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A Labor of Love

The Nature Coast Dulcimer Works is not only the portal for fine, handcrafted Appalachian dulcimers — it is also a celebration of the art of creation. I have never taken for granted the absolute beauty of hardwood as it is shaped and sanded into a lovely and functional work of art. Consequently, this site will not be the typical “Buy my Dulcimers” website.  After all, there are many dulcimer factories and individuals who build some excellent instruments. What I prefer is sharing the joys (and sometimes frustrations) of woodworking and dulcimer building, allowing visitors to “look over my shoulder” as the process unfolds. This desire to share is perhaps a reflection of my career as a teacher and perpetual student. Therefore, this website will be unusual by nature.

I prefer to build my dulcimers one at a time, with design input from the customer. Consequently, no two  instruments I have created thus far are exactly alike. They do, however, reflect the traditional style and construction techniques of the mountainous region from whence I came.

Let’s custom-design your dulcimer today!

Tim Stuart

Owner/Craftsman

Construction

Profile

We have out-of-town family visiting for a few days, but I still found a little time to slip into the shop to cut out the profile. I’m beginning to see this dude!

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Hunting a Gator

With the functional part of the peghead completed, it’s time to find the gator hiding in this block of wood. This part of the process is truly magic to me and I do not rush it. Besides, walnut is not the medium for whittlin’ out a head — I have to use power tools. One …

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And We’re Off!

I like to start with the peghead first. The width of the peghead will determine the width of the fretboard. Since this will be a carved peghead, I need to add extra wood to make sure I have enough to work with. However, the tuning peg box is still the same basic shape that I …

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A Florida-Flavored Number 50

Becky, a fellow member of the Naturecoast Dulcimer Players, has ordered a new dulcimer — one with a gator head carving in the tuning scroll. I am particularly excited about this build: this year marks the 45th year since I learned the craft, it will be the 50th dulcimer I have constructed, and Becky has …

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