Sarangi Project

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`hege
Posts: 41
Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2011 5:36 am

Re: Sarangi Project

Post by `hege » Wed Jul 02, 2014 11:08 pm

I thank you for the guidance naad_brahma.

I understand the need to thin the body out for resonance, but my concern for this initial trial is the wall strength, since I did not start with proper material, only with the idea to see if I have the means by which to sculpt the instrument on my own. Finding that I do have the means and rough ability, there are more attempts planned for the future.
I do plan a bit more weight loss prior to skinning this prototype, but not too much! At the minimum, I would at least like to have a non-broken piece of wall art at the end of this!
The Sarangi that has arrived at my home (in a basket) does indeed have thinner walls, but is of course a much more quality wood. So I do have a model to use for my next attempts, where I will also explore better woods.

I like your idea of starting with a purchased bridge (I already have it, plus a spare) and letting it settle in and then make the long term bridge.

From your response I am thinking to proceed this way. Skin tightly. Nut at mid-nail to cuticle height on first finger. String with standard bridge. Figure out how to bow/play the thing and make noise for a while. Allow bridge to settle, then create a long term bridge addressing my favored string height. Something like that?

Again, I appreciate the input.
`hege

`hege
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Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2011 5:36 am

Re: Sarangi Project

Post by `hege » Sun Jul 06, 2014 3:42 am

I dreaded it.
But thanks to those who have gone before and provided guidance. The project has a skin.
With all of the questions about how tight or loose, how to actually do the deed, I have arrived with a pretty tight and resonant skinhead.
How tight is too tight? I have no idea. I suppose that I know about how tight I did this one, so based on results, I'll make some changes next time. I bought multiple skins for that reason, I wanted to leave one for a second try when needed.
So a quick update for those interested.
'hege
Attachments
side skin.jpg
side skin look
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Skin at Bottom.jpg
At base
Skin at Bottom.jpg (124.67 KiB) Viewed 631 times
Almost Stringtime.jpg
Almost Stringtime!
Almost Stringtime.jpg (144.84 KiB) Viewed 631 times

`hege
Posts: 41
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Re: Sarangi Project

Post by `hege » Fri Jul 11, 2014 8:03 pm

A quick update for those interested.

Sympathetics wound up.

A look at the current string height, and the current skin/bridge height condition.

This weekend the last 11 Jawari strings, including the fitting and shaping of those little bridges.

Then I plan to start putting a little more tension on the thing. RIght now it is strung tight enough to run a bow across, and tight enough for the symps to ring clearly. It is actually making some sound!

Very little bridge settling in the skin so far... time will tell.

'hege
Attachments
Sympathetic windings low res.jpg
Symp windings
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string height.JPG
String height
string height.JPG (46.62 KiB) Viewed 616 times

`hege
Posts: 41
Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2011 5:36 am

Re: Sarangi Project

Post by `hege » Mon Jul 14, 2014 5:43 pm

I am happy to announce the finished exercise mule.

So many lessons learned, from the shaping of the wood, learning (and equipping) to shape and fit pegs, the skin of course, all the little hidden math progressions in the string layout.

Of course this one will be consigned to wall art. The relative hardness of the wood, the "tonality" as it were, was sacrificed for this first mock up attempt, as originally stated, just to see if my hands could shape the instrument.

The next one will of a more tonal wood, and of course with more traditional setup for both the headstock and the body dimensions. This one was, as intended, just some mind exercise and re-awaking of the hands.

I am pleased with the outcome, for those who have joined along, I hope the same for you.

Thanks again to those who provided (even a little) inspiration to make my initial sketches come to life. I have a build log, I will complete and post a link for those interested.

Sometime in the next year as I complete the next one, I am going to have to learn how to play a bit, at minimum, in order to tell if I am getting close to a correct resonance.

For now, though, a few months off for a shoulder repair, I'll be sourcing wood for bodies and pegs while I am recuperating.

Blessings to all.
`hege
Attachments
IMG_0907_low res.jpg
Front view
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laydown
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fingerboard
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naad_brahma
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Re: Sarangi Project

Post by naad_brahma » Tue Jul 15, 2014 1:17 am

How do you plan on fingering the second string will all the tarab strings in the way? Same goes for the third string, if you move the second string over you'll have no room to finger that one. Also the upper tarab arrangement seems a bit risky, those are some very sharp angles which will make it a bear to tune. You really need to get your hands on a functioning sarangi and learn how to play a bit before jumping into making another one. Sarangi are relatively simply looking and extremely complicated in regards to setup and playing.

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David Berner
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Location: California

Re: Sarangi Project

Post by David Berner » Tue Jul 15, 2014 2:28 am

Overall good effort, looks like a lot of work went into it.

I agree with naad_brahma that the current string set up looks unplayable. While looking at the sarangi head on, if you moved the the left jawari bridge over to the left more then i think you'd have the necessary room to move the two thickest main playing strings over to the left more to make room for your fingers to fit on the right side of each main playing string. Another way to gain more clearance room is to make sure the string slots on the jawari bridge on the right side are spaced as close as possible without the strings striking each other when ringing out. Those changes can be made relatively easily.

I think another point to consider before starting on the next one is the overall shape of the body/sound chamber of the sarangi. Most sarangis i've seen look deeper and are more circular.

`hege
Posts: 41
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Re: Sarangi Project

Post by `hege » Wed Jul 16, 2014 12:59 am

naad_brahma wrote:How do you plan on fingering the second string will all the tarab strings in the way? Same goes for the third string, if you move the second string over you'll have no room to finger that one. Also the upper tarab arrangement seems a bit risky, those are some very sharp angles which will make it a bear to tune. You really need to get your hands on a functioning sarangi and learn how to play a bit before jumping into making another one. Sarangi are relatively simply looking and extremely complicated in regards to setup and playing.
You know, naad_brahma, I was wondering the same thing myself. No room to get to the 2nd and 3rd string! I didn't recognize this, in that I am not a Sarangyist. But now that you point it out....

Again, I would mention that this was not intended to be anything other than a learning experience. I wanted it to be an instrument, but I never had pretensions that it would wind up that way. As it is, it is a nice piece of wood that will look nice in the instrument room.

Yes, I tried a couple of non traditional things, the upper tarabs for one, and I understand your concern. There are (2 other plans) ways to eliminate friction in the route, but it actually has held tune pretty well so far in this setup. You'll recall from the first post, that the machine tuners were an economical choice due to the price of pegs. (On a cheerful side note, I have eliminated that problem, in that I have a lathe again, and will make my own full set next time.)

Your comments so far have been very much on the mark, and much appreciated by myself, and others as well. I could fill a small book with the little things I have learned on this short trip. Most of the issues with this piece of wood are due to a non-standard starting point and resulting compressed format (remember, in the beginning, no plans, just desire and drawn sketches). For myself, I find it a miracle that I got all 41 strings on the thing, and that none ring against each other when I bow the strings. A small victory.

These comments regarding the final positioning of the strings? These are things I could not know or discern, as I am not an instrument maker nor Sarangyist, only a hobbyist with wood tools who appreciates the intrinsic beauty of the instrument, and the music. But I am an engineer, and I can deal with these things next time.

As far as obtaining a functional Sarangi, that thought makes me smile as there have been many conversations here about the quality of the available instruments, and for the $$ to get a reasonably good one, I could make a few more on my own including the lesson learned here, and probably arrive at a decent starter instrument by that time. Plus I would have all of the fun building as well.

My next Sarangi project (already in progress, thank you Sitarmaker) will be an attempted restoration of a badly broken one (Masita). It also serve as a blueprint and model for all "from scratch" Sarangi's that I attempt, moving forward. I still intend to go with some innovations on the "scratch" models, and when I get them to the correct scale, these alignment issues will go away. Other issues will present themselves of course. That would be the learning part.

Again, just a hobbyist and an engineer. I would love to hear some positives (wouldn't we all) but negative feedback also teaches. Don't know that I will ever learn to play, but there is a certain joy in creating something with your hands that makes noise, even something as simple as a reed flute, if not the very complex Sarangi. Personally, I am over the top that I was able to complete it at all, that mechanically all things line up without rubbing against anything else...and it's not too bad to look at.

In my job, I deal with Corrective Actions and Preventative Actions. In this case, not too much corrective action available for this "art piece", but plenty of preventative actions for the next try at creating an instrument.

`hege

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Sitarfixer
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Re: Sarangi Project

Post by Sitarfixer » Thu Jul 17, 2014 7:35 am

Hey ! ! ! Lookie dat cat box ! ! ! Nice job indeed ! ! ! As already suggested, a new nut with the main strings spread out to allow fingers into that sea of strings will make this machine a player. Skin job looks good. Hope you thinned out the walls a bit before gluing the skin on. The classical guitar gear tuners look good. Seems like a very complex stringing setup. Rickenbacker 12 string guitars have a logical layout which works very well. Still, the convenience of not having to go for the narkie wrench to tune those strings must be a real treat. Congratulations on the birth of this baby. You obviously have the skills and the patience to make a real go of this. Well done ! ! !

DrKashyap
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Re: Sarangi Project

Post by DrKashyap » Fri Jul 18, 2014 4:31 am

Congratulations ! Very dedicated work indeed. This is the way we can add something useful to the existing traditional. God bless you !

`hege
Posts: 41
Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2011 5:36 am

Re: Sarangi Project

Post by `hege » Sat Jul 19, 2014 3:21 am

Kind words indeed Sitarfixer and DrKashyap. I am humbled. Truly.

I have a busy weekend reworking that nut area, I already have a plan that should provide as much space as can be made on such a compact setup. I'll post a pic when I wrap it up.

Thanks to all for your knowledge and experience. Collectively it will make my next a bit closer.

I see things now in a new light, even more so now, with a critical eye towards that relationship between the tarab rows, the nut config, and resulting string placement. I look at the Sarangi's images on the internet, and I now recognize some poor setups at least.

These instruments are an enigma wrapped in a puzzle, I swear.
They are just Wonderful. Capital W.

`hege

`hege
Posts: 41
Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2011 5:36 am

Re: Sarangi Project

Post by `hege » Fri Aug 29, 2014 5:19 am

My apologies.
Forgot to post the promised build notes.
In retrospect at least a little interesting reading and some "do it yourself" pics.
https://www.dropbox.com/s/h3wp1w0dmay3u ... s.pdf?dl=0

Currently rebuilding a badly broken Sarangi, and have been exploring Pegs as part of the rebuild.
https://www.dropbox.com/s/m0q7oqo4f3hx1 ... s.pdf?dl=0

Cheers, all.
`hege

peeceebee
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Re: Sarangi Project

Post by peeceebee » Fri Aug 29, 2014 5:27 pm

I think mahogany is generally too soft for peg shafts, sarangi pegs are usually a harder wood, rosewood or equivalent- guess it depends on the particular pieces of wood...

`hege
Posts: 41
Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2011 5:36 am

Re: Sarangi Project

Post by `hege » Sat Aug 30, 2014 12:47 am

peeceebee wrote:I think mahogany is generally too soft for peg shafts, sarangi pegs are usually a harder wood, rosewood or equivalent- guess it depends on the particular pieces of wood...
Hmmm.... that may just be true, peeceebee. I have no idea yet. Right now they "stick" pretty well in the body of the rescue victim, with no rosin or chalk.

The fun part is that combinations of different woods can be used, and I guess that is the joy for me in this side venture.

Next time, maybe Rosewood shafts with Teak knobs, Cedar shafts with Walnut knobs, Ebony shafts with Tulipwood knobs, the possibilities, while not endless, are fun to consider.

More about that than anything.
'hege

peeceebee
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Re: Sarangi Project

Post by peeceebee » Sat Aug 30, 2014 3:30 am

Generally, if the peg wood is harder than the body wood, then over time the hole will wear, and not so much the peg. The advantage of this is that when pegs lose their taper, ridges can form, whereas if the taper holds and the holes wear, then the peg just rides deeper in the hole, self-adjusting smoothly with minimal attention needed to maintain smooth action-

`hege
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Re: Sarangi Project

Post by `hege » Sat Aug 30, 2014 5:26 pm

Perfect logic, and I thank you for that little bit of light, peeceebee

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