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About geoff1954

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  1. Hi. This is a problem which seems to afflict many older musicians. It is hard to read music on the stand especially when sharing a stand in an orchestra, because the distance is too far for 'reading glasses' to help. In my case I stopped playing in my local orchestra because I found it frustrating that I could could play the music perfectly well, but not if I couldn't see it! I've spoken to others of 'mature age' and it seems to be a common problem. I play the cello where the stand has to be a reasonable distance away. One solution is for each player to have his/her own music and stand, so that the distance will be shorter. But this is contrary to the culture in string sections and, of course, makes page-turning a problem. Any other suggestions? Someone told me about 'intermediate distance' glasses: does anyone out there have experience of these? Thanks.
  2. Thanks. It sounds as if my JTL violin might have been made as late as 1960s. Presumably in France.
  3. I can find plenty of information on the origins and early years of JTL, but nothing about the demise of the company. Does anyone know when they stopped making violins? (I get the impression that they still make violin cases, but not violins). Why do I ask? I have a fullsize violin labelled 'J Thibouville-Lamy. Paris and London' which looks to be virtually new. It has all the JTL features so I'm sure it is genuine. Can it have been made before 1960? 1950?
  4. For what its worth, prices on Ebay for fractional size violins are much less than full size. This applies to both newish and old violins. Just supply and demand I suppose.
  5. Until recently I owned a violin with a label which was unclear, but definitely 1918 and Rostov. (In Russian letters.) After some investigation I came to the conclusion that the maker was Zaikovsky, but I have no information. I assume he was one of the casualties of the violent unrest. The violin looked okay but sounded extremely good.
  6. Cleflover: It is the label which is blue/purple, not the varnish! Sorry, I can't have made this clear. The varnish is actually quite a light brown colour.
  7. I know, before you tell me, this is an old topic. However I have a little to add. Most of the Maidstones I've seen over the years (and I buy and sell at this end of the market) have the same features and were probably made in the same factory in Bohemia. (Dark chestnut varnish colour, broadly flamed maple, inelegant scrolls, inlaid purfling, etc.) Murdoch must have bought them by the thousand. They rarely have cracks and play well enough. Worth setting up. However I'm fairly sure that some Maidstones came from Germany., and I've seen two which were definitely French, by the JTL worshops. I've just acquired a violin with a Maidstone label which is a blue/purple colour, rather than the usual brown. But the same shape and design of label. I took the belly off in order to reattach the neck and found that it was beautifully made inside. Fully blocked, linings neatly tucked in, smooth back and belly, nicely shaped bass bar. The timber used for the back is also unusual with a prominent vertical wide grain. It actually looks like spruce or pine but is definitely a hardwood. Anyone seen a Maidstone like this? I'm looking forward to seeing how it plays.
  8. Thanks for your replies. I see that the violin has been removed from sale, so perhaps the seller has a conscience after all.
  9. Any thoughts about this violin, and the other violins of this seller? Quality French 4/4 Violin By Hugues Emile Blondelet Circa 1920 Paris ( 312098204550 )
  10. Thank you for your replies and advice, particularly the careful and detailed advice from JoeDeF. I really appreciate it. I have made the odd cello and violin (I phrase it like this deliberately!) and have repaired and set up hundreds of violins. However harps are very different. I'll come back to the forum when my first harp is finished.
  11. Hi. I'm thinking of making a harp. As with anything I make, it has to be 'on the cheap'! Is there anyone out there who has done the same, and can offer advice? I know that kits can be bought but I'd prefer to work from scratch (on grounds of cost, if nothing else.) I'm thinking of a 19 or 22 string celtic harp. Softwood base, birch ply soundboard, maple pillar and neck. No pedals. I see that levers can be added to raise a string by a semitone. I'm wondering if I should add the levers once I have got it working? Presumably the positioning of them would have to be totally accurate? I have plans (free) for a 'Waldorf 22' harp, without levers. Any advice gratefully accepted.
  12. My first instrument is the cello but I am also a self-taught violinist. Chromatics on the cello are easy, 01231230123123. But this doesn't seem to work as well on the violin, not sure why. What is the standard way of fingering a fast chromatic scale on the violin?
  13. Of the modern makes of violin by far the best I have seen is the Gliga. Better than even the more expensive Stentor models.
  14. After taking part in a spirited but under-rehearsed performance of Walton's Belshazzar's Feast I would like to propose an new concept in musical performance. Called the Rallying Point. A place in the music where, if all else fails, the orchestra can come together. Usually defined by a loud and recognisable tune in the brass.