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FredCarlson

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Reply with quote  #1 
Hey folks!

I'm in the final throes of labor here birthing "The Humanitar".  This will be a 40-string Harp-Sympitar:      6 main baritone nylon strings; 11 bass-side sympathetics on a jiwari (buzzy) bridge that divides the strings so each gives two notes, one an octave above the other; 11 treble-side harp strings set up kind of like a Chinese Gu Zheng or Japanese Koto, with bridge dividing the strings to give each string a second note a fifth above; also one of the legs is a bowed/plucked psaltery with 12 strings.  Main strings are nylon, symp/harps are steel, treble harps are Gu Zheng strings, psaltery harp strings are steel.

I'm cramming to get this thing done for an exhibit that opens Feb 1st, part of the "Santa Cruz County Art of Guitar Exhibit and Festival" (see my posting under "Events" for more on that).  The exhibit features 18 Santa Cruz (CA) luthiers, and Alex de Grassi will be featured in a concert on March 1st, giving the debut performance of The Humanitar.

I'll try to get around to posting more about The Humanitar at some point; right now I have to get the thing painted....pink, among other colors!  With polka dot boxer shorts!

It's got fairly typical guitar construction for the top; backs/sides/ of body, arms and legs are all paper mache.  It will be a free-standing sculpture, playable in a standing position without having to hold it up; also the legs can be removed, allowing it to be held/played in the lap/on the knee, like a more normal guitar. 
here's a sneak preview:

humanitar full sketch.jpg This was the first full (to scale) sketch.  Things have changed a bit since then....not much.


new legs.jpg Here I'm checking out the leg castings; back not attached yet; old German spruce top; perimeter frame from maple plywood.  Neck is Englemann Spruce.

Humanitar gets legs back view 2.jpg 
Here's the basic mock-up with legs; back/shell is glued on (lots of epoxy!!), legs bolt onto frame

humanitar project finally getting legslower res.jpg  
Here's the guy with his hat on, waiting leg attachment.

I'm about to go and sand the fill material I spread on the paper mache, after which the painting begins.

I'll keep you posted!

You can find out more about the event it will be debuted at here:

https://www.facebook.com/santacruzcountyartofguitar

And for you non-believers....yes, it really will work!!

Fred


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Michael

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That is very cool and creative.  I hate deadlines.  I hope you are keeping the stress level low.  Next year I hope you will have completed a Guy-o-lin!  (Yes I have your book)

My 21 string bird theme Harp Guitar was ready 1 week before HG11.  Just in time.  I may build something smaller or skip a year this time.

Thanks for sharing this with us Fred.

Michael


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FredCarlson

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Yeah, lots of stress;  I haven't worked to a fixed deadline in a long time.
I got the thing mounted in the gallery last friday, the day before the opening reception, which was last night.
I had never had time to assemble the whole thing in my shop, so the first time I had it all together was the day before the opening.  I did get to play it a little there at the Gallery, and it's pretty amazing.

I have a lot of pictures of the process, but for now, here are a few of it in place in the gallery, just after we mounted it.
The standing leg is bolted to a 2x4 inside the white base platform.  The tennis shoe covers the access hole for bolting.  It's an Adidas...I got a $2,000,000.00 product placement contract, of course....[biggrin].  There is another bolt that secures the green-checked arch at the peghead end; it's pretty solid, enough so it can be played by standing behind it on the platform.

Blitzer gallery 1 lower rez.jpg 

blitzer gallery 2 lower rez.jpg 

blitzer gallery 3 lower rez.jpg 
blitzer gallery 4 lower rez.jpg 
blitzer gallery 5 lower rez.jpg 


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BMS

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Reply with quote  #4 
Oh dear, of dear, of dear...

BenoƮt
nate

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Reply with quote  #5 

Fred:

most of my pics have come from facebook.
I only posted one so I didn't steal your thunder.
Fantastic job!!!  He came out amazing!
I really hope someone youtubes Alex's performance on March 1st.

Did you use Violin fine tuners for all those strings?
Details please....


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FredCarlson

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Ben's comment ("oh dear....") is right on; what have I gotten myself into?

It's very big fun, I think, and was as you might imagine, VERY big work!

Nate:  fine tuners (Uni Midget violin string adjusters) on all harp strings except the ones on the leg-harp.  That is set up to be bow-able like a bowed psaltery....the fine tuners wouldn't easily work there, and at that point I was opting for easiness!!

Good idea about video...I should at least bring my video camera to the gig.

Alex has been down here to practice on it, and we have another practice session tomorrow; the debut is this Saturday, concert sold out (there's a small stage in the Gallery, 100 seats).  Pretty fun!

Fred

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nate

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Reply with quote  #7 
http://m.youtube.com/watch?list=UUdeDjsgVdGBoqEuT2d70YbQ&feature=c4-overview&v=7qPy-x9AEbI
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yaouen

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Reply with quote  #8 
Very nice!!
 
fantastic concept!!

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Michael

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Reply with quote  #9 
The humanitar makes me happy.

Michael

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PhilippeFouquet

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Reply with quote  #10 
When I see Humanitar, I think: La vie est belle!
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