This is my first post--I'm very excited to be here! The dulcimer bug has me firmly in its grasp...
I have a Backyard Music cardboard dulcimer I made several months ago, as well as a Cedar Creek Walnut Classic I built more recently. I initially strung up the walnut one in DAD, and found the melody strings very, very hard to press down. Tuned it down to DAA and that's much better. I got several different sets of strings in different gauges with the intent of optimizing the cardboard guy to DAA and the walnut to DAD (has 6 1/2 fret, so better to take advantage of that for DAD).
While I'm not afraid of restringing, I don't want to do it every 10 minutes, either. The question I have is whether I can swap strings between the two or, more generally, if it's OK to reuse strings if they aren't too old, or if once you string them, you should not attempt to restring them. (And while I'm at it, how old is old?)