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steveg

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  1. go to custums and declare the instrument before you leave the US. Other wise you may have to pay duties when you return unles you can prove %100 that the violin was with you when you left the country. !!!! steve
  2. bows can be straightend and rechambered, it is a delicate and expensive operation, that can sometimes damage the varnish on the bow. So it is a trade-off on your desires. The varnish can always be touched up. The bow in Mandy's post may not be of sufficient value to warrant the expense of straightening. steve g.
  3. 13 pound package to Japan, UPS $275.00, United States Post office Express Mail $67.00, and the post office had it there in 24 hours. UPS = Universal Price Shock. steve
  4. I had photos of the back of the instrument prior to shipping, the package was prepared by Mail Boxes etc. (a UPS subsidiary) and marked fragile. I got them to admit that it was possible that the box was dropped, but not damaged. They paid $900.00 but it took 6 months. When the representative came to deliver the check, they asked for the violin, and then stepped on it to ensure that it could not be repaired. steve
  5. So where on earth did the "3 turn" scroll show up as attributed to Maggini ? I for one am very curious about that. steve
  6. That book is best for learning the mechanics and techniques used for building violins by hand, Combined with the construction methods described in Bachman's book, you will get a feel for what really goes into the instrument. It will not help you identify individual makers, but it will help you learn to recognize a hand made violin vs a machine made violin. The makers all develop their own style and identity. They can be classed in a general category, but the only really good way to learn to ID makers is to see the instruments first hand. I will never forget the day my master showed me the very subtle differnces in hand scraped vs. machine rolled purfling. It was something that I had never noticed before, but after learning it, I could pick out a factory fiddle vs a shop instrument in amatter of minets. (when I say factory, I am referring to the hundreds of thousands of cranked out violins that look good on the outside, but are not finished on the inside. These violins are now genuinely old, however that has not increased their value, because they were never any good to begin with) This bit of knowledge opened my eyes to examining all violins for minute details that are as unique as someones face, and you start to recognize different makers by their own traits.
  7. The book "Violin Making as It Is and Was" by Edward Herron Allen has some very good descriptions of the formation and foundation of the "Arch". If you need a glossary of terms, here you go: Arch- refers to the overall height of the plate above the ribs. rise- distance from the edge that the plate starts to change shape and form the arch. scoop- some violins (french in particular) carved a slight trough around the perimiter of the plate, so that the overall effect is that there is a shallow gutter that runs around the entire instrument. slope- how steeply does the plate rise up the arch. some plates may have different arching on different areas. Some Italian and Yugoslovian instruments have a steeper slope and more arch at the breast of the table than at the belly, thus giving the appearence of a very mild slope from the neck to the saddle when viewed from the side. While others have a symetric slope that has the highest part of the arch directly beneath the bridge. for instance: A Guarneri will have a fast rise, while a Strad has a slow rise. Both have a mild slope. An Amati has slow rise but a steep slope to a high arch. A Stainer copy (Tyrolian model) has a fast rise, steep slope, high arch, with shallow scooping. Sebastian Kloz copies are slow rise, deep scoop, steep slope, high arch. Joseph Hill violins are no scoop, fast rise, medium slope, medium arching. Hellmer violins are slow rise, no scoop (ie flat at the edge)steep slope, medium arching. and so on ......and so one.
  8. The shody type of violins Mr. Hersh refers to, are more commonly refered to as "players" instruments. These violins have lived long and usefull lives, but do not have the head turning looks that the majority of dealers want to sell. There are dealers out there who do carry quite a few "players". But they are tight lipped about them. and try to reserve them for certain clientel. I have found that the dealers with the best selection of "players" are typicaly very very intimate with the local symphonie orchestra. Ask around and find out who the muscians in your area prefer to deal with. Then ask that dealer if you can see the less attractive fiddles that are held back from public veiwing. I have personally been involved in the "discovery" of a few fine violins that were in the most bizzare of places, such as you aluded to with the undiscovered Strad. Those types of instruments are out there, and they are a generally a bargain. Granted....most musicians want a violin that looks good and plays better. But when you cast all vanity aside, it is the sound of the instrument that truely matters. steve
  9. there are cleaners and polishers on the market that are little more than mineral spirits or denatured alchohol. They are tantamount to bug remover for cars. I highly recommend "cremona polish" available at "Classic Bows" in San Diego. It is a mixture of ethanol, olive oil, and what appears to be bee's wax or propolis. It will cut through heavy resin buildup, and then seal the open varnish. DO NOT put drops directly on the instrument !!!! Put a drop or two on a clean rag, and keep rubbing untill all of the volatile component is evaporated. The volatile oil wax will then protect the finsih for about two weeks before it is gone. steve
  10. some ways down the page during a discussion about Jalovek, you mention the authors Duane Rossengart and Carlo Chiesa as contemporary violin experts. Where can I find their books ? I have done an author search on Amazon, and Borders and can find no refferences or listings. Thanks in advance. steve g
  11. Ifshin violins, Berkley Stevens violin shop, San Jose Lanini violins, San Jose
  12. if it is in tip top condition, you might expect a shop to offer $800.00. You should try and sell it yourself at a college. $1200.00 would not be unreasonable for a model 230. steve
  13. You do have a point about the feast and famine cycles of selling. But one must admit that a buyer looking for an upscale instrument would save money if they employed your services and bought from one of the respected auction houses. The gentalman with the original post was wondering if $18,000.00 was too much for a Baily. I think it is. As for my margin, I usually mark up 50% above aquistion and repair cost. That keeps the lights on and food on the table. There is not much of a demand for high level instruments where I live. So most of my trade is in the $500.00 to $5000.00 range. Oddly enough though, the musicians that I have met that had very good instruments and were orchestra players, did not realize the value of the instruments they were playing, some had even been taken advantage of price wise. But they enjoyed the sound their instruments, so I guess that is what is most important. steve.
  14. Absolutly!!!!! Especialy when when RETAIL prices are 3 TIMES wholesale prices or auction prices. Go to an auction and buy and certified Baily.. Then have it fixed. Or Go to a dealer and offer 1/2 of what they are asking. That would be fair. There is no reason why dealers need to mark up violins the way they do, when the actual costs of obtaining the instruments are so reasonable. I can understand a 20% markup to cover overhead, but 300% ?! ?! I am surprised that some shops stay in business now that musicians can buy instruments at dealer prices. Or is it that most musicians are gulable and do not care about the price, so long as they have the "Ultimate Violin" for their dollar? A good salesman can sell a refridgerator to an Eskimo above the Arctic Circle. A good violin salesman should be able to sell a "Vuillaume school" Baily to a beguiled musicain for $20,000.00 with no problem. cavet emptor,.......sucker
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