THANK YOU very much for taking the time to read my FAQ's !
For some basic background information about LUNA
you might also be interested in this explanatory video !
How can I order a LUNA?
The LUNA is built exclusively as a personal commissioned work, in small quantities. If you are interested in a commissioned instrument, please contact me via the contact form.
How much does a LUNA cost ?
A LUNA Newmoon in stainless steel is 1500€.
The Fullmoon-Models, as well as the Eclipse-Models are 1800€ regardless of scale.
This price difference is to 100% due to the difference in material-price.
I personally do not earn more with the more expansive models.
Is the laquering and engraving included in the price ?
Yes, the painting - if desired, is included in the price as well as an engraving from my templates.
If you have a special engraving request, I will also draw and make engravings - either from templates or from specifications - individually for an additional charge of 100€. If you are interested in an individual engraving, please send me a message with your request.
Which optics / surface can I choose for my LUNA ?
In general, all those I list in the Aesthetics section as sample images.
However, please note that this only applies to the smaller "new moon" models, as these are built from stainless steel.
The large "full moon" models as well as the "Eclipse" are neither painted nor heat treated due to the different material and are therefore only available in their natural warm silver / light gold
Both models, new and full moon, can be engraved.
Please note that Urushi - the Japanese lacquer I use - is a purely natural product, which differs in its chemical composition depending on the time of harvest, origin and processing.
Please note that laquered as well as unvarnished instruments become unique in their finish each time - and cannot be replicated !
1 to 1 copys of the surface of an already built LUNA are therefore unfortunately impossible - each instrument will have an individual surface. The photos serve here more as a guide and for rough orientation how the result will turn out approximately.
If in doubt, please decide to buy only after you have personally inspected the instrument, or - if this is not possible - have received the photos and video of the individual instrument
you would get.
Please note that from time to time I experiment with different surfaces and color schemes.
So it can happen that occasionally a LUNA is available for purchase, or photos appear in the social media, whose design does not appear on my homepage.
These are then unfortunately not available for order instruments.
How long is the waiting time?
The waiting time always depends on the amount of orders and inquiries and can therefore only be used as a guideline with a maximum of
3 months, from the moment of order confirmation. However, the actual waiting time is usually shorter.
Of course you will get the exact waiting time after contacting me via email.
Do you also send the LUNA?
Yes, shipping is always insured to a sum insured of 2500€.
International shipping is also possible with the exception of a few countries - but can be quite expensive (eg: USA - 110 €).
A personal pickup of the instrument as far as the journey allows, and a personal playing of the instrument before the purchase is of course preferable in any case - however, this can not always be realized due to the long distance or other reasons.
In this case I will send you a video with photos when the instrument is ready.
Only if you like what you hear / see in the video, you can then purchase the instrument.
Do you require a deposit & how do I pay?
No, I do not require a down payment and the order to build a LUNA does not oblige you to purchase.
Only when the instrument is finished does the binding purchase decision and payment follow.
I accept these by Paypal, bank transfer or in cash.
Can I return the LUNA if I don't like it ?
Please note that you are buying a sound sculpture from a freelance artist - not a product of a major manufacturer !
Since I go with my work in advance and do not require a deposit and also a purchase decision is made only after the instrument is finished, personally examined - or in an individually specially created video could be examined, I depend in my work as a "One-Men-Show" that the purchase decision is reliable.
Should you have purchased a LUNA in stock, you have however the legal right to exchange it within 2 weeks.
Nevertheless, I ask you to consider buying the instrument in detail before buying and to clarify all possible questions beforehand in order to avoid an exchange as far as possible.
Please also note that individual commissioned work according to §312d Abs 4 Nr.1 BG are excluded from the exchange !
I am very interested in a LUNA, but I don't know which scale to choose...!
That is indeed one of the difficult questions.
First of all, the directive applies: Hear and feel !
Since one does not have the entire chromatic scale with 12 semitones available with the Handpan, but is limited to a certain tuning, it is extremely important that this tuning also fits to one personally.
Unfortunately (or fortunately) this part cannot be taken away from anyone.
However, I created a special site - "Find your Scale" for this question, that might help you.
Please note that the associations and symbols used in it reflect my completely subjective perception - but I hope that this can be helpful.
With Youtubevideos it is important to pay attention and separate the tuning of the instrument from the playing of the player.
Many people are fascinated to hear how a "professional" player plays a certain instrument - but then, sitting in front of the instrument, they realize that the enthusiasm is not due to the tuning of the instrument, but to the playing of the player.
If you don't make any progress at all, please feel free to contact me with questions - as a rule I recommend people to think pictorially.
What is it that you want to express with the mood ? Do you rather see yourself put into a bright spring morning, or into a mystical moon night? Imagine the atmosphere you want to create. Is it passionate like the reflected glow of light on the bodies of dancing women, or calm and peaceful like the murmur of a small mountain stream...?
Sometimes it can also be good to choose a mood as a balance. Either for your own being, for example a calmer mood if you tend to be quite alive anyway, or as a balance for a special element in life, such as family or work...
The approaches are as diverse as the people.
Do you build costum request with more notes, bottom-notes or mutants?
The aim of LUNA is to offer the best possible combination of aesthetics and musical possibilities at a high level of quality.
It is therefore built exclusively in the LUNA scales with a central note and 8 tone fields, as these are specially adapted to my shell geometry and my material.
For example, there is the phenomenon of an acoustic interference between a standing wave of the enclosed air volume and a certain tone - in my geometry the Bb4. This note simply cannot be tuned cleanly, it will contain an inherent restlessness and an uncleanliness.
The LUNA tunings are therefore designed and transposed in such a way that this frequency does not occur.
Mutants, with more notes, "bottom notes" and chromatic scales are not offered.
From an aesthetic point of view, for me personally the Handpan in this format is at the height of elegance.
Nothing can be added without breaking off its minimalist form and elegance.
In addition, more notes often mean higher moods, as the tone fields have to be smaller to fit on the bowl.
The LUNA in its offered scales, on the other hand, is clearly oriented to the lower and lower range of the scales in order to lead more into the depth.
Experience has also shown that too high tones on small tone fields tend to become less pure and clean due to mutual stimulation which is called "crosstalking", which applies to almost all manufacturers.
This exchange of sound quality for sound quantity is not something I would like to enter into for LUNA.
This does not mean that mutants, "bottom notes" and other things have no appeal and cannot be performed well, but it is not what I would like to develop further.
Instead of adding more and new, the Luna is an attempt to use my energy to see how far this simple elegance can be refined, polished and perfected.
Can the instruments get out of tune?
Handpans, like any musical instrument, can get out of tune.
The LUNA is made of extremely tough stainless steel and is tested for stability several times during the tuning process.
Therefore, detuning should not occur for years if the instrument is played and handled properly.
However, there are certain factors, like a to too firm "drum-like" playing, besides heating up the instrument too much in the full sun,
that can cause the instrument to detune.
Should this occur, it is important to know that you can always turn to me.
LUNA includes a three-year free tuning service - of course I will continue to offer my service for a small fee even after these 3 years.
(I have also tuned instruments from other manufacturers, such as the Hang. Please send me your questions via email. )
Please note that the LUNA is consciously created as a fine and sensitive representative of the Handpan family, and wants to be played with little power !
If you tend towards a very percussive, powerful, drum-like playing style, the LUNA might not be the right instrument for you.
However, you are welcome to contact me if you are unsure about this - I am also happy to recommend friends of mine who make less sensitive but more "powerful" and "percussive" instruments.
What is Urushi varnish, and does it influence the sound of the instrument?
Urushi is the Japanese name for Japanese lacquer, which is obtained from the sap of the lacquer tree.
Urushi is an essential component of LUNA and is integrated into the overall sound of the instrument.
Since this topic is very extensive, I have dedicated a separate section on the homepage to it, which you can find here.
How should I take care of my LUNA ?
It depends on what kind of model your LUNA is, and how its surface treatment is:
1. new moon model ( unpainted )
These models are generally made of stainless steel, which means that they will not corrode destructive under any circumstances, but - even stainless steel can sometimes show surface rust.
This can happen especially in contact with salt water (hand sweat), with polished as well as unpolished instruments.
You should therefore occasionally rub your LUNA, as long as it is not varnished, with a non-hardening oil (e.g. almond oil, camellia oil, or even Ballistol) to protect its surface.
(If you belong to those who do not mind the surface corrosion and who like its organic look, you do not have to do anything else - the corrosion does not go under the surface of stainless steel and has absolutely no influence on the sound. )
2. new moon model ( lacquered )
All lacquered instruments are extremely easy to maintain in terms of corrosion. You can theoretically take a bath with your lacquered LUNA, or leave it out in the rain - no problem.
For cleaning, an occasional wiping with a scratch-free cotton cloth, or even rinsing with some washing-up liquid - if necessary - is sufficient.
However, there are two things to keep in mind with lacquer, namely the susceptibility to scratches (e.g. on the storage surface) - therefore please keep away from stones and sharp objects or jewelry!
On the other hand, it is important to expose lacquered instruments as little as possible to UV radiation, as this is the ONLY thing that damages the lacquer finish in the long run. We are talking about longer periods / several decades - but this damage to the Japanese Urushi lacquer by UV radiation was the reason that the Japanese always kept all their lacquered utensils when they were not used in boxes and chests, or wrapped in cloth.
I advise the same for lacquered instruments: When you are not playing your LUNA, please keep it in the dark (e.g. in your pocket) or cover it with a cloth.
3. eclipse model / full moon model ( brass )
Brass instruments are absolutely corrosion resistant, and do not require any significant maintenance.
Oiling is not necessary, and if you want you can simply clean them with detergent and water.
In general for all LUNAE - please avoid direct hot sunlight !!!!
Metal absorbs direct infrared radiation particularly well - the instrument heats up quickly as a result, which can lead to detuning under certain circumstances !
Weaker sun is no problem, and you can of course play outside in summer.
However, please allow the LUNA a shady place for this and don't forget:
As a creature of the night, the LUNA needs a little protection from the sun :)
I already own a Handpan and would like to have another one, which should match the first one.
Is something like that possible?
In most cases this should be possible, but in concrete terms it depends on many factors, such as the fundamental, the mode and the reference tone of the tuning - as well as certain technical limits. For more details, please submit a non-binding request via the form.
Do you offer bags for your hand pans ?
From January 2019, specially designed bags for LUNA will be available for an extra charge of 100€. They offer optimal protection and high wearing comfort and should be more than satisfactory for most users.
For people who do a lot of travel, flights or want to protect the LUNA otherwise better, I also offer special "Flight-Case" inserts on request. In these cases the instrument can even survive the container space of the aircraft undamaged. These special designs can be requested by email.
Can I visit you in the Allgäu ?
Of course ! Please write me a message with a date suggestion.
Visitors are also always welcome for noncommittal playing and further information with a warm cup of tea.
Please note, however, that as a modest one-man manufactory my selection of instruments on stock is limited and that you will not find a "professional" shop or salesroom here.
I would like to build a Handpan myself - do you offer courses or can I visit you for this purpose?
I repeatedly receive requests of this kind, which I - with a few exceptions where there is a personal relationship - all reject.
The reason is explained as follows: building Handpans is not a linear working system.
Since one always works on one shell, one overall system, the individual tone fields cannot be regarded as isolated system that can be ticked off and tuned in steps 1 - 2 - 3.
The same applies to the individual tone fields in the microcosm, because each tone field produces 4 important partial tones that must be brought into a harmonic relationship. One cannot simply tune in the fundamental tone but must always move all frequencies at the same time, since each hammer blow has an influence on all partial tones - as well as macroscopically all tone fields in the whole.
Building Handpans is therefore not comparable to the construction of a cachon, for example, in which clear and simple steps can be instructed and carried out one after the other.
The simplest thing about Handpan construction is the shape of the bowl, which can be achieved and communicated with some manual skill - apart from later important considerations about the overall geometry, the angle of inclination, the ratio of surface to enclosed volume and the calculation of the Helmholz resonance and its harmonic ratio to the tonic, or dominants of the tuning.
But to make a beautiful sounding instrument out of the raw shells, I worked full time for 3 years ! and used many thousands of hammer blows and dozens of failed shells.
A process of this kind simply cannot be taught or accomplished in a weekend course - "do it yourself".
Such a course would not be satisfying for me and the participants, too expensive and would cost me too much energy which I would not like to invest.
Since I also paint, I know that a comparison with painting is quite appropriate.
One can discuss certain technical things and also teach:
Composition, anatomy, colours and form theory, etc. however, all this does not make an artist out of one !
Art is the result of years of practice, inspiration and experience - in short: it takes time.
Because of the long flat experience curve, the late feeling of success and the time and practice it requires, I consider the Handpan to be the most unsuitable instrument to build yourself - especially since investments such as tuning rings, raw shells, etc., are not cheap but neccesary - so the cost of the first clean instrument to be expected, exceeds by far the purchase costs of a cleanly and professionaly tuned Handpan.
For these reasons I offer my experience to only a few people, or am in exchange with them - but then in full depth and over a long period of time, and only if there is a clear intention behind it to build sound sculptures ( the Hang was not called "sound sculpture" for nothing ) commercially, professionally or at least with a large temporal scope - by no means part-time or "incidentally" as a hobby or project.
Many people who are touched by the sound of the instrument, but discouraged by its price, dare to build their own instrument, only to stop discouraged after the first 3 unsuccessful shells and to sell the expensive invested equipment again, so I don't want to create false illusions.
All this doesn't mean that you can't build your own Handpan. With a lot of perseverance, attentiveness and patience this is of course possible - only it takes time and the growth of trial and error to create something out of material and art that can touch.
More questions ?
Please do not hesitate to contact me.