James Williams

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About James Williams

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  1. Hi Sharron, thanks for your commiserations but I'm not disheartened. It still sounds a lot better than many fiddles I've played. Job to say really but certainly not a dramatic change, a smidge off the top end perhaps. It did but it was more pronounced on the treble side and I put that down to the soundpost being to long, so I shortened it before stringing up again after varnishing. The result of that is both wings are now raised by about the same amount.
  2. So many helpful replies..I can't get over how generous with your knowledge you folks are with rank amateurs like me...many thanks to you all. The model I used was taken from the Strobel patterns. As you can see I used plain, inexpensive wood for my first. The top was pretty low grade and fairly wide grain. It seemed about the same sort of density as the Engelmann Spruce I have lined up for No.2, so I left the top pretty thick at about 2.8-2.9 as recommended by Strobel. Anyway, here's a couple of pics. Don't know how useful they are as it's still strung and I guess an image without any distortion from the string pressure would be more use. It does seem to run pretty flat in the middle there though.
  3. No, I Cut the holes before fluting and the tips were flush with the belly afterwards. In fact the tips remained flush with the belly till I strung it up.
  4. Violin No1 has been strung up for two weeks since varnishing and the points of both lower wings are standing proud of the belly by about 0.5mm. There is a slight dip in the upper wings of approx 0.25mm. I seem to remember reading somewhere that this is a soundpost fault. The current soundpost is about 2mm behind the bridge foot and a very light push fit. What could be causing this? Thanks, Jim
  5. Same here Sharron I was thinking of using the Hammerl system. Can I ask if you're using this kit Hammerl and if so how many Violins can be finished with it? Jim
  6. Thanks for the replies lads. Ben, I don't know what sort of summer you've had in Ireland but here in Wales we last saw the sun back in April and the Met office forecasts aren't very encouraging for the rest of the Autumn A UV light box would be nice one day but not just yet. Michael, do you do as Berl suggests and seal with a thin hide glue solution first?
  7. I've just completed my first fiddle and I'm about to start varnishing. I have searched to see if this has been asked before but didn't come up with anything. I intend to use an oil varnish with a shellac ground coat. Would using a dark shellac as a ground coat give the same sort of effect as pre darkening using UV light or a Tea stain? By 'dark shellac' I mean the de-waxed Garnet flakes as described Here I'm guessing that: as the the shellac ground will only be a thinned down, single coat, any colour imparted by the Garnett flakes will be negligible. Anyone have any experience of this? Jim
  8. quote: Originally posted by: C.B.Fiddler I have an Ibex - I think the consensus is that it's suitable, but not ideal. The corners are simply not tight enough for the upper turn in the C-Bout, but a little persuasion makes it possible. I would love to make my own, but I spent so much time in the prebuild phase of violin making, I was happy to go ahead and shell out a few bucks for the Ibex. If nothing else, I have the foundation to recast or shape a new aluminum block later on and not have to worry about the electronics. Thanks C.B.Fiddler. I see your logic.
  9. quote: Originally posted by: Andres Sender Making your own iron is not just about the satisfaction of doing it yourself, it also gives the opportunity to have a shape which actually works for violin making, unlike the Ibex iron. I was about to buy an Ibex Iron. Is it the consensus that these Irons are totally unsuitable for violins then? Or just 'could be better'. Jim
  10. You've probably already seen this recent ebay sale for a supposedly Mathew Hardie fiddle. In case you didn't here's the link. Hardie on ebay Looks pretty similar to yours to my untrained eye.
  11. It came my way as a bag of bits. Someone had left it in a damp caravan for years and had tried to glue it back together with a hot melt glue gun!! It's had numerous repairs done over the years. Mostly to the top plate, as it's really thin and delicate. I don't think the neck is original as there were a couple of plugged nail holes in the neck block but no sign of nail holes in the neck it self. I love it's sound. Not terribly loud but a very warm and sweet tone across all the strings with great bow reaction.
  12. Hi apprenticerose, not sure if I'm contributing much but thought you might like to see a picture of my "Stainer". Apart from the C bouts it could have almost come from the same hand. The corners are identical to yours. The waist is far narrower and the F holes are more upright on mine but the rest of the outline is almost identical. Mine has a printed Stainer label in it. The top is also very thin with numerous repaired cracks. www.ffynnon.ukfsn.org/merged/combined.jpg Jim