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Brad Dorsey

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  1. I have a nickel-mounted Hoyer right now, so the nickel mountings do not prove that this is not from his workshop.
  2. I have seen and had bows stamped LEON PIQUE that were obviously made in the Otto Hoyer workshop. I think this one is a possibility, but not a certainty. The head plate could be replaced, or what’s left of it could be reglued if you don’t care about the missing end bit.
  3. One more comment: My suggestion was to glue the ebony break with super glue and then glue the larger ebony piece to the neck with hide glue. The theory is that the hide glue will make future removal of the finger board from the neck possible. But in practice, when you apply the super glue to the ebony break, there will be no way to prevent the glue from wicking into the neck/fingerboard joint and gluing these two together except by applying just the right amount of glue in just the right places. Too little glue will not glue the break together completely, too much will glue the finger board to the neck, and it is extremely unlikely that you will get just the right amount. So what you should do, in light of this uncertainty, is position and clamp the finger board to the neck in the exact position you want, in addition to clamping the break together, to make sure that if you do glue the fingerboard to neck it will be glued where you want it. You may find that the finger board needs to be planed after it is glued. I am suggesting the super glue only because this is a very cheap violin that you say the school is unlikely to use and that would otherwise probably be discarded. On a better violin I would always remove the remaining piece of the finger board and fit a new one with hide glue.
  4. Assuming that it's a cheap Anton Schroetter, my inclination would also be to glue the finger board back together. I'm not sure if I've ever done a repair exactly like this, but with the long break offering ample gluing surface it should come out well. I would leave the small piece glued to the neck. Clean the old glue off the gluing surfaces of the neck and the big piece. Remove any chips and splinters from both surfaces of the break that prevent them from mating. While I expect some here will disapprove, I would probably glue the ebony break with thin super glue. You can clamp the ebony in the exact position you want it and apply a few drops of the glue to the outside of the crack. The thin glue will wick all the way into the break. This could also be glued with hide glue, but it would be harder apply the glue, move the broken piece into position and clamp it before the glue sets. After the ebony break is glued back together, put hide glue between the rest of the finger board and the neck with a knife and clamp them together. The break in the fingerboard can come out almost invisible.
  5. This violin was made in the workshops of Jerome Thibouville-Lamy (JTL) in Mirecourt, France. They made huge numbers of cheap violins, but this one appears to be one of their better grades, and it appears to be in very nice condition. It would probably retail for several thousand dollars in a violin shop. If we knew where you are located, we could better direct you to a luthier near you who could examine it and determine what it needs.
  6. Right. The label is obviously fake And I don't know Italian or Latin, but I'm pretty sure that "restauravit" means restored or repaired. So if the label were genuine, it would mean that he didn't make the violin -- he just repaired it.
  7. “Made in Germany” on the bow and the case tells where the bow and the case were made; it says nothing about where the violin was made. But we can tell from your pictures that the violin was obviously made in Germany, or perhaps some nearby Germanic region.
  8. If by "assessing" you mean price appraising, Roy Ehrhardt's "Violin Identification and Price Guide, Book 1" and "Violin Identification and Price Guide, Book 2," published in the 1970s, give his opinions of values for many mass-produced and commercially imported violins listed in United States dealers' catalogs published from about 1880 to 1950. And various editions of Donald Cohen's "The Red Book: Auction Price Guide of Authentic Stringed Instruments and Bows" compile auction prices. Both of these sources can help determining the values of instruments once you have identified them. Identifying them is a lot more complicated. I don't know of any books that can help with that. Materials, workmanship and condition.
  9. I think that the psychological effects of the wall colors are be less important than how they help or impede your view of your work, especially regarding varnish color, but I have no idea what the optimal wall color is. And of course the lighting makes a difference, too.
  10. If you have caustic sweat, you might consider substituting a metal slide for the customary pearl one. A jeweler (or perhaps the bow maker) could custom-engrave it if you want.
  11. I am wondering more about what the decorations say about the violin's history than about their thematic content.
  12. I think that wire or imitation whalebone windings are more durable than tinsel, hence more practical.
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