The purpose of a sharping lever is to raise the pitch of note by a semitone. You can have a partial set of levers or up to a full set of sharping levers installed on your harp. We recommend to have initially sharping levers on at least Cs and Fs which enables you to play in three major keys (C, D, G) plus three relative minor keys. More sharping levers can always be added later on if you have a need to play in more key signatures.
With the minimum lever configuration (C and F levers ) you can play about 90% of harp music published or arranged for harp. At Handverks Music we carry about 35 of the popular harp music books and methods.
About 20 years ago the LOVELAND sharping lever, designed by Robert Bunker of Loveland, CO was considered the best sharping lever on the market. It was far better than the commonly used blade lever or other flawed flip-up levers available at that time. People said the LOVELAND was "the cat's meow". But yet - there was and still is a problem with the LOVELAND lever because of the reduced vibration when the lever is engaged (or sharpened). There is always a better mouse trap to be invented !
Along came Betty Truitt, a professional harpist, engineer and inventor, who was not satisfied with any of the sharping levers available. Betty set out experimenting with various lever designs. It was about ten (?) years ago when she succeeded in designing that "better mouse trap". Her invention is now widely considered the very best sharping lever available.
The TRUITT lever is the result of a long period of research and development with detailed design, planning and experimentation. The new lever is machined by state-of-the-art computerized, numerically controlled equipment to tolerances of .003 to .005 accuracy. It is made of hard brass with 24 karat gold-plating which will retain its glowing appearance over the years.
The TRUITT lever* has virtually no loss of vibration when engaged (sharpened) whereas the Loveland or other levers lose 10 -20% of tone (vibration) over an open string. But the TRUITT lever is more expensive ($24.50 for the TRUITT vs. $18.00 the LOVELAND - installed). In spite of the extra expense many harp makers and dealers (including Handverks Music) now recommend the TRUITT levers and sell them to their customers at cost without markup, simply because TRUITT advantage makes happier harp players. * Patent: US 5796020
The TRUITT Sharping Lever