nathan slobodkin

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

    Julian If the photo is taken straight on by a good professional photographer then the inner edge of the FF will be pretty close to right while the outer line will be distorted and will look narrower than it should, increasingly so as it gets to the lower wing. if you make the template from the photo you will have to widen the FF slightly as it goes toward the lower hole. The best bet is to familiarize yourself with that makers work and finish the FF by eye to give the right look. If you really want to make an exact copy then certainly best to take a rubbing from an original instrument.
  2. Help identifying violin

    And some times not
  3. Bow, what kind of wood?

    Student bows of that era are some times quite nice. If it's nickel mounted it probably isn't worth a fortune but may be better than you are thinking. Photos?
  4. Show stopper - the brick

    Is this from Salzkammergut?
  5. Help identifying violin

    JTL made all ranges of "student" instruments some of which are quite nice. Also the bows that came with them were sometimes better than the violins. It would be worth your time to look at the "instructions for posting photos for identification" posted above and see what you have bought.
  6. Neat 7/8 violin for ID

    I have been told by someone who grew up in the German Violin trade that at some point in the early 20th century copy routers started to be used extensively in Schonbach/Markneukirchen and that on cheaper instruments they didn't bother with changing templates for tops and backs
  7. Interesting violin on my bench

    Seriously beautiful violin regardless. If that is a "fake" I am sincerely impressed.
  8. Applying Vernice Bianca

    Yes exactly. As far as I am concerned the protein layer is more of a sizing to prevent uneven penetration of subsequent layers. The "ground" is an actual hard varnish layer which the color goes over and which protects the wood once the color wears through. I have seen hard played instruments however which get a sort of dirty gummy transition when the ground does wear through and have wondered what is under there that is breaking down in that way. I would certainly think that sugar would turn into a sticky mess if acted on by sweat and heat from the hand.
  9. Applying Vernice Bianca

    Has anyone had problems with these water soluble sealers causing "dirty" looking areas as the varnish wears off? Any experience with using small amounts of alum to decrease solubility of the dry film? Also am wondering what people mean by "adhering ability" I've not experimented with varnish that much because I can't afford to use stuff I am not confidant in but I have used several spirit and oil varnishes over the years and have never really had any problems with "adhering". The differences that I see in how the varnish wears such as chipping, crushing or rubbing away I have always attributed to the make up of the varnish itself and not the sealer underneath.
  10. Grand Phuba, Sometimes instruments remain in mint condition because they don't really sound well. In this case at the price you mention it would probably be worth doing whatever work was required to make it sound well if needed but if there are indeed no violin makers near you...
  11. Violin geometry references

    Those who know me are aware that I am pretty pragmatic about instrument design and have used either patterns shared with me by my teachers or those derived from the outlines of existing instruments for a very long time. Also that my education did not include much in the way of maths before learning violin making. I have read or tried to read much of the literature on violin design for many years and have understood very little or found the constructions so complex that they were impossible to use. I have recently watched some of Kevin Kelly's videos, however, and have finally understood how geometry could indeed result in the forms of the Amati family from which other models could have been derived by gradual modifications. The video suggested by Juan Tavira above certainly makes sense to me and I will be looking at it again when I have more time to do some drawing.
  12. Bright Sound Tone

    Is it higher density? Like I said I gave up on the stuff after very little experience with it. There is so much good wood out there that trying to get the best out of something I didn't like seemed pointless.
  13. Bright Sound Tone

    My experience with Sitka is very limited because the very few instruments I made with it sounded like I described to Joe; Big under the ear but with no real power . This was early in my making apprenticeship and the other guys in the shop basically said " Told you so". Other American spruces such as Englemann have proved far more successful for me.
  14. Favorite small viola model?

    Rene suggested that the string length of 375 and 150 for the neck should be used on all violas regardless of size. On some older instruments he would move bridge placements up or down to accommodate that although there were some very large instrument where he would have to compromise on this.
  15. I took a photograph of a scroll - Life Changing

    No reason to think that the corners on this instrument are any more original than other instruments that have not been cut down. They would still have the same amount of wear. So is this indeed an Amati brothers instrument that has had a hard life? Some of the cut down jobs that were done in the past, especially by the Hills, were pretty amazingly well done and are pretty much invisible except by people intimate with the makers models although the thought of doing something like that today is pretty abhorrent.