I recently read about and heard recordings of the bansuri, a bamboo flute used in Indian (Hindu) music. I decided to try and make one myself, and according to the tutorial I read it shouldn't be too difficult, but there are some points I need to get clear about:
The tutorial said to find a bamboo stalk with an internal diameter of between 3/4" to 7/8", according to the scale you want the flute to be tuned to. So I figure both the length AND the internal diameter of the pipe determine the base pitch it produces, yes? If that's the case, because you can't have very specific sizes when picking a random bamboo, am I required to make specific calculations against the measured internal diameter in order to find the exact length the bamboo should be cut to if I want to reach a specific concert pitch (A, for example)?
And then there's the question about intonation (accuracy of all pitches along a scale): if the internal diameter of the bamboo stalk is not consistent along its entire length, will the pitches be off-scale if I were to make the finger holes positioned without correction as dictated by simple perfect-scenario (symmetrical bamboo) calculations? If it is so, should I rather find a bamboo stalk with a smaller internal diameter and sand it on the inside to a specific, symmetrical diameter?
And the final question — is there a way to make such a simple instrument chromatic rather than just major-scale? It seems like flutes don't use an excessive amount of finger holes for this (if that could even reach the desired result) but rather use keys that allow for secondary in-between notes, so I figure.