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  • 2½ octaves
  • laminated Finland birch soundboard and back
  • traditional 5th-interval tuning
  • 12/11 configuration
  • also available as a package with a case and playing legs

The Prelude is the perfect setup for a beginning hammered dulcimer player. Built with a laminated Finland birch soundboard and back, it is an exceptionally sturdy, stable instrument that offers a sweet, balanced sound. The 2½ octave, 12/11 arrangement corresponds to all the well-known instructional materials. If coupled with the carrying case and playing legs, the Prelude is everything the beginner needs in one attractively-priced package. The Apprentice model is the same instrument, but with black finish.

The Prelude on its own comes with the basics to get someone started playing: single-sided wooden hammers, a T-handle tuning wrench, note indicator strips and the Hammered Dulcimer Owner's Guidebook.

The Prelude Package includes the instrument and all the above accessories, plus a 28-inch sit-down playing leg, a 5-inch table-top playing leg, and a plush-lined black chipboard C10A case with a separate compartment for legs, hammers and wrench. The instrument also fits in the more deluxe C10 case, and packages can be upgraded to include the C10.

Prelude: $495 (includes T-handle tuning wrench, regular single-sided wood hammers, note guide strips, owner's guidebook)

Prelude Package: $595 Currently Unavailable (includes above accessories, plus C10A case, 28-inch and 5-inch playing legs)

Prelude Package with case upgrade: $635 (includes above accessories, plus C10 case, 28-inch and 5-inch playing legs)

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Burgundy-colored padded soft case for hammered dulcimer

Protective carrying case

Price: $95 - $145

Hammered dulcimer support options include this folding wooden stand Variety of stand and leg choices

Tuning & Specifications


The Prelude, Apprentice and D10 have 2½ octaves of range; the lowest note is the G below middle C. There are 12 courses of strings on the treble bridge and 11 courses on the bass bridge. This configuration is often referred to as 12/11. Easily available keys are G, D, C and F, along with their relative minors. There are a variety of chromatic notes available in each key.

Tuning and Strings

String chart for Prelude, Apprentice or D10 hammered dulcimerSuperscript numbers indicate octaves (C4 is middle C). Dots indicate marked courses. All strings are plain steel with loop ends, and the wire gauges are shown in inches.

Click here for downloadable string charts and string ordering information.


  • Hammered dulcimer diagram with top and bottom rails labeledBottom rail: 38½ inches
  • Top rail: 20 inches
  • Height: 15 inches
  • Thickness: 3¼ inches
  • Weight: approx. 13 pounds


  • Soundboard and back: laminated Finland birch
  • Pinblocks and rails: Eastern hard maple
  • Main bridges: maple
  • Side bridges and soundhole inserts: sapele

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"I'm enjoying every minute of exploring this great instrument!"

-Mitzi Barker (Chugiak, Alaska)