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Dustin Liu

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About Dustin Liu

  • Birthday 02/27/1980

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  1. Does anyone know his story? Like from who he learned his trade ... This Turin maker caught my eye few years ago in a 2006 Tarisio auction. I like his red varnish and smooth edge work. I knew nothing about him. So I stayed away since beautiful instruments do not necessarily sounds good. Then regularly one or two are released every year in Tarisio auction. It made me wondered if his nephew inherits his shop and tries to make living selling his instruments. Recently I was in New York and tried one of his violin in person. I was surprised by it for its huge volume in every register. However the tone sounded very new and was like never have been played. So I started my research on the internet. Here's description from his nephew http://www.amati.com/music-shops/dealers/dealer/giorgio-seita.html He mentioned he was Piedmont school. There's a wiki page removed https://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Pagine_da_cancellare/Dario_Vern%C3%A8 some people think he is a faked maker? https://www.touristtube.com/photo/py5vWBxl/Dario-Verne-Inscription-in-the-Unfinished-Violin-with-Screws-at-the-Museo-della-Musica-in-the-San-Polo-District-of-Venice There's a violin clamp in Museo della Musica bearing his name. Any idea?
  2. My two pennies. I had the problem and solved after done Kreutzer 13 (sounds like Bach cello suite prelude). Sadly to me fingering is not the only difficulty of this piece.
  3. I guess "Branded to the lower rib" is the reason. I didn't pick this out. Should have done so. I don't know why tarisio often save photo on such important things.
  4. My put is the sweet spot may be different depend on the stiffness distribution of the top. 1mm inside is a empirical rule because we can't move a bassbar like a sound post. Imagine if the sound post has to be fixed. How would you teach your student? I will say something like "3mm behind the foot..."
  5. I have the same feeling. I tried to put bassbars on few integrated junk violins. I found it hardly change the tone characteristic. The only dramatic change is the volume due to higher tension allowed. The shape and thickness of the bar is a puzzle to me. I have read that master maker in the old days can tap the bar and tune it but I am not sure what to tune.
  6. I bought few bows described as good but I did't find them any tonally exceptional. Usually they put good/fine on decorated or tortoise bows. I think for Tarisio, "good" most of the time just means the condition, not tonally. "Interesting" usually describes a speculative item. However last time they put "interesting" on a misspelled strad label violin and posted it as a joke. I asked their representative many times about that but still can't get a satisfied answer. Anyway the best way is be there and play it.
  7. For bows I just quickly scanned through. I only picked what I am interested and forgot unimpressive ones (also very expensive ones). The JJ Martin's bows are very nice (156 and 157). The Vorin's(152) is just not for me. It feels light. I didn't get the chance to try Sartory, Simon, and Kittel. There was a lady trying them. I guess she is a violinist of SF Symphony. Looked like everybody knows her. It was a pleasure listening to her music.
  8. short reviews for some highlighted violins in SF public viewing. 273 A. Guarneri: I was shocked it was not as good as I expected. I don't even think it belongs to the price range. 270 Cordano: As described, a very good one. However the starting bid is already history high. 268: JBV: Not impressed. Is this a baked violin? 274: Pressenda: I think this one is the king of the auction. However never had chance to touch it. There was a guy trying to compare 274 and 275 for hours. It's a pity they didn't show 262 in SF. I am quite convinced it is a Landofi violin by the picture.
  9. I think it is quite closed to Guillaume with V
  10. I am a amateur weekend violin repairer. I suggest you be a woodworker first then a violin maker. Fine woodworking magazine online is a good place to start learning. You can buy your fine woodwork hand tool set (dovetail handsaw, block plane, scraper ...) and start building a dovetail box. If you can build dovetail boxes with precision (near perfect dovetail jointing), you can start working on violins. The reason I don't suggest to start with violin is there's very low error tolerance in violin making. Tone wood are expensive and one small mismatch can ruin the violin.
  11. That's true. I got a cracked JJ Martin bow many years ago and brought it to a famous bow maker in my area for fix. He told me the bow is beyond save. And another violin maker also said similar thing blah blah blah. What I don't understand is it's just a long bottom crack. So as a experienced woodworker, I use titebond to fix it. It is now my favorite bow. Modern wood glue bonding are stronger than wood itself. So for permanent fix like crack and seams I don't think modern wood glue is a bad choice. Who would want to reopen a crack or seam??
  12. Back to the original topic, I have heard from many Chinese makers talking about the tone wood. Most of them think Chinese spruce is too stiff and often produces harsh sound. They can feel it when working on the top. European spruce are softer and easy to work. They provide a better chance to make a dark and colorful sound violin. Also the myth of european wood helps. From a same maker the price is far different depends on the tone wood. Take example of a prize wining maker in ShangHai, his violin in chinese wood sales for 1000 USD but in european tone wood it gose to 3000 USD and more. Although some makers think that with good adjustment like thinning the top can compensate the difference and there are indeed some international medals are won by violins of chinese wood. The myth about european tone wood is not shaken. So the market is pushing in the direction that most makers are using european wood for their top violins while most of the chinese wood violins are workshop violins from apprentices or co-works. I think it is difficult for non chinese-speaking buyers to get a decent chinese violin (even you can get one, it may not be a fair price). Because the export market is more about the low end side. So I don't expect you can get a fine chinese violin on ebay. However there is a chinese ebay-like site TAOBAO. Many violin makers sale their violins directly on the platform, but unfortunately it is in chinese.
  13. Yeah I understand. I am just trying to point out that you probably can't tell a fine Chinese violin with other label by the look. Sometimes they make button crown and repaired peg hole to make believe. I have seen a violin maker copy a Strad. by the poster including all repairs. Provide them detailed picture, you can even ask them to create a copy for you.
  14. Sorry that is a typo. I mean "I don't think it is a fine violin." A fine violin means it is made by a single person with care and large amount of time. I am just a hobbyist of violin collection so I may be wrong... My initial guess is German or French. The button is replaced or reshaped (the repair looks bad) makes it harder to tell. A mass produced french workshop violin in mid 20th century has a hard varnish looks brittle. Most such frech violins will have sharp corners and this one isn't. . The varnish on this one looks soft and thin. You can even see brush marks on the surface(and extra layer of varnish on f-hole edge). So I guess it is a german.
  15. It looks like an early french. With thick pegbox and exaggerated button cut. I will mind if it has serious worm damage. 1000~2000 USD is a comfortable range for me.
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