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Everything posted by arglebargle

  1. It goes without saying that if the job has been done well, there should be no way to tell. But I guess I just said it. Otherwise Mr. Yacey was right on the mark.
  2. I was thinking early this morning. Never good. I think we can safely say that most if not all people on this forum have a deep love for all things violin. The pleasure that we get from making and repairing these instruments cannot be understated. At least for me. However, I was wondering what particular aspect or task or job do you hate about violin making? What is it that you put off and put off for as long as possible? What is it that you would gladly pay anyone else to do? And perhaps do. For me it is linings. There is just something about the process that I find tedious and I don't get much pleasure from the job. I was looking for an excuse not to let in my c-bout linings and inside a beautiful, great sounding modern Italian violin I found it. So now I rarely do. Other then that, I love everything else! Good for me! Anyone else?
  3. I was wondering has anyone heard of this Nagyvary fellow? Anyone have any opinions? Anyone?
  4. Just to say thanks for the replies. I will leave it be and continue. Darren- I was fortunate and privileged to be able to take the model from the players/owners instrument. That was alot of fun! Thanks.
  5. I've just started a new model based on a Santos Seraphin violin. Everything looks good, and seems to be coming together. Except... The rib height is a bit too small. Upper to lower is 27.7-29.5 The original has fairly narrow ribs, but not quite that narrow. So, I'm planning on proceeding, but would like any opinions about problems that may arise, or sound issues, arching compensations, etc. Or should I just scrap the garland. As I said, It's my first time with this model, so it's a learning experience one way or another. Thanks!
  6. Really, how likely is it that Chris Germaine is going to respond to any or every request from any or every violin maker that considers him/herself viable. Maybe I should stop typing and try. If there is a standard, which J.Holmes seemed to indicate there was, what is it? Is it an open process that I can submit my work to? Do I need an "in"? The friend of a friend example is funny(Sally), but at the same time serves to remind everyone else just where they stand. If Oberlin is open only to specifics, great. But let us know. If you only want people of a certain caliber, just tell us what the caliber is. That way we don't have to chase our tails, or anyone elses. H. Nebel's class is basically open to everyone. While that may hinder the level of instruction, it's very clear, and provides a wonderful learning experience. And yes, there are many other learning oppertunities, but Oberlin seem to have quite a cache. Is it because it's so wonderful, or just because of the attendees list? I don't know.
  7. This is a fascinating discuission. Since Oberlin was brought up, I too was under the impression that it was an invite only event. I've heard stories of aspiring violin makers washing dishes to be there. Whether or not this is a true story, I believe there is an "old boy" aspect to the violin elite. I say this with no sour grapes. Really, it's just an observation. If Oberlin were open on a first come first serve basis, I would have had my name in the q long ago. I want to go. I will pay any amount. Can I sign up? Is the answer is no? Am I wrong? PM me! Just how open is this gathering of greats? That being said, if you are a shining star in the violin making pantheon, god love you. I do. But let's not pretend that it's easy to get into, and let's not deny that politics are, unfortunatly, involved. Just how does one get into the Federation?
  8. Yes, it is terrible when someone is seriously injured or killed, no matter what the situation. While I may be stunningly dull, I do not see the point in comparing an accident occuring on a road crew with an accident sustained in a violin shop. Expecting people to take personal responsibility does not make me callous and cruel, nor is it a measure of my capacity as an employer. Accidents happen, and to expect an employer to create an environment where they cannot is ridiculous. Forcing them to do so would quickly bring industry to a grinding halt. It is a middle ground of sensible and safe working conditions and sensible and safe workers. Both are just as important, and if either fails, accidents can happen. There are industries where worker safety and the workers themselves are less then a passing concern. The meat processing industry comes to mind. Violin making is a rarified field, with most people engaged in it of higher then average intellect (myself excluded of course )and a decent moral compass and no desire or benefit from exploiting workers. Not all employee/employer relationships are equal. I am sure this is obvious to all. I have deleted nothing.
  9. While I understand your reply, I thought my use of the term "power tool" would be self evident. A "power tool" is not a "truckload of hot ash". When used in the context of lutherie, a power tool refers to a power tool, not "a truckload of hot ash". While there are exceptions, when one is standing at a "power tool", not a "truckload of hot ash", engaged in the process of instrument making, one is usually the only one controling the power tool. As I write this I can think of many cases where I have been with more then one person while using a power tool. However, at no time was anyone other then myself responsible for my own well being. Nor was I responsible for the other persons well being. My responsibility was to be aware, alert, reactive and engaged at all times. I am employed. I work with power tools every day. If I make a mistake, it is NOT my employers fault. It is my own. If my employer chooses to take care of the expenses, great. That is something we have worked out in advance. If I have not been properly trained, or am too young to know better, or am unloading "a truckload of hot ash", then that is a different situation. I was only refering to the use of power tools in violin making, as per the theme of this site. However, I, and I hope most grown people do as well, know when I am not prepared to do a job, and would ask for help, express concerns, or simply leave. There are times when the employer IS at fault for neglegence, but you know that when you are standing alone in front of a whirling blade, the only fingers at risk are your own, and you should act accordingly. More to the point, I guess I was reacting more to the curious resurection of a long dead train of thought that really has nothing more to offer. "a truckload of hot ash"
  10. Ben, Where in God's name did you find this really really really really old thread? Were it not for you, the rest of the world might have forgotten that Ben was injured using a power tool. How is Ben still able to work? What will Ben do? Did you know Ben had an injury? I had not even known that I was interested in these questions until Ben brought the subject back up. The only person responsible for an injury sustained while using a power tool is the operator. Period. Unless someone is holding a gun to your head while you do something you feel is unsafe, then stop. I am sorry for your injury, but the list of people crippled and maimed while working their craft is very long indeed. My hands have many scars, and while I have not sustained any serious injuries, when I do, I promise you it will be no bodies fault but my own. The fact that your education seems to have been paid for as a result of this injury is another matter altogether. Please feel free to sue me if you need to. I understand. Someone MUST be to blame. You're worth it!
  11. Yeah. I've always been puzzled by people that take soundclips from the internet as an accurate repesentation of an instruments sound. Professional recordings have hours of tweeking behind them in order to get a true representation, and even then a bad stereo or speakers can make a great recording sound terrible. Sound clips don't do much for evaluating an instrument. But I'm just a grump. And I like #2.
  12. One thing I wonder: How did Strad get his "eyebrows" on his f-hole fluting. In my experience, they vary from quite pronounced to hardly noticable. I've always just assumed they were done after the arching, and I can't visualize how one would include it in the arching, Johnson and Courtnall style. But I wonder.
  13. Perhaps I am. And I mean that sincerly. However, I also do not fuss around much with tap tones and eigenmodes. I do not do my arching from the inside out. I use willow for my blocks and linings. I don't seal the inside of my instruments. Indeed, there are many, many stools that I may be on the verge of falling off of. I make instruments through an amalgam of all the techniques all the teachers/makers I have worked for or with or under. Not one of them ever weighed any part of the instrument while I was there, or asked me to weigh any part. Maybe I just missed out? One admonition that stays with me to this day, as I was taking my time with a particular job, "Come on, just get it done, we're not making watches here." Pehaps my instruments suffer because of the methods I do and do not use. Time will tell. If you find success with how you work, more power to you. Now excuse me while I go find a scale.
  14. Thickness, thickness, thickness. I've never wieghed my plates or the finished violin. Maybe I'm missing something, and maybe I'll start. But maybe not. The arching and the graduations are what matter, IMO. As with people, the weight of a violin is not a good measure of character.
  15. I've used alot of different materials as a bending strap. The one I keep coming back to is lead flashing. You can find it with a little searching. Very flexable and it offers alot of support. And, to say it yet again, don't soak your ribs.
  16. Is it just me, or are others assaulted by pornography when viewing certain posts? i.e. "Thoughts on a fiddle." There have been other posts as well. Anything to be done?
  17. No, not too creative at all. Very nice work, without a doubt. It speaks to a very different aesthetic then "regular" violins, though. The traditional look of the violin has a certain something that is universally appealing. It resonates with most people in a very elemental way. To paint with a very broad brush here, I think alot of people got involved with violin making through a strong attraction to the traditional look/sound of the violin family. Not so much "Gosh, look at that beautiful instrument. I'd like to make one that looks nothing like that." My 2 cents.
  18. Creativity is the first excuse of the unskilled.
  19. I'll go for the U.S.A. Northeastern, New Hampshire, Boston, that area.
  20. Well, that's a fine question. I give Del Gesu a pass because he is considered on of the standard setters in violin making. In my opinion, one can clearly see the downward trajectory from his early to latter work. Was this a deliberate aesthetic choice or the result of lifestyle/drink/poverty/etc.? I think the latter. However, the stellar regard in which he is held today allows for the vagaries of his workmanship, and his reputation doesn't seem to suffer. Imagine if you will a world with no Del Gesu, but all the rest. Now imagine a makers creates an exact copy of the Ole Bull. What would the reaction be? I think not so good. But who knows? As one of the earlier makers, it was easy to say the hell with it. He was not saddled, as we are, with well over 300 years of violin making history/study/naval-gazing.
  21. I think one must be very careful of "individuality" that is a result of poor workmanship or skills that are not quite up to snuff. The individual elements of the violins that are most appealing are deliberate, well thought out and well excecuted. My first violins had very long, "individual" corners. Not because they were beautiful (they were not), but because my eye/hand skills were not good enough. That being said, I found the best way to nurture individuality is to try very hard to stay true to the original look/intent of the model you are making. The better you can emulate, the better you can alter.
  22. Hooray!!!! The answer! Now arglebargle is the popular one. Thanks!
  23. Any advice on where to find a good branding iron for your bridges? You know, so future generations can either mock or admire my skills. Thanks!
  24. Well, they ARE based out of Alabama.