Josh Henry

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About Josh Henry

  • Rank
    Senior Member
  • Birthday 09/30/1921

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  • Website URL
    http://www.FineViolinBows.com
  • Skype
    fineviolinbows

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Washington DC area
  • Interests
    Bow Making and Restoration

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  1. Hi Brad. Check out this article posted a few years ago by Kari Azure from the Triangle Strings (Jerry Pasewicz's shop). This article highlights the main techniques. https://trianglestrings.com/cheval/ I use a Sherline mill, model 5400. Yes, I have an angle milling vise and I do have to get creative in holding the frog. Most often, I use cut wine corks to hold the frog in the vise. I do reinforce the fragile edges with tape to keep things from splintering. As mentioned in the article, I also will use thermal set dental cast when needed, but more recently, I prefer to use Thermo-loc to hel
  2. Thanks for the additional pictures George. I would be willing to bet that once the gunk is scrubbed away, the heads of those screws will reveal that they are iron, not brass. I do find it interesting that the front screw has a slot that is not centered. This might not mean anything, or it might indicate that these screws were individually made by hand rather than mass produced.
  3. This is a common repair on older bows, and one that can have excellent, nearly undetected results that are very difficult to detect unless closely examined under a powerful light or a black light. I have a few comments... The fact that the button rings are pinned is no indication whatsoever of country of origin. Pin number and placement might hint of an individual maker, but not country or origin. Pins in buttons are pretty ubiquitous. Your mention of the silver underslide having been installed with brass screws would place the date of the frog well into the 20th century. Mo
  4. I have the deepest sympathy for Mary and great respect for Craig. I didn't always agree with all of the things that Craig posted online and, on a few occasions, got into a little argument with him over some technique or belief or some other thing. However, his heart and quest for knowledge was unquenchable. He was a generous person and shared himself with everyone surrounding him. I got to know Craig personally over the course of about three years that we worked together in his latest interest of making bows. Although I never had the honor to meet him in person, we had weekly discussions
  5. I have always used nylon thread for my knots. I used to buy it from woodwind suppliers as oboe/bassoon reed-trying thread (size FF), but now I buy it on 1-pound spools from a textile thread supplier (Nylon, size 138 or FF depending on supplier). I used to use a dark blue thread, but changed about 8 years ago because someone went off to the northern woods to a week long rehair camp and came back as a "professional rehairer" and set up a local shop, and started using the same color. Now, I use dark green. For many years, I had a small bows of liquid rosin (rosin powder with a few d
  6. I've been using CA glue for years in my shop, and have dealt with this same thing. As my primary business is focused on bows, rather than violins, I go through lots of CA glue--so I usually purchase it in either 4oz or 8oz bottles. I keep the larger bottles in the refrigerator for the reasons mentioned above. My primary applicators to dispense the glue are simple, cheap chemistry lab pipettes that are easy to use. Years ago, I bought about 500 of them off of ebay for about $20. They are available in different sizes, easy to fill (and refill), and are disposable. Mine are similar
  7. I don’t have much opinion as to whether or not old spruce vs. new spruce is better tonally for a soundpost. However, for years, I have used some incredible spruce that came out of a piano that was made in the late 1800’s. The piano was a total wreck, and was being thrown away, and I ended up with it so I could salvage the ivory from the key tops. When I took the keys out of the action, I was amazed at the quality of the wood that the keys were made from. They were made from very straight grain spruce, mostly fine-medium grained, with a few of the key beds having wider grain. Also, the black ke
  8. My last resort for this kind of thing is to just throw the frog away and replace it with another one. Bows like these tend to break at the head or have problems that exceed the value, so I keep every old frog that I can, so when I can't get a frog open through the various means mentioned above, I'll just mount a replacement frog to the stick. You may not have been rehairing bows long enough to have a drawer full of them, but keep at it, and some day, you'll have plenty of spares. BTW, I do tell the customer when I have to do this, and so far, nobody has ever cared that there is a non-original
  9. I've got the Knew Concepts saw. Mine is an earlier titanium version (similar in design to the aluminum versions), made before the titanium "birdcage" design that is being made now. If I remember correctly, the titanium that was used was left over from the construction of F-14s, or something like that. Mine has the adjustable quick-release cam design that holds the blade, and I upgraded the handle to one made from rosewood. I can't comment on how it does with cutting f-holes, as I've never before done that. Overall, I really like the saw, and it works very well--I bought this for work wit
  10. In bow making, I find that the most difficult part is the very last thing--but usually the first thing that players look at--stamping my name on the stick. For those of you that have only used a bridge stamp, stamping pernambuco is an entirely different thing (for one thing, you don't use a hammer). Sounds easy, but it is not: Get it straight. Get it in the right place. Get it centered. Get it to an even depth (top to bottom and right to left). Get it nice and black (takes candle soot, not just heat). Press hard and hold it there without moving or shaking (remember, it is really hot at
  11. I'll add another agreement to the many comments above that this is an early Nippon bow. It is definitely not English or French, or remotely valuable. The stick is of some strain of rosewood, and apparently, the frog was made from a similar material mounted in brass. There is nothing carefully made about any part of this bow, and cleaning up and restoring it won't help it's provenance, value, or playability. More photos won't change this either. I cannot fathom why anyone could come to a conclusion about this bow that compares it to Dodd, Tubbs, or Peccatte (which are three quite different and
  12. Just don't confuse the physical term 'elasticity' in the wood with 'stiffness' or 'flexibility' (as in what a player feels). They do not correlate.
  13. Brad, this is also what I do when I fit the silver pin. I do hammer it on a metal bench block to peen and expand it. I can usually do this without splitting the ebony backing, but it does sometimes happen. No, I don't re-pin then petit-talon when I glue it into the frog. It is a tight dovetail fit on the edges of the slide channel, and when gluing the ebony backing (of the silver) to the ebony in the frog, there is no reason for any additional pinning. As most modern bowmakers do, I use CA glue to glue almost everything when making a bow. The top side of the prepared sl
  14. So here are a few pictures from this morning's Skype session with Craig. In these pictures, we are cutting the channel in the frog, in preparation of fitting the pearl slide. We started by measuring out and scribing lines on the edges of the frog that define where the slide channel will be cut. Next, the channel is cut, paying particular attention to the desired taper of the pearl, the depth of the channel, and making sure that it is centered in the frog. The slide channel is left square-shaped (without dovetail) at this point. After the slide channel is defined and cu
  15. What you've described here Brad is exactly the process that we will be doing. Briefly, here is the process: I glue both the pearl and silver to the ebony backing, and fit it all together to ensure a correct and uniform fit into the dovetail channel in the frog. Before gluing the pearl slide blank and silver butt plate to the ebony backing, I file the two pieces so that the fit between the pearl and silver is perfectly flat--as this becomes the finished butt joint in the frog. When gluing to the ebony, I make sure that no glue gets into that joint, creating any gap. Once glued, I place a si