My New Just intonated dulcimer. Thank you Robin Clark & Bob Reinsel.

Lexie R Oakley
Lexie R Oakley
@lexie-r-oakley
8 years ago
230 posts

Congrats Cynthia and Robert on this wonderfully sounding dulcimer.

I am so happy Cynthia that you are buying from Robert, he makes a sweet instrument and I know you will be very pleased.

I love my "Lil' ButterNut" Robert made for me, it is a treasured dulcimer.8.gif

I will be anxiously waiting for your unboxing video and best yet your sound test video.69.gif

Cynthia Wigington
Cynthia Wigington
@cynthia-wigington
8 years ago
75 posts

Looking forward to getting this Thursday, and plan to do an unboxing video, so people will see what they will get since you are planning to build several of these. I may just buy the lot! Thank you Robert.

robert schuler
robert schuler
@robert-schuler
8 years ago
256 posts

Here is a picture of this dulcimer and its almost identical twin. Both were cut from the same poplar log. You can tell by the birth mark over the upper bout sound holeSmile.gif ... The one on the right is just intonated the other is tempered. Gave me a great opportunity to compare the sound with two instruments that are almost acoustically alike in every other way. This was a fun project... Robert


updated by @robert-schuler: 06/19/15 01:02:43AM
Cynthia Wigington
Cynthia Wigington
@cynthia-wigington
8 years ago
75 posts

When Robin said the drones had to be able to tune, DDd sounded like the most obvious successful tuning. Can't help it, I like it, it does something for me. Greta used to stop me from playing, would say enough noter, going nuts - she has not stopped me once with the JI cardboard even. Interesting isn't it? No matter how I'm tuned. Animals know.

robert schuler
robert schuler
@robert-schuler
8 years ago
256 posts

Here is this dulcimer tuned ddd bagpipe. Although this dulcimer is clearly optimized for 155 tuning it can play well enough in any tuning. Advice I would give to all is if you can afford a second dulcimer, try to order one in just intonation it is well worth it. Ill be building a few for sale this year, and there are a few other guys on this site who can do the same.Thank you for listening... Robert.

Cynthia Wigington
Cynthia Wigington
@cynthia-wigington
8 years ago
75 posts

Very interesting. And I guess if the ET folks are off all the time, some of the JI folks can be off some of the time, LOL

robert schuler said:

So what if you take your JI dulcimer to the club and everybody is boiling there cabbages in DAd ?. You can tune to DAd. The only note thats really sour is the E at the first and eight fret when played against the drones. Others like f#, d, a are sweeter than a Jersey peach...Here is a clip of sweet & sour liza jane... As I play the scale note the E, and the C is natural since no half fret. One trick I learned from fiddlers is to play fast and nobody will notice if your out of tuneGrin.gif ...

What about Chords?. Mostly they sound ok just a bit new age . The A is a bit sour. In the clip Bile them sourkrauts down, I play the A as 1-0-1 then with the C# 1-2-1 followed by D, built up 5 ways followed by G 3-0-0 and 0-0-3. Anybody who plays more than three chords is just a showoffSmile.gif . Im a lifelong dedicated ND man so my chord playing is a bit sloppy. But I think DAd tuning is not out of the question on this instrument... Bob.

Bob Reinsel
Bob Reinsel
@bob-reinsel
8 years ago
80 posts

Robert, thanks for the examples, they are really interesting. In the Liza Jane scale the B is a little flat to my ear in addition to the E. But I would expect that since the calculator is designed around a scale starting at the 3rd fret rather than the scale starting on the open string.




--
Bob
Site Moderator

The greatest music is made for love, not for money -- Greg Lake
robert schuler
robert schuler
@robert-schuler
8 years ago
256 posts

So what if you take your JI dulcimer to the club and everybody is boiling there cabbages in DAd ?. You can tune to DAd. The only note thats really sour is the E at the first and eight fret when played against the drones. Others like f#, d, a are sweeter than a Jersey peach...Here is a clip of sweet & sour liza jane... As I play the scale note the E, and the C is natural since no half fret. One trick I learned from fiddlers is to play fast and nobody will notice if your out of tuneGrin.gif ...

What about Chords?. Mostly they sound ok just a bit new age . The A is a bit sour. In the clip Bile them sourkrauts down, I play the A as 1-0-1 then with the C# 1-2-1 followed by D, built up 5 ways followed by G 3-0-0 and 0-0-3. Anybody who plays more than three chords is just a showoffSmile.gif . Im a lifelong dedicated ND man so my chord playing is a bit sloppy. But I think DAd tuning is not out of the question on this instrument... Bob.

John Henry
John Henry
@john-henry
8 years ago
258 posts

Then it seems as if we may be somewhat in tune with each other on the subject of meantone fretting Robin !

John

Robin Clark
Robin Clark
@robin-clark
8 years ago
237 posts

Hi Robert,

Thanks for your comments and the demonstrations of your JI dulcimer. I think that the term 'calming' is very apt. For 1-5-5 and 5-1-1 and perhaps 1-5-7 then JI works very well (1-5-5 being 'perfect'). However, for those looking for more flexibility then 1/4 comma meantone or ET are going to be a better option. I would probably recommend that newer players go with ET as it is the most adaptable and easiest to tune to using an electronic tuner. The dissonance of ET is subtle and it would take many years of musical experience to be able to distinguish the difference between the temperaments. For my personal playing I'm pretty used to working with as many different temperaments as I have old dulcimers, as they are all different 40.gif And most of those old dulcimer builders were not consistent instrument to instrument. 109.gif But you can hear from the recordings I have posted (up around 100 now I think) that, for noter drone playing, the notes of the scale can to some extent 'drift' yet the instrument remains perfectly playable as long as your tuning matches the instrument in front of you.

And that I think is the major point of all this - it really is worth spending time getting your open strings tuned to the best possible match foryour dulcimer, whatever its fret temperament. The delight of JI is that the open strings can all be blended perfectly for 1-5-5 and then everything up the scale is also perfect - just don't take an electronic tuner anywhere near the dulcimer 107.gifGrin.gif

Cynthia Wigington
Cynthia Wigington
@cynthia-wigington
8 years ago
75 posts

Robert again, sounds so fine. I agree about the healing soothing sounds of JI, even on that simple cardboard one I got, and it gives it a more old-timey sound too to me. People start smiling the second they hear that sound.

Lexie R Oakley
Lexie R Oakley
@lexie-r-oakley
8 years ago
230 posts

Robert, I believe you taught me some about dissonance with this demonstration.

Thanks for your efforts, this is how I learn about music. This really sounds great.113.gif

robert schuler
robert schuler
@robert-schuler
8 years ago
256 posts

Here is a clip in DAa that takes in the entire scale top to below bottom. Note how well melody played the low D string harmonizes with two droning A's, and how D at the 17th fret stays in tune with the drones. One thing I get from playing in just intonation is a calming, soothing, healing feeling. Probably from the lack of dissonance inherit in just intonation... Robert.

Lexie R Oakley
Lexie R Oakley
@lexie-r-oakley
8 years ago
230 posts

Excellent Robert, it is great to hear how sweet this sounds. Thanks!69.gif

Bob Reinsel
Bob Reinsel
@bob-reinsel
8 years ago
80 posts

Thanks for the clips Bob. Sounds great.




--
Bob
Site Moderator

The greatest music is made for love, not for money -- Greg Lake
Cynthia Wigington
Cynthia Wigington
@cynthia-wigington
8 years ago
75 posts

Robert so good to hear what these, or this just intonation can play. One more in EAA and you'll have demonstated ionian, dorian aeolian and mixo. What more could anyone want?

robert schuler
robert schuler
@robert-schuler
8 years ago
256 posts

Thanks again , here is the Aeolien mode DAc tune in just intonation. I really love the sound on the root note D...BTW there is no 6.5 fret on this type of dulcimer... Robert.

Johnny Pledger
Johnny Pledger
@johnny-pledger
8 years ago
3 posts

That really sounds good Bob! You have me interested! I may do some reading and start me one.

Lexie R Oakley
Lexie R Oakley
@lexie-r-oakley
8 years ago
230 posts

Really great Robert, I like how you put that song together.41.gif

robert schuler said:

Thanks Cynthia and Lexie... Here is a tune in the Dorian mode... DAg. Again you can hear the nice way the melody and drones harmonize together... Robert

Cynthia Wigington
Cynthia Wigington
@cynthia-wigington
8 years ago
75 posts

Your just dorian sounds better than my equal dorian...can it seriously also play DAc and sound OK?

robert schuler
robert schuler
@robert-schuler
8 years ago
256 posts

Thanks Cynthia and Lexie... Here is a tune in the Dorian mode... DAg. Again you can hear the nice way the melody and drones harmonize together... Robert

Cynthia Wigington
Cynthia Wigington
@cynthia-wigington
8 years ago
75 posts

This sure does sound fine Bob, and you are a fine player as well.

Lexie R Oakley
Lexie R Oakley
@lexie-r-oakley
8 years ago
230 posts

That sounds amazing Bob, thanks for the demo love hearing you play.113.gif

robert schuler
robert schuler
@robert-schuler
8 years ago
256 posts

Here is a sound clip of this dulcimer tuned DAa using one melody string. I used my finger as a noter. I'm not sure the name of the tune, it probably has a dozen names, but is a good demo tune. Forget the tune and just listen to how the drones harmonize nicely with the melody. This is what makes just intonation so special. BTW my cheap recorder is no substitute for hearing in person... Robert

Cynthia Wigington
Cynthia Wigington
@cynthia-wigington
8 years ago
75 posts

It sure looks to be a beauty Bob. I hope you post a clip so we can hear this one and your butternut.

Lexie R Oakley
Lexie R Oakley
@lexie-r-oakley
8 years ago
230 posts

Excellent Bob, oh sure would like to hear you play it. Happy you guys got this all figured out, gee we are a great group!111.gif

Bob Reinsel
Bob Reinsel
@bob-reinsel
8 years ago
80 posts

Wow, Bob that's a great looking instrument! I am really happy to hear that it worked out well. Thanks for the shout-out on the calculator. I appreciate that. I'd love to hear it, BTW.




--
Bob
Site Moderator

The greatest music is made for love, not for money -- Greg Lake
robert schuler
robert schuler
@robert-schuler
8 years ago
256 posts

Thank you Robin for posting an excellent just intonation tread and thanks to Bob for the calculations. I spent three days working out the math to design a 27" scale JI fingerboard. I finished the dulcimer yesterday based on my AW Jeffrey's pattern after spending 12 hours in the field planting asparagus then spent almost all night to dawn playing this dulcimer.

I expected this instrument to sound different than my equal T models but instead I was totally blown away by the sound. After over 40 years playing countless dulcimers, this was the best I ever heard. The intonation is PREFECT!. I can fret the D at the 17th fret and its in perfect tune with the open D.

I can fret the A at the 14th fret and its in tune with the open A. And here is something you can't do on equal T dulcimers. I can fret the D note on the A string at the 3rd fret and its in perfect tune with the open D and I can fret the D on the 4th fret and its in perfect tune with the open A. On equal T dulcimers your forced to choose tuning between the A or the D you can't have both. My JI model has it both ways and you can difference. Folks after you play a Just intonated dulcimer you will never want to go back to plain old equal T again...Here are a couple pics... Thanks... Robert


updated by @robert-schuler: 06/11/15 07:43:13AM