An occasional pick of paraphernalia from postings found on the internet

The following conversation took place sometime ago on the Bob Dunsire bagpipe forum with the title
Bellows and Boobs
“I've recently acquired a set of bellows blown pipes, and have discovered that the part of the rib cage where I'd feel most comfortable having the bellows strap is in a rather "anatomically inconvenient" location. Ahem. So I'm basically faced with the choice of over or under...
Under might work if I had a beer gut, but the problem is that no matter how tightly I do up the strap, it slips down because I have a relatively small waist, and my rib cage tapers towards it.
Over is a bit too high to be comfortable, and tends to squish things a bit so it looks like I'm trying to emulate the Bavarian beer wench look.
Any of you ladies have any tricks for making the bellows stay put, or know of an alternative way to strap the bellows on? I almost feel like I could get away with under if I had a strap over one shoulder to keep the torso strap from slipping down. But I'd be interested to hear if anyone has any advice to offer.”Nate Banton re Dan Houghton
“[He has] a black strap that goes over his shoulder. This strap, added by him, attaches to the front of his bellows waist belt, goes diagonally over the left shoulder and again attaches, at the back, to his bellows waist belt. He just has to slip that over his head when he puts on the bellows.
I made something almost exactly like this for Tim Cummings who is similarly built, and I'm making another for another friend. I haven't tried this with a female however, so I don't know if the added strap would "fit". But it might.
Dan made his from seat belt-like nylon strapping (I think he took it from a shoulder bag), I've made mine from leather. “
Helvetica replied:
“I tried this harness idea last night with some extra strapping we have lying about and it worked like a charm! It was very easy to adjust the positio of the shoulder strap so it was both comfortable and snug.
Everything stayed in place so well I completely forgot I was playing bellows, which is a good sign! Normally I spend half my concentration trying to make sure I maintain control of the bellows, and my fingering suffers. [cont.]
I'd highly recommend this setup to anyone, male or female, large or small. It really does make the whole bellows system a lot easier to manage.”
Tim Cummings recently added the following comment
“I'd like to add that I've found the improvised shoulder strap (which took Nate only minutes to make), to be extremely comfy.
And, incidentally, for those of you interested in pipe-singing, the shoulder strap is a great aid, helping the whole bellows-and-pipe contraption stay put while the rib cage deflates during a sung phrase. Without the shoulder strap, the bellows-and-pipes sink right down to my waist as I sing. Further, the additional strap means you can loosen the torso strap enough to allow a full intake of air.”

[Ed; you can see this strap in action in the photo below. The Bob Dunsire web forum is at]