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Newbie; The Journey Begins!

Posted: Sat Feb 02, 2019 12:48 pm
by Jodelhole
Hello.

It's real now; I'm going to learn to play this wonderful instrument. Web-based resources will be the mainstay, given the fact that I live in north-eastern Washington State. There's a wealth of information on this site / forum. I'll try to find answers before making blanket requests.

Acquired a Framus zither (1966 build?); have attached a photo (attempted). The instrument has an unusual string configuration. Missing one string and tuning tool.

https://forum.zither.us/download/file.p ... iew&id=650

Re: Newbie; The Journey Begins!

Posted: Sat Feb 02, 2019 4:48 pm
by NutmegCT
Welcome to Zither.us!

How'd you get interested in playing this wonderful instrument?

For me, it was first hearing Anton Karas in The Third Man. What a fascinating post-WW2 film.

And where did you buy that beautiful zither of yours? You're indeed a lucky man.

Tom M.

Re: Newbie; The Journey Begins!

Posted: Sat Feb 02, 2019 5:32 pm
by Andy
Welcome!

That is a beautiful instrument! You’re very fortunate to have found such a nice zither to start learning on. I would recommend checking out Keyes Scales earlier than later in addition to whatever instruction book you decide to work out of. It can be found on the site. Good to have another new player!

- Andy

Re: Newbie; The Journey Begins!

Posted: Sat Feb 02, 2019 5:35 pm
by Jodelhole
Hi Tom!

Thanks for the welcome.

I've listened to traditional alpine music for 30+ years, which of course, is loaded with zither. We play accordion, tuned cowbells and jodel. After purchasing what turned out to be a wall-hanger zither on Ebay 20 yrs ago, I decided to wait for the right one/right time. Obtained this on Craigslist, from the widow of a German immigrant. She's from Holland.

This first time I heard one was on a Johann Strauss album, "Tales From the Vienna Woods": was haunted with its unique beauty since.

This will surely be a labor of love. I hope to play a few simple pieces well, rather than difficult pieces half well.

This instrument has been well cared for...deserves to have its voice heard again.

Steve B.

Re: Newbie; The Journey Begins!

Posted: Sat Feb 02, 2019 5:45 pm
by Jodelhole
Thank you, Andy.

A scales method/system recommendation is exactly what I need first. Next, determine if I'm smart enough and have the dexterity to put it all together. No shortcuts in music, just study and practice.

Steve B.

Re: Newbie; The Journey Begins!

Posted: Sat Feb 02, 2019 6:39 pm
by Evelyn
Welcome Steve

Congratulations, this is a very nice zither indeed. It is a so-called Kreuzsaitige (cross-stringed) Zither, aka Perfekta Zither, with the contrabass strings crossing the bass strings at an angle. The first instruments of this rather rare, I think, design were built in Vienna at around 1890 by Franz Xaver Güttler; Max Amberger built them in Munich.

http://www.studia-instrumentorum.de/MUS ... R/3926.htm

Also found this on the Framus website:
"A top model was the 42-string, made of rosewood, air resonating zither Kreuzperfekta model 7/42 outfitted with alpine rose strings."
http://www.framus-vintage.de/modules/mo ... 4671&cl=EN

Edited to add that Franz Schwarzer (Washington, Missouri) built them in the US:
http://collections.nmmusd.org/Zithers/S ... 12970.html

Re: Newbie; The Journey Begins!

Posted: Sat Feb 02, 2019 10:20 pm
by Jodelhole
Hi Evelyn!

Thank you for the nice note. And the information is very enlightening. Having never seen a zither of this configuration, I was hesitant to acquire it, but then saw it in person; it was love at first sight.

I'd like to find a zitherist within a few hundred miles; for lessons and to hear this one played. All in good time...

Thanks again.

Steve B

Re: Newbie; The Journey Begins!

Posted: Sun Feb 03, 2019 8:07 am
by Rudy Mueller
Did you find a tuning wrench? What is the size of the tuning pegs? square or rectangular? If interested, e-mail your mailing address.

Rudi

Re: Newbie; The Journey Begins!

Posted: Sun Feb 03, 2019 9:15 am
by kenbloom
Getting a tuning wrench for this instrument will be easy since it is a relatively modern one. In a pinch I've even used a modern star wrench that is intended for hammered dulcimer or autoharp but the regular square zither wrench is easier to use. Perfekta zithers are rare and hard to find. I love mine. It makes reaching the contra bass strings so much easier. I have an old Amberger but the one I play all the time is an Adol[ph Meinel senior. You can get all the supplies you need from Ann Prinz. You will get plenty of help and support from the kind folks on this site. It is a great resource and welcome to our mania!!

Ken Bloom
http://www.boweddulcimer.org

Re: Newbie; The Journey Begins!

Posted: Sun Feb 03, 2019 10:25 pm
by Jodelhole
Rudy Mueller wrote:
Sun Feb 03, 2019 8:07 am
Did you find a tuning wrench? What is the size of the tuning pegs? square or rectangular? If interested, e-mail your mailing address.
Rudi
Hi Rudy.
I haven't determined the size of the square pegs: they look to be approximately 3 to 4 mm, but I should get a caliper measurement. The peg ends all look unscathed.
My Email address is: sbruchman@hotmail.com

(Please excuse my clunkiness, as this is the first online forum in which I've participated. Amazing to meet so many wonderful people!)