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BigD
05-08-2014, 04:39 PM
So this is more than likely in the wrong place but.. im curious about these seagull merlin do-hickies theyve got out now. I understand its a diatonic scale, mainly tuned DAD and based of a three string mountain dulcimer. Any one have any experience with them?? And with a little adjustment and work could it be made into a large tenor or bari ukulele? They've just really caught my eye and im thinking of purchasing one soon. Also any idea on what strap would be best?? I know the nut and saddle would need work and frets added which seems like a lot of work but more out of curiousity then anything! Thank you!!

mds725
05-08-2014, 06:10 PM
So this is more than likely in the wrong place but.. im curious about these seagull merlin do-hickies theyve got out now. I understand its a diatonic scale, mainly tuned DAD and based of a three string mountain dulcimer. Any one have any experience with them?? And with a little adjustment and work could it be made into a large tenor or bari ukulele? They've just really caught my eye and im thinking of purchasing one soon. Also any idea on what strap would be best?? I know the nut and saddle would need work and frets added which seems like a lot of work but more out of curiousity then anything! Thank you!!

Haven't heard of them. A link to a website, if there is one, or a photo of one, or a link to a photo of one, might help.

janeray1940
05-08-2014, 08:25 PM
There were a couple of threads about these not long ago:

http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/showthread.php?92734-My-mahogany-top-Merlin-is-on-the-way!
http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/showthread.php?94240-Seagull-Merlin-Dulcimer-Review

And a link to the website:
http://www.seagullguitars.com/seagull_merlin.html

PhilUSAFRet
05-09-2014, 03:51 AM
They do not have a ukulele scale, so you could not play it like a uke. Some custom makers make them with tenor uke necks though. Go to cigarboxnation and investigate making one.

Ukejenny
05-09-2014, 04:26 AM
The guys who made my cigar box uke have a cigar box guitar store. The guitars use three strings and they were trying to get a patent for it at one time. Great folks. I think the Nickel Cigar Box guitars would be closer to uke than the Merlin, which is based on a dulcimer.

Edited to add link: http://nick-a-jack.com/home/nickelcbg/

kvehe
05-09-2014, 05:44 AM
I have one (mahogany), and have a lot of fun playing around with it - mine is the first thread referenced by janeray1940. I wouldn't try to turn it into something else, but maybe that's just me; I'm not much of a tinkerer. (If I had been in the East-Start buy group, I think the East-Start would be sitting in the back of the closet now.)

BigD
05-10-2014, 11:23 AM
Well cool thanks everyone! Im not much of a wood-worker of any sorts myself but the shape and idea of it really interested me, without the idea of changing it to something else. I do a lot of camping and such and i feel like it could be a fun thing to grab along and make little tunes as you please. kvehe do you still play yours now and how is the quality/setup/finish? Im a HUGE fan of seagull i think for the price of their instruments you absolutely cant get any better. Plenty of ppl would argue but thats my story and im stickin to it lol and if it wasnt under their name i probably wouldnt even be considering it. But it just sure does look fun!!

kvehe
05-10-2014, 11:45 AM
BigD, you and I think alike. I am also a big Seagull fan, and what initially drew me to the Merlin was the Seagull name. The quality is top-notch, as you would expect. While it's smaller than a dulcimer, it might be a bit bigger (longer) than you'd want for camping, but then I'm not a camper so what would I know? I know that the scale is 20.75". I can measure the total body length when I get home and let you know what that is. ...and yes, I do play it and would say that "mak[ing] little tunes" is mostly what I use it for. I get a real kick out of it.

Okay, home now. The total length is 31.25". It fits nicely in a Kaces baritone uke gig bag (KUKB-4). Do it!

BigD
05-10-2014, 04:38 PM
I think im going to!! I was reading a bunch of comments on idk where and people were complaining about not having a bag and i thought to myself, im sure this would fit in a baritone bag.... and also for the price, 130 bucks free shipping, you really cant beat it. About a month and ill probably have one and ill let ya know how i feel about it! Thanks! Ill also get the mahogany, i dont think the sound is going to be any different between the two i just like the look!

Stuntman
05-10-2014, 07:09 PM
The seagull is pretty cool (Probably won't be available locally in Aus though :( ) but for anybody interested it may be worth checking out http://www.strumstick.com/ - they also do chromatic scale versions. And maybe also the TK'Obrien version http://craggymtnmusic.com/category/pickin-sticks/

A strumstick and a "pick'n" stick were in the marketplace not long ago - might be worth checking out
http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/showthread.php?94313-FS-2-dulcimer-strum-sticks&highlight=strum+stick

actadh
05-11-2014, 03:21 AM
.. Ill also get the mahogany, i dont think the sound is going to be any different between the two i just like the look!

These have intrigued me enough to want to get one, so I have been noodling around on Google & YouTube. This tumblr page comments on the difference in the tonewoods that the company priovided-http://seagullmerlin.tumblr.com/


"Hi,

The choice of the wood for the Merlin affect the tone of the instrument. The spruce top version will produce more higher tone, while the mahogany version will reach lower tone.

We don’t offer transport case for the Merlin

We will probably release a new version of the Merlin with built in electronic next fall.

We use D’Addario strings for the Merlin, but we will eventually offer specific strings set for it.

The strings we use are:

2 x .012 plain steel
1 x .016 plain steel
1 x .024 phos bronze wound"

Barbablanca
05-11-2014, 07:39 AM
A more folksy alternative might be one of Blaine Horlocker's "Mountain Built" instruments:

http://www.smokeymountaindulcimer.com/strum-sticks.htm

I've got one of his strumsticks, a banjo strumstick and an electric one too (called the fire stick) - none of which seem to be currently listed on his site. He seems to enjoy experimenting. His finish is very rough and ready (very folksy) but the instruments work very well and used to be dirt cheap. Note when his site says "except pay pal" he means "accept pay pal" :).

BlackBearUkes
05-11-2014, 12:47 PM
This type of instrument was know as a "Walking Dulcimer" back in the 80's. They have many names now, but its basically a mountain dulcimer.

Freeda
05-11-2014, 01:14 PM
A more folksy alternative might be one of Blaine Horlocker's "Mountain Built" instruments:

http://www.smokeymountaindulcimer.com/strum-sticks.htm

I've got one of his strumsticks, a banjo strumstick and an electric one too (called the fire stick) - none of which seem to be currently listed on his site. He seems to enjoy experimenting. His finish is very rough and ready (very folksy) but the instruments work very well and used to be dirt cheap. Note when his site says "except pay pal" he means "accept pay pal" :).

Www.whiskeyhotelinstruments.com makes strum sticks too.

BigMamaJ40
05-11-2014, 02:36 PM
This instrument has a very limited range. I can't see how this would be a satisfying instrument to play for very long if you already play the ukulele. I could see a non-musician enjoying it for a while, maybe as an introduction to the mountain dulcimer? But a mountain dulcimer is already a pretty good starter instrument, with much more potential.

BigD
05-11-2014, 02:47 PM
Well one of the main draws for me was the simplicity of it so im not too concerned about its limits. I understand it has only seven frets so it is VERY limited but thats ok with me. Ill also be using it as a background instrument because i plan on (hopefully) starting to record here soon.