Celtic Harps of Distinction


Introducing Telenn Ar Menez - Mountain Harp

The harps of Telenn Ar Menez - Mountain Harp* are for those searching for a truly fine celtic harp (also called folk harps or lever harps). Two very important qualities of any harp are its overall tone and projection. Our nylon strung models are designed to provide a lively overall tone with very good projection and none of the "boxed in" sound that some harps possess. They are neither very dark nor very bright in their overall tone, the high octaves being fairly bright while the middle and low octaves are somewhat dark. Thus the entire tonal spectrum is appropriately represented.

Harp Picture LeftHarp Picture AngleHarp Front ViewHarp Right View

The soundboards are made of solid tonewood (mainly Engelmann Spruce). We do not use veneer on the soundboards. While the use of a veneer often provides a pleasing look to the soundboard, and can help even out the resonance and volume of different notes, it also reduces the liveliness and richness of a harp's sound.

We strive to design our harps for a near seamless transition between the octaves, and especially between the nylon core and metal core strings in the bass.

The overall look of these harps is designed to be both graceful and strong, appealing to both male and female players.

Materials Utilized

Woods used include Cherry, Walnut or Maple for the structural frame of the harps. For the soundboards Engelmann Spruce is utilized, although Lutz Spruce (a hybrid of different spruce species), Western Red Cedar and other woods can be used upon request.

The roundback models utilize high quality/high strength bending plywood with a wood veneer for the rounded portion of the soundbox. Bubinga, Santos Mahogany and other colorful woods are utilized for the trim and string ribs.

Sharping Lever Options

Camac or Truitt sharping levers are available on all our harps. These levers are very high quality, easy to use, and produce very true sounding notes. We are currently looking at adding other sharping lever options. If there is a particular brand of levers you would like just let us know and we will do our best to satifsy your request. Also, contact us to determine whether you want a partial or full set of levers, and to obtain the current pricing for these levers and their installation.

Design Features

The soundboards of our harps are triple compound tapered, increasing in thickness from the treble end down to approximately a quarter way up from the bass end, then reducing in thickness again along the bottom quarter of the soundboard, while also reducing in thickness from the center/string rib area out towards the sides. This design is not found on all harps, but the extra time and effort to achieve this compound tapering results in a much more responsive and beautiful sounding harp.

The soundboards utilize an asymmetric design where one side is larger than the other, and the bracing design is also asymmetric. This helps avoid/reduce the occurrence of some notes resonating profoundly while others resonate much less. We think it also gives just a little more "sweetness" to the sound.

Neck Spline

The neck is composed of two, solid wood halves with a high quality, baltic birch plywood "spline" running along most of the length of the neck, but visible only from the bottom of the neck. In addition, carbon fiber is added on one side of this spline. This combination spline greatly helps the neck resist the bending and torsional stresses it experiences from string tension.

 

T-brace


The pillar on our "An Deraouenn" model has a T-brace which helps it resist the stresses it experiences from string tension. In addition, this T-brace adds an aesthetically pleasing, traditional look to the harp.

 


Pillar-Baseplate Joint


The bottom of the pillar is not attached to the bottom of the soundboard but rather is attached to the baseplate, giving the bass notes greater volume and projection than found on some harp designs with pillar/soundboard joins. In addition, having a few inches of soundboard beneath the lowest string allows for greater bass note resonance and volume.

 

Future Design Features

At present our harps are roundback models, but in the near future stave-back and square-back versions will also be available. And in the future various La Tène inspired intarsia/onlay ornamentations will be available at an additional cost.

Warranty

All our harps are warrantied for five years against defective materials and workmanship, and structural failure from normal usage. This warranty does not extend to accidental damage or normal wear and tear. An information sheet is included with the harps detailing actions and modifications to the harp which void the warranty, as well as useful tips for maintaining and caring for your Telenn Ar Menez - Mountain Harp. See the "Warranty" link above for details.

Please contact us with inquiries. We are always glad to answer any questions you may have about our harps. Click on the "Contact Us" link at the top of the page for information on how to reach us.

(*Telenn ar Menez is pronounced "tell in r May nez", the "May" being accented and somewhat nasalized with the lips widened so it is pronounced more at the back of the mouth. And the "nez" is pronounced like neck but with a z sound instead of a k sound).