Is "The Dulcimer Factory" still in business?

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Postby Zira » Wed Feb 25, 2009 10:18 pm

They've been out of business for a while.
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Postby pristine2 » Wed Feb 25, 2009 10:24 pm

I'm guessing they went out of business a few years back.

There's still a listing here for John & Shirley Naylor here with a phone number:

www.owlmntnmusic.com/dulcimerbuilders.htm

Apparently the whole "factory" idea didn't really fly. The feedback I've seen on instruments bearing the "Dulcimer Factory" label speaks to very uneven quality. They may have taken the assembly line paradigm a bit too far.

Still, I've read much nicer things about some of the earlier Naylor instruments.

Best,
Richard
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Postby kwl » Thu Feb 26, 2009 12:37 am

I think that the earlier instruments John and Shirley built were much nicer than the later instruments produced in the Dulcimer Factory. I think one of the problems with the factory was maintaining a steady work force. They did stop building a number of years ago. I don't recall how many instruments were produced, but it is quite a few. You often see them on eBay.
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Postby dingoII » Thu Feb 26, 2009 10:22 am

I just bought a little Saprono, and love it, it has good tone and workmanship, and really sweet sound and easy to play also. It came out of a music store, so taking that it is new.
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Postby CD » Thu Feb 26, 2009 9:53 pm

It is nice to hear a good ending.

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Postby pristine2 » Fri Feb 27, 2009 8:04 am

Lisa -S.H. wrote:
Lisa -S.H. wrote:
YAY! it sounds absolutely wonderful!! Lovely tone and good volume. I was so pleased and surprised!
My student, who had this dusty unloved dulcimer given to her for free is going to just LOVE it!!! It's perfect for her in every way. The action was nice too- all very easy to play. I'm SO happy for her, she really got lucky. :D :D :D



That's great news!

Did the dulcimer have a date on the label, by any chance?
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Postby Martin » Fri Feb 27, 2009 8:10 am

My brother had a DF buld-it-yourself HD kit, and due to poor design (lack of enough braces), it warped pretty bad. I've heard mixed reviews of their MD's.
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Postby dingoII » Fri Feb 27, 2009 10:33 am

I am glad you like it. I just love mine, tuned it CGC. I was really impressed, and would not be afraid to buy another one. Mine isn't plywood it is spruce and blackwalnut. Very well made.
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Postby Va Dulcimer » Sat Feb 28, 2009 7:00 pm

Several years ago, I was playing my dulcimer at a museum grand opening here in Roanoke, VA. (The O. Winston Link Museum for any of you that are fans of photography and trains!)

In any case, as I was playing a gentleman came up and started listening. After I finished playing that tune, we talked for a bit. he said that he had just moved to the Roanoke area from Fredericksburg TX and that he used to build dulcimers for sale. My brain is kinda foggy (too many Thanks-A-Lot Girl Scout cookies today!), but I think that I remember him saying that his name was Naylor. He was interested in trying to get together sometime in the future to play, but somehow, that never worked out.
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Postby pristine2 » Sun Mar 01, 2009 7:39 pm

No shortage of Dulcimer Factory instruments on eBay ... at least one or two a month, I'd say.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?Vi ... 0352024770

At some point there must have been some serious volume from that business.

It would be nice for people to know a way to determine which specimens are more likely to be worthwhile.
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Postby harpmaker » Sun Mar 01, 2009 8:18 pm

The Dulcimer Factory put out a wide range of instruments, both factory made and kits. They used Birch ply a lot, as evident in the Ebay one that Richard just linked to (That's a ply top, not Maple)

The quality of the ones made in the shop were for the most part fairly good, although I did see some in the late 90s which although I was told were factory made, appeared to more like kits.
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Postby pristine2 » Sun Mar 01, 2009 8:32 pm

Lisa -S.H. wrote:i think it's rather pretty for a mass produced plywood instrument. Action is fine and it sounds nice! :D My Student was very lucky indeed to have this given to her from a co-worker's closet!


Thanks for the photos! I'm guessing for now that the "89" is the year of manufacture.

I guess what one really should do to get the full story on these ubiquitous instruments is to track down the owners. I will put it on my research list ...

Best,
Richard
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