Jump to content


Photo

My Current Project

Anglo Saxon Lyre

14 replies to this topic

#1 Carbon

Carbon

    Contriberator

  • Moderators
  • 1,893 posts
  • Location:Milwaukee, WI
  • State:Wisconsin
  • Country:United States

Posted 03 September 2009 - 03:37 PM

Thought Iíd share what Iíve been working on as of late. I've been building PVC musical instruments for a while, and have recently expanded out to woodworking. (As a sidenote, PVC instrument building is indirectly why I got into Nerf building....I had most of the parts already).

This is a seven string Anglo Saxon lyre I just finished, tuned in E flat diatonic. The body frame is maple, the soundboard is birch, and the saddle and tailpiece are mahogany. The bridge is poplar. Traditional bridges are carved, but I decided to take the quicker route, and made it out of dowels. The finish is linseed oil.
Posted Image

A closeup of the tailpiece, tied on with artificial sinew. The strings are a leftover set from an oud. I wonít use a wound low string again, as it doesnít ring very well when itís at a tension high enough to keep the unwound strings from being flabby. Unwound classical guitar strings have worked quite well.
Posted Image

What I find interesting about these instruments is that they typically werenít plucked like a harp, but strummed. The left hand mutes the strings that shouldnít sound, like an autoharp. Also surprising is that these lyres get an awful lot of sound out of a soundbox that's only .75" deep, not to mention no soundholes.
  • 0
Hello. I am Indigo of the Rainbow Clan. You Nerfed my father. Prepare to die.

#2 cheesypiza001

cheesypiza001

    Member

  • Members
  • 752 posts
  • Location:Connecticut

Posted 03 September 2009 - 03:44 PM

Cool. Do you have any pictures of your PVC instruments?
  • 0

#3 Carbon

Carbon

    Contriberator

  • Moderators
  • 1,893 posts
  • Location:Milwaukee, WI
  • State:Wisconsin
  • Country:United States

Posted 03 September 2009 - 03:59 PM

Cool. Do you have any pictures of your PVC instruments?


Never bothered, as I mostly make flutes and pennywhistles...there's nothing really fancy about them. However, it's always fun to pull one out at a gig, and have people say, "what...is that?" Surprisingly good sound, and it's pretty obvious that they come from the plumbing aisle.
  • 0
Hello. I am Indigo of the Rainbow Clan. You Nerfed my father. Prepare to die.

#4 Horus

Horus

    Member

  • Members
  • 134 posts
  • Location:Washington, D.C.

Posted 03 September 2009 - 04:49 PM

Why E Flat Diatonic? That seems like a rather odd key for such an instrument.

Edited by Horus, 03 September 2009 - 04:50 PM.

  • 0
That is all.

#5 Carbon

Carbon

    Contriberator

  • Moderators
  • 1,893 posts
  • Location:Milwaukee, WI
  • State:Wisconsin
  • Country:United States

Posted 03 September 2009 - 06:29 PM

Yeah, I wouldn't necessarily choose Eb either. The key was dictated by the low string, and how much I could tighten it. As it is, I'm surprised it hasn't snapped...it's sort of "thunky" right now. I suppose I could have made the bass string be a fourth below or something, but that would have just confused the recipient of the lyre.

I'll probably replace the low string with an unwound guitar string, and then tune it up to G. I have a six string lyre in G (that uses two each of G, B and E strings) that works quite well.

Edited by Carbon, 03 September 2009 - 06:30 PM.

  • 0
Hello. I am Indigo of the Rainbow Clan. You Nerfed my father. Prepare to die.

#6 Ambience 327

Ambience 327

    Member

  • Members
  • 561 posts
  • Location:Fort Wayne, IN
  • State:Indiana
  • Country:United States

Posted 04 September 2009 - 10:08 AM

What a lovely project, very nicely done. Way to bring some culture to the Haven. :D


I mostly make flutes and pennywhistles...


You make pennywhistles from PVC? That sounds simply awesome. You're making me want to try it.

I went and Googled it and found a few sets of instructions, but if you have any particularly well-written instructions you think I should see, I'd love to see them.
  • 0
Foam in the Fort IV
The fourth exciting Nerf War in Fort Wayne, IN.

#7 Carbon

Carbon

    Contriberator

  • Moderators
  • 1,893 posts
  • Location:Milwaukee, WI
  • State:Wisconsin
  • Country:United States

Posted 04 September 2009 - 11:02 AM

I went and Googled it and found a few sets of instructions, but if you have any particularly well-written instructions you think I should see, I'd love to see them.


It'd probably be more accurate to say I've built transverse flutes, and attempted pennywhistles...the whistles are nothing I'd play at a gig, anyway. I've tried a few low D whistles (both PVC and copper), and the result is OK, but breathier than I'd like...partly because I've been limited to making curved windways. Building a tight, focused windway is a challenge. Haven't tried high whistles at all, not when my $12 Oak whistle serves my needs perfectly.

Anyway, I'm getting a drill press this weekend (!!!), so it's time to revisit flute/whistle plans. I'll let you know if I come up with anything.

Edited by Carbon, 04 September 2009 - 11:04 AM.

  • 0
Hello. I am Indigo of the Rainbow Clan. You Nerfed my father. Prepare to die.

#8 Horus

Horus

    Member

  • Members
  • 134 posts
  • Location:Washington, D.C.

Posted 05 September 2009 - 12:35 PM

Yeah, I wouldn't necessarily choose Eb either. The key was dictated by the low string, and how much I could tighten it. As it is, I'm surprised it hasn't snapped...it's sort of "thunky" right now. I suppose I could have made the bass string be a fourth below or something, but that would have just confused the recipient of the lyre.

I'll probably replace the low string with an unwound guitar string, and then tune it up to G. I have a six string lyre in G (that uses two each of G, B and E strings) that works quite well.

If anything, I would go for a standard tuning separation than a diatonic. Or an open chord, such as a G.
  • 0
That is all.

#9 Carbon

Carbon

    Contriberator

  • Moderators
  • 1,893 posts
  • Location:Milwaukee, WI
  • State:Wisconsin
  • Country:United States

Posted 05 September 2009 - 01:49 PM

Yeah, I wouldn't necessarily choose Eb either. The key was dictated by the low string, and how much I could tighten it. As it is, I'm surprised it hasn't snapped...it's sort of "thunky" right now. I suppose I could have made the bass string be a fourth below or something, but that would have just confused the recipient of the lyre.

I'll probably replace the low string with an unwound guitar string, and then tune it up to G. I have a six string lyre in G (that uses two each of G, B and E strings) that works quite well.

If anything, I would go for a standard tuning separation than a diatonic. Or an open chord, such as a G.

I'm using the definition where diatonic=major scale. You can call a (non chromatic) harmonica diatonic, as well.
  • 0
Hello. I am Indigo of the Rainbow Clan. You Nerfed my father. Prepare to die.

#10 Horus

Horus

    Member

  • Members
  • 134 posts
  • Location:Washington, D.C.

Posted 05 September 2009 - 03:56 PM

Yeah, I wouldn't necessarily choose Eb either. The key was dictated by the low string, and how much I could tighten it. As it is, I'm surprised it hasn't snapped...it's sort of "thunky" right now. I suppose I could have made the bass string be a fourth below or something, but that would have just confused the recipient of the lyre.

I'll probably replace the low string with an unwound guitar string, and then tune it up to G. I have a six string lyre in G (that uses two each of G, B and E strings) that works quite well.

If anything, I would go for a standard tuning separation than a diatonic. Or an open chord, such as a G.

I'm using the definition where diatonic=major scale. You can call a (non chromatic) harmonica diatonic, as well.

I was referring to each string being a fifth away from the one before. Like a guitar.
  • 0
That is all.

#11 Carbon

Carbon

    Contriberator

  • Moderators
  • 1,893 posts
  • Location:Milwaukee, WI
  • State:Wisconsin
  • Country:United States

Posted 05 September 2009 - 06:17 PM

Tuning to intervals of fourths or fifths would be interesting, but make it harder to play single note melodies, or play chords.
  • 0
Hello. I am Indigo of the Rainbow Clan. You Nerfed my father. Prepare to die.

#12 Horus

Horus

    Member

  • Members
  • 134 posts
  • Location:Washington, D.C.

Posted 05 September 2009 - 07:42 PM

Tuning to intervals of fourths or fifths would be interesting, but make it harder to play single note melodies, or play chords.

I suppose. Good talk.
  • 0
That is all.

#13 NerfMonkey

NerfMonkey

    Member

  • Members
  • 1,821 posts
  • Location:Woodbridge, VA
  • State:Virginia
  • Country:United States

Posted 06 September 2009 - 12:54 PM

I can sort of see where the constellation Lyra gets its name; it still looks more like a necktie than a lyre to me though. Beautiful work.
  • 0
SexD Warves

#14 Zorns Lemma

Zorns Lemma

    Sir Scrt

  • Moderators
  • 1,277 posts
  • Location:Dulles International Airport
  • State:Virginia
  • Country:United States

Posted 16 September 2009 - 01:10 PM

I'm using the definition where diatonic=major scale. You can call a (non chromatic) harmonica diatonic, as well.


Standard diatonic or something more fitting to the context like Eb dorian.
  • 0
"In short, the same knowledge that underlies the ability to produce correct judgement is also the knowledge that underlies the ability to recognize correct judgement. To lack the former is to be deficient in the latter."
Kruger and Dunning (1999)

#15 Carbon

Carbon

    Contriberator

  • Moderators
  • 1,893 posts
  • Location:Milwaukee, WI
  • State:Wisconsin
  • Country:United States

Posted 16 September 2009 - 01:31 PM

I'm using the definition where diatonic=major scale. You can call a (non chromatic) harmonica diatonic, as well.


Standard diatonic or something more fitting to the context like Eb dorian.

Standard diatonic. Hadn't thought about trying modal tuning, but that would be fun to play around with. Would've just confused the recipient of this lyre, though.
  • 0
Hello. I am Indigo of the Rainbow Clan. You Nerfed my father. Prepare to die.


0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users