Vintage zippy zither

If you have a string instrument of any kind that needs fixing, a mistake you made in building a new instrument that you need to "disappear," or a question about the ethics of altering an older instrument, ask here. Please note that it will be much easier for us to help you decide on the best repair method if you post some pictures of the problem.
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Kelly knox
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Jan 08, 2019 2:13 pm

Vintage zippy zither

Post by Kelly knox »

Hi, I’m hoping someone can help with this.....I have a zippy zither that has two broken strings. I purchased 11 gauge guitar strings to try to replace them but the bridge is soldered and I can’t get into it. I think I hear what could be an internal nut rolling around on the inside but as I mentioned...I can’t get to it. Is anyone familiar with this instrument or is anyone able to offer any ideas? I bought this as a gift for a friend who had one as a child and I really would like to give it to her in working condition. Any help will be very much appreciated. Thanks in advance and Cheers!

Mark Wybierala
Posts: 469
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2012 10:14 am
Location: Central New Jersey

Re: Vintage zippy zither

Post by Mark Wybierala »

I had to google "Zippy Zither"...
I really don't understand what the problem would be with replacing strings on this. Any reasonable music store ought to be able to address this and probably do it as a walk-in service -- real inexpensively. If you get any other response, take it to another music store. My guess is that it probably uses loop-ended strings like on a banjo or mandolin. A good photo of your exact problem might get you some help here.

Clay Schaeffer
Posts: 1433
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2012 12:04 pm

Re: Vintage zippy zither

Post by Clay Schaeffer »

If they soldered the bridge cover (which should be removable?) you could try heating and remelting the solder to remove the cover.
Another possibility might be to slip the (loop end) strings between the front edge and bridge cover and try to catch the nut that they hook over. It looks like it uses a variation of the Preston tuner for tuning. If the nut has come off the screw you will probably need to remove the cover, but if that was the case I think the screw would have fallen out.
There are pictures on the net which might help you see how the bridge and tuners work.

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