Dave Slight

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    Manchester, England

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  1. The new front doesn't even look like it's made from spruce. Fingerboard is something painted and pinned on, with a wedge underneath disguised as a baroque notch.
  2. The spacing and angles are variable. What worked for someone else might not work for your given cabinet size.
  3. I don't think you really need a plan for that, just work out how many violins you can fit in the given space, without them touching each other or the sides of the cabinet, then cut some slots.
  4. Hello John, I’ve owned a copy of your book for years now, and must say that it is a great resource. There are not many books on bows which focus on making and repair, let alone one which contains a lifetime of knowledge, and provides a link to the great bow workshop of W.E. Hill & sons. I know it had taken you a very long time to compile all the material for the book, and I think everyone who works on bows will be glad that you published all of the valuable material. Anyone who has had the opportunity to view, or play on one of your bows will undoubtedly recognise that you are a true master of your craft. My own copy did not find it’s way onto a shelf, and has stayed in the workshop. I must confess that the pages are not as clean as they used to be, but I think this says a lot for the book! Best wishes for your retirement. I could not resist sharing a pic of this cello bow, truly staggering (pun intended)
  5. Indeed, that would be a necessity for the alignment theory. I have not seen one which I felt was not placed centrally, but perhaps you have seen some which were offset to an extent? From those I have worked on, the size of the hole was always the same, so there is some consistency. If you know why they did this, or have an alternative theory, I'd be interested to know your thoughts.
  6. I would love to know what sort of shapes the Thau milling machine actually could cut. I have seen old plates with large ink stamped numbers on them, that were milled out on both sides. These had a basic outer arching, and a basic hollowing, following this shape. These plates had no outline cut, and were just the two wedges glued together, then milled to remove the bulk of the waste. I’d estimate that 75% of the waste was removed. If anyone is familiar with how Helen Mitchetschlager sometimes roughs out her cello arching before cutting the outline, you will understand better what I am trying to explain. So my understanding of the Thau milling machine was that it was a roughing tool, used to remove the bulk of the excess wood, and created a flattish gradual arched shape, which could then be adapted as required by a maker, saving them some time. I’m not so sure it was some type of early cnc (without a computer) which cut finished plates with a high degree of accuracy, including edge work and fluting, or cut those monstrous bulging arched mingers. But I’m prepared to be wrong too.
  7. No, I think the weight reduction is a red herring. With the Degani channel, you would be able to sight through the nut to a temporary bridge for example, and be sure things are centred, but it isn’t that hard to centre a neck on new work without this. Alternatively it is possible that something was passed through the channel as part of a jig, or simply to extend a centred rod over the body. It may also have been involved in setting the elevation. One thing I do know is that untouched Degani fingerboards, ones which have never been reglued are very clean through the channel, and not filled up with glue squeeze out.
  8. I have always believed that this was an alignment aid in the way the Degani workshop set their necks. Could have been a visual aid, or had something fitted through the slot. The slot itself extends fully through the nut and exits at the other end of the fingerboard.
  9. The term deal was originally applied to boards of standard thicknesses, widths and lengths. It was an amount of wood, not a type. Later it became a term used for common softwoods, probably because these were the woods most used in building etc, and the type most people would be familiar with.
  10. Scots pine is usually red deal, with spruce being white deal.
  11. No, whenever someone is selling one, theirs is always made by the man himself
  12. I’m not sure why you think the crack is too small to get hide glue into, but would take titebond easier? Hide glue is the best choice.
  13. Reading old books from the late 19th century, it's quite a surprise to see how little was known about some makers. George Hart, who in his day was considered an expert at the time, gives some pretty basic and sketchy details about a lot of Italian makers, and it is clear that for some, he had only ever seen one example. Academic research was in its infancy, and a lot of records were yet to be correlated and documented properly. With this being the case, it's easy to see how for things which were considered rare, looked archaic and had rudimentary workmanship just to be taken at face value. I wonder how many genuine Brescian instruments were in London at this time. Probably didn't help that Vuillaume had been pushing Gaspar Tieffenbrucker around this time either.
  14. Saddest is when a maker has died, and that very week when the news gets out, people want things revalued, because in their view it will be worth much more than before, now that the maker is dead.
  15. Once you’re not around to promote your work any more, things start to fall off the radar pretty quickly. It’s a shame, but also a reality. Same thing has happened with Rubio for example.