David Beede's 
"Eedy Beede" octave dulcimers...
My "classic model"  has a poplar body, all oval sound holes and 3 string mahogany "standard fretted" fingerboard [includes 6 1/2 fret] and sells for $345. Additional features can be seen in the pricing info below. Approximately 24" long, 5" wide and 2" deep, they have 1.25" wide fingerboards, 16.5" strings lengths, tuned in DAD an octave above full sized dulcimers. They can also be tuned as low as AEA with satisfactory results.
This is my first octave dulcimer I made in the '70s out of left overs from a full sized instrument. It had zither pegs and a longer string length so was tuned AEA.

LTDnumberOne70s.jpg (22056 bytes)Whenever I'd play it folks would ask about it...

kidplayLTD.jpg (12908 bytes) My wife Julie Johnson has taught  kindergarten for 15 years so there have been many opportunities to test these with little hands. kidplayLTD2.jpg (238538 bytes)

P1010121.jpg (24422 bytes)

Though child inspired these are very capable instruments that hold their own in a variety of musical settings. Whether you're showing dulcimer fundamentals to little fingers, or floating a high harmony into a dulcimer jam or adding authoritative chop chords in a mixed jam session, these instruments really shine.
I had the great pleasure of participating in a jam at the Hudson Valley folk festival in Beacon NY. Though hard to see here, I'm playing an octave dulci along with two guitars, a banjo, and a djembe African drum. Most mountain dulcimers would be functionally silent in this kind of group. 

After months of research and experimentation - 27 prototypes - and hours of playing and listening this design finally emerged.

Other sound hole designs are available.



Close-up of turquoise "loop" perfling.

Here's my "Floridian" model with Atlantic white sided dolphins for sound holes.

The "floating fingerboard" allows a wider surface of soundboard to be activated - and as a side benefit you can use it to hold TAB while you're learning a tune.

Though rather tradition looking on the outside - the inside reveals some pretty advanced features to insure good sound and playability.

A honeycomb pattern of holes lightens the floating fingerboard, while maintaining its rigidity. The lighter the fingerboard the less effort is required for the top to move, which means more sound.

A "V" brace helps transfer vibration from fingerboard to top.



     You think

      someone loves her EDBD...??

You want to hear one? 
My friend Aaron O'Rourke did me the favor of recording a few pieces that you can download as MP3s. 

These are relaxed "first take" recordings in my living room. I think you'll liken 'em!

aaronEDBD1.jpg (18042 bytes)Check out Aaron's YouTube

Angeline the Baker   MP3  1.7 MB
Bonapart's Retreat   MP3   1.5 MB
Aaron's original #1  MP3   920 K
Aaron's a little "Just foolin' around" - a short jazzy improv. MP3 645 K

For some care, feeding and playing info and tips go HERE and follow the linkS. 

You can also watch the PBS TV spot where I play "The Water is Wide" on one.  HERE  

Or see it here on YouTube the playing section.
And here is the You Tube building section.


Octave dulcimer "Floridian" model by David Beede from david beede on Vimeo.


15 min octave dulcimer crash course! from david beede on Vimeo.

My buddy Papa Joe Kretschmer plays a Prine tune. He's a master of minimalism

New instruction video for Michael Peter Smith's song "Spoon River"

Sorry about being a little out of tune... couldn't bring myself to shoot it all over again. Listen gently...  :~)

    Pricing* details:

The base or "classic" model is made of poplar and has a 3 string mahogany fingerboard, oval sound holes, 13 frets and costs $345.
The feature list below allows for some alternative configurations. 
Feature costs are added to the base price of $345: 

Extra frets - $10 each 

Heart sound holes - add $20

Sun & Moon sound holes - $39

Dolphins - $49

Turquoise inlaid perfling with "loop" - $100

Gold tuners - $30

Strap Pins chrome - $6 each  gold - $7 each
Cases now available!!
Durable padded fabric case with two zippered pockets and shoulder strap - $29 

dusty burgundy
olive green

Quick "snap" release strap - black nylon  $18
Adjustable fabric strap - tan or black - $12

Domestic shipping is via USPS or UPS [There is an extra $5 if ordered without a case due to additional packing necessary.]

For more info. or to place an order contact me. PDF of the price list can be downloaded HERE.

Back to David Beede's Home Page