Doug Berch

Dulcimer Maker And Musician

cropped Dulcimer Builders and Makers 1 23

Month: July 2012 Page 1 of 2

It Must Be An Interesting Life Being A Black Walnut Tree

A black walnut tree and it's friend Fernando.

I’m taking a break from hand planing several pieces of black walnut destined to be parts of dulcimers and some other instruments.

The pieces I’m planing comes from two 3/4″ thick quartersawn boards sequentially cut from the same tree. The boards look similar except one has some dark mineral streaks (I love dark mineral streaks in walnut!) and part of a knot near one end.

After sawing the boards into pieces of identical dimensions I noticed the pieces sawn from the board with mineral streaks weighed considerably more than the other. I didn’t put them on a scale but the difference in weight was remarkable.

When I started planing the pieces another dramatic difference  became noticeable; pieces from one board were much easier to plane than the pieces that came from the other.

The pieces from the lighter weight board were easy to plane and I quickly produced a beautiful surface. The heavier pieces proved very difficult to plane and I was getting tear-out regardless of which direction I came from. I had to switch to a high-angle smoothing plane and use a lot of muscle to get a good surface on those pieces.

I don’t expect complete consistency from boards coming from the same tree but I have never had two boards sequentially cut from the same tree be so different.

Every tree tells a story.

 

Artist’s Interpretation Of A (Hammered) Dulcimer, From An Old Sketch

Artist's Interpretation Of A (Hammered) Dulcimer, From An Old Sketch

 

Artist’s Interpretation Of A (Hammered) Dulcimer, From An Old Sketch

Here’s The Dulcimer

…plucked right off the piano’s family tree

The artist came close to getting it right, aside from the missing bridges and dangerous looking hammers!

 

Music I’d Like To Hear #37

Music I'd Like To Hear #37

 

Music I’d Like To Hear #37

 

Claudia Cardinale With A Dulcimer?

The other day while bouncing around in cyberspace I stumbled across what was said to be a photograph of Italian Tunisian actress Claudia Cardinale.

What caught my eye was that she is holding a dulcimer!

Claudia Cardinale With A Dulcimer?

I was curious if this was a still from a film and I searched for “Claudia Cardinale” and “dulcimer” which did not bring up anything about Claudia Cardinale and a dulcimer.

The search did however bring up references to the lovely and talented Claudia Schmidt.

Claudia Schmidt playing dulcimer

On another note; from the way Claudia Cardinale is playing the dulcimer it is clear her playing was strongly influenced by the also lovely and talented Butch Ross.

Butch Ross - one cool dude!

 

 

Music I’d Like To Hear #36

Music I'd Like To Hear #36

 

Music I’d Like To Hear #36

Page 1 of 2

Doug Berch & Dulcimer Makers