The Dusty Blog

Thumbnail for How to Keep Your Harp or Hammered Dulcimer Safe from Cracking in the Winter Months
Posted by Dusty - Nov 11, 2016, 4:51 PM
You’ve probably heard at some point that bad things might happen if a wooden musical instrument gets too dry, but what does that actually mean? How dry is too dry? Is it the inside air or the outside air that matters? How do you measure it? What’s actually at stake if you don’t pay attention to the humidity? Is there any reason to panic?
Thumbnail for Can I replace my nylon harp strings with gut?
Posted by Dusty - Aug 17, 2016, 3:36 PM
The short answer is yes, you probably can, but there are some important things to take into consideration so that you don't hurt your harp. There's also a lot of mystery surrounding harp strings and string tension, so we'd like to explain some of the basic concepts and hopefully clear up a few common misconceptions.
Thumbnail for How to load an FH36 in its case
Posted by Dusty - Apr 5, 2016, 4:47 PM
Our 36-string harp cases are a very tight fit when they're new, and this video will give you some tips about getting your harp into the case without tearing your hair out.
Thumbnail for New rules for flying with musical instruments
Posted by Dusty - Sep 29, 2015, 1:01 PM
Planning to travel with your harp or hammered dulcimer? We'll explain the new rules and what they mean for your next airplane trip.
Thumbnail for Do I really need an extra set of harp strings?
Posted by Dusty - Aug 5, 2015, 4:08 PM
Important information about replacing broken harp strings to help you decide if you should invest in a backup string set.
Thumbnail for Sanitizing Harps in Therapy Settings
Posted by Dusty - Mar 11, 2015, 11:28 AM
One hurdle that therapy harpists sometimes run into is the need to disinfect their harp. Depending on the situation, there may be specific protocols that have to be followed, and harpists are understandably worried about what this means for their instrument. So to help ease those fears, we did an experiment with sterile alcohol swabs from our first aid cabinet (70% isopropyl alcohol on a cotton pad) to test the effect on the finish we use.
Thumbnail for Dusty Pedal Harp Pickup Video Demonstration
Posted by Dusty - Feb 20, 2015, 6:20 PM
This video demonstrates the sound of the Dusty Strings P30 Pedal Harp Pickup in a Lyon and Healy. Video and demonstration by Katie Buckley, principal harpist in the Icelandic Symphony Orchestra.
Thumbnail for When does wood choice in harps matter?
Posted by Dusty - Jan 19, 2015, 6:40 PM
So you’re reaching the end of your quest for the perfect harp. You’ve considered the number of strings you want, the size of the harp, pedals vs. levers and so on, and you’ve finally found the right model for you. But one last decision remains: which wood will you choose? Perhaps your eyes prefer a certain color, but is there anything to consider besides visual appeal? The answer is yes… sometimes.
Thumbnail for New Harp Recordings
Posted by Dusty - Jan 14, 2015, 4:58 PM
We are excited to announce that we have some new harp recordings up on our website! You can now hear all of our FH harps in figured cherry, as well as the FH34 in maple and our new Boulevard Classic 34. It's not a quick and easy process for us to record a new harp, especially because we take extra steps to keep our recording setup as consistent as possible between sessions. So even though we've been building harps out of this gorgeous figured cherry for a few years, it has taken us until now to get the recordings done. Many of you have been waiting a long time for this, and we appreciate your patience!
Thumbnail for Sharping Levers: Camac vs. Loveland
Posted by Dusty - Jul 24, 2014, 4:08 PM
Search the web for sharping lever comparisons and you’ll find a wide range of passionate opinions on what type of lever is the best. (If you’re new to the harp, sharping levers are what allow you to raise the pitch of individual strings by a half step, which means that you can play music in different keys without re-tuning the harp.) Because our current scope of experience is mainly with Loveland and Camac levers, we aren’t going to speak to the other options that are out there, and because we firmly believe that no issue has a single solution that is objectively the best for everyone, we are not going to offer an opinion on which lever is better. What we intend to do is share our observations about the differences between Camac and Loveland levers.