Home Media News & Blog Chanter Tuning Brain Game #2
Chanter Tuning Brain Game #2

Chanter Tuning Brain Game #2


brainThere are many different ways you can tune a chanter:

  • Change Tape
  • Raise-sink a reed.
  • Lick a Reed
  • Adjust a Bridle on the Reed
  • Shave a Reed.
  • Poke a Reed
  • Carve out a chanter hole.
  • Etc.

What is the best way to tune your chanter in the following scenario?


Low A is in tune, but many of the other notes seem "off".


  • You're fully warmed up.
Show Me the Answer!!!

This is a common problem! Believe it or not, Low A is a note that changes more than most other notes as you warm up, or as environmental conditions change.

What to do:

  • Test some of the other common notes using the blow trick.
  • Are they flat or sharp to the drones?
  • Adjust the drones to be in tune with the other notes (or the majority of the other notes).
  • Then, adjust the tape on the Low A to bring it into tune with the rest of the chanter.
  • Be careful though! This will be a moot procedure if you're not fully warmed up yet.

Questions? Don't hesitate to ask!


Andrew Douglas Andrew is a prolific practitioner of the bagpipe, having been active at the highest level of pipe bands, solo competition, teaching, and creative endeavors for the past 20 years. He's also the founder and creator of Dojo U and of PipersDojo.com


  1. Assuming many means more than half, then the low A is not "in tune". The chanter needs to be tuned to itself. Raise or lower the reed until as many as possible notes are in tune with each other and then tape the other holes (assuming they are sharp) to bring the chanter into tune with itself for this particular reed at this particular temperature, humidity, reed moisture content, etc.

  2. I would agree with Kevin. If the lower hand is out except for A then A is not in tune and you may need to sink or raise the reed. If the upper hand is off possibly F then use some tuning tape once your lower hand is in tune. Many different scenarios to this with the information given, so it would depend on other information.