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  1. Wow, you guys are quick to respond. Thanks Mr. Hersh and Mr. Stancel for the help. I was starting to feel like i was going looney remembering guilaume and not nicolas. Mr Stancel: Does your new Maline have a three part (silver-ebony-silver) button like the one that Tarisio's Auctions has? I think mine had a solid silver button and maybe a parisian eye but i can't really remember. Is that possible or would it have been too early? Anyway, thanks. Paul Teasdale
  2. Hello. I am studying violin making in England and after reading that,I asked around to people who would know about X rays.I have been told only a nuclear power plant would do the job... Thanks
  3. Hi My wood is English sycamore,it was cut in feruary 99. I put three of the beetles in a jar with a bit of wood and they all climbed on it. I found drawings of woodworm beetles,none of them looks like mine.Mine have a tiny head compared to the body,and the body is sort of round shaped,maybe 3/4 mm diameter. thanks for your interest.
  4. Hi everyone I got a tree a few months ago,and I am a bit worried about small bugs running on it. They are brownish,about 1 and a half mm long,a small head and don't move unless I touch them. Can anyone tell me if they are going to lay worms into my wood? Thanks,Paul
  5. Hi I tried a few times to make varnish with Michelmann's receipe,it always turned out completely opaque. Does anyone have any idea on the subject? Thanks
  6. Arn't certain people caustic, crude and not socially skilled - No kidding ! : Fine instruments often have very thin, delicate bridges that are quite capable of tipping over. : In reality, I do not have this problem, the previous owner of my violin did. I did not hold that against selecting this instrument since it has superior tone! Perhaps he or she should have taken up the "ukelin" [sic]. : : You have got to be kidding, you mean to tell me that you are for real!!!!!? Perhaps if you take up the Ukelin you can rest assured that you won't have to deal with that problem again. : : : No matter how careful one is with bridge adjustments, at some point or other everyone (OK, nearly everyone) has a catastrophic bridge collapse. : : : Is there any kind of E string fine tuner that doesn't manage to ding or gouge the top plate in a collapse? : : : Does anybody have and like the Midget 2 prong adjuster (no. 1230) shown in the Shar catalog?
  7. Is there going to be a gathering ? If so when and where?
  8. : Hi I have a decent french cello and just found out that the soundpost isn't completely parallel to the top(or wherever it is supposed to be parallel to). It seems like it's just a little bit angled, and I was wondering if this is making a big difference to the : sound of my cello. Would it be necessary to take it to a luthier(3 hour driving) and have it set up properly? How much difference can the setting of the soundpost make? : Thanks in advance for any responses, : Justin Justin, I think the correct word is perpendicular. If the sound post is not positioned correctly is will impact projection. If the soundpost is at an angle it may be indicative of a problem with its overall lenght . I have 2 basses which I am repairing the backs due to soundpost cracks. This is expesnive and driving 3 hours may be cheap if you wind up doing it anyway. Like the tv ad for oil filters says "pay me now or pay me latter". Have a reputable repair person look at the instrument - unless you don't care about it. Paul
  9. I have a unit which, due to prior neck repairs, requires replacing the upper block. I have the block out of the unit and the bouts cleaned up. Now I need to make the block. The original one appears to have been make from popular. I have a fairly complete contour on one side . Anyone have any suggestions as to how I should approach this repair. Thanks, Paul
  10. : Does anyone know how sensitive violins are to temperature changes during shipping? If you go from several degrees above freezing to 20 degrees or so below freezing and then back (e.g. shipping by air transport) will this hurt the violin? Is it better to ship by ground? (Of course, by ground, your violin could go from a warm warehouse to a freezing cold transport truck anyways.) : Please, I'm having a violin shipped to me and I need some expert advice soon. Thanks. : Brandon. Hi Guy, Please don't think that I am an expert - just a repair guy with an opinion. The coeeicient of thermal expansion will differ for the various wood involved. I think the key ekement is the slope of the heat up and cool down transients. It is all relative and probably the most critical is to have a gradual temperature change . This is beyond your control so have the instrument shipped insurred irrelevant of the mode of transportation. There are some things that could be done like loosen the strings, drop the sound post have it packed good so mechanical shock is minimized. Thermal shock is beyond your or anyones control. good luck Paul
  11. : Does anyone have a good diagram of a violin posted : on the web? : or can you scan one for me? : (or more than 1) : the measurements and ratios would be nice : thanks : mimi Why not use a reference book - like Strobel (sp?) Paul
  12. : You didn't ask, but I'll tell you in advance that you'd better really be sure it's a piece of junk, because ANYTHING you do to change the varnish is going to considerably reduce it's value, no matter how bad you think it is now. I assume you're going to turn it into a lamp or something, because once it's been revarnished no violin dealer or knowledgable player is going to want to touch it with a ten-foot pole. If you have a student grade instrument and the table has gouges in it which are down to bare wood - did you ever scrape the entire table. I have done it on a few instruments and they really looked great (relatively speaking). So if one starts with a piece of junk not much can be done to ruin it. What do you think? Paul : : : : : I have a cheap Strad-copy I want to : : : strip the finish off of, restain and varnish. : : : Anyone with some thoughts, advise : : : or who knows of a good book : : : on the subject. : : : thanks.
  13. : Thank you very much for the detailed instructions. It was like actually watching a bow being rehaired...it obviously helped that I seen the rehairing before. I must admit I was surprised to get such a reply and I appreciate it very much. I guess there are so many bow-makers in the USA that you stoped worrying about competition. It's not the same in other parts of the world. My uncle, I mentioned, is the only man doing repairs on stringed instruments in the whole country...the sad fact is that he hasn't got as many customers as he had before the aggression on Bosnia. None can live of aprox. 20 violin players in the country. I had a chance to engage in violin repairing too, at a well known school, but like my uncle did many years ago I decided to get a university diploma first. : Sometimes I ask my self how can people live of repairing (or making) violins at all? First there are not so many artists in one region who need rehairing every three months and second, everybody takes care of his instrument so they don't have to be repaired often. You could start making your own violins but then you need three months to make a piece of art that costs about $1000. If the most famous schools of violin making in Europe are going broke what will happen to less known violin makers like my uncle who haven't : had the chance to earn a certificate? He started to learn the job by assisting his teacher, a well known maestro in former Yugoslavia. He had to earn his teachers confidence in that matter that the maestro could put his name behind the work my uncle did. This is the toughest kind of school there is. After maestro Nikolic's sudden death my uncle inherited the atelier but was left without a certificate of a violin maker. I don't know about USA but in Europe the certificate of a violin maker is a matter of survival in the sea of : traditional violin making schools. : My uncle dried the tears of hundereds of artists by making the damage on cello's, violin's, viola's disappear and he can fix almost anything a man can damage on an stringed instrument (literally). I can say because I saw it my self. But he could never make ends meet if he hadn't had a job, totally different from violin making. Having no customers for this region and no certificate to be taken in consideration for international work he has to do this other job (a very responsible and time taking job) so that only from time to time he repairs an instrument if it is a challenge for him. Recently he repaired a totally unusable cello of a russian artist. The poor Russian cried of joy when he saw his cello again without any sign of damage. But when it comes to the simple things like rehairing a bow (even mine)...no way you're going to make that man light the candle, melt the wax and tight the twine Now he keeps telling me how he will make a new atelier when he goes to retirement, and how he will finally finish his Zubin Mehta violin. This violin is one of his own works. When he presented it to Mehta they decided to put Mehta's autograph on the corpus of the violin. : I will have to learn to do the simple reapairs my self before he starts using the wood he is drying for the last 20 years. Maybe he wants it like that to see if I really want to engage in this thankless handicraft. I know one thing for sure: he would kill me if he knew I was writing in public about his problems : I have no choice because I have to play a concert next summer with new bow-hair I hope : Maybe it would be interesting if you and others could tell what you think the future of a violin maker, repairman or bow maker looks like. It is also an interesting issue for the next century and for young people like me who wish to remain tradition. I have friends who continued their musical education in different parts of the world and I heard different experiences. It would be great to hear what people of other coutries and continents think about the profession of a violin/bow maker. It could help find solutions or at least define the problems that should be solved. : Finally, are we going to see (more) violin making schools being closed after all these centuries? : Nihad : Sarajevo, B&H : : Hello: Well...in USA we don't have secrets...just different methods. : : I assume you started rehairing from the frog. Have twine...I use unwaxed dental floss...powdered rosin...I make my own from old cakes....; a well fit wooden plug...just room enough left for hair to come around; : : super glue, and a flame source. : : Wet the hair, put frog on bow, leave a few mm of space from frog to fully loose position, comb hair twice to tip, hold bundle securely, work-in a little powdered rosin, holding bundle flat, tie off, 1-2 mm past mortice...I use two half hitches, four turns, then two half hitches...KEEP TWINE TIGHT...cut floss 3mm too long, melt ends of floss to a little ball, flatten with wet finger before the ball cools, then cut hair 1 to 2 mm past the floss, seal with super glue. Remove frog from bow, put in you jig, then comb hair toward tip...keep bundle parrallel to stick, turn hair over, remove comb...keeping hairs in position, then, put tie-off in the mortice, then put the plug in...replace frog on bow, tighten and allow to dry. Several tries at right length and parallel hairs will become the norm! : : Good luck : : Al Stancel : : PS: The more answers you get, the better you can pick the procedure to fit you...hope you get lots of response! i THINK THE PERSON COULD SHOW A LITTLE MORE RESPECT FOR HIS UNCLE
  14. : Hi Alison.. : I would avoid winding the string such that it ends up pressing (rubbing) against the side of the "peg box" since this could (read can!) lead to a jammed peg or worse... a cracked/broken peg box ... which I don't think you want! : Have fun ... Alan I agree with Alan. Perhaps the pegs could use some attention. Paul
  15. : Measure the string length from the nut to the bridge. It should be 13 3/4 to 13 7/8 inches. The sound post must be 1/8, to 1/4 inch BEHIND the foot of the bridge, other wise, some one is pulling your chain BIG TIME. : steve Arn't your numbers reflective of a 4/4 ? Is the instrument in question that size? Paul
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