james kaulback


Location: Lebanon, PA
Country: US

My Latest Followers:

Oliver Ogden mariellen parks Brian G. Robin Thompson Strumelia


youtube videos: 3
images: 15

I got hooked on dulcimers about 40 years ago, and decided to try to make them. After a few years of making a traditional steam bent sides, I tried something rather radical, and began forming sides by cutting them out on a band saw. This opened a whole new world of unusual designs. I cut the sides in a serpentine fashion and even cut some at a 15 degree angle. Most of my fret boards are also cut in a similar serpentine fashion. I put a block of wood around each sound hole before I drill it, giving the illusion that the top is deeper than the standard 1/8 inch. Since the sides are at least 1/4 inch thick, I use my router to round off the sides. This gives them a starting to melt look. I stopped making them about 30 years ago, and started again 4 years ago. I resumed my odd ball style, and tried a few out of exotic hardwoods such as zebra wood canary wood and paduk. I have developed my own playing style of finger picking that does not require a pick. Mostly I play while watching TV, and rely on muscle memory to find the proper frets. Since I am running out of wall space and corners, I have been trying to sell some. Soon, I will be putting some on EBay and Etsy.

Latest Activity


Latest Group Discussions


Latest Audio


Latest Videos

merry melodies 2

merry melodies 2

@james kaulback
5 years ago - Comments: 2
merry melodies

merry melodies

@james kaulback
5 years ago - Comments: 0

Latest Photos

100_8015 (2).JPG
100_8004 (2).JPG

Latest Forum Discussions


No Posts!


George Beckwith
04/19/14 09:53:04AM @george-beckwith:

Yes, cost depends on what kind of wood you choose. 5 or 10 more than the list price. I have some customer that use 5 and 6 inch wood. I also cut wood for mandolin, guitar and strummers. All are different sizes length and width. Just email me, my email is listed with the wood ad.

Karen Keane
06/14/13 08:07:34AM @karen-keane:
Hello and welcome to the site. This is a great place to share ideas and listen to music. I hope you enjoy!
John Keane
06/12/13 08:02:10PM @john-keane:

Howdy and welcome to the FOTMD crew!

Ben Barr Jr
06/06/13 06:20:54AM @benjamin-w-barr-jr:

Hi James, and welcome (back or once again?) to the wonderful world of the Friends of the Mountain Dulcimer. Thus, I am sure you already know what a great site this is and all of the many great people here.


Jim Fawcett
06/06/13 04:34:48AM @jim-fawcett:

Hey James, welcome aboard. Glad ya found us.