Hi everyone, glad I found this site. I am not a luthier, hope that is ok. I did find this Stossel Lute and I am trying to get it playable again. The Uke next to it is a tenor for size comparison. The button board is obviously an after thought probably for a child or elderly who might have problems with the steel strings, Some of the strings are broken. I was not sure what to restring it with, but I was thinking of some spare strings from my 8 string uke. Hopefully that thought does not upset the purist.
I think tuning is as follows
eÂ² cÂ² a' f' d' b g
I have been thinking about a Stewmac uke build kit as I don't have any of the tools to go from scratch and thought it might be a good way to get my feet wet.
Thank you for any help on this.
Hi Bill, and welcome. You sent me off on a bit of an internet excursion to find out about the Stossel lute. It seems like a cool instrument, once very popular in Germany but then just disappeared after WW2. I have never seen one in my part of the world, or even heard of them until now. There are probably not too many Stossel purists around for you to offend these days, so you can do anything you want with it.
The pegboard does look like an after-market addition - but rather well made by the look of it. Do you plan to remove it? How is it attached? As far as restoration is concerned the main question is the structural condition of the body, and whether the tuning hardware is in working order. How does it look? I presume that you tune the thing by winding onto those pegs at the tail? Do you have some sort of clock key that turns them?
Mark, please tell me what is your part of the world, I am in So. Florida. Point well taken, can you offend if there is no one to be offended? I think nylon is less stress on the wood than steel. Here is a picture of the key board. I think I will keep it on. The tuners work, I got a 5 size clock key from widgets.com. Thanks for your response interest and advice. Like I said, I am not a luthier but someday I would like to try my hand at building a Stewmac tenor uke. Hope to get some help here.
Hi Bill, I am in Sydney (Australia, not Nova Scotia). Well the pegboard attachment is not subtle! It would obviously not be hard to remove later if you wanted to. It is good that the tuners are working. So you should be able to tinker with this and get it playing OK. I found a Youtube video of one being played with steel strings, which gave it a very shrill but interesting voice. I imagine nylon would be a bit more muted.
I'll give it a try. Thanks. It is kind of unique. If I could get to actually play something on it that would be nice. Right now I play ukulele, going from 4 strings to seven ought to be interesting. Thank you again for your time and interest.