martin swan

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Everything posted by martin swan

  1. love the concept of an "apparent fact" by the way!
  2. Michael, I'm not holding my breath ... though i was experimenting with that today and I'm up to about 60 seconds ......
  3. OK sorry, we're clearly not interested in the same thing and are talking at cross-purposes!
  4. The fundamental misunderstanding which scientists and pseudo-scientists bring to this debate is that the "sound" of the violin is what's important. What's important is the quality of music a particular player can make with a particular instrument - most of that seems to defy science or any kind of broad agreement, and it's far from being simply about tone. It's not susceptible to measurement and can't be repeated according to a formula.
  5. My implication is that if you haven't played an Amati you can't comment on their playing qualities .... If you haven't compared a narrow-waisted one with a wide-waisted one then any claim of nasality is unfounded. Lots of things about violin tone appear to make sense on paper but simply aren't borne out by experience ....
  6. lyndon, well spotted .... another "very powerful" violin I wonder if the violins behind him are in Tennessee or Kentucky? talking of which, here's another great use of a backdrop .... mysticviolins I notice these people have about 8 violins in stock, one of which is this vastly overpriced and mis-labelled mis-attributed "derazey", so whose shop did they film the video in? of course it all serves to illustrate that YouTube "soundfiles" are a joke (a bad joke)
  7. Thanks for the reference - read through all of that, nothing completely relevant to my question, which is about the width (and by extension the elasticity) of a soundpost and how this might affect tone and response.
  8. Hi Mr. Murphy, How many Amatis have you played? I've only played one, but it wasn't nasal! So to my certain knowledge 100% of Amatis are not nasal. Mr. Swan
  9. Hard to judge anything from a YouTube clip but I think the seller obviously likes it and I'd believe his assessment that it's "powerful". Given the back length I'd say definitely German, the neck graft a repair .... don't think you missed anything! These long Maggini copies can be very loud but in my experience a bit lacking in pliability/playability and hard to get a singing tone out of. $4000 very steep price indeed, we may yet see it re-listed! I would be a bit shocked if a shop over here sold it for over £1500 given the repairs to the front. Raises an interesting moral issue - the sell
  10. Michael I think increasing the diameter by a millimetre probably increases the stiffness more than any treatment would. If you've tried breaking kindling with your foot you'll know just what a direct relationship there is between diameter and stiffness!!
  11. I don't think so ... I think it's a buyer getting carried away by a neck graft, might think it's a Rogeri! Derazey made some Maggini copies but they don't look much like this. The photos are sexy, nice light. I did have a very similar Maggini copy a year or two ago - definitely superior to the usual tradey ones with the long backs and the extra turn to the scroll. But I came to the conclusion it was just a better German tradey violin, probably 1860 or so. The scroll on mine was better - this one seems to end up with some rather hurried cuts around the eye, and the general line is a bit wonky
  12. Ryan, Yours is an interesting train of thought! I agree that there are many more obvious things to tweak, but post size is one of these things that everyone seems to take as read, and I only started wondering about it when confronted with the (surmountable) problem of narrow f-holes. I do know a restorer who uses different hardnesses of post as part of his box of tricks, and feels that less grain lines will give a softer sound, probably because of increased flex in the post itself. But is it true? Possibly not ...... I think of the post as a coupler mainly, but would a piece of beech do
  13. I can't see any theoretical problem with an elliptical soundpost provided the longer diameter sits at right angles to the table grain (less chance of dunting the table that way). With old instruments it's not an option to enlarge the nicks - with new builds I feel that narrow nicks are much more attractive. Undercutting the inner edge allows a tiny bit more width in the soundpost and looks nice, but actually I've decided to overcome my inherent laziness and adopt Melvin's method for picking up a soundpost dropped through the lower eye. I have been struck by how often narrow f-holes (too n
  14. Do you have the expired listing number?
  15. Aha, great tip Melvin thanks - I've always tried to pick the post up as it's rolling around horizontally ..... I'll try that. I also take your point about diameter and surface area, Pi r squared etc - instinctively I feel that a large contact area is good, but maybe a 7mm post would sound even better? I assume that the standard soundpost diameter has evolved as a function of the average f-hole, rather than through tonal evaluation. Or has f-hole width evolved in response to an ideal soundpost diameter? Ben, width & length = result!
  16. Has anyone done any experimentation with different widths of soundpost, or indeed different cross-sections deviating from round? I ask the question because I come across quite a few good violins with f-holes too narrow for a 6.3 or even 6mm soundpost. It drives me crazy dropping a full width soundpost through an eye and trying to pick it up with the setter, and even crazier trying to fish it out with a loop of fishing line if the fit isn't right. So I tend to shave the sides of the soundpost down to allow for normal setting. Is this really bad? It seems a better solution than using a gener
  17. OK I vote for the scroll being original! If it was playable when it came into the shop I would get it set up again and give it back to the director pointing out that it's authentically labelled, worth a few bob, and not suitable for a careless student. For all we know the donor might have been very proud of this violin and might wish it to go to a talented student. For all we know the director may be planning to play it! Not every good student at a music school has a good violin .... Interesting paradox this thread has pointed up - that a violin can be too special to be played by a
  18. secrets of cremona yawn yawn ... I bored my wife to tears with this shit, in the end she said "you don't suppose Stradivarius just threw away the bad sounding violins?" Bill Yacey's account of the evolution of the violin is beautiful and plausible. If there was a particular secret then everyone would know it! I think great violin makers have a sound in their head (often based on an instrument they own or have studied), and they stick at it stubbornly until they get that sound. I'm sure this involves a lot of dis-assembly and re-assembly, fine tuning, chucking things in the bin and starti
  19. Scottish arithmetic works on the basis that everything is worth less than I think and actually I don't have any cash on me, perhaps you could lend me a tenner? I'll pay it back by the end of the week promise ...!
  20. God no, I'm thinking of people I know much closer to home ... I would be happy to share Machold-like tales. Jacob, I really didn't want to offend you - maybe you were sucking your teeth while looking at the photos, but I think your assessment of its value to a restorer (based on photos) is 100% fair, though I would buy it for $500 as I am generally optimistic! It's just a rather odd case because the violin belongs to the music school, and I was urging caution. I think if your option were offered to them amongst others, it would be the easiest and quickest so lution (provided Brad actuall
  21. I agree with Jacob about the violin, it's definitely of the period, absolutely characteristic of the region, and no reason to assume it's not Vogler. I also agree that the neck is probably a replacement, partly because the scroll looks too short and plain, and partly because of the mis-shapen button. This is not a student violin, although obviously on Maestronet the fact that it isn't a Strad or a Guarneri (or a bollocks tradey violin being passed off as a Guarneri by a lunatic) doesn't stand in its favour ..... So the question is one of value, and of how to do right by the people who brough
  22. Hi Lyndon, I see the substance of my post (originally Melvin Goldsmith's argument) being repeated by many, although the great Burgess seems to take exception to me on the grounds of lack of experience. Maybe I should post again after I've set up another 500 or so .....! But for now, please allow me my fanciful notions born of ignorance and general stupidity. If you start with the concept of letting the position of the bassbar govern the set-up (I only started doing this about 200 violins ago), then you need different width bridges in order to avoid making bizarre cuts for the ankles. Despi
  23. I agree with Melvin - slacken off the strings, remove the bridge, ignore the soundpost completely, put the bridge back on and bring the violin back up to tension and it will sound very different, to the point where many players bored with the sound of their (less good than they'd like) violin will feel that a marked improvement has occured. In view of this, it's very hard if not impossible to judge what difference a post adjustment has actually made! I was taught that the bass bridge foot should sit over the bassbar, the treble bridge foot should find itself exactly equidistant on the other
  24. lalofrank2011 is the new i.d of "ihaformosa" whose bizarre and deluded use of eBay I recorded in : previous post Interestingly the last violin this freedom fighter sold repeatedly was a genuine but tatty Joseph Chanot which he bought at Bromptons. I see lalofrank2011 has just "sold" a bow which he inherited from his mentor, the same bow as has been "sold" several times by ihaformosa! How long before he lists it again? Martin Swan Violins