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Ed Shillitoe

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Everything posted by Ed Shillitoe

  1. Jacob: Here is my first effort to date a bow based on your chart. It's a very small bow, made for a child's violin or a pochette I suppose. I've marked the features as I see them with a red arrow. The flat side to the frog implies a date before 1765 - but the other features seem to be fairly consistent with a date prior to 1830. The stamp says T. Tubbs, and the BVMA book shows that he was in business from 1823 onward. In other words this bow can be dated to within seven years. Would you agree with that? Ed
  2. Jacob - two other features I notice on English bows of the period are 1. There are often very very obvious tool marks on the back of the frogs, such as on Richf's bow and 2. The fact that the screw hole often comes out of the back of the adjuster but not always. Do these have any significance in dating a bow? I'm interested to see how you include the extended stick mortice as a useful feature. I've noticed in on a lot of bows but always thought that some repair person must have extended it. I'm working on photographs of some of my old bows. Ed
  3. Excellent Jacob. Thank you very much. I am going to dig out some old bows from my collection and see how your chart works. Ed
  4. Are the strings up to tension? If they are loosened then it might be easier to get everything back together. Ed
  5. Getting Pops off a Shen bass is indeed a hateful job. Here is how it's done (seriously). You get two high school boys who are on break and offer them minimum wage. Give each one a bottle of water, a Cascade dishwasher pod, a container of Novus #2, an old credit card, a roll of shop towels and a can of Coke. Tell them to show up with a phone loaded with whatever music they like. Set up two basses side by side - one boy to each bass. Tell them to dissolve the Cascade in the water and scrub away at a section of the bass until the rosin is soft. Then use the credit card to scrape off as much as they can. Then to apply more Cascade, followed by Novus #2. The Fuller's earth in the Novus aggregates softened rosin into a kind of gel that sticks to the shop towels, allowing it to be pulled off the bass leaving a nice clean surface. Then go on to the next section. While doing this they play their music really loud, chat to each other and sip the Coke. One Coke is about enough for one bass. You look in on them every 20 minutes. Pay them in cash. A couple of days later they will text you and ask if you have any more basses to clean.
  6. Thanks to all MN'ers who have helped me in the last year! I hope you all have a wonderful 2016!! Ed
  7. Craig - you're retiring? That can't be! You'll still be on MN, right? Ed
  8. I don't think that is correct. His name is johnstaggbows and his email address is at hotmail.com. Ed
  9. I got mine and it's excellent. It gives very clear descriptions and drawings of everything to do with making and repairing bows, with an emphasis on the English techniques. It also has an interesting section on life and work for bowmakers at the Hill shop, which I have not seen anywhere else. It cost 79 pounds, including shipping to the US. Mine is number 100 out of an edition of 400, signed by the author! Thank you Mr. Stagg!
  10. So Craig - it seems that the silver and pearl are separated by sawing into the ebony from the other side, then snapping the piece in two. Is that right? This must mean that there is a loss of material from the kerf, and therefore the pearl and silver are very thin where they touch. Are you concerned that the slide could move up and down a little at that point, and not make for a good joint? In fact it's only a butt joint. I prefer to make the end of the slide on a bevel with the ebony a little longer, and then a reverse bevel below the silver. Then the slide fits just a little under the silver at the end and is very firm. Any comment on that? Ed
  11. I can't find it either. I sent him an e-mail. Ed
  12. Congratulations on another milestone Craig! Keep posting! Ed
  13. It seems that Ms. Hahn knocked a piece off her violin - but a nice repair! https://twitter.com/violincase Ed
  14. Yes - buying new tools is half the fun! As for silver tube - I do have some from various sources, but can't find it big enough for bass bow buttons. Bending 14g silver into a 16mm diameter tube is not so easy - at least for me. I think this has been discussed on Maestronet before but I still haven't found a source or a really good technique for this.
  15. Nice going Craig (and Josh of course!). Silver work is one of those things that separates bow making from violin making - it's a whole different set of skills. For ferrules, I bend them using this machine from Micro Mark. It's a bit slower than hammering the shape but gives a very nice texture to the finished piece. http://www.micromark.com/bending-machine,7739.html What I'm waiting to see is how you bend the silver for the button. The machine won't go down to such a small diameter.
  16. Well, I'm here at the convention and the judging is in progress for the student performing and the bass making competitions. Results should be out tonight. The bass making is very popular with 40 people signed up to help! The top and back seem to be finished on the outside and the thicknessing has started. Ribs have started but no work on the scroll. I took a couple of pictures on my phone but I have no idea of how to post here - I have an iPad with me but no computer. If anyone knows how to do that please let me know.
  17. I'll be there. How about you Joe? It's a lot of fun - lots of simultaneous sessions with recitals, lectures, discussions and demonstrations. There's a makers' competition with awards for tone and workmanship, and a recital where you can hear the winning instruments being played. This year they will try to make, varnish and sell a bass in a week! Anyone can bring their tools and join in! Ed
  18. Hi Elizabeth! Welcome to Maestronet! I buy my silver from Rio Grande, in NM. They will take even small amounts of scrap in partial payment for your next order. Ed
  19. And 6 bows with ivory frogs. That seems more than usual. Ed
  20. A similar story to the Hacklinger one: In the year 1971 I went to the viewing day at Sotheby's to see the Lady Blunt. There was a big crowd looking at the violin and it was being passed around. Suddenly some ham-fisted fellow pulled a mirror from his pocket and tried to push it in through a sound hole. The auctioneer went white and grabbed the violin back - fortunately no damage was done! I don't know what it would cost to fix the kind of problem that that could have caused! Ed
  21. Every couple of months or so it seems that someone comes on here and asks about the Bolander book. Has anybody thought about putting out a reprint? Does anyone know who owns the copyright? Ed
  22. Has anyone ever tried to actually measure the time it takes to get the center of a bow as hot as the outside? Knowing this would tell you how much longer a bass bow should be heated for, than a violin bow. I have often thought of trying to measure this and then write a paper on it for the VSA journal. I would call the paper "The speed of heat in pernambuco", although I suspect that the correct term is "thermal conductivity" or something like that. It shouldn't be too hard to attach a surface thermometer to one side of a wooden board and then apply a constant heat to the other side and time how long it takes to get to a given target temperature. Then try a thinner piece of wood. Then different species. Then prepare all kind of statistical analyses, charts, diagrams and so on and submit the paper. Right now I don't have the time but if anyone else wants to do it that will be fine with me! Ed
  23. And here is how they sound: (Given the right combination of instrument, composer and musician of course!) Thanks to Professor Benelli for making the video Ed
  24. Me too. Thank you Jerry / Kari. Can you expand on the role of the packing tape? I'm surprised that it's strong enough to hold the feather edge stable while the milling is done. Ed
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