Gadulka Wrench

How did a drum maker and gajda player start making gadulka tuning wrenches? Because I respect fine instruments and was horrified to watch gadulka players in Bitov groups tune their instruments with crescent wrenches (or worse). So, with design help from gadulka players Chris Carlile-Kovacs and Dennis Godfrey, I developed this wrench to be strong enough to turn a reluctant peg with a wood surface in contact with the peg head so it wasn't damaged in the process. These wrenches fit on the pegs like an old fashion clothes pin (down from the top). One thing that isn't obvious in the picture is that the top is rounded so you can easily push in a peg that is riding out.


These wrenches should be custom fit to your instrument. Send me a tracing of your thickest and thinnest peg (like the one to the right) and I will shape the throat of the wrench so all the pegs will fit.


Those of you who are not Balkan musicians are now wondering "What's a gadulka?". It's a vertically held bowed instrument related to the medieval rebec. It has 3 played and a variable number (up to 10) sympathetic strings that resonate and provide a complex harmony / drone sound. I have nothing but the highest respect for anyone that even tries to play a gadulka, let alone anybody that gets beautiful music out of one. The reason one needs this wrench is that the pegs all stick out of the back of the head and are usually too close together to get your fingers on. Traditionally the pegs are tapered but the holes are drilled so they are cylindrical. The peg is then crush fit in, often making them very hard to turn.