Making a Pink Ivory keyed flute

I have decided to make a 6 keys flute out of Pink Ivory wood. I've never worked with this wood so it should be interesting. 
I will try to post regular updates of the process , pictures, maybe videos of the process.
 I sourced good quality Pink Ivory blanks a few months ago, and I also selected a figured blank that I will use to make the head. I couldn't resist turning the figured blank straight away so I started the head already as you can see below.

After being turned, the blank were drilled and reamed.


I started today working on the main body of the flute and I turned the first blocks for the  keys of C, Bb, and G#. This is the first step before milling the blocks and drilling the tone holes and pad seats. I will do the same with the right hand joint and the foot.

I'm still amazed by the color of this wood.

I'm also working on a Blackwood and Delrin flute, same process.

It's taking shape but still far to be completed.


I am waiting for some silver Wire to arrive to in the meantime I am milling the blocks of the main body.


I have been very busy with work lately so unfortunately I didn't get the chance to take many pics of the next stage. Basically, I milled the blocks,  drilled  the tone holes and cut the pad seats. Everything is ready for the keys.
 Next you will see that I  forged silver rings and mounted them on the flute. I am also making a walnut box.

The embouchure is also cut so next step will be undercutting and shaping each tone hole.

I received the keys, they are very rough looking, just out of the cast so and will need to  remove the sprues and polish them. They are very soft so I will apply a heat treatment in order to harden the metal.

All 6 keys have to be prepared for heat treatment and final polishing.  This is a long process, the remaining casting sprues are removed and all 6 keys are sanded using wet and dry paper down to 1000 grit.
After the final sanding, they are covered with borax and go through a two stage process: 15 minutes at 750 degrees, cooled down in water and then 60 minutes at 316 degrees and cooled down slowly. This allows the metal to harden.

All tone holes are undercut and the keys are mounted

I use delrin for the screw cap 

The last and final part, the flute gets a last sanding and then goes into a bath of Tung oil for 24 h. It is then dried and get a final polish.  Last step is voicing and tuning and....voila !

Next will be to complete the case... to be continued

23/12 : modification of the head, I inserted a faux ivory embouchure ( Elforyn).  The material is very similar to ivory and has nice figures and grain. It is also a possible solution for musicians with allergies !

The first step looks a bit scary but it has to be done

The flute finished, in it's box