Finch Hammered Dulcimer

(2 customer reviews)


The 16/15 Finch hammered dulcimer features a a wood top composed of individual boards joined by tight fitting tongue and groove joints which are not glued, permitting the wood to shrink or swell, based on humidity, without putting stress on the overall instrument. It sounds great!

Innovative New Finch 16/15 Model for All Climates-Songbird Dulcimers

Laminated Bridges

Dampers (installed)

Onboard Electric Pickups (installed)

Or get the Complete Package!

Complete package includes: dulcimer, case, stand, double face hammers and tuning wrench. Learn more


The 16/15 Finch hammered dulcimer features a a wood top composed of individual boards joined by tight fitting tongue and groove joints which are not glued, permitting the wood to shrink or swell, based on humidity, without putting stress on the overall instrument. It sounds great!


  • 16/15
  • Built with Air Dried Walnut with back ply
  • Hard Maple sides and Walnut bridges
  • Sound holes in the back
  • Works well in dry or humid climates
  • Comes with hammers and T-handle tuning wrench

Play in Humid or Dry Conditions

The trouble with solid wood is it shrinks or swells across the grain with changes in humidity in the environment.  It can move a lot.  The rule of thumb in woodworking is not to glue wood cross grain over 8 inches wide.  But we routinely do it in the hammered dulcimer world, gluing tops as wide as 24 inches to maple pin blocks.  But if the top is not totally dry when glued to the frame, and it shrinks in winter, it can crack.  If it is dry, but the humidity goes way up, it will swell and put stress on the overall instrument.

The construction of the top for the Finch model is a completely new and novel way to eliminate this problem, what we call a Multiple Section Soundboard hammered dulcimer. The Finch tops are composed of 7 individual narrow boards joined by tight fitting tongue and groove joints which are not glued.  This allows each individual board to shrink or swell as it needs without causing problems. No more cracks, no warps, no having to keep your dulcimer in a specially humidified environment in the winter or you void your warranty, no worries at all.  Just play it and enjoy it.

Construction of a Finch top through the use of tongue and groove joints

We believe this is the way solid wood top hammered dulcimers should be built.  It works great!  We have tested them, and they will take almost any environment and just sound good.  No special care necessary.  Sound holes all need to be in the back on these.  Cutting sound holes on the top would compromise the structure.

Rich Tone, Stays in Tune Well

For solid one board tops, builders are pretty much trapped with some version of mahogany or other, or a softwood like spruce because they are the most stable.  But with our new system it is now possible to make dulcimers from many different woods.  We tried a bunch, they all sounded good, but some are better.  Air Dried Walnut is just magical with full rich tone and amazing tuning stability!

The color of Walnut may vary: sometimes it will be reddish, sometimes it can be very dark, and sometimes it can have almost a purple color. Commercial producers kiln dry their walnut and steam it in the process. This is to drive some of the color from the heartwood out into the normally white sapwood so they get a better yield. But it also muddies the color. Kiln dries walnut is a uniform milk chocolate brown, but Air Dried Walnut is vibrant, more red and with streaks of color sometimes almost purple. Kiln dried walnut will get lighter with age, but Air Dried Walnut gets darker and richer with age.

We also have a versions of the Finch available as a 17/16/8 chromatic dulcimer.  Learn more about the Finch Chromatic, or our flagship model, the Finch Chromatic Pro.

Additional information

Weight 18 lbs
Dimensions 39 × 17 × 6 in

Availability: We are a small Mom and Pop enterprise, and can’t have everything we make in stock all the time.  We should have all of the accessories and small items all of the time.  We also try to keep natural Phoebe and Chickadee dulcimers around all of the time.  But other finishes or higher end models will be hit or miss.  We build dulcimers 6 of each model at a time to get the economy of scale, so if we have them, we have them, if not, it could be a month or two depending on where we are in our cycle.  If you have a deadline, please contact us for availability of what you are thinking of getting before placing the order.

Shipping Info:  A shipping calculator with all the functionality would cost us big money, so we opted to use the basic and reliable Paypal checkout system and include a reasonable average shipping cost on the price of each item.  If you order multiple items to ship in the same package, we will refund the extra via Paypal.

International Shipping: Our standard shipping amount is for shipments to the lower 48 United States. We can ship internationally, but not to everywhere. Our packages must go via US Postal Service to be as economical as possible. It depends on the rules of the receiving country what size package they will accept. In general most European countries are OK. Also Australia, New Zealand, and Japan. If you are wondering, you can check yourself on the Post Office website. Our most common package is 44 inches long, 24 inches wide, and 6 inches thick for a total length plus girth of 104 inches. They weigh 33 pounds. This should be enough info to get you a quote. You can always contact us for a quote, too.

Payment Info: We have been using Paypal for years, and believe it is the safest online way to pay.  You don’t need to have an account with them to use our Paypal checkout system, and best of all, we never need to know your credit card or bank details. Of course, we still like checks best since they don’t cost us money to process!  If you want to send us one in the mail, we would greatly appreciate it! Just don’t use the shopping cart, and contact us directly with your order, and we’ll work out the total and details.  You can also call us directly with a credit card number for payment.

Dealers: When possible, it is always best to go see and try out an instrument before buying. You can also get the input of a knowledgeable sales person. A good dealer will have in stock several different models of hammered dulcimer. Some will even have instruments from different makers, and it is very educational to see and hear the difference.

We have many trusted dealers all over the country that we have been working with for many years. We consider these folks close friends, and would not hesitate to recommend them to you. Contact us and we can put you in touch with someone near you.

2 reviews for Finch Hammered Dulcimer

  1. Miranda Thomas

    12/10/21 – Back in February of this year I ordered the Finch 16/15 Package.
    Well, I emailed Chris and Melanie this week to say thanks. They asked if I would write a review and I’m quite happy to do it!

    It’s a wonderful beastie, I love her so.

    Been kept mostly in the open for the year, in an upstairs studio room, about a half dozen outings with it.
    Environmentally, Oregon had a pretty wild year going from major drought into flood, It’s seen the entire humidity-gamut.
    Taking it out, at the worst I’d say the detune would get maybe a quarter-step out (high humidity). But it would always translate evenly across the board.

    And as these days are, things happen. Up until just recently she sat idle on the stand for a bit over two months. Even with the change of season, the entire deck was within ten cents of tuning.

    It may not be quite the looker that some of the other models are. But if you want a hardy, beautiful sounding deck that you aren’t scared to take outside – this is the one.
    It’s truly a testament to the design, and the craftmanship going into the instuments here at Songbird.

    I am perpetually grateful, and thank you all so much for such a marvellous instrument.
    M. Thomas

  2. Jeannie

    We received our new Finch this week, it arrived safe and sound in a very sturdy and well padded case.

    Chris has been so generous with his time and expertise. We appreciate all of the time and attention he puts into making very high quality, yet affordable instruments.

    The Finch sounds and and looks very beautiful! We chose a Finch for several reasons, first and foremost we like the resonant tone and voice of the instrument. Secondly, we live in southern Florida and the humidity here can be hard on any instrument and its unique construction makes it a perfect choice.

    We would highly recommend Songbird hammered dulcimers to everyone.

    Thank you again Chris!

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