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Thread: I Need Sitar Knowledge

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    I Need Sitar Knowledge

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    I have an opportunity to purchase a sitar. My brother-in-law bought one when he was in India a couple of years ago, however, he is now moving to a smaller home and has to downsize. He will let me have the sitar at no cost - as long as I pay the shipping.

    I have no idea if the instrument is decent (my in-law can't find a manufacture name, etc.) and he did not buy a case, so it was shipped from India to the US without a case and would now be shipped from L.A. to Wisconsin without a case - and I do know sitar can be fragile.

    I'm guessing he did not buy it from an "instrument store" - more likely from some kind of tourist trap (although he does tend to travel the lesser known routes - and he claims it was not purchased at a trinket store). I figure it's at least worth the cost of shipping - just to mess around with - and if I actually can start to learn and enjoy the instrument I can always try to upgrade in the future.

    I've gone on-line and read what I could to try to understand a good instrument from a poor one and the related maintenance, etc. (hell, even learning what kind of strings and where to get them was a learning experiance) - however, I'm hoping some people here at Home Recording may have some additional insight.

    I appreciate any knowleged you can offer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Xdrummer View Post
    I have an opportunity to purchase a sitar. My brother-in-law bought one when he was in India a couple of years ago, however, he is now moving to a smaller home and has to downsize. He will let me have the sitar at no cost - as long as I pay the shipping.

    I have no idea if the instrument is decent (my in-law can't find a manufacture name, etc.) and he did not buy a case, so it was shipped from India to the US without a case and would now be shipped from L.A. to Wisconsin without a case - and I do know sitar can be fragile.

    I'm guessing he did not buy it from an "instrument store" - more likely from some kind of tourist trap (although he does tend to travel the lesser known routes - and he claims it was not purchased at a trinket store). I figure it's at least worth the cost of shipping - just to mess around with - and if I actually can start to learn and enjoy the instrument I can always try to upgrade in the future.

    I've gone on-line and read what I could to try to understand a good instrument from a poor one and the related maintenance, etc. (hell, even learning what kind of strings and where to get them was a learning experiance) - however, I'm hoping some people here at Home Recording may have some additional insight.

    I appreciate any knowleged you can offer.
    well ...... I used to have one but I don't know how to tell if one's good or not. I think they're all made by small mom and pop type places ...... how do ya' know who's a good builder or not I can't say.
    But for shipping costs it's got to be worth it.
    If you know the secret codes you can get by the mastering boss on level 8.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Xdrummer View Post
    I have an opportunity to purchase a sitar. My brother-in-law bought one when he was in India a couple of years ago, however, he is now moving to a smaller home and has to downsize. He will let me have the sitar at no cost - as long as I pay the shipping.

    I have no idea if the instrument is decent (my in-law can't find a manufacture name, etc.) and he did not buy a case, so it was shipped from India to the US without a case and would now be shipped from L.A. to Wisconsin without a case - and I do know sitar can be fragile.

    I'm guessing he did not buy it from an "instrument store" - more likely from some kind of tourist trap (although he does tend to travel the lesser known routes - and he claims it was not purchased at a trinket store). I figure it's at least worth the cost of shipping - just to mess around with - and if I actually can start to learn and enjoy the instrument I can always try to upgrade in the future.

    I've gone on-line and read what I could to try to understand a good instrument from a poor one and the related maintenance, etc. (hell, even learning what kind of strings and where to get them was a learning experiance) - however, I'm hoping some people here at Home Recording may have some additional insight.

    I appreciate any knowleged you can offer.
    Anything specific you were wondering?
    History has a way of deleting anachronisms. -PKD

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    Put out the call to CrowsofFritz. He knows a thing or two about sitars.
    Quote Originally Posted by Lt. Bob View Post
    But for shipping costs it's got to be worth it.
    Bottom line for me, this. I also used to have one and I wouldn't know a good one from a lame one. But then, I'm like that with pretty much every instrument !

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    *******
    Last edited by fat_fleet; 01-19-2013 at 19:11.
    History has a way of deleting anachronisms. -PKD

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    Shipping an uncased instrument could be EXHORBITANT and possibly fruitless if it's not extremely well protected.

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    Thank you to those who replied. I did find a web site for a distributor of Indian instruments, Buckingham Music, which does provide a lot of good information.

    I talked to my in-law to get a better understanding of the Sitar he has - and he claims he purchased it in 1969 in Bombay, from an actual "music store" - so it sounds like it is an actual instrument vs. a tourist trinket. He cliams it's a 2 rated instrument (which based on Sitar rating is just below a professional model (kind of like a "student model").

    The shipping will be somewhere between $60 and $100 - and he plans to get a heavy duty crate and make sure the Sitar is carefully packed. He plans to remove the tuning pegs (which may be a challenge to figure out how to re-string about 20 strings - but I would have to learn at some point anyway).

    I'm willing to take a chance for $60 - $100 (plus another $35 or so for new strings). I've spent money of much dumber things (the mucho thousands on blow, smoke & booze in the 70s and 80s comes to mind).

    Well at least I know what I'll be spending most of my time doing in 2013 (trying to tune a Sitar).

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    A group that I traveled with and ran sound for had a few sitar songs - The hardshell case for it was very expensive.
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