Ayasugi Vertical Lines

On page 36 item 2. says there are only “7 visible lines” However the picture above the note in 1. shows 8 lines. the two photos in 4. and 5. also show 8 lines…

The number of lines depends on whether you are carving the short side of the dou (7 visible lines) or the long side of the dou (8 visible lines). Hence the different number. Don´t worry, it took me some time to figure it out but p. 36/ 2. describes it correctly.

Just to make sure, in my book (version from July 2018), the first picture on p. 36 should be a short side with 7 lines, then a long side 8 lines, p. 37 long side 8 lines, and then short side with 7 lines.

Hope this helps! :slight_smile:

Thanks much Stefanie for your explanation. That helps. I have the 4th ed of the book and received it this week from Amazon. I just bought a used Tsugaru from Japan that has a torn skin- see photos in the repair section. Is it advisable or possible to add Ayasugi after the Tsugaru is assembled? How much does the Ayasugi help the resonance? Should I add paint to lacquer if there is none on the inside? Any suggestions about adding an electronic pick up for a guitar amp?

I will need to wait for the Tsugaru to be shipped to me.

First of, congratulations on getting a tsugaru shamisen!

Regarding the ayasugi, I think it would be very difficult to add it when the dou is glued together. You do need some space to move a chisel around. It would be a different situation if the dou would come apart, then one might consider adding the ayasugi. Personally, I wouldn´t unless you are a pro woodworker :slight_smile:

Does ayasugi add or help resonance? I have no experience. From what I have read, it seems that there are three kinds of opinions on this matter -

  1. it does help (there are even studies with measurements and graphs)
  2. It doesn´t do anything, it´s just a show of higher craftsmanship and adds value (Though not always, as there are plenty of instruments where the ayasugi is carved by a machine)
  3. the truth is somewhere in between

In short, if your shamisen doesn´t have ayasugi, it does not mean it´s worse or worse sounding. :slight_smile: Oh, and you don´t need to add lacquer inside if there is none.

About adding an electronic pick up - try to post your question in “Playing/Techniques”, hopefully you´ll get some answers there!

Good luck and most of all, enjoy your new instrument soon!

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