FiddleDoug

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Everything posted by FiddleDoug

  1. I spent 34 years as a chemist. If you haven't actually measured the pH, you can't make assumptions. Sodium Nitrite is an oxidizer, and it's very possible that you are oxidizing the dye to a different color rather than it acting as a pH indicator. It's also possible that as the nitrite reacts, it might form Sodium Hydroxide as a byproduct.
  2. Back in the 60s or 70s, we had a local violin maker, who would have making classes on Saturday mornings. I know two local shop owners who attended those classes as teens. I helped with the estate sale after his widow died many years later, and I acquired two instrument like that, that were left in the shop. I might suspect that this could have come from something like that. Simple label with name and date kind of fits that.
  3. I seriously doubt that! In my experience, bulging ribs are caused by plate shrinkage, not from what someone has done.
  4. " I would however shorten the rib that is bulging off the bottom block first " Ditto on that!! That's a bigger problem than a non-original saddle.
  5. Tell her that it is normal for the string, and that even if she did get some marks on her peg, it's not an issue. Also mention your 20% restocking charge.
  6. That would be Chanot, not Chanon.
  7. Exactly how hard do you play your instrument to make them heat up?
  8. I totally agree with Jacob! If you're working on instruments yourself (without any training), you have to realize that we don't do this by instinct, or gut. In most cases, it's mostly about getting the proper measurements and configuration. A good start for that is getting something like the book: "Useful Measurements For Violin Makers". That will give you information about neck angle, bridges, nuts, etc.. This stuff isn't trivial, and a lot of us have many hours of professional training. If you want to escape from your "remote area" for a couples of weeks, in a normal, non-Covid yea
  9. Adding corner blocks is very unlikely to do anything for you. Adding an interior breast patch won't help with the area on the outside, unless you do as Nick suggested, and make a cast. and sandbag the front to correct the arching. I didn't open the pictures, but I would trust Nick to see that the neck is pulling out and needs to be reset. If the neck is pulling out, adding a crown to the button, won't help, and would actually be a problem in the long run.
  10. In place of a light bulb, which might be an issue at night in a bedroom, you could get one of the low power rod heaters designed to keep condensation out of safes. Mounted in the bottom of the cabinet, with a pan of water over it, it would also add humidity. Again, monitor temp and humidity.
  11. Yup! Plug in thermostats aren't that expensive. Only problem with the fridge is that I would have a tendency to open it up looking for a cold one.
  12. I'm trying to remember what kind of heating Strad has in his house. Or, for that matter, what kind of central heating buildings had before about 1900. Seriously, what kind of temperatures are you talking about? "freekin' COLD" has different meanings for different people. How are your violins stored, and how many do you have? In extreme cases, you might consider some kind of cabinet with a small heater and humidity source. The heater could be something as simple as an incandescent bulb (properly placed away from flammable materials). The wattage of the bulb determines the amount of heat. A
  13. No to oil varnish for retouching!! The first reason that I think of is that it takes hours to dry! With retouching. you typically have to put on several color coats, with clear coats between, often adjusting the color for subsequent layers. Oil varnish would take forever! A second reason is that you are more likely to have better adhesion with shellac based spirit varnishes. A third reason is that it's easier to remove spirit bases varnishes if you are not happy with something that you've done (color).
  14. "Well... my current violin sucks... " I agree with Rue. You don't buy a fixer upper in hopes that it will be better than your sucky one. You need to go to a good shop and try out violins in good, playable condition.
  15. Using a clavette, rather than a full button graft, I think yes. "A few" covers a pretty wide range. https://maestronet.com/forum/index.php?/topic/319831-non-traditional-repairsmaterials/page/2/
  16. Looks to be a Markneukirchen-ish dutzenarbeit. It looks to have a broken button, so, repair and set up would probably cost a few hundred dollars. It could turn out pretty nice, but you wouldn't make money if you sold it afterwards.
  17. So you have it in your possession for a week, and you ask us to "appraise it" without pictures???? Can't be done! Take a very good series of pictures as recommended in the post at the top of the page, and post them. For all we know at this point, it could just be a dolled up dutzenarbeit worth $1000.
  18. I spent 34 years as a chemist, and used fume hoods all the time. I bathroom fan is inadequate for CFM, and is trying to push the air out a 3-4 inch pipe/hose. Most bathroom fans are in the 50-100 CFM range. You probably want something more like 400 CFM. The hood need to be limited volume, with a limited entrance for air. This is a small lab fume hood. Notice that the door hinges down to limit entrance size.
  19. That's a soundpost crack, that would require attention with the top off. It's not something that you just slather a little glue on. Best left to someone that knows how to handle it.
  20. Probably not. You have to remember the dendrochronology is based of the growth of tree rings, and that growth is based on climate. I think that virtually all of the wood in Europe probably comes from an area less than 300 miles in diameter. That's about the size of New York State. Wood (spruce) in the US could probable come from anywhere from the mountains of the Carolinas to Maine, and then there's always the vast range of wood from the Rockies and other western mountains. There can be a lot of climate variation over those areas.
  21. Do not put any kind of oil on the worn spots!! As was mentioned before, a light coat of shellac on the worn spots might be best to seal the area,
  22. Impossible to tell without a detailed series of photos (as described above). Even then, there may be some things that the photos don't show, that a luthier might come across when examining the instrument, repair costs can also vary quite a bit from city to city. At a minimum, several hundred dollars.
  23. Not to make this the topic, but if you're tacking about something like vegan beliefs, you might remind your client about hide glue. Back to the subject. Urethanes and many synthetic finishes are made from oil. A nitrocellulose lacquer might work for you. What about a nice Japanese Urushi lacquer (toxicity)? https://guitar.com/guides/essential-guide/all-about-nitrocellulose/
  24. Remember, a high school student with no job!