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Posts: 316
Reply with quote  #1 
HI, one of my students came over for his weekly lesson yeterday. When he was walking down th stairs, he slipped and broke the gourd on the carpeted stairs, and the sitar was in his padded case. So the back half was cracked really badly. Pieces hanging off, in and out. We went and played the whle lesson untill he noticed the cracks. So in a rush I called element-82, and he suggested white glue. Just put the pieces on with glue. SO I did, and even though you can see the cracks still, it's holding and the sitar is in good shape.

I have a question if anyone can answer. Everything on my old sitar had really thick parts and wood, tabli. My old Bina used to be banged against the corner of tables, hit on walls, accidentally dropped on cement. Only scratches occured, nothing ever broke. My students gourd was very thin and smashed in an instant. Is this a feature of high and low quality sitars. he spent about $900 US on his, mine was a Bina student. So what is it. Thin=expensive Thick=no good?

Sadaqat chup nahi sakti banawat ke usolon
se, Ki khushbu a nahi sakti kabhi kaghez ke phoolon se

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Posts: 1,937
Reply with quote  #2 
Ouch! Let that be a lesson to all! Transport the instruments in a case or at least "take the bullet". Elmer's glue works fine. To eliminate the glue lines, the gourd bits should have been held together with tensioned "Scotch" brand 2" wide clear packing tape. DO NOT use any other brand!!! Well, onward. Gourds. The Calcutta gourds - Hiren Roy, Hemen, Naskar all use alarmingly thin gourds. I've owned them all over the years which is why I'm not a big fan of the Calcutta inventory. These gourds are set to the instrument, then coated with wall plaster (I'm not kidding) and then painted. The often seen result is paint coming off to show the plaster underneath. I've got the photos to illustrate this. The Pandapur, Miraj and Sangli gourds are much much thicker and have a better outside surface, such being that there is no need to hide the cheese with paint. French polish Really shows it all off. So, to answer your question referring to gourd thickness - thick = quality regardless of brand name.
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