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Dulcitars (2009)

My local woodworking club ( recently hosted a class taught by William Wells ( on making dulcitars much like Bob McNally's "Strumsticks" (   A dulcitar is a 3-string diatonically fretted dulcimer-like instrument which is designed to be easy to play even by novices to stringed instruments.  More details on dulcitars and various commercial dulcitars can be found here.

I just completed my first two which I'll be giving away as Christmas gifts to my daughters. Here are a few pics:




Neck and body are walnut, fingerboard is rosewood, soundboard is spruce, and the back and headstock inlays are maple. The finish is Tru-Oil. Hardware (modified mandolin stuff) is from Stu-Mac. 

These things are easy, fun, and cheap to build and will make great gifts. I especially enjoyed learning to make the inlay in the headstock.

NOTE:  William Wells taught me how to build these instruments, and he has been kind enough to scan his hand-drawn plans and build instructions and offered to make them available for free here.  Click on THIS LINK for a 6.4 Mb zip file with his scanned instructions and plans.  Make a few of these things and let me know how they turn out.

Copyright 2009 Chris Billman