martin swan

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  1. Very much in agreement with Jeffrey. With us, if you're a new customer you might get a generous trade-in deal or a discount, never both ... With existing customers we offer a full upgrade policy. This actually acts as an incentive for us to keep our prices reasonable, since we may very likely have to buy things back at that price when our clients upgrade a few years down the line. With new customers, it's true that most people who are buying a violin are also selling a violin. For reasons which are blindingly obvious, we are likely to be even more disaffected with the proffered trade-in than the person who wants to dump it on us. 9 times out of 10 it goes into auction and sells for less than the nominal trade-in price. So in effect the trade-in is a discount.
  2. One should always be wary of fluted fs on revarnished fiddles ...
  3. Sorry to say that for me the label has nothing to do with the violin ...
  4. Gilles Nehr is a genius - this design has been around for a while and has some real devotees. But of course it’s a bit like a Vuillaume self-rehairing bow, and as we all know these attempts to rethink the bow will never catch on and should be discouraged
  5. I hate to say it but I would probably have described this as "Caussin Shop" The post crack in the back is a killer I'm afraid - even if it doesn't appear to go all the way through, that will be because a) the crack pushes outwards and is therefore neater on the inside and b) there's no varnish on the inside to mess up
  6. Probably a good idea to read the rest of the thread. These pins are original to the construction. No-one puts pins in the front of a violin in order to sex it up ...
  7. Bohdan, I for one really value your contributions here. I think it's great that a serious professional with specialist knowledge and experience of making strings and diagnosing string problems takes the time to share on Maestronet. My impression of this discussion, which I have followed with interest, is that it's typical of the way Maestronet is going. People just jump in with their categorical opinion, sometimes you don't know who those people are, sometimes they don't seem to have read previous posts and don't accord respect to people who have already said the same thing or even said the opposite. I know how much effort you have put into this very specific and detailed issue of STRINGS, and I'm surprised that people aren't a bit more willing to engage with what you have to say. But I think it's just in the nature of a forum. I am as guilty as everyone else of just stating my beliefs, rather than having a well-mannered discussion. If i could sum up your position, you are saying that in an ideal world, every nut would have u shaped grooves that perfectly fit the particular brand of strings currently on the instrument. But that string choice changes constantly, either through changes in preference or through necessity, a v shaped groove is a more pragmatic approach. In the vast majority of cases (and in particular when people are trying out a new brand of strings, which is obviously something you want them to do!), a v shaped groove is more adaptable. I don't think anyone would argue with that. There are some serious professionals here who have expressed their preference for getting the string grooves "just right", but they must surely agree that this approach only holds true for a particular brand of strings, and that they have no control over the future choices of their clients.
  8. Forgive me if I'm out of line, but your story sounds much more like that of someone who bought a dud at auction. It's really not my experience that a specialist auction house would get you less money for a well certified Oddone than you would get on Ebay. What was the certificate you bought it with? I'm also amazed that the deciding factor for a private buyer would be that a friend brought along their Oddone to a "private sale" (is that a concept or an event?) and that the two violins looked the same. Generally an Oddone is sold with a paper from one of the very few experts in modern Italians who are qualified to sift the wheat from the chaff ...
  9. I agree a spline isn't going to help. From the first post I got the impression that the crack was new and went all the way round - this is an old repair and if the back of the mortise is reinforced internally either as Conor suggests or with wood then there's nothing to do.
  10. Agree - I too am puzzled by this because the crack doesn't look like the result of a recent trauma - even the tip which was knocked off appears to be repaired.
  11. If the recent trauma caused the diagonal crack in the head then yes, disaster I'm afraid. As Dwight says, I would have a secure repair done (spline) before rehairing or putting any tension on the bow.
  12. String tension, string angle, bridge mass and stiffness - these are all completely different things and they work together in very complex ways. I'm pretty wary of any generalisations ie. doing this will cause that, because there are too many variables. All I would say is that 1. fingerboard projection is not in itself a very useful measurement because you can have any number of projection measurements for the same string angle over the bridge and 2. there is a psycho-acoustic aspect to the height of the action, by which I mean that the player hears the sound differently depending on how much finger pressure they need to use. Add to that the very understandable misconception that more effort will result in more sound, and you have a recipe for total confusion.
  13. This was discussed here at some length before. A piece of journalise puffery completely failing to clock that this is a commercial sound archive for film composers who don't want to pay for session musicians ....
  14. Haha we do our best ... thanks for pointing it out
  15. One possible reason is that over the course of 7 years both parties became increasingly sure of what constituted a good violin, but that only one of them was right ...