Burled Walnut Dulcimer

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Project by MattMize posted 02-28-2013 02:37 PM 1900 views 2 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This dulcimer was started by my grand-dad back in the 1980’s. While building it he accidentally broke the top of the tail off. He made a replacement tail but never got around to putting it in or putting the sides in or doing any further work on it. He just hung it up and it stayed in that same spot until he died nearly a decade ago. My dad and I were working on the other two I posted earlier when we came across this one with the new tail hanging with it. I brought it home and took the broken tail off, put the new tail on, made some sides (couldn’t find anything that matched close enough to the burled pattern so I made them out of some straight grained walnut. It bends easier and more uniformly anyways.) and made the bridge and nut, and finished it. The top and back are almost exactly the same, as they’re both bookmatched and from the same piece of wood.

10 comments so far

View Campzeke's profile


66 posts in 2136 days

#1 posted 02-28-2013 02:58 PM

Your grand-dad was an awesome dulcimer builder and quite a character to boot. I happen to own some of his fine work. I hope you continue to build on Bob’s tradition of building some of the finest Mountain Dulcimers available. It appears you are well on your way.

-- Campzeke, Tampa, FL

View ghost5's profile


302 posts in 2135 days

#2 posted 02-28-2013 03:01 PM

Another great piece. He must have been an amazing artist. Thanks for taking up his tools I would hate to see his legacy lost.

-- Tommy,

View helluvawreck's profile


32087 posts in 3070 days

#3 posted 02-28-2013 03:10 PM

This is a beautiful musical instrument.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View ldl's profile


1135 posts in 2568 days

#4 posted 02-28-2013 05:10 PM

I love to listen to music on the dulcimer. Love that mountain style music.

Great looking dulcimer.

-- Dewayne in Bainbridge, Ga. - - No one can make you mad. Only you decide when you get mad - -

View blackcherry's profile


3338 posts in 4026 days

#5 posted 02-28-2013 05:39 PM

Brings tears to my eyes so beautiful, your a credit to your heritage, well done…BC

View Surfside's profile


3389 posts in 2377 days

#6 posted 02-28-2013 10:02 PM

That is a professional work! I love the shape, design and its finish! Beautifully done!

-- "someone has to be wounded for others to be saved, someone has to sacrifice for others to feel happiness, someone has to die so others could live"

View a1Jim's profile


117340 posts in 3780 days

#7 posted 02-28-2013 10:06 PM

This is gorgeous Matt great job.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View solardave's profile


75 posts in 2247 days

#8 posted 02-28-2013 11:43 PM


View justholler's profile


62 posts in 2526 days

#9 posted 03-01-2013 02:23 AM

Great story and a beautiful piece

-- Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most..... Twain

View MattMize's profile


32 posts in 2275 days

#10 posted 03-01-2013 03:05 AM

Thanks for the feedback, guys! It’s really encouraging getting complimented by other woodworkers!

Campzeke – It’s great to hear that from someone who owns some of the fine instruments that he built! I’m definitely planning on building as many of them as I can in my spare time away from work. I’m hoping that at some point I’ll be able to make them as nearly perfect as he could!

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