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Jeffrey Holmes

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About Jeffrey Holmes

  • Birthday July 23

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    Ann Arbor/Tecumseh
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  1. 1) I will not take credit for the idea, as I'm pretty sure others used it before me (the idea had to come to me somewhere or through someone), but I have been using (the same piece of) shrink tube on my setter for almost 40 years. I mentioned it and provided a photo on this old thread from 2010 on soundpost setting. link 2) Hahahahaha! Nice image! I do know some colleagues who like to put a small drop of water on the slot with a brush though.
  2. As I heard a good friend of mine say to an exuberant violin repair geek once when they wanted to make an "improvement" in a nice old fiddle: "It's probably a good idea not to think you're the first genius to be inside that violin." Some traditions are traditions because they've been proven reliable and effective.
  3. There was a product marketed by a German company as "Luthiers polish" in the states about 25 years ago which I felt did a better job than Super Niko does... and left no white residue (which I've seen with Niko). it's not on the market any longer, but I wish I knew the formula for that. A few colleagues have tried to reproduce it but it's never quite "right". Shar made a version, but same problem. To bad. Handy for less expensive instruments and very good for specific limited uses on expensive ones.
  4. "Here’s a beaten up violin I was given. I think it’s spirit varnish I put a pin head drop of alcohol on and the varnish dissolved. As can be seen it’s very grubby how should I go about cleaning this, and hopefully have a nice looking violin. As can be seen it’s not an expensive violin..." It depends... Is the "dirt "ground into the varnish or does it sit above it? First, you'll have to determine what to do with that open crack (as Jacob pointed out) and the damage at the edge. In general, when cleaning a fiddle, I will start with the least invasive solvent, test a small area to make sure it's only removing what I want it to, and move up the list carefully if required (testing small areas as I go, starting with soft cloth dampened with distilled or deionized water for example, moving to qtips for the tighter areas). Warning; even these H2O solvents can harm some finishes. If the "dirt" has a rosin component, H2O solvents may not get you far, but if the dirt is water soluble, you may see results. Artificial spit is available through some conservation supply companies (no, I'm not joking). The enzymes may have a positive effect. There are also some soaps that, used correctly, can be effective and relatively safe for most varnishes and effective for rosin buildup. Vulpex is one (I believe it was formulated for use in cleaning parchment and leather)... It is not used "straight", but rather mixed with stoddard solvent or high grade mineral spirits at about 1 part soap to 20 parts solvent, or distilled water (similar dilution... but that soap mixed with water is more aggressive, so I avoid usually rely on stoddard or mineral spirits). Again, test in a small area before proceeding. If you use Vulpex, I'd advise using nitrile gloves (it's on the alkaline side of things) and neutralizing the surface by wiping with clean cloth damped with distilled water (as you'll already have tested distilled water, right?) to neutralize any soap left on the surface immediately following the cleaning of a section. I'd also recommend good ventilation or other safety devices if mixing with mineral spirits (solvents aren't great for you). Going up the ladder from there I'd not recommend for a novice... and if anything you try softens the varnish on the test area, discontinue with that substance. Good luck, tread carefully.
  5. Inside a rather pure Giorgio Gatti of Turin. I've not seen a form of this in a Farrotti nor Antoniazzi (had two Riccardos open on my bench last week), but that doesn't mean it didn't occur.
  6. My wife uses them for her guitar and they've been pretty steady as long as she keeps the case closed after taking the guitar out for use. I also work with a college that bought a quartet of very nice old classic Italian instruments that have used them to successfully battle (so far) the widely varying humidity in the school building. They don't last all that long it seems, but some say they are "rechargeable". Haven't tried that personally. Nice if they were. They aren't cheap.
  7. Yup... really stinky fitting one at the top interior of the box, but certainly more stable. Agree this may not be the instrument for which that operation would be a wise choice... and for a first timer might require therapy after attempting it. I sometimes cut off and install the small end first through the larger hole with the bushing on the end of an awl, then install the peghead (larger) side. Similar trimming savings inside the box, less removal of the exterior cheek wall on the small side of the hole than a reverse installation would require.
  8. Oh man... that song went through my head when I read Kimmo's post too.
  9. Awwww... Their mini block plane is kinda cute.
  10. Hi Nathan; For "American glue" I have 192, 251 and 315 on hand. the 192 and 315 are M & H high clarity, The 251 is from Eugene Thordahl. 192 is probably what I go to most... and no mater what I'm using I make it fresh for anything critical. I did have a bad experience with one batch from Thordahl, but I imagine there are number of reasons that might happen and many colleagues use his glues regularly. I've also tried two Japanese glues (only available there as far as I know; can't order them here); A deer hide glue we had exposure to at Oberlin (nicknamed "Bambi Glue") and a hide glue (that I rather like so far) that a colleague brought me (really nice to work with). I know David has done some great testing with glues... and Christian Shabbon has done some pretty in depth testing with various strengths of hide glue. I believe that he found the higher gram strength were not as effective with the maple to ebony bond when glueing on fingerboards... and maple to maple bonding had interesting results too. He may have some of this info on his website (I haven't checked).
  11. I agree. Good for strong cleanly glued cracks if you're set up to get clamps in place quickly. Not enough working time for many other operations.
  12. 1) I stated fact. I have never seen or heard of a Loveri reaching the level that you claim Dmitry quoted. I, by the way, am only going by your claim of his valuation listing. That does not mean that he, if he said it, is incorrect or that I place myself above him or anyone else. I've just never seen it... and... as Robert Bein used to say; "If I'm correct 99% of the time that means I've blown one out of a hundred". Who blew it this time and by how much is really unimportant. The market makes it's own rules. For what it's worth, I really don't give a damn if you've heard of me or not. My colleagues (most whom I'm sure you know of) know what I know and what I do not... and I'm happy to let them be the judges of my competence. 2) There has been an international wood trade since the colonies. While it may be typical for makers to use wood from local sources, it is certainly not a hard and fast rule... and, I doubt you will find an expert or an appraiser (who can tell the difference) who would value a Postiglione made from a German box at the same value as one made start to finish in the workshop. If you do, run. They can still go for a significant sum, but stop short of the purer ones. 3 & 3a) Your own posts illustrate the problem. There is a reason new members can only post 2 posts a day until 10 approved posts are reached. 4) In my opinion, you've been as snarky as it gets. What have you really contributed? Insults? 5) I've been contributing and moderating this board for 20 some odd years as a volunteer. I've seen members come and go... and many stay or return. Complexion changes constantly, but it's an open forum... and that comes with the territory. I generally enjoy the members here and I do not use this place to promote my business. I don't need to. You obviously feel you don't need to participate in a civil manner, so I'll make your decision to go for you. Best of luck, Jeffrey
  13. I didn't "allude" to anything except my own experience(s). I said " I've not heard of a Loveri of any type fetching what Mr Gindin quoted (although I suppose it's possible)" I also suggested he be contacted with photos. Clear enough? I believe most would consider this a helpful suggestion. I know, have known, and have respected Dmitry for many years (since the early '90s)... and knew his father as well. You misspelled Dmitry's name, BTW. ...and nowhere did I refer to the origin of the wood itself in relation to value. Do you have any other snarky comments regarding my post? Also, in case other members are following, your IP address AND your rather distinct email name match Bowhunter. Only the email server itself varies. I believe you are disingenuous at best.
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