Hans Pluhar

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Everything posted by Hans Pluhar

  1. Quite right, a technical difficulty we have not been able to solve completey, but it is actually the exception because in this example the numbes are very close to each other. I am including a picture where these crossing isolines don´t really occur. Hans
  2. Yes, very well said, Melvin! I guess we tend to believe things easily once they appear in print somewhere or are expressed in figures and so on. Means we should never stop questioning and searching, things we violin makers actually constantly do because there are no definite truths in an artform like this. This is of course not to say that the Messiah does not have definite measurements:-) Cheers, Hans
  3. Yes, Mike, I have not been spending too much time on MN, this graduation topic just caught my eye luckily at the right moment. Cheers, Hans
  4. Hi again, by the way, I did not have the pleasure to measure the Messie! I used the figures of the Strad poster to create the color map. Just for clarification. Kind regards, Hans
  5. Hello Michael, do you have the "Pringle thicknesses"? Can we have a look at them? Cheers, Hans
  6. Hi there, I made color maps of this one, might be easier to understand the figures. When judging top thicknesses I like to have a look at the back thicknesses too. Here the centre of the back is substantial. Cheers, Hans
  7. hi emviolins. Thanks. Not exactly off my bench, but I just found out the young violinist playing Bartok on my violin here http://www.hanspluhar.com/stradivarimodel.html won a concertmaster audition for the Aachen Symphony Orchester in Germany with his Pluhar violin, so that is nice to hear..... On another note I just came across this and I bet many of you know this since it has been viewed more than 2,5 m times. Anyway, sorry to bore you...but I found it wonderful especially the bit how this clarinet sounds in the end! So worth waiting for the end. Hans
  8. In case you were wondering how to choose your wood, some people have super skills at it...... Cheers and have fun, Hans
  9. http://hanspluhar.com/bvmafhole25.html This is a close up of the inside on a Rogeri Cello. One can see a few things: The basic layout was made on the inside. There is a line showing the body stop. One divider marking for the outside nick. A couple of tries laying out the bottom eye and wing showing a bigger circle around the one that was cut in the end. The actual is also lower. Two scribe lines showing the direction of the wing which have been discarded. The one that was used is lower. Maybe there are more things I have not seen? Best, Hans
  10. Hi Roger, thanks for this eloquent contribution and also your praise. It means a lot to me to hear it from you! You are absolutley right in assuming that my instruments will not wear like the classical Cremonese ones did. There are many reasons for that. Charles Beare told me some time ago, he thinks most of the wear pattern we see on the old Cremonese happened in the first 25 years of their life. This leads me to believe that the varnish must have been quite soft and taken a long time to cure. Playing habits were different then, cases were different. There was no climate control like we have today. One thing that must be fundamentally different though to our work today is the way the Cremonese varnish adheres or adhered to the ground. How is it possible it came off so easily creating these characteristic holes? It is as if one could pick it right off with one´s fingernail. I don´t think I would like to use a varnish like this today, even if I could. It is not so great to have the fabric of the cases sticking to the varnish. If a musician plays it for a couple of weeks and returns it and it has several traces of wear, shoulder rest not to mention, it would not be nice to offer this (not pristine anymore) instrument with blemishes to someone else. So yes, we have to make instruments for todays musicians and market and I will not cease to work hard on improving the look of my unworn violins...... I am aware you have taught many makers very well to do fine antiquing but as you say it is very difficult and I wish I could do it well too but it seems I am not willing to put all this energy into it, but who knows, maybe one day I will come knocking on your door :-) Kind regards, Hans
  11. "Chung recorded with Solti on several occasions. With the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, in 1979 she recorded Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto for video" from: http://csoarchives.w...yung-wha-chung/ In 1979 she would have been 39......if I did the math right. Not sure though if it is the "Harrison" Strad. Hans
  12. I do mean drawing 1 but: yes I think you are right, the lines I am referring to are probably just pores cut along their length (not medullary reays). Hans
  13. Hi Guy, the way I remember the correct direction of the grain is that the veneer should be cut the same way a rib is cut. This way you see the medullary rays in poplar as longish lines parallel to the purfling as seen in Cremonese instruments. In your case that would be like drawing Nr 1. Best regards, Hans
  14. Thanks, Joe and all the others for your positive feedback! I am not sure if pristine instruments are more common in Europe than America....(?)... Best regards, Hans
  15. Hi Chris, thanks for your kind words. While I have the greatest respect for the makers who do truely fine antiquing, this technique has never been my cup of tea. I have also reailzed that antiqued instruments sell quicker than new looking ones, which has forced me to work harder on sound to make up for the slight disadvantage. Also one has to pay more attention to other details of the woodwork which might have been discussed in the thread you mentioned which I have not had the time to look at unfortunately. I find a varnish successful if it allows me to see the details and properties of the wood well. So one of my goals is to find the right balance between getting varnish in/ on the wood and sealing it on the other hand. This is a little bit of a gamble as every piece of wood reacts differently. I like to see the flames get darker as you turn the instrument and then lighter again to the point that they almost appear to be white. The other challenge is the surface texture and I have had varying results. While it has been and to some extent is still fashionable to leave the bits of dust or other small particles on the surface, I find it quickly looks like unskilled work even though supposedly Cremonese instruments were covered with them in the beginning. On the other hand an overly polished shiny surface does not look too good either, so I try to find something in between. One thing I have discovered is that I don't like it too much when an instrument lights up on stage in the lime light. Also energy saving lamps make the varnish look completely different than normal bulbs or the sunlight. I have no answer to this. So light is quite understandably a huge factor. This also applies for photography, attached a picture of a violin of mine that Richard Valencia shot. I don't know how he does his lighting but he does a great job! Seeing instruments of mine that have been heavily used for as little as 3 to 5 years shows that the everyday wear of a hard working musician adds character to the instrument immediately. A slightly softer varnish wears nicer although in my opinion it should not wear down to the wood very fast. Also a too soft varnish mixes with dirt too quickly which you can't really clean..... Luckily there are enough musicians who like new looking instruments! Hans
  16. Yes I admit I hate it too! Anyone else? Hans
  17. Hello Anders, sorry it took me a little while to get back to your question: Both recordings on the link were made in the big hall of the Music University Munich. Same player, same instrument, same hall, same microphone. Very different repertoire though, which requires very different style of bowing. Best regards, Hans
  18. I can´t generalize. All I am saying is that I don´t mind if a new violin does not have so many colors in the beginning. My violin in the 2 recordings developed nice colors in 3 years in the hands of a good player. That is only 1 % of the time of a violin built in 1712.......It all depends on the combination of player and instrument. Hans
  19. Don't even know where to start with this question. Working in somebody's shop for 10 years, incorporating their style, not being able to tell the differnece between who made it and picking up some tips over coffee? You tell me!
  20. Thanks Anders, I will find out. I was given the recordings by the player, so I don't know. Good to hear from you! Hans
  21. Thanks, Carl. I respect Joseph´s work a lot. And he has done a great deal for modern violin making by breaking a few taboos by publishing previously well guarded data on Italian instruments. Co-hosting the Oberlin acoustics workshop and conducting tests (like the the Fritz test for example) has contributed to helping modern violin making. Hans
  22. I don´t quite know what you find amusing about this. Of course, they lived in the same city, so for sure knew each other´s work very well, but it is a completely different question if one of them worked in the other´s workshop or not. Hans
  23. Hi Roger, it has been a while..... thanks for the nice interview with Maxim Vengerov published in the recent issue of the Strad. I heard Maxim first when he was about 13 and I 15 (in 1987 or so) and he has been an inspiration for my violin making from the very start. So I am glad to hear he is coming back to playing the violin in public again. You mention again your theory that del Gesu might have worked in Strad's shop, can you give us more background on your thoughts? Best regards, Hans