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SERENDIPITY STRIKES

POW Maxwell's Silver Hammer, March 1992. I openned.. an issue of Acoustical Guitar and there in black and white, the printed words: THE LOST MOUNTAIN CENTER FOR THE GUITAR.
A Kasha Design Master Class with Richard Schneider. Needless to say I immediately enrolled and was accepted..that in itself a minor miracle since my lutherie experience was near nil. The Lost Mountain Seminar Workshop introduced me to an amazing new world which has now become part of my life. From that experience with Richard Schneider I dove headfirst and have been using the KASHA/ SCHNEIDER designed bracing systems in my guitars and ukuleles.
So what is this system all about? A collaboration between physicist Dr. Michael Kasha and the late master luthier Richard Schneider..imparting their theories and explanations of sound transmission, plate vibrations, and tonebar placements to produce a better guitar. A thirty year journey to create a blueprint for guitar construction that took a different approach to soundboard construction from the more popular and prevalent fan bracings emmanating from the Antonio Torres Jurado School; a creation of a new soundboard design.
The Kasha/Schneider design..created a bracing pattern spreading out radially from the bridge..a bracing pattern adjusted in lengths and thicknesses! Kasha's tone bars are shaped and positioned to follow the nodal lines of normal sound modes in order to transmit impulses that the strings create. The string vibrations are transferred to the bridge and couples with the vibrating soundboard. Kasha's radial patterns are placed so that their positions will not interfere with the amptitude of sound wave resonances as they develop into patterns.In essence the Kasha/Schneider system is a graded asymmetrical pattern with longer low frequency coupling bars on the bass side of the bridge; graduating to shorter high frequency bars on the treble side. The Kasha bridge is designed with a wide bass side and a narrower treble side to enhance the coupling between two occillators..the vibrating strings...and the vibrating soundboard...coupled though the back and forth and rocking movements of the bridge. For a more thorough explanation see the following:

  1. Physics and the Perfect Sound, Brittanica Yearbook of Science and the Future 1974 Redesigning The Guitar___Science News 1970 98 180
  2. Applied Mechanics and the Modern Stringed Instument-Classical Guitar By M.Kasha and Nicholas Kasha,J.Guitar Acoustics,no.6,104-121 (Sept.82)
  3. Model Physics and the Optimization of the Modern String Instrument Unabridged MS for Britannica Yearbook of Science 1974 1-40
  4. A Perspective On The Relation of Science to Esthetics in Musical Instrument Design and Performance.American Lutherie,oct.1986

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