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Mat Roop

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Posts posted by Mat Roop

  1. On 12/11/2022 at 6:37 PM, Brad Dorsey said:

    .....I suspect that any knowledgeable person here would say that the valuer of this violin is so low that it is not worth trying to make it playable; it only has value as a sentimental wall decoration or as firewood.

    Sorry Brad, but I fully disagree.  The sentimentality of a dear grandfather is not a monetary issue. Made playable with student quality strings for a starter student or kitchen party fiddler would be rather inexpensive (in fact it might be playable as is) and could be the nudge that starts the OP on a musical Journey that he can also pass on to his heirs. Neither would I hang it as a wall decoration.... but at least I would hang it as a wall decoration In a playable condition, someone sooner or later will surely see It, and play it... and that just might be the beginnings of a wonderful journey.

    Cheers, Mat

  2. I would move the post so that it is equidistant from the centerline of the body as the Bass bar.

    Verify also:  1-that the top center seam is in fact the centerline of the instrument. 2- that the endpin is in line with the centerline of the instrument. 3- that the centerline of the fingerboard points exactly at the end pin.  4- That the projection of the fingerboard produces a bridge height ( center top of instrument to top of bridge) of 32mm  +/_ 1mm but no more that +/_ 2mm.

    1,2& 3 are interrelated and if one is off then that will take some consideration.

    Have fun!... Mat

  3. Yes, I do agree with both of you, but where there is significant family sentimental value I usually end up surrendering. 

    I think I can deal with the cracks in a long and painful process.

    It's the linings, or lack thereof, that I am tempted to leave as is, but if a few extra hours will  prevent a failed project, then I'd rather do that..... but not if it really is not necesssary.

    Looking for thoughts & ideas!


  4. So I have been asked to repair this highly sentimental dog with a lions head and bring it to playability. It has significant cracks in the top,

    but my real question is ... what about the lack of linings in most areas... what impact do linings have on tone and if I just glue it back togetherafter crack repairs,  what are the chances of it holding? The linings that are there are rather small about 3mmX 1mm




  5. I have heard of wetting the bottom of fitted bridges to soften the wood and create a better fit.....

    ... and so the question is ... what is the  general concensus of wetting the ends of a sound post before inserting after final ajustments?? 

    Do pros do that? ... I have always done mine dry. 

    Could this possibly create a softness that could create a slight indent in the top... and that would cause difficulty if future ajustments were needed?

    Thoughts?? ... Thanks! Mat


  6. In a previous thread  https://maestronet.com/forum/index.php?/topic/354777-violin-bow-trial/ 

    Andrew Victor said " If you can feel vibrations in the stick while playing, you have a pretty good idea that the string vibrations are not adequately damped in the bow."

    So, what are the qualities of a good bow that enhances the damping of string vibrations? 


    Can someone explain the physics principles of how the bow does the damping? 

    Thanks!... Mat

  7. re the scratches... Just clean the violin and then give it what I call a varnish rub.. ie section at a time,  rub the violin ( using your finger), with fresh OIL BASED violin varnish of matching color and then IMMEDIATELY wipe it ALL off. That leaves a microfilm of varnish that seals the open wood, helps blend the scars, and leaves it with good character.

  8. 3 hours ago, Renegade said:

    ... because no one would be interested in it.

    I would clean it, fix any damage and glue any open joints, and do a full set up... then donate it to an elementary school string program. That would reward them for the repair work they send you, and If they don't then they might!

  9. I would get an in-person opinion from a respected archetier.

    I would be inclined to have it repaired to a useable state assuming no issues that I cant see in the pics. You should be able to get value for the cost... but you won't know until you have spent the cash!

    It is likely quite old based on the rolled rather than cut thread on the screw. And... I would not assume it is ivory, unless you know for sure.

  10. I guess when you have your nose to the grindstone and don't look up, you have a lot to learn!... True in my case.

    In my earlier comment I noted that all speakers that I am aware of, are cone shaped with the hollow pointing forward. Well that is not at all true... apparently the better ones costing $25000- 250000 are shaped quite different as in the you tube video. ...and sound far superior to the cone versions, and more like instruments.

    Here are a couple of links my audiophile son pointed me to...The first is really interesting reading but way over my pay scale.



    Based on the comments in the science review link... I think the experiment I proposed is a lost cause and I will not be sacrificing an historic Markie "Usual" for a test!

    Interesting discussion and thanks everyone for their input... Cheers, Mat




  11. Hi Marty, I would love to see you do the experiment professionally... You are so much more skilled and adept at building special  models and likely have some excellent equipment to record the tonal results. Maybe even build it on higher ribs.

    As for myself, not being a maker, I will just take a cheap markie set it up and see what it sounds like, and then flip the back, and see what the change is... just for my personal curiosity.

      I will likely need to irreversibly alter the back in the process as the button needs to fit  flush to the base of the neck for gluing ... I might even have to remove some of the recurve so that it will glue securely to the ribs.... not to mention I'll have to strip the varnish for sure.... etc etc

  12. 7 hours ago, Mr. Bean said:

    My importer told me that there are "investors" (with too much money) out there that buy Dominants (and maybe other popular brands) in large batches wholesale or off factory and sell them on Ebay (and other platforms as well) with only a small markup to end-users. Even with a small profit it will get them a better result than bank or stocks nowadays. They do not care about our violin trade: in fact they spoil it for violin makers with a drawer of strings in their workshops!. So it is not necessarily fake.

    If these investors have too much money,  why would they revert to a low profit business that includes extra work to store, pack and ship??  I think that is unlikely.  ...maybe just another conspiracy theory to justify the fake.

  13. Marty, so am I correct to understand that in a normal violin, when the soundpost moves (vibrates) inward, the top plate spreads pushing the ribs outward, and at the same time the bottom plate moves outward pulling the ribs inward. This suggests that the two plates are working against each other and actually twisting the ribs.

    So, with the bottom plate flipped, then the two plates will be spreading in and out at the same time ... a more efficient / powerful system?

    I plan on trying this on a cheap markie ... first set up normally then flipping the same back... and see what the difference is. I realize the body volume will be significantly reduced, but ultimately this can be resolved with higher ribs. Maybe I should try it with a small viola and end up with a powerful violin?:P

  14. I am not a maker, so maybe this makes no sense but... I'll ask anyway...

    While recently repairing a back plate sound post crack made me wonder what would happen if the back plate were to be installed in reverse with the arching concavity outward. that should make for several advantages ( I think)

    1- with changes in humidity, the post fit should not change as both plates would expand & contract, not exactly but similarly, keeping the spacing between top & back the same... more significant for the cello or bass

    2-pressure on the back plate from the post should be less likely to create a crack

    3-sound radiation from the back plate would be to the outside instead of being trapped inside and interfering with the vibrations of the top plate. 

    A speaker cone always projects from the concave side... so why not the back plate?? or for that matter why not both plates with the concavity to the outside?

    I've been thinking of taking a less valuable violin and making new taller ribs and fitting the back plate in reverse.  Of course I'd have to do some calculation to try to keep the internal volume the same as original... if that matters.

    Anybody thought of this before???  Thoughts on what the results might be?

    Cheers!... Mat



  15. I'll pay you $30 for it!... But remember, I am in Canada so that means $30 CAD.:o ... and you pay the shipping:D

    BTW... looking at the bass bar , It appears the bar is of good quality, so it has likely been replaced... probably better than the original , but, then you lose true authenticity of the instrument.

    Good luck!... Mat

  16. 11 hours ago, uguntde said:

    Of course, this was a joke. But it would not be worth a lot of repair work. On the other hand I know one man who has learned repair work using such instruments. 


    I agree Uguntde... It surprises me at times how little it takes to make an instrument like that "playable" ... just have to ignore all the little things like a broken corner, mismatched pegs, fingerboard that is slightly off center, or a bit warped. etc. An instrument like that is often enough to get a young student player started and if they are a natural, they will soon find a way to upgrade, and then they keep the old relic as a keepsake.

  17. ...and the head might be missing the tongue. 

    If it was well used, it likely sounds decent... these are nice conversation pieces and with the sentimental value, it is a nice piece of history. I would not hesitate to have it fixed up to be at least playable.  Have it as your own playable and if you are not a player, having it out on display will entice any violinist visitor to give it a go!...Good luck!image.png.de2b329117b2dc9916773f0b19578a9a.png

  18. 4 hours ago, uguntde said:

    Firewood. Get it chopped up and burn it. 

    That would be a shame... someone of serious financial limitation would love to spend time ... with your guidance ... and make it somewhat playable with your used parts. It is still better than nothing for some.

    I have never trashed a violin, but have spent some time and given several away to those in need. If it is a client's violin I have also done work at minimal or no cost, depending on the circumstances. 

  19. I don't use the traditional s shaped setter for stabbing the post... Always felt the metal was too soft. 

    I use a crudely modified small instrument screwdirver with a 3mm shaft of about 3-4 inches,  the end is ground to be about 3-4mm wide, and about 0.5mm thick at 3mm in from the end ... the end of course is sharp like a knife. Works like  a charm and it is easy to lift the post to position the bottom at its ideal spot... I hardly ever use the "mover" end of the traditional setter . Here are a couple of pics... notice that the mark in the post is very small and the same spot is used so that after many tests, the post is not mangled. The setter is pushed into the post only about 2-3 mm and that is sufficient to push and pull and rotate the post.... quick & easy! ... just don't stab your fingers!:P

    ... My 2 cents



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