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Stick Dulcimer Gig Bag/Carrying Case: Custom-Designed, Hand Made, Water-resistant

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Carry your stick dulcimer in style while protecting against the elements and everyday dings.

This carrying case/gig bag accommodates instruments up to 30 inches long and 5 inches wide (at the sound box). The vinyl fabric sheds water, and it's sturdy enough to ward off small injuries. The flap closes securely with hook-and-loop fasteners. A small pocket for picks is included beneath the flap. The bag carries comfortably with a hemp cord.

Due to differences in fabric availability, the color may vary slightly from that pictured.


5 out of 5 stars

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I gladly accept returns and exchanges
Contact me within: 14 days of delivery
Ship items back within: 30 days of delivery
I don't accept cancellations
But please contact me if you have any problems with your order.
The following items can't be returned or exchanged
Because of the nature of these items, unless they arrive damaged or defective, I can't accept returns for:
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Buyers are responsible for return shipping costs. If the item is not returned in its original condition, the buyer is responsible for any loss in value.


The dulcimer is a 3 (or 4) string instrument, with frets arranged for a major (do-re-mi...) scale. Modern dulcimers are usually tuned to open D or G, so that a simple chord is available at every fret.
The Two Basic Dulcimer Types

(1) Traditional Appalachian Mountain dulcimer: a sound box, often in a teardrop or hour-glass shape, topped with a fret board. It's played horizontally on a table or the player's lap.

(2) Stick Dulcimer: guitar-like shape, i.e., fret board on a neck that opens into a small sound box. Smaller and lighter than a mountain dulcimer, it's held like a guitar for playing.

Another instrument, called a Hammered Dulcimer, is a very distant cousin. It has one string for each note, and it's played by striking the strings with small hammers. It's a historical accident that they're both called dulcimers.
A dulcimer has fewer strings than a guitar or ukulele. More importantly it has fewer frets--basically only the white keys of a piano. As a result, the dulcimer is much easier than other string instruments to play.
Four-string dulcimers usually have just three string courses, i.e., two of the strings are tuned identically and run next to each other.
Since it's a folk instrument, there are no rules about playing a dulcimer. Two basic styles, however, are common.

(1) Traditional Note-and-Drone play. In this style, a melody is played on the highest string while the other two strings create a droning accompaniment. Early mountain dulcimers often were not even fretted under the drone strings. Most players start out with this style, and many never move away from it.

(2) Chordal play. In this style, chords are formed much like those on a guitar or ukulele. Chord charts for stick dulcimers are readily available.

Of course many variants are common--that's part of the fun!
Tonewoods are always controversial among players and builders! Preferences are subjective and differences are subtle, but here are my observations based on over 150 instruments built:

Cherry - rich, mellow
Maple - bright, clear
Padauk - bright, lively
Walnut - rounded, mellow

Aspen - rich, rounded
Cedar - crisp, lively

The outside woods, have most influence on the sound in about this order: Top, Sides, Back.
The wood piece is called the saddle, perhaps because the strings ride on it. Its placement is critical: too low and the instrument will be flat, too high and it will be sharp.

Because the strings are different thicknesses, they need to be at slightly different distances from the nut.

The saddle is slanted so that the thinnest string can be slightly closer to the nut.

Adjusting the saddle is the last step in building a stick dulcimer.
The strings are attached to small brass pins set at an angle in drilled holes at the instrument's tail. To change a string, just
1. Cut the string (or loosen it at the tuning peg).
2. Pull out the pin with a pliers: regular slip-joint pliers are fine,
(Remember that the pins are angled slightly downward.)
3. Place the pin through the new string's loop.
4. Tap the pin into place.
5. Attach the string's free end to the tuning peg and tighten.

Note that the saddle is spot-glued to the instrument top, so it shouldn't fall off. If you want to re-adjust the intonation, just tap the saddle and it will pop free.

If you need help choosing new strings, please contact me.

Stick Dulcimer Gig Bag/Carrying Case: Custom-Designed, Hand Made, Water-resistant

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From Rensselaer Falls, New York
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