First time build
(Have pics of my build but can't see how/where to upload)
Half way through my first dulcimer, and found this forum whilst researching sound holes. Odd it's taken this long - I play instruments and make things with wood (furniture).
Started when a good friend showed me the dulcimer he made years ago - I was fascinated, mainly by the sound and the immediate playability. So I borrowed his mold, some jigs, many clamps and his steam bending iron.
Briefly, scale length 27"; back and sides flamed sycamore (very like maple, a little less hard/bright); quartered spruce top, ebony board, cherry bits (neck, head, tail).
I am making this for interest and to play, so I have made some mods along the way. Apologies to traditionalists but this departs from the traditional design in some respects. Main changes are a floating neck fixed near headstock and at around the octave. Neck is stiffened with graphite rod. The neck stops at 2 octaves and it will have a floating bridge (bone saddle, compensated a little).
Mainly made this from materials I had - tuners from a guitar I had swapped out, Corian nut from some scrap, the woods from my stock etc. The only buys were the spruce tonewood, fretwire, graphite and strings.
I suspect it's going to sound quite bright / toppy - there could be acoustic problems, I really don't know til It's done and tuned up. It's been very enjoyable to build anyway and I hope it will end up looking good. Sounding good too? I'll have to and and see.