2.108 1988 Folkcraft FSHW 4 String 3 Course 1988 – £225 + £20 original shell case
Printed label: “Folkcraft Instruments/Winsted CT 06098/Model: FSHW 460 [h/w]/Date: 6-15-88 [h/w]”.
Folkcraft is one of the two big US builders of mountain dulcimers, with McSpadden. It prides itself on always using sold woods in its handmade instruments. David and Melissa Marks started Folkcraft Instruments in Vermont in 1974, moving to Winsted, Connecticut in 1980. David was a music teacher on the look out for cheap, easy to learn instruments when he came across the mountain dulcimer. First he worked with students to build dulcimers, then set up on his own part-time, By 1975, the business was booming sufficiently for David to give up teaching. In 1989, Folkcraft bought the Rugg and Jackel FolkRoots business and took over its product line. Folkcraft was sold in 2007 and the workshop moved to Woodburn, Indiana.
This is one of Folkcraft’s popular FSH series dulcimers. All solid walnut, one piece back and one piece arched fingerboard, standard scroll (with small rebate round edge) and heart soundholes; open-geared guitar-style tuners; 6+ fret (but no 13+) and pearl dot marker on 3rd fret only. Hard plastic nut and rounded (unslotted) bridge; usual copper pin string anchors for loop or ball end strings.
A pretty design with a good rounded sound. This comparatively early FSH has a little pick wear on upper frets/fingerboard, a few dings on the edges and a small (repaired) impact crack on the far side waist. The price reflects a very sound instrument with a few cosmetic shortcomings.