This custom dulcimer is from Blue Lion (www.BlueLionInstruments.com) and is a heavily modified Force/d'Ossche' model.  The top, back and sides are of Flame (Fiddleback) Maple that has been dyed blue.  The back of the headstock is of the same material and color.  The face of the headstock and the fretboard overlay are of extra-dark rosewood.  The insides of the headstock and tailpiece are curved to enhance the sonic resonation qualities.  The dulcimer is also 1/8 " thinner (top to back) to allow me to reach that long A and long C easier.

The headstock features my custom dragon logo and a descending ray of light that is reminiscent of a similar feature on one of Albert d'Ossche's own instruments.  The back of the headstock has the laser-engraved Blue Lion logo. The head stock shape is a personal design that I adapted from the shape of Line 6 Variax headstocks.  The tuners are speed tuners that require no winding around the post, just set the length, tighten the knob in the back and the excess string is snipped off immediately -- makes for superfast string changing.  The fretboard features a Tree of Life inlay from the third fret to the tenth fret.  The inlay material is a blue-shaded mother-of-pearl that matches the instrument well.

Since I play standing up, I opted for the fret dots to be placed on the side of the fretboard, like a guitar neck.

The soundholes are a personal creation based upon the F-hole heart, invented by Robert Force, used in the common Force/d'Ossche model.

I had an L.R. Baggs pickup installed, also.

Inside the instrument is a placard that has my personal life statement:

Ours is not to master
  all of the tides of the world.
But to do what is in us
for the succor of those years
  wherein we are set.
Uprooting the evil in the fields
  that we know,
So that those who come after
  may have clean earth to till.

                   Gandalf the White
                   -Return of the King

If you are interested to know more, drop me a line at QuintinStephens@aol.com.

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