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Salve Håkedal

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Everything posted by Salve Håkedal

  1. Most of this is way above my head. But regarding torrefied wood giving brighter sound: Does torrefying alter the ratio of stiffness between longitudinal and radial direction in the wood (trunk)?
  2. Yes. That's true if all the sides of the billet are perfectly flat. My "calculator" is useful if the wood comes from i.e. Gleissner where the billets may be rough cut and irregular. Then it may be necessary to estimate the right measurements along the edges.
  3. A sound post would convert it more or less to a cello. Which is made for bowing. The bassbar-soundpost arrangement assures strong asymmetry, which is probably essential for powerful sound. I've never made an (archtop) guitar, but I'm puzzled that they are not made more asymmetrical in their bracing. That goes for flattops too, I think. Would not that make a richer sound?
  4. Objective wood properties. For my early fiddles I only made a subjective estimation like "light" or "somewhat heavy". Not quite as precise as what I've done since.
  5. I've written one sheet of notes for each new instrument in 36 years. It can be fun (sometimes embarassing) to go back and read. But most of you don't read norwegian anyway! Without these sheets, I would probably have learned (even) less.
  6. A problem (and contradiction) with hardangerfiddles is that decorated pegs on old fiddles are often made of maple. Stained or even painted! Maple is really not suited for pegs, however. Still, preserving these original pegs is a point, while for most violins, it's not a big issue throwing away worn pegs and fit new ones.
  7. Just a side note: If I have to use a blank with more than slight runout, I use a lower and flatter arching. That way the runout will be less severe towards the end- and neck blocks. I think 14 is OK. I'm all for variation.
  8. If that's true, I'm really impressed. How old are your Michelman varnished instruments?
  9. However perfect you wash that precipitate to remove the salt byproducts, the vulnerability of the Michelman varnish to moisture won't go away. Believe me JacksonM, I tried!! The reason is that the very core of the varnish - the metal rosinate - is in itself a salt. No longer soluble in water, but still not resistant enough to moisture. (I know I've bragged about this before: In all other aspects, I loved it. If it is not touched - at least not by my skin and by some of my customers skin, as I learned - it ages beautifully. I.e. no alligatoring. I don't antique my instruments. But if I did, I might actually use Michelmans varnish. Because then them vulnerable places would be bare and maybe frenchpolished already! But at that medium stage; when the varnish is all tacky and dirty at the shoulder etc., is just awful.)
  10. Nowadays you can study lots of research that may enlighten your view on modes of the finished violin: Schleske, Strad 3d, Stoppani, Borman etc.
  11. Don, that has not happened to any of the instruments that have "revisited" my shop.
  12. When I make new instruments, I do 2 small tricks: Cut a very small chamfer at the edge of the block. When I size the block with glue, I don't go quite to the edge. If I use thin enough glue for the final gluing, it will soak into the wood where it's not sized. So there will not be glue squeezed out at the edge of the block. And the tiny slit from the chamfer will lead the opening knife in position.
  13. As usual, Don gives a very good answer. As a hardangerfiddle maker I do pretty wild things. Of course, a hardangerfiddle is something rather different from a violin or a viola, but it might give the more narrowminded (sorry!) violin makers some perspective. It's more about resonance, with the complexity that Don writes about, than it is about levers or "force diagrams".
  14. Reading this: ".. The resulting resin softened only very slightly with direct water contact .." makes my varnish trauma return. The Michelman resin had this defect, which was the only cause for me finally giving up on it.
  15. If you make hardangerfiddles, you'll appreciate geared pegs, I tell you!
  16. Is it possible that this is true only while bowing is perfectly stable? .. that when there is variances in the bow stroke, there will be transients that may be more unpredictable and out of that plane?
  17. I use spririt varnish on my new instruments, and french polishing is part of the process. (If it's taboo, I don't care.)
  18. I percieve shellac as harder and tougher than sandarac. Sandarac may seem hard in the raw beads. But in thin applications, I'd call it brittle, not "hard" as you did. So I believe it adds brittleness to shellac which is more coherent (tough/hard) without sandarac. Maybe "brittle" is opposite of "soft" in your vocabulary? Not in mine. (But I'm norwegian; not english.) I share your minimalism regarding ingredients. I use mastix to soften shellac. I think mastix soften the shellack without adding brittleness. Or expressed another way: it adds plyability to the shellac.
  19. Hardening shellac with sandarac!? I guess you meant the opposite?
  20. The following works fine with my bench and plane. It requires that the halves be planed flat before shooting the joint and that the bench is also flat.
  21. Hi Don! I think I remember you wrote something like "why not do it right the first time?" when you started and appeared here on Maestronet. I think there were more people than me that was a little skeptic to that! :-D But your down to earth and scientifically informed attitude and knowledge has been a great resource and help for a lot of us here! In Norway we say "tusen takk" (=1000 thanks).
  22. A chair with adjustable height is nice, too.
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