The Dudey belongs to the category of smallpipes and is closely related to the Hümmelchen. Although one might assume an Eastern European origin because of the name Dudey, it is primarily found in Germany. Thus Michael Praetorius included it in his encyclopedia of renaissance instruments Syntagma Musicum.
The Dudey has a smooth, slightly nasal sound. Like the Hümmelchen it is a quiet bagpipe and very pleasant when played indoors. The strong chordal sound of its three drones make it an ideal solo instrument as well as an instrument that should not be missing from any renaissance music ensemble.
The Dudey has a cylindrical chanter and three cylindrical drones which are integrated in a shared stock. It is normally mouth-blown, but can also be driven by a bellow.
The chanter is equipped with a double reed. It is either build with an open, recorder-like fingering or with an French, half-closed fingering that has more chromatic tones. Main key is C/F or D/G respectively or the low tuning G/C. The gamut is a ninth.
The drones have single reeds and are tuned a perfect fifth or an octave apart. They can be retuned with an additional drilling, expanding the tonality range. The drones are combined in a shared stock which is embedded in the bag in such a way that the drones rest on the shoulder. With bellow-driven instruments the drones rest on the right forearm across the body.