for this instrument is comparable to that of any other first-class musical instrument. It'll be like nothing else out there.

via Tapatalk


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Karl
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« Reply #146 on: November 09, 2016, 03:24:04 pm »

I tried to post some pictures yesterday, but the files were too large.  Cliff has kindly offered to help me with that, so those pics should appear within the next day or so. 

Rob, you asked --with a wink-- about 3D prints for beta testers.  Even though you were half kidding (weren't you?), I'd love to be sending prototypes to several of you! That has been my plan all along. The problem has been money. For instance, to accurately test our latest four-piece ready-to-injection-mold design, I've had to go with an expensive high-precision form of 3D printing.  To give you an idea, just last week I spent (gulp!) about $900 for the parts for just two 3D printed "pro-ranges."  Of course, I have lots and lots of older prototypes, at MANY stages of developement, but I'm not fond of distributing out-dated or superseded models for testing and feedback.  At this point, Ubizmo (who has been so helpful throughout this development process) is presently the only one besides me who has a "PR" prototype, and not even he has the latest design, which has been slightly improved. I'm anxious to assemble his new one and send it to him, but first I need it in unassembled form to take to a meeting with an ultrasonic welding expert with whom I hope to meet this week.  Ubizmo was spot on with his recent comment about the precision needed for this instrument, which is why I'm being so careful... 


« Last Edit: November 09, 2016, 03:31:13 pm by Karl » Logged
EriChanHime
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« Reply #147 on: November 09, 2016, 03:45:57 pm »

Thank you so much for the more frequent updates, Karl. Really looking forward to this new ocarina. Excited to see pictures. Smiley


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Karl
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« Reply #148 on: November 09, 2016, 05:33:25 pm »

Okay, I promised pictures, so here are a few that I just took on my phone. Keep in mind that these are only 3D prints and we've tweaked the shape slightly, but these will give you a pretty good idea of the look and size.

For those of you who are super observant, you may discover a subtle hidden clue in these pictures to the name of this new vessel flute. Ah, but not even you guys are that clever, so here's another hint. The name stands for Compact, Optimized, Dual, Aerophone, and --to me-- it represents a small leap forward in music. You probably still haven't guessed, so you'll just have to wait until launch! And don't bother to beg, bribe, or threaten! I'm just not ready to reveal the name yet.

One of the pictures shows our hero being cornered by a few Sopranos -- recorders, that is.  But don't worry. He's not intimidated because, unlike his taller colleagues, his notes are solid, pleasing, and easy-to-sound over the full two chromatic octaves, from the lowest notes to the highest, and he has a more intuitive fingering pattern. Every instrument has its advantages and disadvantages, but who would you rather bring along wherever you go?

It's a busy time, but I'll try to post sound samples soon.









« Last Edit: November 09, 2016, 05:52:09 pm by Karl » Logged
RW_eagle
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« Reply #149 on: November 09, 2016, 07:34:56 pm »

It looks great Karl!  The fun,  pocketable, playable instrument genre is definitely in the "crosshairs".  Look forward to adding this instrument to my Mountain Ocarina lineup.   Keep up the good work Karl.

Rob W.


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