Greg F.

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Everything posted by Greg F.

  1. Yikes! 7 year wait for a violin!?! Is any violin really worth such a wait? What if you don't like the finished product? If the wait time starts to approach one's expected longevity (or the luthier's) then maybe one should move on to someone else.
  2. Yes, it's possible to find a good violin at auction. Yes, it will probably cost something extra to get it setup properly. Yes, if you do your homework, it will end up costing less than if you bought the same instrument from a shop. After all, dealers are regular auction buyers (and they too have to spend time and/or money fixing it up "right") and they're in it to make a buck (or two). It all comes down to your comfort level.
  3. I knew him as a watch dealer, etc. He was often at shows put on by the NAWCC (a watch collector organization). Very knowledgeable about watches and had a large collection of horological ephemera (which is what he reproduced in his books).
  4. Greg F.

    bow wood

    Thanks. Needs a rehair. Hopefully it will be a good player.
  5. Greg F.

    bow wood

    I was walking to the store this morning and ran into a friend of mine who, knowing that I like bows, showed me a few that he had recently been given. He gave me a couple, one of which (branded the ubiquitous Bausch) looked to have nice wood. Might it be pernambuco?
  6. Solely from the perspective of looks, I like #2 (lower) better. (BTW I'm a million miles from being a bow expert.)
  7. Neither looks like a great bow but they don't look like total trash either. I have about 40 functional bows (out of about 150-200 that I've sampled). Most are older wooden and fully nickel mounted. Few are truly garbage for an intermediate (at best) fiddle player like myself. Several are on loan to local fiddle players who like them better than their carbon fiber Codas and other bows. I have about 6 or 7 silver mounted ones, most of which perform better. So in my experience, an older fully nickel mounted bow made of decent wood and no problems is likely to be a decent intermediate bow if it has good hair. But this is just my experience as a rank amateur. I make no claims to be an expert.
  8. For collectibles, ebay is the greatest thing since sliced bread. But even bread gets moldy. If you're looking for a bow as a "tool" then by all means avoid ebay. Go to your local shop and pay full retail (or near it) for the bow that fits your needs. But if you enjoy the hunt then there's no place like ebay. Bargains are to be had but knowledge is king (or at least prince). As for the bows you've shown, nothing strikes me as special about them (but I'm way way far from an expert) but I suspect that you could get them for less than the price of a rehair. And if they both have decent hair then you come out ahead.
  9. Reminds me of why there are no ice cubes in Britain......Lucas refrigerators.
  10. Greg F.

    German bow

    741 mm. Weighs 59.2 g (heavier than I'd remembered)
  11. Greg F.

    German bow

    It's problem free silver mounted bow. As I recall it's a bit on the light side (don't remember the weight).
  12. Greg F.

    German bow

    This old bow is stamped Karl Wilfer. Could he be an actual maker or is it more likely to be a fictitious brand name?
  13. If it was represented as you describe then I would return it.
  14. My mistake. A typo. It is meant to read "nickel silver (an alloy often having about 20% nickel)". Otherwise my "calculation" would be meaningless.
  15. This is an interesting bit from an 1892 catalog. Note that both "imitation" and "genuine" Bausch bows are being offered. IMO, a reasonable interpretation is that the "imitation" ones were anyone's bows that were simply stamped "Bausch" and the "genuine" ones came from the Bausch firm (whether a Bausch made them or not). Or maybe it's all meaningless catalog hype?
  16. Not exactly an "ad absurdum". A back of the envelope calculation: The same source notes that in 1824 nickel silver (an alloy often having about 20% silver) was being marketed for 3 thalers per pound. It's a good guess that most of this price was from the nickel rather than the copper, so let's guesstimate that pure nickel came in at not much less than 15 thalers per pound. How about we go with 14. There are about 14.5 troy ounces in a pound. A thaler had roughly as much silver as a US dollar of the time (maybe 10% more?). A US silver dollar had roughly $1 worth of silver in it. So nickel (in 1824) comes out to be about the same price as silver ($1 an ounce). And maybe it still was in 1827?
  17. I find the following link to be a more interesting currency converter: http://www.historicalstatistics.org/Currencyconverter.html
  18. Here's another old page (from 1915). Prices go from 55 cents to $29 (the later would get you into the range of some well known French makers). One of the issues with these old catalogs is figuring out if the prices are retail, wholesale or something like "keystone" (usually twice wholesale but not always).
  19. Neat old catalog page. I find these very interesting as they give direct evidence of the bow market, prices, etc., way back when. Besides those reproduced in the Ehrhardt books there are others to be found in various places on the internet. Sometimes the period prices of "generic" silver mounted bows can approach those for makers whose bows command 5 figures today.
  20. Recently saw an old bow with few details, iffy pictures and suspect condition sell on a popular auction site for over $1500. A couple people must have noticed something interesting about it...or maybe their dinner standards are higher than most.
  21. Martin, How would you recommend cleaning the lapping on this bow? I don't want to go too crazy but it could use a little. Greg
  22. As is it weighs 52 g. So with hair it should come in at around 56-57 g. A little light but still in the range for a violin bow.