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David Burgess

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Everything posted by David Burgess

  1. Would you describe your playing style as being closer to that of a "pusher", or a "tickler"?
  2. A 5-string won't tolerate a high C-bout width (because the bow will run into the C-bouts), unless the player only tickles the top and bottom strings, or alternately, uses a bridge curvature flattened so much that the middle strings can only be tickled.
  3. So am I, and so are lots of other people. So what?
  4. Yes, "sound adjustment" skills in the profession are all over the map.
  5. A lot of it has to do with the mass-per-length-unit changing with use. This can happen either from wear (most obvious on aluminum-wound strings which can often be seen to have worn flat on the fingerboard side with extended use), or eventual internal contamination from rosin, body oils, skin detritus, etc.
  6. It can be, with an instrument which has too little mass and/or rigidity for a heavier string, or a heavier playing style of the user. Yes, but not without collateral tonal consequences, which many good players will consider to be negative. Kinda depends on where a particular player's priorities lie.
  7. The position of the eyes of the ff-holes can vary quite a bit. There are many different strategies for determining the centerline of an instrument, but positioning it according to the ff-holes is not one which I have heard highly-touted, by some of the best in our business.
  8. Horrors, it might be possible that the legend of these makers individually going through the forest during a full moon, tapping on trees to assess their tonal properties, might be a myth?
  9. Yes, a high overstand can compensate for a high "neck projection", as far as reducing the downward force on the bridge, not that there aren't other things involved like the increased mass of a higher bridge. I do consider some settling. The first time I used a cross-grain spline in a cello neck, I didn't know for sure if it would have any value or not. So I set the neck in about 10mm high, which had become my custom, since I considered 5-7m,m to be an average drop with either a fresh cello neck graft, or a new cello, over span of about ten years, in a climate with high humidity cycling. About ten years later, same cello, Rene Morel called me on the phone. "Davide, we have your cello in zee shop for a new breege. You has set zee neck too high, and we has to add wood to zee bridge feet". That wasn't my first clue that this was working, but probably my first after ten years of a cello being on the East Coast. But I still set in a new cello neck about 3mm high, because not all subsequent neck drop is due solely to bending of the neck heel. While owners of older instruments may expect rather expensive routine maintenance, including periodic neck resets, it seems that owners of newer instruments do not, so I've put a lot of effort into trying to meet new owner's expectations.
  10. Note: I have corrected my 160 C typo to 260.
  11. Added linseed oil will (or should, unless one manages to mess up the process) alter the oil to resin ratio of the cooked varnish, if the temperature is momentarily brought up to 260 C or higher. However, even if the pre-existing varnish and the oil are mixed together cold, it will still result in a varnish which behaves as if it was softer. Yet another caveat: While linseed oil can be a good initial plasticizer or softening agent, it will eventually get hard and brittle with enough time, or exposure to UV light. Another overly-axiomatic statement, which is not necessarily true. Perhaps it's true for you, at your experience level.
  12. A quick Google search didn't tell me much at all. Rosin, and neutralized rosin taste pretty much the same to me. Perhaps I need to attend more wine tasting classes, so I can learn to better discriminate between "tropical" and "island fruity"?
  13. One knows that the waste stream is free of salt when.......?
  14. Yes, neutralizing an acid with a base will generally result in the production of some salt, but how does one wash the salt from the metal rosinate? How does one know when the resin is half-saponified, fully saponified, or over-saponified? Does all rosin (including cooked rosin) have the same acidity?
  15. Shopping around for bows which are already in playing condition allows you to audition and try them, without risking the money you would spend on just putting this one into a condition to evaluate.
  16. What??? How could such a thing possibly work without pages and pages of calculations, and checking to see what everybody on Facebook and Twitter thinks about it?
  17. It's arguable whether some of the futzing saves time or not. Probably some of it does, and some of it doesn't. Depends. There are good makers who use a lot of jigs and fixtures, and good makers who can accomplish similar outcomes with a much smaller set of jigs and tools.
  18. I too use a plane with a slightly curved sole for planing fingerboards. Not that it is strictly necessary, but it can save a lot of time if one planes a lot of fingerboards.
  19. I think it's a neat design, so was willing to give it a try. But I found the grip to be far from excellent. More like problematic, unless a player likes a cello that gets shorter and shorter during a performance.
  20. Or one could just put a good squeeze on the edges of an arched top to increase the distance between the top and back for easier insertion of the soundpost.
  21. I'm pretty sure that most of the Oberlin Acoustics Online Seminars become available on youtube, eventually. But I would consider it a good investment to become a VSA member, to be able to ask and have questions answered during the seminar. For me, it has been pretty good bang-for-the buck. Sure, there are people who posture as "knowing everything already", so they probably wouldn't be much into watching or learning anything from these presentations.
  22. I hope most of you watched the Oberlin Acoustics Online Seminar presentation today. Lots of the things which have come up in this thread were addressed and discussed. Sam Zygmuntowicz was the main presenter, but there was a lot of input from some other really successful makers, as well as from some highly respected fiddle acoustics researchers.
  23. Cool, if you can negotiate a contract which pays you for your standby time. If you were being payed per mm of soundpost movement, I might need to object, since it wouldn't be the best thing for long-term health of the fiddle.
  24. If the trap door is to remain secret (which it would have zero chance of being able to do), of what use would it be to the better sound adjusters, who have never needed a trap door?
  25. Sounds OK to me, but I wouldn't recommend retrofitting one on a Strad, or any other instrument which derives value from being in somewhat original condition.
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