How Denis Wick Mutes Are Made

with Stephen Wick


Stephen Wick: "I think with our mute production, the thing which makes our products so special, is the hand crafting element-- it takes such great skill to make these mutes. But when they're made, they take on a work-hardened quality, when they're made with this hand crafting method. And what that means is, these mutes are very light, but also very resonant. So when you use them in an orchestra, or a band, they really project. They've got this very special sound. And that's what makes our mutes so special."

Peter PlunkettFactory Foreman, Mute Production: "Metal-spinning is the process that enables us to form an aluminium disc over a steel former to create the same shape. We rotate the former about 2.5 thousand revs/minute, and we manipulate the circle of metal over the former to create exactly the same shape."

Stephen Wick: "The reason that we don't use machines for all of the spinning: you don't get the same work or quality. A machine tends to press the aluminium out in a much less sensitive way. When our spinners are working, they're using so many of their sensors--working by eye and also working by touch-- to get an even spread of metal across the form. That element of hand-working, we think, produces a superior product."

Peter Plunkett: "They've all got a very good sense of pride in their work there, because they finish with the best bands and best orchestras in the world--so we're well aware of that."

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