baroquecello

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Everything posted by baroquecello

  1. Warped bridges really Damage the Sound. They basically work like springs or shock Absorbers on a car, the opposite of what you want. (well almost the opposite; the violin Bridge design has evolved into what it is now in order to filter out certain unwanted frequencies, so it is a selective shock Absorber, if you wish) Sometimes it is possible to straighten them, but then extra care has to be taken in order for them not to become crooked again. And as a new violin Bridge is not so expensive and not so much work (compared to Cello bridges, which are my reference Point) I usually get them replaced.
  2. The style of the Player may be important when it Comes to this, yes. My first 4/4 size Cello was a Saxon Thing with a somewhat high Bridge, (I'd have to measure but I estimate a projection of around 84MM) but very low neck overstand, I think not more that a centimetre. This must have caused enormous Forces on the top, which is relatively thin (I still have the Instrument). The Instrument does have a relatively Deep bass bar to counter this. I often got complimented on the Sound of the Cello, also by fellow cellists who tried it out (and I'm tempted to get it restored; it has got an old back soun post crack that is reopening, and it is just not worth it, from a financial Point of view) but it may be that I got used to this Kind of playing Action at a critical Point in my development as a Cellist, and secretly Long for this Kind of bow atypical Action/string Response. As to the second Point, choking the Instrument, although certainly valid for violin and viola, I wonder how valid this is when it Comes to Cellos specifically. When the bass bar and Sound post Setup are properly adjusted, does this really happen in cellos? This Question may Show my inexperience, but I tend to see colleagues (professionals) that have experimented with it use high Tension strings, especially for the upper strings.
  3. Philipp, no he is not referring to the Romberg flat, but to the scoop. A fingerboard is in fact not flat from nut to bridge end, but somewhat concave. If you press the string down at both ends, you will see that in the center, the string is not touching the fingerboard. Every well made fingerboard has this feature, regardless if it has a Romberg flat or not.
  4. The Background is, I am a professional Player, and I've noticed I consistently seem to prefer cellos with a projection that is on the high side. I've been taking note of it because my own Cello has a projection that is somewhat low, but still within accepted parametres. I did get it raised a bit, new York style, and that had a beneficial effect, which is why I started tracking this characteristic in other cellos. It is my Impression that often Cellos with a higher projection have a much better string Response and because of this require less work in the left Hand. Often, they seem to have a richer Sound Palette with more possibilities further away from the Bridge, without loosing Sound. Lower projection I associate with having to work harder in the Right Hand, playing Closer to the Bridge with more weight, and consequently having to press the string down more rigidly in the left hand for it to make sure it is stopped cleanly enough for a good sound. I have not been Looking at the neck overstand so much, so I cannot say if it has anything to do with the string angle over the Bridge. Because of this, I would expect big Players to have less of an issue with this, as they are stronger and heavier and that element of Cello playing Costs them less effort, while smaller, leaner Players especially with smaller left hands may be more sensitive to this. I am wondering if the generally accepted projection is Maybe a Little on the low side. Maybe, with the newer steel strings, ideal Setup in this regard has changed a little. Has anyone experimented with this in cooperation with good Players? Has anyone been keeping track of this parametre in the amount of Instruments sold; if this is Right, there should be a correllation betwen the ideal fingerboard projection and the Speed at which an Instrument is sold. I believe @Don Noon did some Experiments with the violin regarding string agle and projection and came to the conclusion it doesn't make that big of a difference. But violin and Cello have different crucial setp issues, and violin string Response is much less problematic than Cello string Response can be, so I think that the case may be different for Cello. It would be great if a few here would want to Delve into the subject and observe Players reactions reaction to Instruments correlated to projection and/or string angle.
  5. Fingerboard projection and Bridge height however, are two different Things as the Bridge add a few MMs to the projection, depending on how much string clearance off the fingerboard is desired. So take that into account when measuring Since it is a seperate Topic, I will start it in a few minutes and hope for a lively discussion with People with experience. The Background is, I am a professional Player. I've noticed I consistently seem to prefer cellos with a projection that is on the high side. It is my Impression that they have a much better string Response and require less work in the left Hand. Based on my experiences so far, I would wait with reducing the projection untilI would be certain that the current projection is not giving me what I want.
  6. I think it Looks quite nice. I'm a Cellist, but responsible for the Rentals of the Music School I work at, and I'd be happy if our Rentals would look that good. However, it Looks to me as if there is something weird going on with the back centre seam over the end block. Is it coming apart?
  7. If you local violin shop will buy this, I cannot answer, but I suspect not. Ebay would be a good place. Please, you should put a thick piece of Cloth between the tail piece and the belly, because the way it is now, the fine Tuners will Damage the varnish, whih is totally unnecessary.
  8. Are the ribs also spruce on that Testore?
  9. Well I can. If Instruments where made consistently thicker in the past, that Points towards a different Sound ideal from what it is now. If they would have considered the Sound of thinner plates better, then they would have made thinner plates, it is not that hard to do so. But I have never heard of consistency in the thickness of the plates in old violins or violins of specific Areas and times. Has anyone tried to do Research on the subject? Interestingly, in my experience most baroque violin playerrs prefer rather lightly made Instruments. Whatever that may mean.
  10. It is a shame that the scroll broke off. The construction without Corner blocks Points to Markneukirchen, the scroll could have given us a confirmation of that suspicion. The top block must be a laer Addition, it probably had a through neck, originally.
  11. Personally I steer my students away from Stentor because the ones I've tried were terrible and without doubt detrimental to student's technique. For anything but 4/4th cello I advise renting because fractional size instrument is are very hard to sell. This and the fact that the setup suffers from use are the reasons why you have the impression newly made instruments depreciate more than old ones. This is really not necessarily the case. No honest private person manages to sell student violins at the retail price. Shops offer newly setup instruments with a warranty, only that makes a shop bought cheap violin twice as expensive as 2nd hand (an its worth it, usually). If she is as dedicated as you describe, please try to increase the budget. Because your daughter has played on not so great instruments, it is likely that she will not recognize a good instrument when she plays one. Usually players get used to their instrument and find something that sounds similar to what they have. In your case, if the teacher really isn't doing more than just that, I wonder if it would not be a good idea to first rent a good 4/4 violin from a good lutier, so that your daughter gets used to a good instrument therefore is more prepared for picking an instrument herself. And you have some time to up your budget.
  12. I might add that for a Little more Money you might get a lot more violin value. I don't kow the market in the UK, but in Germany, if you look for it Long enough and have a bit of patience, for around 2500 Euros you will be able to get an Instrument that sounds really good and could serve a professional Player quite well. Under 2000 that is very hard to find.
  13. I would say that is a bit of a tight Budget to be making demands on the provenance of the violin. If it Comes to playability, stability and tone, in that Price range, modern Chinese is almost unbeatable, really. Look at Yitamusic M20 and up, Jay Haide, Maybe Gliga (Romanian!). You may get lucky with an older Markneukirchen or Mirecourt trade fiddle, if it is well restored or survived the years well, but usually they Need quite some work to make them playable. To believe that you can hear the provenance in an Instrument is to believe in fairy tales, mostly. For your Purpose, ditch the ideas About age and provenance, use your ears and eyes, and your daughters Hands. You should pick a bow after you picked an Instrument. Every bow and Instrument is different, and one bow may work great for one fiddle but Sound mediocre on another, so you really have to pick one that fits your particular Instrument and Hand/arm. Even Carbon fibre bows have individuality. Cheap CF bows that work are Carbondix, but you will find others for a bit more that Sound better. A good rule of the thumb is to calculate 1/4-1/3 of the Price of the violin for the bow. If wooden, don't go under 250 Euros. As opposed to the Instruments, Chinese Bows are usually crap, by the way. I would assume the teacher is helping you pick an Instrument and bow? I'm a Cello teacher and NEVER let my students buy an Instrument without having given my OK.
  14. I acquired a cello for student use. The bridge is quite warped, and, although in the long run I will have a new one made, I would like to straighten it. I've done this in the past using a water boiler, holding the bridge in the steam. however, this has the disadvantage that the pores of the wood open and the wood will look decidedly different afterwards. Also, I've heard that steam hurts the cell structure, leaving the wood less strength. So I wad wondering if there exists an alternative method for making the wood bendable, without steam. Would heating in an oven work? And, if yes, what temperature should I use? I believe I only want to soften the lignin, nothing more, right? Thank you for any advise!
  15. Well, the lutier uses them on Rentals for People with this Problem. Otherwise he uses Pirastro tonica, and those do not last Long with sweaty Hands. Maybe it is different for violin and viola, or Maybe they changed some of the material?
  16. A local lutier advises helicore strings for violinists and violists with agressive Sweat. Ofcourse, one has to see if they Sound good on that violin, but they sure are Sweat resistant.
  17. In that price range, I think I'd go for a newly made cello. At the same time, I'd advise the buyer to try absolutely anything he can get his hands on. Visit all bigger shops in the vicinity. It is not a good idea for you to buy a cello for someone else. That person should be involved in picking the instrument. An experienced player should also be asked for opinions.
  18. Kessi, congratulations on your restored Cello. I think ist great you got it repaired. There are a number of Features that Point to it being made a Long time after 1780, and to it having been altered afterwards. This Cello was originally built without Corner blocks, a method of construction that was used in bohemia and saxonia etc until roughly 1900. This is visible through the pointy rib Corners, that have the seam in the centre. Together with this goes what is colloquially called a "through neck": a neck construction without an upper block, somewhat like a guitar neck construction. Along with this, there would have been a carved out bass bar, rather than a glued in bass bar. Each part of such an Instrument was made by a different craftsman, which can explain differences in appearance between Body and scroll. The scroll fluting Ends at "6 o'clock" does not go all the way to the bitter end of the throat, also a characteristic of this Region and time Frame. All of These are traits from the Cottage Industry in Northwestern bohemia and south saxonia. most prominently Schoenbach and Markneukirchen. As the rib Corners, model of the Corners, and seam, the scroll and the General appearance all Point to that direction, it is likely that this is a Cello from the second half of the 19th century, that was repaired at a later date, at which Point it received its glued in bass bar, top block and possibly the Corner blocks. So These Details are not original in your Cello. I own a very similar Cello, in much worse state, with its original neck, but a replaced bass bar. It sounded very good when it was still playable, and I'm tempted to get it restored, but market value is a lot below the cost of restoration, which is why I have not had this done yet. Every time I see something like this, it makes me remember its Sound... Your Cello can ofcourse function very well as a baroque Cello, and it Looks as if your lutier did a good Job. Sometimes such instruments can Sound surprisingly good. Wispelwey used a Cello from the same Region and time Frame as yours as a modern Cello for much of his recording Career!
  19. @bogdan101 it needed a different bridge and sound post, the fingerboard needed some work, I put on a decent set of strings and a tail piece. The pegs were fine. So it needed a whole new setup. All in all, it still was worth it ; it turned out a decent students instrument.
  20. @KB_Smith actually, the Question you are asking is already answered in the text you quoted from. Read it once more and if you still have Questions, I'll be happy to try to answer them, if I can.
  21. Some Cellos are sensitive to string Tension, others are not. If the Cello is not, you can use that to your Advantage in trying to find what suits your playing best, otherwise it is a matter of finding what works best on the Cello. I do not know if there is an Optimum for Cellos with a high projection, but if your Goal is to reduce the stress on the top, then lower string Tension would be a way to go. What playability is concerned, assuming the Cellos behaviour doesn't Change much due to more or less Tension, the difference can be described in several ways. If you compare the string of the same type, then lower Tension will be thinner (not thicker, like you seem to think). It is generally somewhat easier to set in Motion, and can or should be played Closer to the Bridge than its higher Tension Counterpart. One brand you can really try this out with, because they are made in a very similar way, is regular Jargar. If you buy a forte and a dolce string of that brand, the difference will be quite pronounced. The lower Tension will require more precise bowing to have good sound, but not more weight or so and it will possibly allow for slower bowing close to the Bridge. The Sound usually is somewhat less loud and a Little more "reedy", more overtones and less fundamental, compared to the forte counterpart. However, different string Brands have different ways of construction. A light gauge gut core c string will be very different from a light gauge spirocore, the difference will be much bigger than between the light gauge spiro and its heavy Counterpart. Of Course that is an extreme example but it also Counts for other strings types. So say Dominant will have a lot less Tension than magnacore, but the different playing characteristics are largely due to the different core materials and only to a lesser extend to the string tension. In short, it is a Thing you Need to try out. In my opinion: first find a brand of strings you like, then mess with gauges.
  22. @Blank face Does the rounded surface on which the neck is screwed and glued Maybe offer some leeway to make sure the neck is set straight and the fingerboard Ends up in the middle between the f-holes? It seems this is a Problem you often Encounter on cheaper Instruments, and I can imagine this to be an investion to solve this Problem. Is that completely out of the Question? edit: i just read your Seidel likely wasn't screwed, the Question still stands though.
  23. @KB_Smith It is a bit unfortunate, I do think you overpayed. But you are Right, 900 for a good sounding violin is ofcourse not a lot of Money, and if you are going to Play it for a Long time, then it is not so bad after all. There is no shame in loving a cheapo if it gives you the Sound you want! About the "missing" Corner blocks, they are not really missing. It has to do with the method of construction. Basically, there are three different ways to construct the ribcage of a violin. Nowadays the prevalent one os to build around an inside mold, you will be able to find examples of this in a lot of bench threads in the contemporary makers Forum. This is the method that was used mostly in Cremona (but it is not strictly cremonese!). Another ethod is to do it the other way round and construct the rib Cage with an outside mould. This was very popular in France in the 19th century, but again, not exclusively there. The third method would be Building on the back, for which there are several ways of doing it. One way would have been to carve out a channel in the back and set the ribs in that channel, glueing them together in the Corners. (the early French method) Another would be to sort of pre glue the ribs together, then glue them onto the back, modifieing the shape of the rib Cage so that it resembles a violin, then filing off the excess from the Corners. This leads to the seam being in the centre of the Corner. This is the case with your violin. Such a construction does not equire Corner blocks. This type of construction was prevalent in much of southern Germany/czech republic etc, but there were also early italian makers that employed this method. None of the Methods are inherently superior, all have different Advantages and disadvantages. The 2nd Bob method however became the method of the violin making Industry around Markneukirchen, where many not so well sounding, cheap trade violins where constructed. Consequently, it in time by association was viewed as an acoustically inferior method, even if this is not necessarily the case. Because of this, makers using this method started putting in "fake" Corner blocks, often not more than a small piece of Wood, to obscure the construction Methods, so the violin would be viewed as superior. That is the short Explanation.
  24. I'm only a Player with an interest in Instruments, so please rate my judgement of the insrument bearing this in mind. To me this Looks like a stripped and clumsily revarnished Instrument, that likely was made in the Markneukirchen area. The Things that Point in this direction are the Corners of the ribs, which Show the seam Right in the middle, the scroll fluting which Ends 6 o'clock, the "Delta" at the chin of the pegbox, the blackening of the inside of the pegbox. Look inside to see if it has all four Corner blocks (they shouldn't be there, but even if they are there, they could be fakes or added later on). The Stripping and revarnishing is visible since the varnish Shows a strange texture on the Surface, and the "antiqueing" in many places, in particular on the scroll, but also other hard to reach places, Looks like left Overs from the old varnish. The Darkness of the rib Corners is caused by the old varnish that soaked in there (end grain) during the Stripping process. The blackening of the Pegbox chamfer, which one sees on many French Instruments, is done too clumsily to be from a master makers Hand and Looks much too new, compared to the rest. I wouldn't be surprised if it is alkyd based. All in all, you have a functional, but almost valueless Instrument in your Hands.