C. B. Gifty three string fretless kits.

They make the Pure and Simple kit, and the Big Easy kit. Both are 3 string fretless and both mount the neck to the top of the box on the outside. It uses two bolts. This is a very simple design for sure. But, what are we giving up with this design compared to runner by the neck through the box? 

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  • Hi, those links are a good way to explain what we are talking about here Order99.

    This dulcimer sits above my desk, I don't know why I did not think of showing it earlier. It shows what you describe in your post above.
    Cheers Taff

  •   Found a Youtube Link that shows a design nearly exactly as I described:


    And the results are pretty darn loud for such a tiny box:

  • Hi, I have not seen the kits of which you speak but I reckon either one has a design that can affect tone and volume. On top or under the lid depends on a number of things. But when starting out with either design you are going to be happy to make music.

    I have mentioned this many times, the top makes the best sound if its vibrating qualities are not restricted.

    If the neck is attached to the top, inside or out, it is restricted from doing its job effectively. You will get sound, but you could get better.

    Also, the air in the box contributes to sound, volume and tone, so depending on the size of the box, filling the box with timber with a "through" neck can also affect the end result.

    I have used both methods but the one I prefer is to attach the neck to the box using a heal as used on traditional guitar builds. Side-by-side comparisons will demonstrate this well.

    If when I have built using the two methods you mention I build so that the neck does not touch the top.

    But they all work.

  • Well, the 'stick-on-top' method gives up a little bit of resonance, so the 'neck-thru' is a lot more forgiving on smaller boxes. There are ways to minimize the resonance loss though:

    1) Just like the Dulcimer it emulates, the less of the neck that touches the box the better...as long as you still maintain strength of neck. Washers work, as do small wooden shims. Scalloping the neck to only touch in three or four places is both beneficial to the sound and artistic-and you could use washers, shims or scallops on the underside of the soundboard to match the upper attachments if you want too...

    2) A bridge that overlaps the neck to touch both neck and soundboard helps regain resonance as well. C.B. Gitty makes a 'Flying Bridge' on his website, or you can carve and tune your own...

    3) Use a metal body for the sound box instead-those candy boxes and cookie tins have resonance to spare!

    Combine all three and-well, who needs a pickup?

  • Build one & see?

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