Back in 2002 I bought an old xylophone which had lain unused for over 20 years. It can only be described as a wreck!

The note bar bed was no longer flat and it caved in severely in the central playing area – in fact it could not be played.

I suspect that it had originally been a flat bed instrument – the naturals and the sharps being in one plane – unlike modern instruments with the sharps raised above the naturals.

However, at some point someone had fitted new wooden end cheeks to convert it to the modern two level layout

Some of the resonators were badly dented and the whole thing had been repaired with aluminium alloy plates bolted together in an attempt to strengthen (and fix solid) the joints in the note bar bed. The resonators were covered in a lacquer which had become dull and sticky over the years.

The resonators, 60 of them including dummies, were coupled together with pop rivets. These had to be drilled out, the resonators cleaned up individually, pressed back into shape, re-riveted back together and finallly painted with Hammerite Bronze.

Work underway, new oak beams for the note bed and frame cleaned up, strengthened and primer applied.

New end cheek fitted and frame resprayed.  Resonators and note bars in place.

Happy in its new home.

Proud owner Dewi gives it a whirl.


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