What is a Wind Chime?

A Wind Chime is any device which makes sounds from the movement of surrounding air currents. While a Wind Chime can be any combination of materials and structures, they are usually a collection of metal pipes suspended by lines, with a “Striker” to hit the pipes and a “Sail” to move the Striker.

What is a FAE Wind Chime?

A FAE Wind Chime is an artisan-crafted musical instrument hand made and tuned in the U.S.A. from the best products on Earth, including U.S. Copper. FAE Wind Chimes are made of a choir of tuned metal pipes which are sounded by a Striker moved by a Sail either manually or by air movements, such as from the wind when played outdoors, or from an oscillating fan when played indoors. FAE Wind Chimes are hand-crafted with the goal of longevity and ultimate resistance to deterioration. Further, they can be built with the intention of inducing a calming and even meditative state in the listener, which can enable faith in the miracle of healing. They can be installed outdoors in the harshest of climates and get the maximum use. Or they can be installed indoors for a nearly indefinite life, safe from the elements, where they can be handed down for generations. They can be played by air, hand, or even by pet with an animal-attracting Sail installed.

How much should I expect to pay for a good Wind Chime?

As a rule of thumb (“FAEstimate”) you can expect to spend around $10US per chime per decade that you want your chimes to last. For example, let’s say a customer wants eight chimes to last 40 years, they can expect to spend 8 (chimes) times $10 (dollars) times 4 (decades) or about $300. With very little maintenance, St. Michael’s Healing Chimes at $249.95, made from pure, U.S. copper, should easily give 100 years of faithful service. That equates to only about $3 per chime per decade of service. A FAE Wind Chime is something to be handed down to future generations. How many things will really be handed down at your passing that only cost you $250?

Are Fairies included with each FAE Wind Chime?

We can’t promise a fairy will accompany your FAE Wind Chime, but we didn’t tell her she couldn’t either! We believe fairies, as tiny angels, are attracted to the sound of bells, chimes, cymbals and gongs. At least, they aren’t scared of those sounds!

Are FAE Wind Chimes indestructible?

While not indestructible, FAE Wind Chimes can handle a tremendous amount of abuse. Our own Wind Chimes have peacefully passed through multiple Florida hurricanes, but are safer when laid to rest flat on the ground during inclement weather. Best of course is to pack them back into their original tube for ultimate safekeeping. More impactful than random accidents are the effects of long-term deterioration and oxidization of the materials, as well as nearly constant change of temperature and humidity, which take a toll on any wind chime over time. However, FAE Wind Chimes are made using knowledge from several industries, such as sailing. Sailboat materials are subjected to not only sun, heat, cold, rain, but also saltwater which brings even more problems to woods and metals. That’s why we try to use rot-resistant and very dense woods, and only those gathered ethically, such as from plantations where the tree is native and not threatened.

Are FAE Wind Chimes “Maintenance Free”?

Definitely not. At the very least, the nylon lines which make the paracord suspension system will rot out and eventually fail; it might be 20, 40, or even 80 years, but it will happen. This means a FAE Wind Chime with paracord suspension will need the suspension replaced occasionally, depending on location of installation. Indoors, these lines should last for at least a few decades without maintenance of any kind. There may be certain additives or oils that can be added to the lines to increase longevity; those remain to be discovered. Meanwhile, FAE sells kits to replace your Suspension Lines. Further, you can always ship your FAE Wind Chimes in to be reconditioned which includes new lines, and hand-oiling of the wood components and (optionally) cleaning/polishing of the metal pipes.

Pipes are always considered maintenance-free, and follow the longevity expected for the metal involved. However, copper pipes can be polished, and steel pipes can be coated and re-coated in many ways to increase longevity. These coatings or polished finishes may require ongoing maintenance, but that is up to the owner.

All maintenance can easily be done by the handy owner. If you can tie a Figure Eight knot, you are ready. If you can polish a cymbal, or other brass fixture, you are good to go.

What is the Longest-Lasting Wind Chime you can make?

For the longest lifespan at any and all costs, you want a FAE All-Bronze Wind Chime. We consider each All-Bronze Wind Chime a museum-piece. While a price in the thousands may seem astronomical, the shock can be quelled as you consider a similarly-sized bronze statue which, in the end, makes no sound for you.

You can still estimate the cost with our FAEstimate: $10 per chime per decade of service. For five chimes in service for 1000 years, or 100 decades, we would multiply 5 chimes times $10 per chime times 100 decades: $5000. Can it be less? Yes, maybe we can use a Bronze alloy that doesn’t last quite as long as the best possible Bronze. There are always compromises that can be made to suit your needs and reach your budget. Even if you consider the cost of a funeral or casket, wouldn’t rather have a memorial that reminds you of someone every day? Remember, this will become something that reminds others of you, as you leave it behind to them.

It is recommended to ultimately leave your FAE All-Bronze Wind Chime to a trust, or to a museum, who will be equipped to maintain it ad infinitum. To organize development of your FAE All-Bronze Wind Chime, please reach out to chimemaker at fae dot earth.

Do Steel Chimes Rust?

Yes, all iron-based metals have the potential to rust and usually rust in a predictable manner. Uncoated steel pipes will function as a wind chime outdoors for up to 30 years before the pipes will probably become too thin to make sound. FAE Wind Chimes made with steel pipes will have a thick, zinc coating to prevent rust and extend your steel pipes for several decades. But the cut ends will not have a coating, and will start rusting towards the middle. Extra zinc can be added by dipping or spraying, but this will affect the sound and will require occasional re-coating. The good news, Steel Chimes tend to be slightly louder than other metals, and are the most affordable, especially for large chimes.

Coated steel can remain effective almost indefinitely, with regular maintenance. Check out any active navy ship: its made from steel and its floating in saltwater of all things. Ships from the 1940s are still floating and they are mild steel. Left neglected, however, all steel will eventually break into little iron oxide flakes and sprinkle back into the Earth.

Do Stainless Steel Chimes Rust?

Easy answer: “No.” Honest answer: “Yes” It depends on the specific ratio of components in the mixture. 304 Stainless Steel is what your silverware is made from. Sometimes silverware can come out of the dishwasher with a tiny spot of rust here or there, more from the extreme heat than from the water. 316 Stainless Steel, however, is surgical quality and will not rust in the higher heat of an autoclave. 414C is even better but usually used for knives. Titanium is accepted by bone while Stainless Steel is not. None of these are cheap. Even tubes meant for handles in your shower can be 304 Stainless Steel and show signs of rust. Yet most true Stainless Steels will take much much longer to rust through, maybe hundreds of years versus tens of years for mild steel. If you need your Wind Chime to last thousands of years, you want FAE All-Metal Bronze Wind Chime.

Do Copper Chimes Rust?

Where “rust” is defined as “oxidize,” yes copper oxidizes over time. Copper Oxide is a very useful material that will eventually form on the outer surfaces of your Wind Chime’s Copper pipes. It is bluish-green and, once formed on the surface, should stop any further oxidization. This will take at least a year when Copper Chimes are left outside. It can affect the sound, in which case Copper Chimes can be polished with any good cymbal cleaner. If they sound good and you like the patina, they can certainly be left to oxidize. If your house happens to have copper flashing or roof, it will match quite beautifully.

More affordable than Bronze, FAE Copper Wind Chimes are made from 99.9% pure U.S. Copper, and will function for many decades, even outdoors in the harshest climates.

Do Brass Chimes Rust?

Great question! Rust only happens to iron, so No Brass doesn’t rust. And Brass doesn’t quite oxidize like Copper. Brass is made from Copper and Zinc, where the Zinc prevents Copper Oxide from forming. Zinc, however, is lost over time (dezincification!) leaving behind Copper only, which will oxidize on its surface. Much more costly, it should also last quite a bit longer than pure Copper, and the Zinc tends to improve the sound of the Chime. Bells are made from a specific ratio of Copper and Zinc, called “Bell Brass,” because this will carry the sound furthest. Brass is more likely to crack than to corrode in the next few hundred years.

Where does the wood come from for FAE Wind Chimes?

All wood for FAE Wind Chimes comes from either our own conservation land as White Oak from forestry trimmings as part of our Land Management Plan, or from specialty and exotic lumber yards in Central Florida which strictly sell only ethically-gathered hardwoods (in fact, they have little option themselves). Further, FAE Wind Chimes can be made from board-ends, to help prevent real wood from being thrown into the landfill. This means wood pieces which are leftovers of old boards that have become endangered species can still be made into something meant to last a lifetime or more. This gives the wood used for FAE Wind Chimes the most possible respect. Alternately, you can request a custom FAE All-Metal Wind Chime from copper, brass, or even bronze for a Wind Chime that can last for literally millennia without maintenance. Just email your chimemaker at fae dot earth.

Can you build a FAE Wind Chime from wood I already have?

Yes! If you have a wood piece that is meaningful to you, and makes for a good Wind Chime, we will happily use it to make your FAE Wind Chime. Reach out to us right away using chimemaker at fae dot earth.

Can I get Untuned Wind Chimes?

Yes, you can request a custom-made and untuned wind chime, which will save money because it saves time to not tune them. This is not standard practice for FAE, because once you’ve heard tuned Wind Chimes, its hard to listen to untuned ones; just as with a guitar or a violin. But if you have never heard tuned Wind Chimes, this might be a good option for you. Simply email a request to your chimemaker at fae dot earth.

Why does a Wind Chime need to be tuned?

Simply, FAE Wind Chimes are musical instruments. Musical instruments sound best when tuned. An untuned Wind Chime is just like an untuned guitar; it sounds kind of bad. Cheap musical instruments are untuned to save time and money on the factory’s Cost of Goods Sold; this is equally true for cheap Wind Chimes.

FAE Wind Chimes are tuned so they sound good as a whole, and sound good near other Wind Chimes tuned to the same pitch. Just like an orchestra needs to be tuned together as a whole, a FAE Wind Chime is tuned to a certain pitch. This pitch can be the standard concert pitch of A4=440Hz, which will tend to be in tune with much of Western Music. This pitch can also be tuned to alternate frequencies, such as that used for classical music of India and the Middle East, A4=432.1Hz, which happens to also align with the Earth’s Planetary Frequency. This is also the concert pitch best used for healing intentions, such as with the FAE St. Michael’s Healing Wind Chime.

Can FAE tune or otherwise recondition my beloved Wind Chime?

Definitely. It may be tough to tune it to a wide range, depending on the size of your Wind Chime’s pipes. Or it may be impossible mathematically to create a specific chord with the notes produced by your existing set of pipes. But yes, FAE can get the best possible sound from your existing Wind Chime. We can restring it, and rehang the pipes more in the style of FAE, which is to say to get the best sound from it. We can oil, paint or refinish in the manner that best suits your beloved Wind Chime. We can replace or rebuild any or all parts, as you see fit. We understand how attached you can become to your Wind Chime, and we honor that. Reach out to chimemaker at fae dot earth.

Where do you ship FAE Wind Chimes?

We ship via United States Postal Service “Priority Mail” both domestically and internationally. We have shipped FAE Wind Chimes as far as Sweden and China. We always include Tracking and insurance at the full value of the Wind Chime.

How do you ship a FAE Wind Chime?

FAE Wind Chimes are shipped complete and ready to hang, with all lines and chimes in place. Your Wind Chime will be packed in a suspended state inside a round, cardboard tube and surrounded with kraft paper packing material. It will have a paracord line already connected to your Wind Chime’s Top Ring, ready for installation. We always include Tracking and insure your Wind Chime at its full value.

Why can’t I just go buy a cheap, Chinese wind chime for $40 from anywhere?

Let’s say you spend $40 and get a small wind chime with four pipes made from cheap, recycled steel and low-quality line. These materials start rotting right away, especially in the sun, and within a year the cheap, Chinese wind chime will be lying on the ground, or broken. I know this because it happened to me, and it made me want to make better wind chimes.

But to answer the question, let’s use the equation from the FAQ “How much should I expect to pay for a good wind chime?” Let’s say the cheap chime lasts 2 years. That would be $40 divided by 4 chimes divided 0.2 decades (2 years), which actually equates to $50 per chime per decade of service. This is because you have to replace the cheap, Chinese wind chime five times per decade to keep it functional. After ten years that’s easily $200, and four piles of junk added to the landfill or left on the ground. This was only $50 short of the full cost of a FAE St. Michael’s Healing Chime. The FAE wind chime will last 50 times longer than the cheap, Chinese wind chime, and has a chance to never enter a landfill.

What kind of knots are used to make FAE Wind Chimes?

For simplicity, a Fae Wind Chime uses Figure-Eight knots almost exclusively. To hang a FAE Wind Chime, however, connect a line to the Top Ring using an Anchor Hitch.

What kind of metal should I use for my Wind Chime?

It depends on how long you want it to last. FAE Wind Chimes last at least 10 years no matter what. We literally will not make it if we don’t believe it will last a decade outside. If you need a Wind Chime for less than 10 years, you might want a cheap model from China.

For approximately 10-20 years of outdoor service, Steel makes very good sound for Wind Chimes at low cost.

For approximately 20-40 years of outdoor service, Galvanized Steel makes very good sound for Wind Chimes at medium cost.

For approximately 40-80+ years of service, Aluminum makes very good sound for Wind Chimes at medium cost.

For approximately 50-150 years of service, Copper makes good sound for Wind Chimes at medium cost.

For approximately 100-200 years of service, Stainless Steel makes good sound for Wind Chimes at high cost.

For centuries of service, Bell Brass makes quite possibly the most perfect sound for Wind Chimes at high cost.

For millennia of service, Bronze makes excellent sound for Wind Chimes of the Ages at maximum cost.