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About deans

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  1. string length and after length

    The 1/6 rule is what I like to see. If you cant get it just right longer afterlength is usually better than shorter. Its usually at least more responsive.
  2. What do I have here?

    This is a cheap entry level violin, not much cash to be had here. Perhaps the bows are something a bit better.
  3. Upgrading old cheap violins.

    A myth IMO, especially when talking about instruments in this category. Chinese instruments often have pretty good wood and its hard to ignore all of the students doing quite well with them. On the other hand there is something about owning old instruments, even ones that were not meant to be masterpieces.
  4. Upgrading old cheap violins.

    It increased the value to the point of a sellable, playable instrument. In the 1970s and 80s a student violin was a terrible orange Scherl and Roth or something like that, pretty low bar, and the economics were different. Some people were efficient, I remember taking stuff to shops and getting repairs that you would be laughed at today.
  5. Upgrading old cheap violins.

    I think its safe to say that many made a living doing this. Usually graduating the top, bass bar, good neck set. But NT has a good point, why do this when you can order a shipping container of new Chinese fiddles.
  6. Any theories on what caused this damage?

    I think a good possibility is a beginner with no instruction monkeying around and banging the bow tip on the corner when trying to bow the G string. Its something that happens when a complete newbie picks up an instrument, I just haven't seen it happen to this extent.
  7. Violin Strings

    Are you talking plain gut? I use Gamut strings a lot, mostly on modern set up. For the A I just get medium treble gut. A month of hard playing is sometimes all you get, but usually 2-3 months. You could have an issue with your instrument, a rough nut grove for instance. Your slightly higher tension shouldnt be an issue. You can play with different gauges as well. If you are talking about wound gut, my only experience in the last few years is the various Pirastro offerings, mostly Gold Lable. They should last longer. I would not buy any gut strings on Ebay. In fact I would only buy Gamuts.
  8. Anyone else think the art world has gone mad

    Vanity for sure, but being gullible is not a trait that allows you to amass this kind of money.
  9. Michael has some good points These bricks are obvious, ugly, and easy targets to make fun of. But it seems to have been a common repair (not restoration) that didn't really affect the playing properties too much.
  10. HOPF ... REAL OR COPY?

    Hopf was a large family of makers starting in the 18th century (maybe a bit earlier). The early makers usually produced fairly distinctive models from what I have seen, they are rare. As time went on a more squarish shape evolved and the trade started stamping tons of cottage industry instruments with Hopf stamps. By the mid 19th century many squarish model "Hopfs" were produced, these are the ones we see the most . These are not really "copies" of earlier Hopfs, just something that evolved in the trade. Hopf stamps can be found on many other models as well especially later on. It was just a stamp. The Chinese are making them now. Yours looks like a better than average 19th century instrument, maybe early 19th, the neck looks good, I'm thinking its grafted, looks like a good fingerboard. The only issue is the back center seem, looks like there is some case gunk on it, but I would check to see if its open or has been poorly repaired. Worth fixing up IMO if there is no real issue with the center seam or anything else. It might just require a good set up and a few tweaks. Better picks would help.

    Keep in mind that there is a lot of fake bidding on Ebay. Good chance nobody actually bought this.
  12. Violin type Nicolo Gusetto

    Sure, I have one, its in better condition, just missing a piece of the binding. But after a couple decades I still haven't gotten around to setting it up....... Lots of people like stuff like this just as oddities and conversation pieces, that's why they always seem to get at least some money (not zero).
  13. Violin type Nicolo Gusetto

    Rubbish is what ends up in Jacob's "dust bin". I don't think this one would even make it that far.
  14. Violin type Nicolo Gusetto

    These regularly sell on Ebay for around 2 to 300 bucks. The ugly crack would bring the value down to about 100, and only because somebody might want the head.
  15. Lots of Books at T2

    See number 14.