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Mark Caudle

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About Mark Caudle

  • Birthday 06/06/1953

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    Professional baroque and renaissance cello, bass violin/viola da gamba and viol player in UK and Poland since 1973. Also makes baroque instruments - mainly celli. Around no. 15 + some restorations of baroque wrecks!

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  1. The problem with these instruments is that all the measurements and features are wrong compared to good historical examples. The neck ( and therefore string length) is too short, and also too thick and narrow, the bridge is much too high, and the construction is based on violin techniques with regards to linings, blocks etc. Usually the plates are thick and heavy as well compared to historical viols. They sometimes work ok but do not sound like viols!
  2. He is alive and well and i played a concert with his group last week!
  3. https://allegrolokalnie.pl/oferta/wiolonczela-lutnicza-4-4-doskonale-brzmienie-stan Here is a cello currently for sale on the Polish internet auction site. No idea if it is really a Chamot and there is no photo of the label. The description says that there is "a visible label inside of the Polish Lutnik, Jan Chamot"
  4. There is no such thing as a 400 year old viola d'amore. It might be 400 years old and been converted to a viola d'amore in the ?18th century? The first viola d'amores are from the 4th or possibly 3rd quarter of the 17th century and they were wire strung without sympathetic strings. The first ones with gut and sympathetic strings are from the 18th century. If it is a 400 year old converted viol it probably didn't originally have back linings but sometimes very small upper linings. Without seeing it, most likely it isn't 400 years old.
  5. The best viol plans I know are those drawn by Stephen Barber of the Colichon and Meares now in the Royal College of Music collection (the same Meares as the one in the article by Dietrich Kessler). I don't think these are readily available and Stephen Barber has now passed away. But really worth searching for as they are superbly detailed.
  6. Thank you. That's a good idea and I will try something similar next time!
  7. I agree that a brush is much better at getting into the grain lines than a cloth. I mostly use a medium stiff brush rather bigger than a tooth brush!
  8. Check out the documentation from Mimmo Peruffo on the Aquila strings site. He knows far more than me! But we do have some strings from Stradivari. Not for violin though.
  9. In this famous engraving of Corelli performing in the Piazza di Spagna in Rome in 1687 there are about 60 string players in th open air. Since string tensions seem to have been higher than today and it must have been required to hear the music above the sound of the crowd I imagine that loudness was very much a necessary quality of the instruments.
  10. I have no interest whatsoever in the value of instruments but only if I like them and see and hear qualities that I enjoy in them. I like this one and if it was mine would happily put in the time to repair it.
  11. Another thing, which I don't know if you have tried, is that some old bows are a bit bigger in the cross dimension than the vertical near the tip which I think gives more stability in use.
  12. I have been playing around making various clip in frog bows and I think that one improvement in yours would be a slightly pointed front to the frog so it can't move side to side. Also a straight or slightly concave top to the tip would be more elegant.
  13. Don't understand why you think this is firewood. It looks to me like a well designed and well made instrument in rather original condition that needs repairs. Maybe it's in a less appreciated tradition.
  14. I had some at one time and found it was very easy to bend-almost like rubber! Not sure that is a good thing for violin tone.
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