FiddleDoug

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Everything posted by FiddleDoug

  1. Florescent bulbs used by people who raise reptiles have a really high UV output in both the UVA and UVB ranges. You might check those out instead of BLBs. (I'm assuming that your using the conventional dark purple "black light bulbs".)
  2. I'm not a violin maker, but from my knowledge of wood, I'd say that it's a tough question. The density of woods is somewhat variable, and if you're going for a specific thickness on graduation, the weight will vary somewhat. I'll be interested to see what the makers will say.
  3. There were a lot of these fiddles made without corner blocks, in the Saxony area of Germany and Czeckosolvakia in the late 1800's and early 1900's if you go through the listings of the National Museum of Music (link on my website). You'll see tons of instruments listed like that, with no blocks, false lower blocks, lower blocks but no upper blocks, carved in bass bar. All done to lower the cost!
  4. Keep the picture size reasonable. Large pictures take a long time to load. Make use of links to get to different parts of the website and I prefer to not have the links open a new window. Make sure you can easily get back to your main page. Check my website. It was actually done using MS Word, saving the document as an HTML. Using this method is not quite foolproof. You have to preview the website, because the font size and placement may look a little different than the MS Word document (MS Word has a webpage preview function that makes it pretty easy. Also, check your webpage using differe
  5. I would tend to leave it as is. It would be a lot of work (and expensive) to remove the fingerboard, remove the wedge from the neck, re-do the fingerboard and nut, do a neck pullup, and probably cut a new bridge. All of that without any guarantee of improvement.
  6. Julie, Magnus kind of described it, but no one else really has. The seam between the table(front) and ribs is opened, including freeing the table from the upper block. Thin glue is then placed in the opened joint, the neck is pushed into the correct position, and the table is clamped back down. The result is that the neck angle is increased, the upper block and ribs bend out a little where they meet the front, there is a little less overhang where the front meets the ribs at the neck, and there is a little open space between the neck and the front under the fingerboard. A small filler is add
  7. Very interesting! If you check my website, you'll find a picture of a Fiddl-ette. The body of that instrument is carved from a solid block of redwood.
  8. Perhaps that area was damaged during some previous neck work?
  9. Very interesting read! Please note that the instructions call for smoothing the instrument with horsetail. This is not the same horsetail that we use for bow hair, but rather the plant horsetail. The stems of the horsetail plant have silica crystals in them, and have traditionally been used as "sandpaper" (before sandpaper was invented).
  10. C.B. A generic frog from one of the major suppliers costs about $25 plus shipping. Figure that plus a little fitting cost (shouldn't be too much) and your usual rehair cost of about $40. Should be under $100 total.
  11. I've worked on instruments that had a groove under the fingerboard. If you do it, you should probably extend the groove all the way to the scooped out area on the bridge end of the FB. I was taught no groove when replacing the FB.
  12. Very interesting! It's got a real bass bar, so it was probably a playing instrument. The top is actually much nicer than a lot of factory instruments I've worked on where the bass bar is roughly carved right from the top. The ribs appear to be very thick near the end block? (Is this correct or just an illusion?). They also appear to be continuous right across the end block. Looks kind of like a Chanot style violin that has had corners put on.
  13. Have you changed the strings on it? Strings do wear out and loose a lot. Some players will change them every 6 months or so (maybe more ofter for really demanding players).
  14. I would guess that the just did the set up in NY. Let us know if you track down any info on the violin. It would be interesting to see what the date is.
  15. Check out this source for info on your instrument. http://www.marquisviolins.com/aboutuspage.htm They may have access or info about the NY archives as well as thier LA archives.
  16. Richardz, I've got Dominant strings on two of my other instruments, and they're good. The Synoxa's on a third instrument sound great! I've had much better players than me play them and tell me the same thing. They seem to gravitate towards the one with the Synoxa's. They're on a fiddle from 1884 that I restored. Perhaps I'll put Dominants on it next time around and see how it sounds then! Always a bit tricky to get the right strings to balance and bring out the best in an instrument! Sa for the Wurlitzer shops, I'm not sure how far back they go. Perhaps there are some records somewhere that
  17. I also do radius. Much simpler to only have one template to deal with for the whole length of the fingerboard. It's pretty easy to run a 41 mm radius template the whole length. rather that having several templates to deal with over the length.
  18. I wouldn't try this first on a good instrument. It would also be good to watch someone do it before trying it yourself. Make a note that some instruments have small wooden pins through the front into the end blocks that have to be dealt with. Also, be very careful around the corner blocks so that you don't break the corners off the front.
  19. The Wurlitzer shops in NYC were the premier shops in the US in the 50's or so. Some of the real greats like Sacconi worked there. I did some training with Hans Nebel last year. He was recruted from Mittenwald by Wurlitzer, and he talked quite a bit about the Mittenwald- Wurlitzer connection and the work that was done in the Wurlitzer shops. I suspect that the set-up of these instruments was checked pretty closely at Wurlitzer. As for the strings, I don't know anything about the Piranitos. Tried the Pirastro Tonicas and wasn't really pleased. I've got a set of the Synoxas on an instrument tha
  20. I've worked on several instruments with no corner blocks or false lower corner blocks. If you look in the descriptions of the National Music Museum (http://www.usd.edu/smm/collect.html#bowstring), you'll find that a lot of the late 19th/early 20th century "factory" violins attributed to the "Markneukirchen and/or Schönbach " area have no corner blocks, or no upper blocks and false (hollow) lower blocks. When I'm doing a top off repair on these, I usually tuck a little linen patch and a little glue in the no block corners, just for a little insurance. Many of these instruments also have carved
  21. Barry, You might want to add a couple more lights down lower, or use some diffusers. That will get rid of the shadows from the bridge and tailpiece.
  22. I would stay away from that one. That would be a several hundred $ job with no guarantees to the customer. The bass bar should not be trimmed below standard measurements. Regraduation sholud also include a new bass bar. Too many variables, and it's a major opperation for the instrument. May take several months to settle back down after the work. Other than the fees, you'd be better off trying different types of strings and maybe tweaking the soundpost.
  23. Forgot to mention that the instrument is hanging from monofilament line, and that the reflectore are the $6 clip on workshop lights.
  24. I'm using 4-75 watt "Reveal" (trade name for color corrected incandesant bulbs) bulbs in reflectors placed at four quadrants in front of the instrument. I've got a white fabric background (about 20 inches by 40 inches)about a foot behind the instrument. No flash used. I'm using Photoshop to color correct to the white background. I'd post pictures here, but I'm still having trouble with posting on this site.(I can only use the quick reply). If you go to my website, and go to the last pictures under "What's in the shop" you can see an example. I just got the fabric background, so the other pictu