Welcome to FOTMD! Feel free to ask lots of questions--just know you'll get a LOT of opinions! If you haven't already checked out the various groups, do that so you'll find the ones that interest you the most.
Some people have asked me if it's harder to play a chromatic dulcimer than a diatonic one. People with a great interest (and skill) in music tend to learn fairly easily if their first dulcimer is chromatic. I have been somewhat daunted by the challenge of learning to play a chromatic after playing a diatonic for years--but that's just me. Without fret markers to guide you, you quickly discover that it's like someone changing all the black and white keys on a piano to all brown--and making them all the same width and side by side, rather than the former black keys being set back from the front edge of the piano. You might find middle C, but you'd quickly get lost. So when you play the chromatic dulcimer, you have to find what works for you, as far as markings go.
Hi Erthling, and welcome to the wonderful world of the Frienbds of the Mountain Dulcimer. It's a good place to come, spend some time, learn about the dulcimer, and to meet some good people.
Hey Erthling, welcome aboard. Glad ya found us.
Yes, you can. Some folks mark the "extra" frets in some way to help. I like the method of using a marker of a color you like and coating part of the top of the chromatic frets. You can then skip over them easily that way. The marker doesn't penetrate the fret material and will wear off after time or can removed with a solvent like mineral spirits, paint thinner, acetone, etc. I'm not sure which one works best. I'll have to put some marker on a fret and try it. I'll let you know. It may be a few days from now as I want to let the marker dry well before trying to take it off.
"The dulcimer sings a sweet song."
Welcome Erthling to Friends of the Mountain Dulcimer. Glad you joined. This is a wonderful community of friendly people who love the dulcimer. Join in the discussions. Ask questions. Make lots of new dulcimer friends here.
Welcome to FOTMD ErthLing. It is good to have you aboard. Let us know if we can help you on you dulcimer journey. Enjoy your dulcimer.