CSchabbon

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  1. I am not sure. The first batch is nearly sold out. I might make one more. I really like this tool and put a lot of love in it.
  2. A new tool for crack repairs is on the market, limited availability for a limited time only. https://christianschabbon.com/aluminum-tower-block-clamps/
  3. When the first garage is full of old casts it's time to rethink. I keeps casts until the instrument is sold. I do trust that my repair last and I won't need the cast again. I do keep a selected few very nice instruments casts though.
  4. Also, the type of glue is important too. I think regular hide glue (low bloom, below 200 gram) is the best. High bloom hide glue, technical gel or rabbit skin will start gelling and tacking too fast and make your life difficult
  5. Excellent posts so far. I hope you might find some additional information here: https://christianschabbon.com/gluing-cracks-using-the-g-clamp-method/
  6. CSchabbon

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    I think the previous post are a little too dark for me. I think life as a musician is much more difficult than being a luthier. The question is, are you an outstanding player? One of the top of your class at NEC? Then I would think it might be good to pursue playing. Do you have excellent social skills? Together with your playing abilities you might become an excellent sales person. Or maybe one day you can open your shop and become dealer. Or Are you really good with your fine motor skills, do you think you can one day repair high end instruments? Maybe consider violin restoration. Compared to Europe, at the moment the US has a lack of skilled restorers. That might change in a decade or two, no one can predict that. There are a lot of schools that pump out a lot of young violin makers. However it is difficult to get good training in the US (much easier in Europe , personally I believe the general level of restoration is a lot higher there(Germany, UK especially)). Maybe consider training in Europe. Are you into new making? There are makers that barely make ends meet, but also a few that scoop in a six figure income. It all depends how skilled you are. Most guys I know have frequented a violin making school, although I know a few that have pursued an apprenticeship. Schools will only teach you new making and very little restoration. North Bennet Street school is an outstanding school by the way. The are also schools in Italy (Cremona and Milano) that are pretty much free but by far not as good. Mittenwald is also a very good school. So you need skills and a little bit of luck. I wish you all the best. Although I originally planned becoming a physicist I certainly do not regret becoming a violin maker. By the way, the majority of violin makers are pretty bad players, although there are exceptions. Excellent playing is not necessary but a plus. Fine motor and social skills are more important. Please give me call if you need advice.
  7. The 1/30 taper is ideal for ebony fittings. This taper will compress boxwood pegs very quickly. They just won't work. 1/20 is considered to be the right taper for boxwood. Again Ebony just won't work well in this taper. 1/25 would be in my opinion the ideal taper for boxwood and rosewood. Unfortunately there are no peg shapers that I know on the market, just 1/25 peg shapers for lutes, and they produce too thin pegs. So if a violin has a 1/30 taper in the pegbox, it will need ebony fittings or bushings if one would like to convert to boxwood. If a violin has a 1/20 or 1/25 taper it needs box- or rosewood, or bushings if one wishes to convert to ebony
  8. I have an enormous amount of vision aides. Starts with weak bifocal reader, then strong bifocals (+3.5). The problems with reading glasses as mentioned above is the focal point can be a little too close if you want strong magnification. For this case I use dentist loupes. The problem I found was that the focal length is a little far for my taste, but I solved that by taping reading lenses in front of the dental loupes to adjust focal length from 450mm to maybe 250mm.
  9. Depends all on how wide the strips are. If they are not wider than the thickness of the top, there should be no problem. I don't really think that cleats are superior to silk strips or woven polyester, especially if the cleats are thick and there are multiple cracks. I can see a problem if there is a wide strip of parchment, those sometimes come loose. Also, a lot depends on how good and strong the glue is that was used to glue the cracks. I have seen repairs that were probably 100 years old, still pretty much invisible and sound.
  10. It should be clarified that there are a number of different alcohols. Ethanol should not be compatible with oil varnish, however Isopropanol (or isopropyl) should mix well. I cannot see any advantage of using Isopropanol over turpentine.
  11. This violin is at the end of its useful life, it has salvage value or in this case maybe no residual value. It would be better to guy a reasonably priced instrument from a local shop. The local shop usually guarantees the availability of repair (if it's not a general music store). If you buy a violin from ebay, you might end up finding no one who wants to repair your violin. In this case, the post repair value will be lower than the repair cost. In other words, on every dollar you pump into the repair, you get pennies back.
  12. I'd rather doubt that you could get $100 on ebay for it. I also don't believe that it would be worth much more once repaired. It has a soundpost crack in back and top. It will make a nice campfire though.
  13. My favorite pigments for retouch were the Cinquasia Pigments from Kremer. Here the link to the red: https://shop.kremerpigments.com/en/pigments/pigments-of-modern-age/organic-pigments/4810/quinacridone-gold-red-gold-po-48 Unfortunately they don't have the Cinquasia Gold (Gold-braungold? PO49?) anymore, that was my favorite yellow. The Cinqusia Gold-rotgold is a perfectly pure red. Those pigments were so fine, no grinding needed and perfect transparency. I still have two jars of W&N Indian Yellow left, but I always thought it to be too opaque. It will probably still sit in my pigment box once I am dead. The Orasol dyes are and the Hammerl "Farbextrakte" are the same thing btw.. I have used them with mixed success. I stopped using them completely. All except one of them really change color under whitish fluorescent light (the red becomes invisible somehow), also the tend to mess up the flow of the varnish when brushing. It's a pity all those nice pigments get discontinued, I think those big chemical companies (BASF probably) make a batch every few decades and once exhausted that's it. I would and will look into Quinacridone pigments. I think that's the way to go. Also, Artemis makes excellent lake pigments. Probably the best, they just have so much experience. They do need a lot of grinding though. Here the link: https://www.artemis-pflanzenfarben.de/index.php?ccPath=11