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About Mason

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    Cats and kittens... Some puppies and dogs are pretty cool too.
    Mazda Miatas, obviously

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  1. Conforming f-hole templates to arching between c-bouts

    It isn't exactly a good 3D model, but it's just as quick to make a foil rubbing as a pencil rubbing, but you get more information. You can make a pretty accurate template photocopying the foil, and a more permanent reference by casting it in plaster. This is from a Testore cello that I only had about 10 minutes to take measurements. In this case I was mostly interested in the f-s, but I did get partial c-bout and corner with it, which also shows the purfling and edge details.
  2. Conforming f-hole templates to arching between c-bouts

    Oops, I totally I misunderstood your question. My bad.
  3. Conforming f-hole templates to arching between c-bouts

    I'm not sure if something like this is what you mean, but Andrew dipper showed me this quick and easy way to make a 3D copy of f-holes. Basically you put a piece of aluminum foil over the part you want to copy and rub it with a soft old toothbrush to create a depression in the foil. You can then photocopy the foil and make a template from the photocopy. You can also cast the foil in plaster for a more permanent copy. I'll try to upload a photo later
  4. Bright Sound Tone

    while these observable setup idiosyncrasies might not be the cause of your sound issues, they might be preventing you from getting an accurate representation of the sound. As far as the alignment issue I pointed out, the photo is obviously taken at an angle, but the strings are centered over the fingerboard. If you move the camera to a more straight on angle, where the strings are centered between the f-hole lobes, the strings will no longer be centered on the fingerboard. It might not be a big deal, but if I had the instrument in my hands it would be something that I'd try to figure out what is going on. As far as setup classes I don't know of many with a focus just on setup, but workshops like oberlin would be worthwhile. You'd be able to pick the brains of dozens of people with lots of knowledge. There is no one ideal way to setup an instrument, but learning how to refine your skills would be worth your time.
  5. Bright Sound Tone

    Why would you exclude these important factors? You shouldn't assume it's not a setup issue just looking at this photo I see there are some potential problems. it looks like your bridge is south of the mensur, which I'd guess means your post is just as far south in relation to the bridge. The bridge also looks a little crooked and the top surface of the bridge isn't an even thickness, the edges are thicker than the middle Also, either the bridge isn't properly centered or the fingerboard or neck aren't straight, or possibly a combination of both. Thats just what can be seen from this photo. I'd suggest learning to do a very precise setup before going and changing major aspects of construction, but 6mm does sound thick. Some violins it might work, but most instruments I measure come in somewhere between 4-4.5mm in the post area. Slightly thicker for some slab cut backs.
  6. Brothers Amati King Henry IV NMM 14470

    I think the luthiers library has this instrument... all the instruments have really good measurements, photos and laser scans of the arches.
  7. Hills shop records

    Here are a few links I found that mention models he used... I guess according to the Kerr article he made closer to 3,000 instruments, that's insane! This strad article is probably the one I got the 2,000 number from... but I guess that's just a hypothetical number.
  8. Hills shop records

    I had a small stack of articles on George Craske a few months ago and one had claimed he made over 2,000 instruments with no assistance.
  9. include model on label?

    I have seen makers put a copy of the original label, then their own label in another place. I think that's a less low end looking alternative to let players know what they are looking at. But generally I tend to agree with Johnmasters I recently saw a Roger Hargrave violin that was a copy of a Peter of Venice, but the original was later attributed to another maker. I don't remember the exact details, but it was a beautifully executed violin either way.
  10. Elements of construction and responsiveness

    My "map" wasn't so large until a few months ago... but that map never really surprises me. i suspect if I were "the boss" of the shop our definition of conservative would probably be pretty similar.
  11. Elements of construction and responsiveness

    Ha, yes that is an extreme example, but I have seen bassbars placed all over the map and it's something I pay a lot of attention to. Most of the bassbars I have replaced have been because of damage and/or placement. I take a very conservative approach when deciding to take an instrument apart and change a bar because of position alone, but sometimes less invasive solutions don't achieve the results the boss was hoping for. in my own instrument making, placement has a higher priority than shape, but my instruments aren't winning any awards, so take that into consideration when deciding if there is any validity to my observations.
  12. Elements of construction and responsiveness

    This is just an observation, and on instruments my employer has acquired, not customers instruments, tho I note placement of the bar when replacing a customers bridge or post. There is a range of standard full size bridge widths that can accommodate many bassbar placements, and I usually refrain from replacing a bassbar on the assumption that it's a bad placement because a violin could sound fine with a 38mm bridge overhanging the bar by 3mm, but it could also sound more like a 3/4 violin... as I stated above it's just an observation that I've noticed I replace more bassbars what are too far inside standard than outside standard.
  13. Minature camera for looking inside a violin?

    I have thought about getting an endoscope, but so far I haven't found anything I can't photograph with my iphone and a mirror, no matter where in the instrument I need to look. As stated above good lighting is essential. If it's an inscription on the inside of the belly it helps to be able to mirror the mirror in order to read it, I use a free app that allows me to do that. Here is a signature in the upper bout of the belly of a violin. Some shots are more tricky than others but it's pretty easy once you get the hang of it. August Gemunder, New York 1912
  14. Elements of construction and responsiveness

    Working in a fairly busy shop I get to see all sorts of things with various complaints involving response. One of the biggest influences on response I've learned and observed is all joints must be tightly glued, especially at the neck/upper block joints. Another observation I've made is that I replace more bassbars where the foot overhangs the bar too much, than not enough. Overall it's almost impossible to make generalizations when it comes to instruments. I have seen plenty of instruments that surprise me.
  15. Fake maple flaming?

    That looks like zebra wood or something similar, but the grain is oriented perpendicular to how it should be. Not painted flames as far as I can see on my phone. I'd bet the neck angle changes more dramatically with seasonal changes. Good luck to whoever buys that.