Ottavino Spinett

When I was a boy, I read a book about young Christiaan Huygens, who was to become an outstanding scientist. Young Huygens built a harpsichord for his sister, using pieces of glass for covering the keys. I found it fascinating, would I ever be able to build an instrument? Years later I played recorder and cornetto in an ancient music group and enjoyed the sound of harpsichords and spinetts. But building an instrument remained something far beyond my skills and budget.

So, when I saw at the Renaissance Workshop, an affordable kit for an Ottavino Spinett, based on a true 1595 Ottavino, I decided to try.

It has been a long and humbling process, committing and correcting many mistakes, overcoming frustration and clumsiness.

Base board Balance rail, framework
Jack register Soundboard, bridge
Casework Tuning
Keys Jack, plectrum, bristle
Finally, an imperfect but playable Spinett!