jacobsaunders

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About jacobsaunders

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  • Birthday 05/24/1959

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  1. Let hope only in threes The Monical Website claims that the ex. workers still check it (wait & see)
  2. We didn’t make an effort to highlight the new broken replacement scroll, because I primarily wanted to show an Alban from 1710, but if you put your extra strong reading glasses on, you will see that the fractured part is by the scroll shoulders, right next to the hole where the bourdon strings come through from the back of the peg box, leaving the whole thing relying on a tiny area of short grain, which must surely break sooner or later. As to the second part of your question, I am still thinking about it. @ Deans & Mark I agree, I will have to go and search for a few old D’Amores to look at. I just thought that someone might have some published specs. I will write to the Monical firm tomorrow.
  3. I am pretty sure that it is not from the Salzkammergut, rather it seems to have been made by a woodworker who knew roughly what a violin looks like, and worked it out himself. i have had arguments with people on Maestronet who always thought that amateur auto-didact stuff must surely be American, although I suppose it could be. I doubt that it is all that old..
  4. In German, one hears often enough the phrase “Gesetz der Serie” (law of the series) which I am struggling to adequately translate into English. “It never rains, but it pours” is about as close as I have got. At the moment I am gradually getting the impression that it is starting to pour with nice instruments with broken off heads. First the Polish violin https://maestronet.com/forum/index.php?/topic/342171-chamot-krakau/ then the Bellosio viola https://maestronet.com/forum/index.php?/topic/342187-bellosio-decapitation/ and now a Viola D’amore by Alban from Graz with a broken off scroll/peg box from 1710, has invited herself. I have very little experience with Viola D’Amores, in fact my experience confines itself to once in the early eighties, when my then boss in Munich handed me one by Bisiach, and told me to go and make a new top nut. At first I thought, “Good, a top nut, ok” and went to do it, but it was only when I sat down to start, that I realised what a fiendishly complicated contraption a D’Amore top nut is. It basically (to ignore exceptions) has twelve pegs. The bottom 6 of which are to tune the upstairs strings that go above the fingerboard, and the top 6 pegs are to tune the sub-terrainian bordon strings that go first behind the peg box, then beneath the fingerboard. This requires a double decker nut. I was extremely proud of myself having made a successful nut, but the next day, threading new strings on, without getting the sub-terrainian ones all tangled up, then tuning it, was almost more difficult. I couldn’t help thinking of Michael, a London session Violinist for whom I used to babysit for many years ago, who, upon returning from a session where a D’Amore was being played remarked; “Looks like a bloody chain-saw, takes about an hour to tune, and then it sounds like shit” The scroll is not an Alban, but a recent replacement by a colleague of mine in Vienna, who I would not wish to criticise for his courageous effort, but I think he made a design mistake, which leaves it unsurprising that it broke off where it did. In my minibus full of “Geigenklumpert” which I spoke of before https://maestronet.com/forum/index.php?/topic/342039-building-method-ribs-let-into-a-grove-on-the-back/&do=findComment&comment=836372 there were a number of old unvarnished 19th C. scrolls (one may certainly not speak of “white” any more) from the estate of Jaura, which even he might have scrounged somewhere as I did. Amongst these is an unused, unvarnished D’Amore scroll. I have been wondering if this ex-Jaura scroll wouldn’t do Alban proud, far more than the not particularly elegant broken modern one it has. Amongst the immense multiple brain-teasers re. D’Amores, is the neck angle. The current one has IMHO a much to flat neck angle, so that the bordon strings that go through the middle of the bridge, hardly make an angle on their way through the bridge. This makes them more or less dummy strings, there for optical rather than musical reasons, since they exert practically no downward pressure on the bridge. I was wondering if anybody could point me to guidance re D’Amore neck angles? To Alban: Johannes Michael Alban was the second son and pupil of Mathias Alban (often called Albani). He was born in Bozen on the 27th September 1677, and worked in Graz from about 1700. He was succeed by his pupil and son in law Wolfgang Sagmayr about 1730. The details of the family are probably best summarised in the Österreichische Musiklexicon http://www.musiklexikon.ac.at/ml/musik_A/Alban_Familie.xml;internal&action=hilite.action&Parameter=Albanertrappe In a recent thread, which I couldn’t find, we had a long discussion about fake Albani labels, of which there are hundreds of thousands. Here is a real one, although it is hardly possible to photograph through the “Flame” (not F) hole. I will do my best to not have to open the body though, since these Gamba style instruments without edge overhang, are a nightmare to get back together again.
  5. A short description of the inside of the viola for those who might be interested: The viola is in very good, near mint condition. The back has a parchment strip, reinforcing the back joint. The upper treble rib has a couple of cracks reinforced with pine patches, and there is one belly crack with a cleat. Otherwise I can find no repair issues at all. Having the back off, will give us the possibility, to have a long argument about the date on the label. The corner blocks are, in the plan view, right angled (well sort of) triangles, the block to glue area to the lower/upper bout roughly twice as long as the block to middle bought glue area. The rib end joint is a mitre. This is fairly obviously made around an inside mould, although Bellosio didn’t let his deep (ca. 10mm) pine linings into the blocks at all. The most impressive thing about the viola, apart from everything else, is in my humble opinion the arching, but it has proved hardly possible to document this with photographs There is an, in many respects, almost identical Bellosio instrument illustrated on pages 200 to 205 in the book “Les Violons” from the symposium in Paris 1995. I have made a sketch of the plate thicknesses (at the bottom of this post) and hope you can read my handwriting! The ribs vary from 1mm thick in some places, up to about 1,4mm in others.
  6. G.A. Pfretschner was originally a string spinner. His firm became one of, if not the, largest Markneukirchen wholsalers of everything to do with Music. The firm lasted from 1834 until 1977, so you can find all grades of merchandise. We have spoken of G.A. Pfreschner numerous times, for instance here:
  7. Lütgendorff was an art historian, and a dilletante in the violin world. infact, when I moved to Austria, a decendant of his was Defence Minister here, which has nothing to do with violins, as far as I know. Henley was a Violinist, Quite what Jalovec was I do not know, but probably nothing reputable.
  8. or your local apothecary
  9. The problem with all these “data-bases” or dictionaries, be it the “Amati” on-line one, Henley or Jalovec et al, is that there is no one willing to delve through original archive material (a lot of work), and the previous “data-base”, normally Lüttgendorff, gets plagiarised, sometimes (particularly Henley) with the authors own racist brass knobs on. The biggest deficit is that none of them quote any sources. That is a particular problem for instance with the Wenberg American one, which is for this reason more or less useless. Making the umpteenth inaccurate plagiarization of Lütgendorff, without giving concrete sources would be the apex of wasting time
  10. Without wanting to dimisish my fathers efforts, the "Tertis Model" viola was developed by Arthur Richardson and Tertis himself. I wrote a short piece on this subject here: https://maestronet.com/forum/index.php?/topic/174737-is-thetertis-model-still-used-by-makers/&do=findComment&comment=648059
  11. No, the varnishing teacher in the Mittenwald Geigenbauschule was ANDREAS Fürst. There are/were a lot of Fürsts in Mittenwald, goodness knows how many of them were called Hans
  12. I will do my best. The first step is to do nothing at all, until the insurance has agreed to pay me for it, so a little patience please. The aim of the repair will be to get everything back right there, where it was before, so that a “crown” would have no useful purpose
  13. Yes, that is roughly what I did. I also lent him my Mathias Thir viola (which is the same size almost to the mm) so he would leave me in peace for a week or two. He still looked like a warmed up corpse though .
  14. Late last night, a borderline suicidal customer rang up, at his wits end. He had dropped his Bellosio viola, and the neck had broken out (with the button). From a violin restoring point of view, it isn’t really a big deal, I have described this repair before, https://maestronet.com/forum/index.php?/topic/330042-violin-id-and-repair-advice/&do=findComment&comment=617534 but for him it was a mortal blow. I was wondering, how colleagues go about calming down such a customer, when they ring late at night, when one is slightly pixilated anyway, with a couple of beers intus, and is on the way to bed? I suppose one could say “Oh shit! it’s knackered, I’ll give you 20 quid for it”, but that would be a bit naughty, wouldn’t it.
  15. We had a longer, in my opinion very intersting thread re. "waffle violins" some years ago here: