Link in previous post.
Dwain, I think the simplest way to relate the solfege to the Ref C and Ref D columns is like this: DO=C or DO=D depending on how you are tuned. So if you are are tuned Daa (traditional tuning) then DO = D, Re = E, Mi = F#, etc. The scale starts on the third fret of the dulcimer. "Ref D" is really just reference to the D scale and "Ref C" is the same for the C Scale if you are tuned to C. You could tune the dulcimer to Cgg and then refer to the Ref C column, in which case DO = C, Re=D, Mi=E and so on.
Thanks, Bob, yes, I'm familiar with Solfege, but couldn't suss out how the particular notes referred to anything "C" or "D." I'm not much on music theory, and not a dulcimer play to speak of, so maybe understanding your explanation would help. So the "Ref D" refers to a string tuned to D? Guess I might seem to be asking for a whole course in musical notation, and tuning.
Dwain, here is the new link to the original article. The link in the spreadsheet was to the former incarnation of this site.
The REF C and REF D columns are references to the C major and D major scales, for those who play other instruments or read music. The Solfege reference is for those who are familiar with referring to the notes of the scale as Do. Re. Mi. etc. "Solfege" is just the name of the formal method of using those syllables for sight reading.
Thanks, Bob! I'm still studying the Solfege and trying to understand that. So the open string in JI is not variable, I gather. But haven't been able to find the "+ sign above column J", so sort of struggling with the meaning of Ref C vs. Ref D. I'm a newbie at this, as I haven't revisited the realm of alternate intonations for awhile. Maybe I should look at the FOTMD discussion referenced in your calculator before going much further...
From time to time I've considered Mean Temperament. It is supposed to sound very sweet, and it would be a hoot to create some "Mean Tempered Bears." Does anyone have a MT spreadsheet or calculator?
I've had a couple of McSpadden's built using the JI calculator and a couple in quarter comma meantone. Meantone is based around getting the 3rds perfect but the 4ths and 5ths are shifted slightly, as they are in equal temperament. One of the aspects I like about JI is that the open strings in DAA (or other 1-5-5 tuning) can be set to a perfect 5th and the octave at the 3rd is also a perfect 5th. This both makes tuning easy and the sound really lush - I find I don't have to compromise at all and 'tweek' the tuning to get things sounding OK like I do with ET or meantone. The advantage of meantone over JI is that most tunings work OK and it is better than ET in that it does have that nice 3rd.
Of course, old dulcimer makers to set the frets where they wanted and I really like the pattern Leonard Glen used, which is basically JI )or close to) but with the first fret moved nearer to ET. It does mean that the 1st fret and the 8th fret are slightly different (not an octave) but because it is impossible to play those two notes together that doesn't matter. I've had my batch of Heritage dulcimers from the Hagen family made with this fret pattern as it is just a little more adaptable than JI. However, for a lot my personal playing I love JI and make use of that flattened 6th 2nd fret.
Essentially, every fret pattern is going to lead to compromise somewhere - so it is a matter of finding what you like and learning how to use it.
Ken, you may want to download the calculator again. The version I posted earlier was 2.5 not 3, which is the latest. 2.5 will still work fine for you. Version three is a cleaner looking xls file.
Kevin, this should be the same as the one you downloaded a while back.
This is the link to the original Mean Tone calculator posting
Please see the latest post for the downloads.
Ken, here you go.
(repost because I got silly and hit the wrong button. Got your response Dan, that may be the current one)
Some time back we had a discussion about Just Intonation and someone made a JI calculator for fret spacing. I got a copy at first, but I believe there was at least one revision. Can someone post the latest and greatest please? I'm about to start my first dulcimer in years (probably last too). Wormy Chestnut in the long slender Walking Stick style...