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  1. Quick question. Looking at the bridge, the bass side (G string) is taller off the top than the treble side (E string). Even accounting for the fact that the G string is further from the fingerboard than the E string, it looks like that the fingerboard's surface is further from the violin top on the bass side compared to the treble side. Two questions: 1. Why is the fingerboard further from the top of the violin on bass side? 2. If this is customary, how much higher is it on the bass side than the treble side? Hope my question makes sense. Thanks, Josh
  2. Thanks everyone. These are in BILLET form so they are uncut for backs - so they are not plates yet. And yes, same dimensions. Also yes that the denser stiffer unit gives a higher pitch. Does one want the stiffer but also more dense units or the lower density units. Or is it a happy medium somewhere. Thanks, J
  3. Quick question. If I am comparing billets of Maple cut for violin backs, and when tapping them with a light metal mallet, does the pitch indicate anything? Is the higher pitch always preferred as I assume it has a stiffer/higher strength to weight ratio? Or is this not the case? Can maple be too stiff? Thanks, Josh
  4. StuartRochon. 2 minutes? That's jesting right? Just the dampening of the plate moving air should stop the vibration in seconds rather than minutes. J
  5. Greetings, Would you kindly recommend a book that efficiently and clearly provides the measurements I need to evaluate a violin's physical characteristics (i.e. Fingerboard scoop, length, curvature, bridge setup, etc) so that when I see a violin, I can accurately evaluate its setup and identify any obvious problems. Would "USEFUL MEASUREMENTS FOR VIOLIN MAKERS" be Strobel be the one to get or would you recommend something else? Thanks, Josh
  6. I've done a search and did not find the answer I need. I've been testing a number of violins. They all differ in the mass of the various parts. Some have noticeably smaller chinrests, small tailpieces and lightweight endpins. If one replaces all three parts with larger (more comfortable chinrest) parts and a larger tailpiece and heavier pegs that also weigh more, would that GENERALLY be detrimental to the tone or is there not a general rule on this? This has a significant implication when picking a violin in a shop. For example, one may find a violin that responds just beautifully but the chin rest is absolutely wrong for one's style. If one picks the violin and then later changes the chin rest, the tone may change pretty dramatically. So a general rule would be helpful. Thanks, Josh
  7. A bit curious. Testing some violins, AB two pairs (4 violins) of violins and found the same phenomenon separately. These are not expensive violins. One pair worth hundreds. The other probably $2K+. Violin A is easy to play, speaks easily, even string to string volume, very powerful, good up the fingerboard etc. However you play it (within reason), it just gives the tone easily. Compared to violin B below, the tone is darker but thinner. Violin B takes more work to play but when played with more attention and effort, also produces a better tone. But when played more casually, the tone is definitely not as palatable with squeaks etc. So it takes work to get the best tone tone. It's clearly more emotionally satisfying if you put the effort into it but it does require effort. 2 questions: 1. If the advantage of B is noticeable, but slight, would you select violin A or violin B? I assume if B is considerably better in tone, then B would be the choice even if it takes more work to play. There's something to say about A's ease of play. More forgiving is probably the word. 2. Is there some correlation between violins that gives you more colors and depth of tone that makes them harder to play than a loud and responsive violin that is a bit thinner in tone? 3. I guess there is a 3rd. Do most violinist with violin B adapt and get used to the violin? or is a violin that's easy to play just flat out easy to play? Thanks, Josh
  8. Not sure if this worth anything but there are a number of carbon fiber guitar manufacturers/luthiers. They have been around for probably two decades so there's a long track record. The company that produced the most 'woody' sounding guitars (really indiscernible in tone from real wood) is the now defunct Composite Acoustics. They really are excellent instruments if one is looking for a durable wood sound. They used KEVLAR layers to dampen some of the CF's harmonic series to get a more wood like tone. Not sure if there's application here but thought I'd mention it because they are so successsful. Josh
  9. Thanks everyone for responding. The general concensus seem to be that there are improvement but within days if not hours of coming off the bench and strung up, you can clearly tell the fundamental characteristic of the violin and it won't change so dramatically that a good violin will 'break in' into to become a great violin. Lyndon, appreciate your longer postings- though you do not seem to mind speaking in a rather strong tone.... Josh
  10. Any chance you can compare it to a LC in terms of tone? Would be interesting. J
  11. I know that with a well crafted acoustic wood guitars, the brand new off the bench tone tends to be tight and it breaks in rapidly. Though it will continue to mature through the years, the greatest period maturing comes in the first few hours of plays in the first few weeks. I'm wondering if well crafted high quality wood violins are the same. 1. Do you feel that with a BRAND NEW off the bench violin, that you can play it immediately and after a few minutes, already predict it's tonal qualities as it mature through the years? 2. If not, what would the minimum number of hours of play would you like before the tone 'settles' into a predictable direction? I'm wondering if brand new instruments can be easily evaluated. (And that's not even considering what a new bridge or sound post can do to the tone....) 3. Would the greatest change (lets say 80%) happen in the first year? First two years? Is is improvement extremely noticeable 4. Can a violin be built too lightly so that it is initially very responsive but in time, go 'tubby' or 'dies' in its tone? I've seen guitars do this. Thanks, Josh
  12. I'd love to have recommendations of any or some books that is the 'bible' of violin maintenance and setup. I'm not looking to make a violin but would love to learn the in and outs of cutting bridges, sound post setups and the like. Also, any webpages that will give me a good head start would be great too. Thanks in advance for any help. Josh
  13. Curious. When new strings are strung up and takes a few days to settle in to the desired tone, is it simply a matter of the string stretching, or does it require playing. If stretching, one can simply get a cheap violin and pre-stretch strings on it correct? Or is the string maturing through being played and perhaps being aged by interacting with the acids/oils from the player's fingertips? Curious. Josh
  14. For you Andrea (Tartini) users, which version do you us for your violin? (i.e. Solo, Orchestra etc) I did not get my query answered by the manufacturer so thought I'd post here. I need help on more descriptive explanations such as which is softer, which is more lyrical/rounder in tone, etc. Also, do some use viola and cello versions for the violin? Why? Since these are just about the costliest rosin on the market, I'd like to make a better informed choice. Thanks, Josh
  15. JoshT

    Weighing bows

    Ebay. Look for one with resolution down to 0.1 grams with a 100 grams or more maximum weight limit. Pretty cheap really and these are surprisingly accurate. J
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