Dave Slight

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    Manchester, England

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  1. In the context of Strad’s graduations, it does seem to be different to what is expected. That said, it appears to work well, and also has a great story attached to it
  2. The trouble is that there are so few original necks left, and unless you happen to be taking the fingerboard off, or other neck work is required, you'd never really notice it. I remember a few times visiting Eric Voigt's storeroom. He had a stack of neck graft blanks, about a foot square, and several feet high. Everything Voigt offered for sale had a new neck graft, whether it needed one or not. It seems he was even replacing already grafted necks with his own grafts, which he felt were correct and superior. This sort of policy was not unique to him by any means, and I guess was the standard for any British workshop of class in the late 19th and early 20th Century. Paul Voigt certainly admired Hill's, and was trying to be the Manchester version of it. It seems that the traces of original construction survive mainly in examples of instruments which good shops didn't feel were worth their time, or instruments which stayed in their local area, put in the loft for a lifetime or two, owned by skinflints etc.
  3. While it has some English features, it also has some which are not. I don't think you can conclude with certainty it is English.
  4. This is partly true. If we look back, virtually all countries had some famous and successful makers during the baroque period. Many of these were influenced heavily by the work of earlier generations, particularly Stainer and Amati, some makers being more successful in this respect than others. As time goes on, the models develop into something more personal, but the DNA is still clear to see. As for Italian superiority, or at least the desire to own one, this seems to have been there from the earliest times. It can be seen in many historic documents, where records show royalty and the aristocracy were ordering directly from Cremona and other parts of Italy, or envoys being dispatched to obtain some. I don't agree that Italians were only considered superior with the advent of modernisation as you suggest. They were known and sought after long before this.
  5. From what I have seen Martin, this seems to start with one famous London workshop in the late 1700's, the idea then seems to have spread. This is not a particularly well done example compared to some. I think the violin in question is from around 1800, and the unusual shape makes it seem more archaic than it really is.
  6. I think it is Blank Faces old bow from high school
  7. Agreed. The neck joint will be original to the instrument. That method of a screw pocket in the neck can be seen in a number of original necks, and seems to be an evolution of the screw through from inside the body The end blocks look like they are some sort of cedar or mahogany, which isn't typical, but the bulbous half moon shape is.
  8. And yet the most successful models of the Baroque era are Stainer, Amati, Strad, Guarneri, Serafin etc. All of which are intrinsically beautiful models, and none of which have a wasp waist, or bizarre proportions.
  9. It should be remembered that a lot of old makers, were people working in allied trades. Therefore, one often finds violins which can leave you scratching your head as to why the woodwork, or even varnish is competently done, yet the model and proportions only make sense if you'd had a week on the lash at a gin palace. Does the grain of the endblocks run parallel to the ribs?
  10. Having done both straight, and antiqued finishes, I have found that for me, an antiqued one is much more likely to sell sooner.
  11. For a new violin, without a potentially checkered past, and under £2000, I can recommend Gewa and Jay Haide.
  12. I’m not sure how the $17k was arrived at, but I’m sure your teacher will be delighted to accept it If the orchestra needs more cellos, it would make sense to visit shops within the area you were prepared to take this one for appraisal, and trial as many as you can there.
  13. I think the OP indicated this violin was approx £2000. I don’t think anyone would be cutting down a viola, reshaping all of the ribs, re-edging, making matching purfling, retouching the varnish invisibly at that kind of price.
  14. You won’t, because what you have is a very cheap German violin.