Tom R

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About Tom R

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  1. I would just like to get some of your thoughts on tailpiece selection in regards to tone. I've read that lighter is better but I've also read that some instruments respond better to a heavier one. I'm also curious about the effect different woods/materials (ebony, boxwood, metal, etc) have on tone and what criteria, if any, one would use in deciding which would best?
  2. I should clarify this a bit- I don't do all the rough work with this, I still rely a lot on my gouges. I do about 70% rough work with the gouge and about 30% with the dremel. Gouges are far more satisfying to use but the dremel helps out a lot on the steeper slopes. It's also helpful when your tools start to dull or you get tired. It's very hard to tell what's happening on that video. I'll have to try making another video using a plate that hasn't been started yet.
  3. If you try it you'll understand it a lot better. The mark left by the saw blade is very similar to a gouge mark. If the teeth marks weren't visible it would be very hard to tell the difference.
  4. Sorry, forgot to make it public. It's fixed now.
  5. I just wanted to share a method of wood removal I discovered using a dremel. It's very easy, it just takes a little getting used too but once you get the feel of it you can remove a lot of wood quickly. Below is a link to a youtube demo I made:
  6. Great work on those inlays Bruce. Your advice is very helpful and much appreciated. I'm going to start with something simple for my first attempt. I figure the scroll is probably a good place to start since I can replace it should I really screw up. I plan on using the ebony and hot hide glue method you posted, but I have one more question for you if you don't mind. The inlay I plan on doing is mostly lines, similar to your scroll, but I was wondering if I should be concerned about cracks forming from wood shrinkage as it ages?
  7. That is some very helpful info, thanks. Would you happen to know if the 60-62mm is on a fully strung instrument? I am still pretty new to violin making so I'm trying to figure out how much the top arch might drop once the tension is applied.
  8. Glad to know I wasn't doing it wrong. I have done a ton of reading and research on arching but I have never seen any mention on measuring the arch height. It's obviously a very important aspect and I just find the lack of info strange. I was pretty sure the way I was doing it was accurate but I wasn't sure if the height should be measured from the top of ledge or from the bottom. Since we're on the subject of arches- I'm working on a strad model and I am planning on using a height of 15mm for the top and 16 for the back. Any thoughts or suggestions on these heights?
  9. What is the best method for measuring the arch height on a plate that has not been hollowed out yet? I have been measuring the height by placing my caliper on the top of the arch and the unhollowed inside, so my arch height is basically the thickness of the unhollowed plate. Is this an accurate way of measuring?
  10. Thanks for the link! I was wondering if anyone has ever used or has any thoughts on using ebony powder for inlays. I found some on stewmac:
  11. I want to add some decorative black inlay on the violin I'm working on. What is the best material for this? I'm thinking of black mother of pearl or ebony. I was also wondering if anyone knows where I can buy some. I've found a lot of white pearl blanks but I can't seem to locate any black mop or ebony blanks.
  12. Perhaps I should clarify- It's definitely not a "bad" violin, plays well and sounds great. I've played several other violins and none of them had that same comfort level as my other violin. When I talk about comfort, I'm referring to the way the instrument feels in my left hand, how much I need to reach for notes and how easy it is to now across the strings. I have tried different chin rests and the one I am currently using felt the most natural. I have built one violin and I'm working on number two so I have developed a significant amount of skill and I would be comfortable making some
  13. What are some of the main factors that affect how easy a violin is to play? My older, cheaper violin is very comfortable and easy to play. My newer, more expensive violin sounds a lot better but it does not feel as comfortable to play and requires a little more precision. I've been playing the newer one for over 3 months now and I've gotten used to the feel of it, but every time I pickup the older one I can't get over how easy it is to play. I make far fewer mistakes using it and I really enjoy the feel of playing it. The difference in sound quality is the only reason I prefer the more expen