Forum Activity for @nathina

Nathina
@nathina
11/22/21 08:06:47PM
190 posts

Trying to identify this dulcimer.


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

It is 60's to 70's very thin and light. The fret board appears to have been designed for staples but this has full frets and no evidence of the staples being replaced. Made of Walnut . The VSL is 28 overall 33. Has many features of an Amburgey but the head is different. The tuners are black ebony, and appear identical to an Amburgey. Had a peg stem for a hitch pin, which I am going to replace with brass pins. In many respects and Amburgey and in many respects not. I am making this playable again for the 21st century. Any ideas who built it? 


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Nathina
@nathina
10/28/21 07:39:51PM
190 posts

Does anyone have information on the Dulcimer Guild


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

Trying to find the hx of the Dulcimer Guild out of Colorado. Seemed to have dropped away from any information.

Nathina
@nathina
10/07/21 10:21:05PM
190 posts

Has anyone Heard of the Andrew Instrument Company. USA


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

From what I know they are a USA company, and was building dulcimers in 2009. He built enough dulcimers so that there should be some recognition, and the build was good. Not just a hobbyist. I just restore an hourglass that has a number 18133 but I doubt he ever built that many, so it may be 18 of 133 or 181 of 33 or etc. The date on the dulc is 01-09.

Nathina
@nathina
09/02/21 06:42:21PM
190 posts

Wanted: Vintage McSpadden Dulcimer


FOR SALE:instruments/music items/CDs/Wanted to Buy...

Vintage McSpaddens used a horseshoe symbol on the Fret board. These are generally pre 1982 or so until they went to solids for tops sides and bottoms and changed the Symbol to McSpadden. The vintage are laminated tops. Sound just a good though. Generally singed by Lynn McSpadden, before 1982.

Nathina
@nathina
05/31/21 02:36:12PM
190 posts

Making a dulcimer humidity resistant?


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

Ken Hulme:

 YOU ARE SERIOUSLY OVER-THINKING THIS WHOLE THING!

"
-coating the inside of the dulcimer in something water protectant: an idea I had earlier that seemed to not be useful in general, but maybe in this context would help it hold up."

No, NO, NO!   I live much closer to the ocean than your sister, and coating the inside will NOT work.  If it did I would be doing it.  For two years I lived less than 100 yards from the ocean on an island in the Pacific near the equator, one of the saltiest environments on the planet!  If coating the inside would have worked I would have done it.  IT DOES NOTHING!

-gluing in frets with a strong glue: in general I know that stronger glues tend to make maintenance and repair much more difficult, but if I want to build it to last, maybe I should glue them in with something heavy duty to reduce the chances of them shifting?

It is worth noting that I have traveled down there with dulcimers I have built and always had to pummel some raised frets every time I got there, so this is a primary concern for me.


You should not need to glue frets in if your slots are the proper width (not too wide), cut to the proper depth (not too shallow), and you have hammered/pressed them in properly.  However, if you feel you must glue, use one of the slow setting Super Glues, as my friend John Knopf recommends will do the job.

Gel Packs -- WILL NOT WORK. Not the way you think. You'd need ten pounds of silica gel and it will only last a few days. 

The fact is that the Dulcimer needs to adjust to the environment where it will live.  If it can't because you sealed it up inside and out, one scratch will cause it to warp horribly.   If the dulcimer can't adapt to local conditions because you artificially adjust it's local humidity with gel packs, it will warp the instant you let the humidity change.




 I Agree. Although in Arizona, humidity is "relatively constant" except for the monsoon season. 
Nathina
@nathina
05/31/21 02:26:14PM
190 posts

How Many Dulcimers Do You Own?


General mountain dulcimer or music discussions

It seems I somehow only have nine now.

1 McSpadden,

1 Arthur lee West,

1 Fred Martin Bowed,

1 Gardener Teardrop,

2 Blue Lions,

1 Rugg and Jackel,

1 Jenny Lind Gibson,

1 HA Fleming

and a Hoffner Electric 

and selling a RS dulcimer, John A Maxwell, Daron Dulcimer and an unknown + an 1850-1870 Friedrich Augusta Glass Violin

Nathina
@nathina
02/08/21 08:52:45PM
190 posts

Need Help Identifying two dulcimers if possible.


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions


Dulcimer #1. Butternut top, walnut sides and back. Engraving on head scroll and neck.

Dulcimer #2 Solid Walnut, thick waist, Heavy build. Weight is well above 3 pounds. Nickel silver bridge and nut. 

thanks.


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Nathina
@nathina
01/17/21 03:25:48PM
190 posts

Can someone help Identify this dulcimer? Thanks.


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

This is a solid wood walnut dulcimer, that uses silver nickel nut and bridge. Extremely thick waist, but still enough for an hourglass. It is 1970-1980 build. It may be a Sylvan James who is known for thick waist dulcimers around that time, but not sure.


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Nathina
@nathina
01/16/21 02:56:17PM
190 posts

How is the COVID-19 coronavirus affecting you?


OFF TOPIC discussions

In Arizona the governor checked on when the reserve vaccines that were released by the Government were going to arrive and how many. He found out that there are NO reserve vaccines, never were, and that nothing is coming. For Me I am waiting for the Johnson and Johnson single dose product. Too many unknowns about the second dose at this point, if there ever will be one, for the Pfizer or the Moderma. There also is the Astra Zenica coming. Needless to say I will have to wait anyways, if I ever do receive it, probably by 2022 for my age group. By then we will either know if the vaccine works, especially for the new B117 version.

Nathina
@nathina
01/16/21 11:03:04AM
190 posts

A Luthier who used pegs to fasten the soundboard?


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

I am trying to identify a vintage dulcimer made entirely of butternut, but the luthier used small wooden pegs to hold the sound board onto the frame. The pegs go into the support frame. I will post pictures, but I have no references to pegs / dowels approx 1/8" being used. Whoever made this loved butternut.

Nathina
@nathina
01/04/21 10:58:32AM
190 posts

Fret Markers


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

Matt Berg:

Why not try indented markers that are slightly below the surface.  They would be tactile and not interfere with a noter!

I don't know why that is not done. It would work equally well.

Nathina
@nathina
01/03/21 08:08:44PM
190 posts

Fret Markers


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions


Dusty Turtle:

I've heard of tactile position markers on the back or top of the neck on guitars, so that you can feel with your hand where you are on the fretboard, but I've never seen anything like that on the fingerboard itself.

But we don't wrap our hands around the finger board /fret board on a dulcimer. There is no back. The markers I have come across are unobtrusive, you can feel them, they don't interfere with a noter, either they are just outside the proper position for a noter, or they are too "slippery" to be a problem. We are not talking a square wall and less than a 2mm rise, enough to feel, not enough to interfere. In fact they are usually not higher than the string itself.


updated by @nathina: 01/03/21 08:13:19PM
Nathina
@nathina
01/03/21 07:54:04PM
190 posts

Fret Markers


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions


They can be fancier, rubies, sapphires. depends who the dulcimer is being given too or was given too. There are some interesting instruments among European royalty. I haven't seen them added to really narrow fret boards that were specifically for noters. Rubys are not expensive, used for jeweled watches and clocks. Same with sapphires. Low grade diamonds are even cheap enough to use as fret markers.


updated by @nathina: 01/03/21 07:57:31PM
Nathina
@nathina
01/03/21 06:22:29PM
190 posts

Fret Markers


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

Strumelia:

I would think that raised fret markers could interfere badly especially with noter playing, particularly if they were located between the melody string(s) and the middle string. That'd be bad!

Besides, on any dulcimer other than a chromatic one, if you're not looking while playing anyway then raised fret markers are already there... they're called frets.  ;)

Actually those for the blind are placed just outside of proper noter placement for the melody. They are sloped on all sides and do not create an obstruction to fingers.

Nathina
@nathina
01/03/21 02:28:59PM
190 posts

Fret Markers


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

I'll add something else. What about raised fret markers. The purpose is to allow the player to know what fret they are on without looking. Thus eyes can be on the strum or picking, or music. These markers do not interfere with the strings. Simply provide sensory feedback.

Nathina
@nathina
12/30/20 10:59:32AM
190 posts

Fret Markers


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

Without using the apps, it should be possible to know where the frets go. Tune the first string to D, and work your way up until E is found, then mark that and continue.At least I would think you could use this method.

Nathina
@nathina
12/29/20 03:25:39PM
190 posts

DIY? building a dulcimer kits/plans


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

Folkcraft.com or Backyard Music https://www.backyardmusic.com/dulcimers.html, may have plans. Otherwise the backyards are cheap and you can create the design from their product. Backyards are surprisingly good for a cardboard model.

Nathina
@nathina
12/25/20 07:04:07PM
190 posts

Fret Markers


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

I see a lot dulcimers with 4, 6 and 10, 13 marked, and some 8s. I restore and mark at 3, 5, 7 and 10.

Nathina
@nathina
12/25/20 10:55:57AM
190 posts

Restoring the Delser, I accidentally erased the other.


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions


I will then tune it to traditional...

...Since as Strumelia says, it is not necessarily a collectable, for the enhancements I have in mind it will need to be darkened some. This is a little more that a restoration but an enhancement to a restoration. Still beautiful and still itself, but with a little added art. Popular, now I know what the back is. Just couldn't remember. Ok will be tuned traditional, 4 string galax. 

Nathina
@nathina
12/25/20 12:04:17AM
190 posts

Restoring the Delser, I accidentally erased the other.


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

Oh by the way I may have a surprise to show, not sure as yet. Depends on what has to be done on the instrument. I will need some help in identifying it. 

Nathina
@nathina
12/25/20 12:01:23AM
190 posts

Restoring the Delser, I accidentally erased the other.


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions


I accidentally deleted the Post on repairing the Desler and since I don't know if it can be retrieved I'll start over.

Strumelia: you asked what tuning AEA, string spacing, the same as everything else.

Dusty: the depth is this instrument makes me think it would be a good baritone. 4 strings tuned to AEAa. Although I still may try to see what it sounds like in CCCc and AAAa. This one when finished will be going up for sale. The public sadly cannot recognize a good dulcimer from a bad, thus the rapid sales currently of Horas and Apple Creeks. The tend to avoid wooden tuning pegs for Starite tuners or Planetary ones. Right now the push seems to be for baritones. Ron Gibson has started to sell baritones in one of his designs, Folkcraft as in the Utube, and many others. Nothing much really being done, (although it is suppose to be a deeper soundbox, extra support if needed etc.) I might leave it up to the public as to which tuning they want when they buy it.

Ken: I am not adverse to tuning the galax to traditional but it will be for sale. This is not one I consider keeping. It would lend itself well to AEAa. But that is still off a ways. Next to finish the stripping, and raise the grain for staining. It has now been reshaped and the unit is again solid, no holes or dings. What would you suggest as to the stain dark or red top? dark Fret board, back? sides? neck and head as well as block will be walnut, and I will two tone the strum hollow. Fretboard is chestnut, top is cedar, back is ? sides are same as back. 

By the way I will be posting, once retouched and cleaned an HA Fleming 1970. This unit is beautiful and well above some of his other ones. Not sure why the difference, but the workmanship is much better than I have seen. 


SORRY all about the erase. If it can be retrieved please do so.


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Nathina
@nathina
12/24/20 06:29:05PM
190 posts

What do you think of this one? 5 str Dulcimer with wooden tuning pegs


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions


Ken Longfield:

It looks very good Nathina. It is pretty much what a new Jim Good dulcimer looked like on his sale table. For some reason I'm under the impression that Jim sold his workshop and inventory a while back, but I'm not certain about this. I remember when Jim started using walnut shells in his sound holes. Jim's wife is Brenda, but I don't know if she ever painted on any of their dulcimers. Post fire of 83 when he went to walnuts for sound holes.

Ken

"The dulcimer sings a sweet song."

I was informed by a friend that knows him and Brenda. Her maiden name was cooper, and she occasionally enhanced specially made dulcimers, for who I don't know. His new ones post 83 look like he was making an extension of the fret or soundboard that looked like a violin chin rest apparently. Quite attractive. Since this is an "enhanced" dulcimer, I was hoping to find out more on its history. He hid his name well inside. Used an endoscope to find it. 
updated by @nathina: 12/24/20 07:47:53PM
Nathina
@nathina
12/24/20 05:02:19PM
190 posts

What do you think of this one? 5 str Dulcimer with wooden tuning pegs


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

Ken Hulme:

Someone did a nice job.  Are the top & back veneer?   Beautiful painting, but not nearly enough sound hole area.  Commercial violin pegs, but not everyone wants to take the time to carve their own (I don't!).  Maker's label?  

Way up there, Jim Good 1980 so a pre 1983. Jim I understand is in a nursing home with Alzheimer's. Top and back and sides are solids. Brenda Cooper did the enhancements. Not sure if that is his wife or not? Hand signed. Used a shaker peg for hitch pin instead of standard dowel peg. As you say the job is very nice, was able to restore it back to new condition without too much altering. Interesting string setup, so it was tuned from Bass to Melody DGADD but too much pull on the strings so retuned to CGGCC and it took it fine.
Nathina
@nathina
12/24/20 03:44:28PM
190 posts

What do you think of this one? 5 str Dulcimer with wooden tuning pegs


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

I am trying to get more information on this dulcimer. Sounds great, finished restoring it last night, couldn't sleep. 


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updated by @nathina: 12/24/20 03:44:58PM
Nathina
@nathina
12/23/20 11:16:27PM
190 posts

R&J Came Today


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

And the competed Rugg & Jackel 1986 D50S


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updated by @nathina: 12/24/20 12:11:00PM
Nathina
@nathina
12/22/20 02:05:16PM
190 posts

R&J Came Today


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

After I cleaned it up, Small surprise. The case is covered in leather, and leather wrapped handle. I though originally just the usual cardboard. Still polishing the case.


DSC00619.JPG DSC00619.JPG - 62KB
Nathina
@nathina
12/21/20 03:42:31PM
190 posts

R&J Came Today


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

In the process of cleaning it up. 10/1/86 #3 D50S


updated by @nathina: 12/21/20 03:44:18PM
Nathina
@nathina
12/20/20 06:23:53PM
190 posts

A W Jeffreys Jr.


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions


Quigley:

Update: I tuned the dulcimer to CGC, sounds great. This dulcimer has a 27" VSL. It sounds pretty cool.

Thanks!

 Great, is that C3, G3, C4
updated by @nathina: 12/20/20 11:59:54PM
Nathina
@nathina
12/20/20 11:47:01AM
190 posts

crosby dulcimer from wisconsin?


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

Probably way off with this, but David Crosby of Crobsy Stills and Nash? This luthier made some for him. https://lapidusmusic.com/bio

Nathina
@nathina
12/19/20 11:47:54PM
190 posts

A W Jeffreys Jr.


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions


Quigley:

Interesting, just bought bought a 1974 A.W Jeffrey's dulcimer and found that the strings are really small in diameter. Ever hear of the strings that (1st).005,(2nd).005, (3rd) .005 and (4th) string .015. I have ordered new strings and just waiting for them to come in. I wonder if they are actually original however they really can't be right?

There are string packs out there from other manufacturers that do have different Sizes. I just put John Pierce Strings on a dulcimer .009, .010, .012, .023. Tuned it to C4, G3, C3. Wouldn't take much more, but is does sound great. I wonder if someone was trying to get a soprano dulc or having trouble strumming?
updated by @nathina: 12/19/20 11:49:31PM
Nathina
@nathina
12/18/20 11:13:14AM
190 posts

Dragons Anyone.


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

This one I do not have. A lot of work went into the carvings,  Built by Freeman D Jones.


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Nathina
@nathina
12/18/20 10:39:37AM
190 posts

A Henry C Desler Just came in for restoration.


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

Ken Hulme:

Builder's name doesn't ring any bells.    Galax style dulcimers did/do not normally have feet.  


Sorry I used the term foot as the base of the dulcimer not meaning feet as on the back.
Nathina
@nathina
12/18/20 10:35:19AM
190 posts

A Henry C Desler Just came in for restoration.


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

Strumelia:

As far as I know, a dulcimer having feet doesn't specifically suggest WV.  Galax dulcimers are traditionally tuned in unison all high ddd or equidistant dddd stringing. BTW we have a Group here on fotmd for Galax dulcimers- might be some fun threads in there to check out for fun.
Maybe the 1/2" action was an experiment to use it as a lap steel, with a slide? Obviously one cannot fret a 1/2" action. Maybe they clipped on a pickup. People do things weird things with dulcimers they find. Do you think the bridge and nut were replaced with high ones? Can't say much without pictures.

Sorry when I say foot it is the design on the end at the base, not feet as in underneath. The bridges are original and will be fixed. Anyway here are the pics before stripping it down. Heavy square block base I was led to believe is a WV style. There was no way to get the string anywhere near the fret board even with a noter. But all will be repaired and it will shine again.
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Nathina
@nathina
12/17/20 11:13:33PM
190 posts

A Henry C Desler Just came in for restoration.


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

This time I am taking before and after. I don't know what Desler was thinking when he built this. The body is solid and the wood is good but the action is litterly 1/2 inch + off the fret board. There was 6 feet of string on each tuner and they were all .024s. Noting the construction I think he thought he was making a baritone and larger heavier strings required higher action. Currently it is completely unplayable, but I will start on the restoration eventually, and it will sing again, actually for the first time. This thing could never be played in the state it is in. The style is a galax, WV foot style. Hopefully when finished it will be something. This should make a good baritone when finished.Short VSL, and narrow fret board, 3 string.


updated by @nathina: 12/18/20 10:35:45AM
Nathina
@nathina
12/17/20 04:35:11PM
190 posts

Just received a John A Maxwell


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions


Strumelia: Your Maxwell has a huge amount of charm and grace and should be a joy to play when strung up. I can tell you care about it. Maybe you can record a simple tune for us on it soon.   :)

I care about all the instruments I restore. They sort of become "friends" . Taking something that was meant to sound lovely, and again allowing it to do so is a good feeling. The tuners I have fixed to hold perfectly. I have tested them with a .032 string and it has maintained tuning over several days. That is how I adjust wooden pegs. If they can hold a heavy tension then they can hold the correct string. There are also a few other tricks I use on wooden pegs to hold them tight. 

Nathina
@nathina
12/17/20 04:16:32PM
190 posts

Just received a John A Maxwell


Instruments- discuss specific features, luthiers, instrument problems & questions

I still have to work on the wooden box. I will show before and after shots. The box itself, is designed specifically for the dulcimer, and is padded with the Maxwell Tartan. It is made out of spruce ply, but should not be problem to fix the missing wood piece, and the dents.  Probably will re-stain it as well. 

1