As a sustain control device for the dulcimer, dampers provide a remarkable range of tonal effects, from the rich and complex natural voice of the undamped strings to a wonderful, wholly muted marimba-like tone with no sustain. The player can hold the pedal down for complete damping, or integrate light, quick taps to clear sustain between chord changes and to accentuate phrasing, giving tunes a sophisticated, articulate sound. Once experienced, people tell us they'd never go back to playing without dampers.
Low-profile damper bars, made of hardwood with custom-fit felts, are mounted on the dulcimer using U-shaped return springs. Durable, stretch-free cords running through the soundbox connect to the included pedal. An ingenious spooling device in the pedal easily adjusts the pedal cord length to fit any stand height. The whole setup fits inside our instrument cases and weighs about 2 lbs.
These models are built to be "damper ready," which means all the holes are pre-drilled. The dampers can be installed by Dusty Strings when the instrument is ordered, or easily added later by the player. Included are complete instructions, pre-felted damper bars, and all necessary tools for installation in less than an hour.
Note: Our damper kits are designed specifically to fit a Dusty Strings D45 or PD40, and it is unlikely that they will work well on any other instrument.
Installed by Dusty Strings: $395
We install dampers in our shop on new or previously purchased Dusty Strings Chromatic Series hammered dulcimers (except models D500 and D550 before serial #13169 and model D300 before serial #13378). Please contact us to arrange for installation. Due to the complexity of the chromatic models, these dampers are not designed for field installation.
Installed by Dusty Strings on a D300, D500, D550, D600 or D650: $545
Installed by Dusty Strings on a D570 or D670: $745
Available à la carte for use with Dusty Strings (or other) damper systems, or as a second damper pedal so the left and right bars can be controlled by their own pedals for creative and unusual effects! Our pedal has a low-profile design, and an ingenious spooling device to easily adjust the pedal cord length to fit any stand height. There is one pedal included with the purchase of the dampers.