Tablature for diatonic instruments like Mountain Dulcimer

• Aug 21, 2021 - 21:48
Reported version
S5 - Suggestion

Software 3.6.2548021803 / Rev 3224f34.

Add the Instrument - Mountain Dulcimer to score being written. Add linked tablature staff to the Mountain dulcimer. Copy/paste notes from score to tablature. Associated Fret numbers will appear within the tablature automatically. Problem is that the fret numbers are not all correct. In the file attached, the first measure shows the automatic fret callouts as: 5-4-2-0-2-4-0. Desired callouts should be: 3-2-1-0-1-2-0. Mountain dulcimer tuning used in U.S.A. (A440 Hz) is D-A-D. Need a method to recalibrate the macro to create the desired fret number callouts.

Attachment Size
Wilene's_Waltz.mscz 19.56 KB


Frequency Many Once
Status active needs info

Svore neexed. Likely the string data is incorrect ir at least not matching your expectation

Regarding Mountain Dulcimer tablature:

Geoffery1948 wrote

the automatic fret callouts as: 5-4-2-0-2-4-0.
the desired callouts should be: 3-2-1-0-1-2-0 [for] Mountain dulcimer tuning

I think you're pointing out that MuseScore's automatic fret numbers = semitones, but you want the "diatonic" fret numbers ala Mountain Dulcimer, which proceeds W W 1/2 ... depending on the type of fretboard on the dulcimer.

I thought MuseScore had a feature for that ... or someone had created a plugin that translates "semitone fret numbers" to "Dulcimer fret numbers."


In reply to by scorster

Turns out someone wrote such a plugin in May 2021.

See the Mountain Dulcimer chromatic-to-diatlonic tablature plugin by Jeff Rocchio

Sounds like there's one limitation worth mentioning. You should plan to create tablature in an unlinked staff, via copy/paste from the standard staff. I think the plugin's instructions say that running the plugin with linked staves will "garble" the notation on the standard staff.


Title Tablature creation - Instrument - Mountain Dulcimer - error with fret number callouts. Tablature fie diatonic instruments like Mountain Dulcimer
Severity S3 - Major S5 - Suggestion
Status needs info active

In reply to by scorster

I just tried the Mountain Dulcimer chromatic-to-diatlonic tablature plugin by Jeff Rocchio.

The plugin works largely as expected but it also appears to have a couple of issues described in the attached score.

     Mountain Dulcimer Plugin Test 01.mscz

Incidentally, as mentioned in the score, there's a chance that sammik's scordatura plugin could work for diatonic Dulcimer tablature. There a discussion of the Scordatura plugin usage here.

UPDATE 2021-08-23: I've attached a second test score, made hurriedly. I hope it accurately and better illustrates a couple of issues pertaining to:

1) the sound produced by clicking diatonic tablature numbers (after running the plugin)

2) the result that occurs when dragging a diatonic fret number dulcimer tablature to another string (after running the plugin.) Or the inability to drag the fret to another string, when doing so is not a problem in the chromatic tablature.

     Mountain Dulcimer Plugin Test 02.mscz