mness4

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  1. How smooth should the final surface be for highly figured ribs? Mine have a definite wavy feel from the undulating grain of the flame...but only to the touch. When they are clamped around my mold, they take the shape well. I should note that when preparing the flat rib stock, I angled the scraped to avoid accentuating the texture of the flame.I believe the wavy feel is coming from the bending process. One a related note, how does one decide the rib scraping is done? I applied mineral spirits to get a better idea of the final surface, but to be honest I'm not exactly sure what I'm looking
  2. I'm in the process of gluing the ribs using a 17 mm-thick inner mold (from International Violin)...my first violin. I just realized that I probably will not have enough clearance to remove the mold once the linings are in place. The distance from the top of the mold to the top of the blocks is ~8-8.3 mm, and the lining is expected to use 7 mm of this remaining distance. Even though the linings will be tapered, I doubt I will be able to angle the mold out. I notice in Johnson's book that they use a 12 mm-thick mold that is rabbeted. Will there be enough flexibility in the completed rib st
  3. I posted an earlier thread asking advice about my c-bout rib bending technique using a steamer, iron, and an outside mold. The conclusion was that it worked on practice pieces but not the highly figured "good" pieces. I came to the conclusion that it would be best to buy a traditional bending iron. I bought an iron from International Violin (model T29) and bending strap (T296). When it arrived, I was concerned that its shape did not match my outer mold, especially the lower corner bend which was a larger radius than expected. It's different enough that I would not be able to force the lower co
  4. Your comment about not forming the bend before heating enough is discussed by Fischer as well. He mounted the iron on a stand so he could roll the outside C-bout mold (or inside upper/lower-bout mold) to ensure the bending only occurred after sufficient heating. It seems to me though that you could accomplish the same with the bending iron if you bend slowly enough, but of course I haven't tried it yet.
  5. Ok, here's a dumb question from someone who has obviously never used a bending iron/strap: I do have a 0.3mm bending strap, but it isn't flexible enough to bend easily around the upper c-bend on my outside form. I think it would kink the strap if I pulled it tight completely around that curve. Is this supposed to happen?
  6. I'm following a slightly inferior version of the method Albert Fischer discussed in his 1974 article. I've seen that floating around here a few times. That method has been said to work for highly figured ribs, but he incorporated a strap/spring clamp to keep the rib against the mold. He also uses a damp cloth. I suppose it's not too surprising mine failed. I will probably have to decide either to follow him completely or use a standard bending iron and use my outside mold as a reference (like someone mentioned here.)
  7. I see I posted my pictures incorrectly. Maybe I'll post a few separately if there seems to be a reason. I was wondering why videos of ribs bent on bending irons didn't spring back like my initial bends after steaming. This is why I went into the oven...which did work well. This confirms that my second approach with the hobby iron was in the right direction, but not hot enough. It was hotter than the clothes iron, so I could bend without the same amount of moisture, but it still had a LOT of spring-back until I heated it in the oven. The iron wasn't hot enough the make the resin (or whatever
  8. Sorry for the length of this post, but I wanted to be thorough. Hopefully I inserted the images properly or else I will need to re-post. I'm in the process of bending my first set of c-bout ribs using an outside mold. The process I used is described below. In summary, I had good success with test pieces of low-medium flame maple 1.2mm thick using this process. It worked reasonably well (with an on-the-fly modification) on my first attempt to bend a highly-flamed rib that was to be used on my violin. I was much less successful on the mating rib. I'm wondering if anyone had any advice before p
  9. I'm starting work on a one-piece back and I'm having trouble getting it perfectly flat on my jointer table. If I press on one corner I get a very slight rocking of the piece. I would estimate 0.5-0.75mm. I could measure more accurately with a feeler gauge if necessary. My power tools are in the garage here in Minneapolis, so I don't know if the cold temperature is making the wood move. I could complete thicknessing the back in my basement (where I do most of my work) on a flat sheet of plywood with mounted sandpaper. This should be more controllable. In any event, I haven't started carving a
  10. mness4

    rib bending

    This is exactly what I was thinking. Thank you. In your link you hint at using moisture to aide in the bending. How do you apply it? Do you steam or immerse? Do you simply live with whatever grain raising results or do you scrape/sand? I was surprised to read in another thread that some actually immerse the ribs in water for a minute or so. Interesting recommendation above...to thin more at the corner areas. I wonder if this would affect the sound. Mike
  11. mness4

    rib bending

    Please direct me to a thread if this was already discussed. I'm about to start bending ribs for the first time. Of course, I chose flame maple rather than starting with something more reasonable. I will be making hardwood forms that match the shapes of the six sections, accounting for a 1.2mm rib thickness. Is there a preferred method of applying heat and/or moisture to the ribs using this approach (rather than a traditional bending iron)? I was planning to place a moist hand cloth on the flat rib, apply heat using a clothes iron, bend in the mold using a spring clamp/strap assembly, and dry i
  12. Yeah, I think I was well over $1.3K without considering some other ancillary, but pricey, tools such as violin calipers and peg shapers. I don't mind spending the money, however, if I know I'll use at least most of what I buy. Of the tools I've listed, I agree the 9-piece scroll kit is overkill. The 5-piece seems much more reasonable. I looked at Ernie's gouges. Their sweep matches that of the scroll kit, and I had earlier been leaning towards 2 Cherries. However, I wasn't thrilled with the handles for scroll carving. Although I have no experience carving anything, let alone delicate scrolls,
  13. After looking through the links suggested and further internet searching, I have compiled the following list of gouges, chisels, files that I am considering and organized them versus application. The scroll gouge set is admittedly more than I need...there is a 5-piece set that I am considering instead. Does anyone see any issues? Thanks, Mike SCROLL/NECK scroll gouges: 9-piece #6 set (6,8,10,13,16,20,23,27,31mm) - Dastra (http://www.diefenbacher.com/luthier2.htm#Dastra_9_pc._Violinmakers_Scroll_Carving_Set) scroll chisel: 3/8" straight pegbox chisels: 7mm, 14mm 1", 3/4" half-roun
  14. Thank you for the replies. I should have mentioned that I did buy the three Strobel books and I plan to follow his method. I also bought and watched his how-to video, but it was specific to the cello. I'm sure most steps are easily transferable to the violin, but the tool sizes do not (I assume). Also, the violin making step-by-step book does not mention the specific tools at each step. I will look back to make sure, but I believe that's why I started my internet search. Thanks again, Mike
  15. Hello, this is my first post. I'm preparing to make my first violin and I was wondering if I could get some feedback on the selection of gouges (2 Cherries) I'm planning to buy for the top/back as well as the scroll. I found a very useful set of step-by-step instructions by William Bartruff here: http://www.bartruff.com/howto with a list of tools at the end. I like this source because he explains which tools he uses at each particular step. Regarding the gouges in particular, he recommends the following: top/back channels: #8, 30mm and fishtail (doesn't mention specific fishtail though) pu