This 10 -course lute from 1980 had a loose bar and had developed a low action.
It is always a joy to get a nicely made lute in for repair and adjustments. This is my first encounter with a lute made by Stephen Barber. It was made in 1980. As of all Barber and Harris lutes this one is also made of beautiful woods. The ribs are deeply and evenly flamed in a lively pattern, the finish and colour is just perfect. To my eye this lute is most certainly based on the Hans Frei lute in Warwick County museum, England. I got this information confirmed by lutenist Henning Hoel in France, who has a similar made by Stephen Barber. This lute had to be opened to re-glue the loose inside bar securely to the belly (spruce top). On the job , I had to replace two other bars, the first one had been bent causing a dip in the belly next to the bridge changing the playing action. This lute was very well made so i suspect the cause to this deformation may have been a too high string tension at some moment? Setting up this lute to perfection again meant changing this bar but also introducing a sleight lengthwise curve to the top to give enough space under the strings for a a good right hand plucking technique.