HARMONICAS WITH STATIC MOUTHPIECE CONNECTED WITH A FLEXIBLE TUBING WITH SLIDING BLOWING DEVICE MOVED BY THE HAND?

Anything apart from the two mainstream default harmonicas (Solo-tuned fully-valved chromatic, and un-valved Richter 10-hole diatonic). Alternate tunings, different construction, new functionality, interesting old designs, wishful-thinking... whatever!
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drkcostas
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HARMONICAS WITH STATIC MOUTHPIECE CONNECTED WITH A FLEXIBLE TUBING WITH SLIDING BLOWING DEVICE MOVED BY THE HAND?

Post by drkcostas » Fri Dec 13, 2019 2:29 pm

The history of harmonica writes that it was inspired by the Chinese instrument Sheng, which is like a wooden panflute but with one only blowing pipe that distributes the air to many pipes. (e.g. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sheng_(instrument) ) Actually this may have lead the chinese to make an interesting panflute with a single flexible blowing pipe (as in bag pipes) and a sliding mouthpiece on the row of tubes like in the next link. https://drive.google.com/open?id=18JCFP ... SEBVHCUb-Q
(e.g.https://www.aliexpress.com/item/3283820 ... b201603_53)
Now this indeed makes the panflute 66% easier and faster to play as I have tried and tested. It is easier to move and slide the blowing-mouthpiece across the tubes, than to move the whole of the panflute across your mouth.
IS THERE A SIMILAR WAY TO APPLY AND PLAY THE HARMONICA?
I believe there is given a smart design and crafting (as many by Brendan Power) . Since harmonicas are good in playing chords , obviously the static mouthpiece must be of at least 3 holes (but not more than 4 holes), and allowing all the techniques , of tongue blocking , lip-blocking , bending, overblowing etc. Then this static mouthpiece will have distribute the air with 3 separate flexible pipes (possibly within one larger) to a sliding blowing device with at least 3 holes again, sliding on the many holes of an harmonica. The sliding blowing device will be moved fast with the hands. It is expected that with such an harmonica some advantages would be
1) You can play faster and learn it faster
2) you can play easier and more accurately, because you see the position of sliding blowing device across the holes of the harmonica
3) The mouth action is simpler and easier , static ,as there is no friction between the harmonica holes and the mouth.
Some disadvantages would be
1) New methods of holding the harmonica and sliding the blowing device must be created.
2) New methods of creating tremolo with the two palms , must be created.
It seems that the idea of sliding blowing device is not new as e.g. it occurs in the ChengGong harmonica (https://www.patmissin.com/gallery/gallery03.html), but the main idea of the ChengGong harmonica is entirely different.
Any encouraging ideas in this direction are welcome.

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Brendan
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Re: HARMONICAS WITH STATIC MOUTHPIECE CONNECTED WITH A FLEXIBLE TUBING WITH SLIDING BLOWING DEVICE MOVED BY THE HAND?

Post by Brendan » Sat Dec 14, 2019 3:27 pm

Unfortunately I don't think the panflute device will translate to harmonicas. The difference is that you need to seal the tube to the harmonica to make the reeds sound, which has negative ramifications.

Besides the technical difficulty of creating a well sealed sliding mouthpiece adaptor, you would run into the dreaded Helmholtz Resonance Coupling issue. The resonant frequency of the chamber which is created by the combination of your vocal tract, the tube and the comb slot will interfere with the reed vibration in a way that is likely to lower pitch, or even stop it playing altogether.

I know this from trying to create a tuning table using a mouth tube that was intended to tune reeds over a four octave range, on blow and/or draw breaths. Results varied so much I gave up. Harmonica reeds work best when your mouth is closest to them.

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drkcostas
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Re: HARMONICAS WITH STATIC MOUTHPIECE CONNECTED WITH A FLEXIBLE TUBING WITH SLIDING BLOWING DEVICE MOVED BY THE HAND?

Post by drkcostas » Sat Dec 14, 2019 10:30 pm

I cannot argue as I have never experimented with that. I assume you have. Very probably you are right.Here is something similar to an harmonica from the experimental musical instruments of Bart Hopkin . http://barthopkin.com/spomo-hi/ . It could be blown also with a single tube and sliding blowing device. It looks like an harmonica with flutes in the place of reeds (and it could also be reed-winds too like clarinet , or bawu which has metal reed like those of harmonica ) But indeed the pitch is produced by the dimensions of the air-columsn mainly and not the reed dimensions.
Last edited by drkcostas on Sat Dec 14, 2019 11:58 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Brendan
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Re: HARMONICAS WITH STATIC MOUTHPIECE CONNECTED WITH A FLEXIBLE TUBING WITH SLIDING BLOWING DEVICE MOVED BY THE HAND?

Post by Brendan » Sat Dec 14, 2019 10:35 pm

An interesting instrument!

You could test the harmonica application by getting a tube and sealing it to a single harmonica hole with some Blu-Tack or similar. Try differenbt holes on blow and draw to guage the variable effects. I think you'll find the same as I did.

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drkcostas
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Re: HARMONICAS WITH STATIC MOUTHPIECE CONNECTED WITH A FLEXIBLE TUBING WITH SLIDING BLOWING DEVICE MOVED BY THE HAND?

Post by drkcostas » Sat Dec 14, 2019 10:36 pm

Most probably such an idea might work better with a digital harmonicas like in your presenation here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nwgIAFOnJVs

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