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  1. Jacob: "http://www.maestronet.com/forums/messageview.cfm?catid=4&threadid=272136&highlight_key=y&keyword1=quite"> this link
  2. Hi Jacob Thanks for the helpful corner suggestions! Regarding varnish: this was made by Neil following the recipe he gave in a previous thread (the one where he posted photos of his small Amati copy). The ground consisted of this varnish mixed with pumice powder, applied with a stiff brush then "buffed off" with a cloth to give a smooth surface for the colour coats. For the colour i mixed in a fair amount of red madder pigment to the varnish. The varnish is really nice to apply, and can be worked on for a more or less unlimited time to remove brush marks, dust specks etc (i tended to apply by brush then "flatten" the varnish with the palm of my hand. It doesn't really dry at all without exposure to UV, hence the very long working time. Drying time is ~24 hours in a UV cabinet. I applied 4 coats in total, cutting back the final coat with 2000 grit Micromesh (no sanding between coats seems necessary). After this, re-exposure to UV for a few hours allows the varnish to "collapse back" to fill the surface scratches left by the abrasive and take on a bit of texture from the wood underneath. This leaves a very nice finish. I think it looks quite good in the photos, but much nicer in real life, far beyond my expectations. I forgot to say that I tanned the viola in the UV box for 3 weeks before varnishing. The varnish is nice and transparent so the tanned base colour shows through to good effect. Sorry I didn't respond to your earlier request. I was having difficulties posting on the new version of the board at the time!
  3. quote: Originally posted by: CamQTR Hi Ken, Fantastic! Great work for first instrument. I had same problem (still struggling with it!) with the corners on my first 2 violins. It didn't hurt their sound though, and my first is still my favorite. I'm now working on my fifth instrument, a viola, based on the Strad Archinto viola. ( http://www.camqtr.com/archives/000031.html ) I'm still not happy with the corners. I find that making a viola is slightly more work, more wood to scoop away! Looking forward to seeing your next project. - Cam Thankyou, CamQTR. The Archinto is a stunningly beautiful instrument. Went to look at it the other week (along with the Viotti and Maurin Strads) at the RAM collection in London. Lots of beautiful corners to look at there! I also made a trip to the Ashmolean earlier this month to see the Messiah and the Alard Amati. Unfortunately managed to pick the one weekend when the museum was closed (st Giles fair)! Forward planning never was my strongest point! To answer Matt's question, the viola took me about 11 months to build (in my spare time) and 1 month to suntan/varnish.
  4. quote: Originally posted by: M_A_T_T quote: Originally posted by: henfisher ispirati? For my education and info. what is the issue about the corners? Regards Henry [/img] This is something I've seen on alot of first instruments, and have been working to avoid with my first violin. I believe he's refering to the 'stubbiness' as well as angle of the corners. Here is a picture of the unfinished back of my violin, I made an effort to angle my corners inward and keep them sharp, I think it helps a little: http://files.photojerk.com/mmaatt/violin/v246.jpg Yes Matt, I can see that your corners are much nicer. well done! The shortcomings of my viola corners were pointed out to me at quite an early stage, by Neil and also by other posters on the board when I posted photos of the completed body in the white. To be honest, at the time I couldn't see what was wrong with them, but my "eye" is much better now, and it makes me rather uncomfortable to look at them! I have already made new mould/templates to improve the corner shapes for my next viola, although I am now working on a violin, based on the "Milanollo" Strad (hopefully also with nicer corners!) To answer Jane's question the back length is just under 16" over the arch. It's based on the 1785 Guadagnini Viola Strad poster. It sounds much better than I dared to hope; quite sweet and clear, although maybe a little lacking on the C string. It was made for my eldest daughter to replace her not very good German factory viola, and it definitely sounds and plays (and looks, despite the corners from hell!!!) quite a lot better than that, which is a relief. The varnish, by the way, is Neil's (nertz's) modified Baese stuff, which he described in a previous thread.
  5. the beast In response to Amori's request for more making-related stuff, I thought I'd put up some pictures of the viola I just finished. It's my first instrument and so a bit rough in places. any comments most welcome. Copious thanks are due to Neil Ertz for all his extremely kind help, advice, instruction, assistance etc etc.......
  6. quote: Originally posted by: mark Seth pretty much hits the nail on the head from the admin's point of view. This site is sometimes viewed by minors and we have always felt that some form of censorship is appropriate given the "Family" or "G" rating of the site. Having said that,we are looking into how the software works and what words should or should not be censored. Mark Sorry Mark, but I think than this kind of censorship is not only objectionable but also totally futile. As can be seen from the examples above it's always possible to get round a filter by judicious substitution of symbols/letters and/or slight mis-spelling that nevertheless leave the original meaning perfectly clear. Are Seth's examples any less offensive (if one is offended by that sort of thing) than they would be if JC's name were spelled correctly? I don't think so. And how far should this go anyway? Should we consider banning Craig T's occasional eulogies to ice-cold Guinness just in case some passing innocent is tempted into a life of stout-sodden debauchery??! As for protecting the interests of minors, you just banned Chri$tma$ for cripes sake!!!!
  7. If I wanted to make an iron like this, should the curve of the aluminium block correspond to a typical c-bout curvature, or should it be a little tighter?
  8. ....this is just plain silly.
  9. I bought a few spruce wedges from SVS last time they had a "Xmas sale" (the "ayatollah" wouldn't allow me to type "chri$tmas!!!") Service/delivery was excellent, but the wood (their top grade) had quite a lot of runout.
  10. John Cockburn. My real name. Just wondering if this gets past the "brain police"...........!
  11. quote: Originally posted by: Jacob "Gary Bease's book is a great. The recipe is simple...crush up resin, put in pot of hot oil, cook. Rub on instrument." <br /> <br />That is EXACTLY how the Fulton varnish is made. The freak-out factor comes in with making the resin - which you don't have to do, you can buy terpene resin. <br /> <br />The "results" I suspect depend on method of preparation and skill in application. The Fulton varnish has variously been described as "hard", "soft", "transparent", "opaque" etc. There have been reports of difficulties experienced with the preparation and application of various other types of varnish on this forum. <br /> <br />All this I personally consider a Mickey-Mouse issue. We don't know what the old Cremonese varnish consisted of exactly. We all try various things, and report on our experiences. All such reports based on actual experience (as opposed to unsubstantiated and uninformed opinions) are useful and helpfulft>. If the "inventor" of a recipe is conceited enough to claim that his recipe is the one and true original Cremonese concoction, that by itself will not deter me from trying it out, and if it works for me, fine - I'm not about to blame the varnish for the arrogant claims of the inventor. If anone is interested in the first hand experience of this novice (just finished my first instrument-a viola), I would like to say that Nertz's modified Baese recipe (posted in a previous thread) works fantastically well. Easy to apply, and looks beautiful (although you do need a UV box to dry it). Neil very kindly gave me some varnish he made, but I did watch him make it and it seems a very straightforward process. The varnish was coloured with madder pigment (which I did make myself following Neil's instructions, very easy).
  12. Quote: I've talked about this a lot to my customers. I'd say the finishing part comes to about 75% of the price. How come? No disrespect, but this sounds bonkers to me, on the basis of the relative length of time varnishing takes, compared with actually making the instrument.
  13. A few years ago someone I know paid £500 to have a £5000 violin revarnished. So I guess around 10% of total cost of instrument is in the varnishing??
  14. I wouldn't have thought that any reputable maker would sell a violin in the white. You sell a violin to someone, they make a b*ll*x of the varnish, and your hard earned reputation heads down the sewer tubes?!.
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