Latest bouzouki by Hans de Louter, 1996

This is a picture of the latest bouzouki Hans de Louter has made (sorry, it's already sold). Though in the overview picture it looks a lot like the one I have, it differs in a few features, most notably the way the neck and body are joined. The scale is also slightly shorter, 63.5cm instead of 65.

The head on this one looks identical in shape to the one on mine, but is actually some 1.5cm shorter. The birds inlaid have their heads bent both over their necks, while on mine the left head goes over and the right under the neck. The tuners, like on mine, are gold-plated mini-Shallers but now with gold-plated instead of brownish plastic knobs. Note that this one, like the prototype has the neck pin accessible near the nut, and not through the soundhole. Technically, this is a lot easier, but it tends to weaken the neck at that point, which is why I chose to have it doen differently on mine (and also on my second one, which is currently in the making).
The abalone used on the soundhole of this one is nearly white, and hardly contrasts with the mother-of-pearl. Also the enclosing ebony "V"s are put wider apart.
The tailpiece on this one is similar in shape to mine, but bigger. We may install one this size on mine as well.

The neck-to-body joint is done more indirectly on this one, an idea Hans took from a much older cittern model. This way the neck can be "dove-tailed" into the neck block, like it is usually done on steel-string guitars. This allows more control over the neck angle. Also the actual heel can be shaped more elegantly, since it doesn't have to match the shape of the body at the joint.

The heel cap is extended to partly fall over the back of the instrument. This has no function, it's purely an ornament. It's made of ebony. The sharp edges where the sides join the neck block are also decorated with strips of ebony.

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(Modified: Fri Jun 21 17:57pm by han /