The Peeler Firth & Pond is an excellent instrument with a clear tone that will complete your authentic impression. The fife features nickel-silver tapered ferrules rather than the standard brass ones. While both types were used the nickel-silver tapered ferrules give the fife a distinctive look.
Peeler Fifes offers the “Firth and Pond” Model with your choice of two different style finger hole patterns. A brief discussion of “Modern” and “Historical” finger holes is provided to assist you in making your decision. The model with the “Modern” finger holes is by far the more popular model. If you have any questions after reading the differences in the finger holes, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Modern fingering holes: This is what you probably have on any fife you purchased in the last 125 years or so. On a standard Peeler fifes the fingering hole sizes starting from the fingering end are 0.25″, 0.28″, 0.25″,.028″,.028, 0.25 inches. As you can see holes # 1,3 & 6 are one diameter and holes 2,4,& 5 are another. With some minor variation this is what you will find the majority of the one piece fifes being produced today. If you are going to be playing with other “Modern” fifes, this is what you should choose. It is also my most popular model.
Traditional fingering holes: This is the typical design found on so many civil war era fifes and earlier. When I began to produce the F & P, I took measurements from several original models that can be traced back to the mid 1800’s. As on the original fifes, the finger holes on this instrument are an exact reproduction of those found on the original fifes that were produced by Firth and Pond. When comparing these fingering holes to the “Modern”, fife you will see that fingering holes are smaller and all the same 0.22 inch diameter. There is also a larger spacing between the 3 & 4th hole. This F & P with the traditional fingering holes has the same look as the original with only a few minor variations.
This type of fife is for the hard core civil war re-enactor or those striving for historical accuracy. Because it is a direct copy, it plays with all the flaws (flats and sharps) as the original. It will not play well in tune with fifes with the more modern style fingering holes