Stumpf fiddlea.k.a. Pogo-Cello, pogocello, Polka Cello, Poco Cello, stump fiddle, boom-ba, boom bass, bumbass, Hum Strum, devil's violin, Teufel Stick and others. Usually these are made from shovel handles, hoe handles, pallet lumber, old ski's, cookie or cracker tin boxes… generally a pretty casual construction. I thought I would try making one on purpose, making as much of it myself as possible, and hopefully it wouldn't look like something the dog dragged home. I don't really know how to play one of these but I always wanted to make one. I wanted it to look well constructed and to be something that wouldn't get beat up or fall apart when it was used.
I wasn't able to find a long spring. I did obtain a ½ inch diameter screen door spring, which was 18 inches long. I felt it would be too difficult to stretch to a 36-inch length and would be much too tight.
I tied it to the top of a stepladder and hung a bucket of water on the other end to stretch it to the required length. Then I gently heated it with a propane torch to cause the spring to relax. After it cooled I removed the bucket and measured the length. I did this a couple of times until the spring was 30 inches long. I guessed that a 30-inch length stretched to 36 inches would work for my purpose.
I wrapped the horn with plastic electrical tape and used epoxy to cast the shape of the horn.
Stainless steel food serving trays were used instead of the usual pie pans or cookie boxes, which usually become pretty beat up and dented. These stainless trays are fairly thick and much more durable. They should take a pretty good beating.
A series of holes were punched around the outside edge and the trays joined with machine screws.
The tambourine was sized to fit around the main shaft and I used steel jungles.
The tambourine was made from ½" Baltic birch plywood.
A threaded rod coupler was epoxied into the bottom of the main shaft for attachment of the rubber bumper.
I cut a handhold at the top of the shaft the size of my hand, which provides a comfortable grip. This ended up weighing 9.3 pounds as the stumpf fiddle and 11.4 pounds as the devil's stick so I wanted a good grip.
There is a a video series on this sumpf fildle. Click play below to see all
Back to my Woodworking website.