Seasoning Guide

Different recipes for seasoning a bagpipe bag exist.

Unfortunately not all of them can be mixed. Combined, they can easily spoil the bag. Therefore it is essential to find out which type of seasoning your pipe maker was using and stay with it.

What you will need

  • bagpipe seasoning
  • pot to heat seasoning
  • paper towels
  • small funnel that fits into the chanter stock
  • kitchen sponge
  • tight fitting cork plugs for the stocks, or better:
  • homemade plugs made from wooden dowel rods and yarn

Preparing the seasoning

  • Open the seasoning bottle
  • Place seasoning in a pot with water and heat to about 90°C (almost to boiling point)
  • wait until seasoning is well liquid

Preparing the bag

  • Remove all pipes from their stocks
  • Some instruments have a foam plug behind the reeds, remove it
  • Close all stocks except the chanter stock with plugs
  • Push the plugs as deep into the stock as possible to prevent leakage of seasoning into the stock
  • Wrap some kitchen paper around the chanter stock
  • Use a funnel to fill the bag with seasoning without burning your fingers
  • Avoid spilling of seasoning onto the leather as it might leave ugly stains or marks on the leather
  • In case of spilling use warm water and a sponge to immediately remove the stain
  • Firmly close the chanter stock with a plug
  • Thoroughly massage the bag, pay special attention to the seams
  • Remove plug from chanter stock und strongly inflate the bag
  • Push the bag firmly. The pressure will push the seasoning into the pores of the leather
  • At this stage some drops of seasoning might leak from the seams. Wipe off excess seasoning with a sponge.
  • Pour excess seasoning back into the bottle
  • Streak out the bag to avoid clogging of excess seasoning in the bag.
  • Leave the lightly inflated bag to cool down for at least 2 hours
  • Remove all plugs and wipe out stocks
  • Re-assemble the instrument
  • In case of a bellow-blown instrument this is a good time to check the bellows for possible leakage