Unfinished Whamdiddle Walnut Bones|
Fun do-it-yourself project - just sand and rattle away!
My first pair of wooden bones were walnut. They produced a relatively warm tone and were heavy enough to provide the kinetic force I needed to make them click with ease. The wood is pleasing to the touch and the mellow sound is perfect under many situations. An excellent choice for both new and experienced players.
Walnut wood is warm and inviting. The color varies from light grayish brown to deep chocolate brown to an almost black purplish brown. The grain is slightly open and usually straight, but can also be wavy or irregular. The texture is somewhat coarse but uniform. The surface is generally dull, but it may develop a lustrous patina after years of use.
Fine woodworkers enjoy working this chocolate colored wood that emits a pleasingly distinctive aroma.
Just Half the Price of Finished Bones
These unfinished bones are manufactured from Walnut hardwood by Rick Fogel, a master luthier with a graduate degree in Physics. His finished walnut bones sell for $15.97. So finish them yourself and save eight bucks.
Look what you get:
Sand with medium sandpaper (100 grit).
Sand with fine sandpaper (150 grit).
Sand with very-fine sandpaper (220 grit). (Rick scrapes them smooth in step 3 with a very sharp hunting knife instead).
Your bones are now ready to play. If you want a durable protective finish, then follow additional steps below.
Rub with commercial woodworking oil or paste wax such as Minwax, carnauba wax, beeswax, shellac, butcherblock oil, or other vegetable-based wood preparation. Follow manufacturer's directions or ask your local woodworking store for advice. Rick rubs Whamdiddle bones with marine spar varnish, lets them dry, and calls them done.
If desired, buff for high gloss finish. Use soft rag or buffing wheel with tripoli polishing compound.
- One pair of unfinished Whamdiddle bones
- Three 2" x 5" sheets of sandpaper (medium, fine and very-fine).
- Simple finishing instructions
Finishing wax, oil, varnish or other surface preparations not included.
- Solid Walnut Hardwood: Excellent for musical bones.
- Proven Shape: Designed by master luthier.
- Quarter-sawn Lumber: Creates stable tone, won't warp or crack.
- Includes Playing Instructions: Shows how to hold and play bones.
- Unfinished Pre-cut, Rough Sanded Hardwood: Fun & easy do-it-yourself project.
- Includes Sandpaper: Saves you a trip to the hardware store.
Figures are approximate (but pretty darn close)--
- Length: Short, 7" (18cm)
- Length: Traditional, 7-1/2" (19cm)
- Length: Classic Long, 8" (20cm)
- Width: Narrow, 7/8" to 1" (22mm to 25mm
- Width: Regular, 1-1/8" to 1-1/4" (29mm to 32mm)
- Width: Wide, 1-5/16" to 1-3/8" (33mm to 35mm)
- Thickness: 1/4" to 3/8"
- Composition: Domestic walnut hardwood
- Camber (arc): 28 degrees
- Weight: 2 oz
- Color: Chocolate brown
- Specific Gravity: .59
- Density: 40 pcf
- Hardness: 1010 Janka
- Sandpaper: Medium (100), Fine (150) and Very-fine (220)
The Inside Story...:
Handcrafted By a Master Luthier with a Graduate Degree in Physics
Whamdiddle bones are magnificent instruments. They are handcrafted from domestic and exotic hardwoods by Rick Fogel. Rick is a master luthier in Seattle, Washington who holds a master of science degree in Physics. This winning combination of top-grade material, brilliant artistry, and scientific expertise explains why Whamdiddle sound as good as they look.
Great Looks, Solid Design, Superior Tone
Take a close look at the marvelous color and fascinating wood grain of Whamdiddle bones. That gorgeous appearance comes from quartersawn wood, so the look is no accident.
The designs are special too. For example, the Whamdiddle Classic Style is less oval than minstrel style bones, yet rounder than flat style bones. This unique design bridges the gap between minstrel and flat styles. You can expect the Classic Style shape to fit especially comfortable in your hands. After all, the design has stood the test of time for more than 40 years. But the first thing you notice when you grab a pair is their substantial heft. Even the lightweight Classic Style bones feel full in your grip.
On the other side of the spectrum are Whamdiddle Flat Style bones. Not only are they agile and thin, but they fit any size hand and deliver a remarkably dynamic range of tones.
Whamdiddle Minstrel Style bones are a blast from the past—perfect for living-history musicians who demand authentic reproduction instruments.
But no matter what style you choose, Whamdiddle bones deliver a rich full range of tones that make you proud to rattle them.
Crafted From Quartersawn Lumber, the Prime Working Stock for Quality Musical Instruments
Why do Whamdiddle bones reveal spectacular grain patterns, warp less, and generate better tone? "Because," Rick explains, "they are made from quartersawn lumber."
Rick described the technique to me but it is a bit complex. So I looked up the term in a technical report from the U.S. Forest Service. They indeed confirm that quartersawn lumber
"shrinks and swells less...splits less...and figure patterns and wavy grain are brought out more conspicuously." Another expert source reports that quartersawn wood "helps prevent warping and also provides the best vibration patterns acoustically." And yet another authority tells us "quartersawn wood helps ensure that an instrument's sound remains as invariable as possible."
So yes, musical bones made from quartersawn lumber are decidedly prime quality instruments. But the ultimate test, of course, is to try them yourself.
Largest Selection of Whamdiddle Bones on the Planet...plus those Famous Laminated Bones.
Welcome to the largest selection of Whamdiddle bones on Earth! No other store offers you a larger choice of Whamdiddle bones. In fact, most of the Whamdiddle bones we offer are designed exclusively for Bone Dry Music and available no place else in the universe.
Please note that each carefully matched pair is expertly hand-crafted, but no two pairs are exactly alike. (i.e. Some pairs might vary slightly from another in length, width and thickness.)
Where does Rick find the exotic, rare, and domestic species of wood for these gorgeous bones? "It's scrap wood left over from the dulcimers I make," he says. So if you see something you really like, get it now. Because when a species of Whamdiddle bones get sold out, they might be gone forever.
Can't Decide Which Bones to Choose?
Check out this handy guide: Bone FAQs
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