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Everything posted by Jimbow

  1. The reason a lot of people don't store their violin back in its case is because most cases have become so protective with all their zippers, clasps, rain flaps, velcro, magnets, and snaps, it's become a big hassle. I particularily dislike the "rainflaps", and the last few cases I have purchased have been a lower price level than I preferred just to eliminate the "Rainflap" feature and all its associated problems. I guess they call them "issues" these days. My absolute, favorite violin case is a French "FEL Chambord" which has only a short rainflap on the front. The suspension interior is beautifully designed and detailed. My favorite violin just loves to be nestled in it! I haven't been able to find a source in the US since this closeout purchase in ~1997. If anyone knows of a seller in the U.S., please let me know. Just my $.02 Jimbow
  2. Re: Bridge accident...what happened? Then, suddenly, the damned bridge snapped clean in half lengthwise. Please describe in more detail what you are describing as "lengthwise" and exactly where. Also, was bridge 90 degree upright before it failed? (I would assume it was, however if it was tilting, that would clearly account for it going out of tune.) Any visual evidence of an old, partial crack at the break? If it was a treated bridge, an old crack might show. What harm could it do to ask him politely to cut a new bridge realizing he might have a logical explanation and decline? You are very lucky it happened at home! Jimbow
  3. Jimbow

    Strad posters

    Ron, I read the referenced thread also and found it very interesting. It seems strange that a fine traditional old magazine like the STRAD would allow things to deteriorate so badly. I remember 5 to 10 years ago when I was a subscriber, Strad would even copy old articles out of their archives for a slight fee if the back issue was unavailable. Great articles and service used to be the norm. Now the NJ phone number doesn't even return my four phone messages to order a subscription. They ask for name, phone no.,purpose of the call, etc,etc., but never call back as they say they will. Also none of the local magazine stores stock Strad or even know how to order copies. Strange indeed! Can't help but wonder if the organizational problem is in the UK or on this US side of the pond. Maybe a good opportunity for a motivated investor here. Jimbow
  4. Jimbow


    Perlman played the most beautiful song.I wonder if the violin he was playing is a strad. ---------------------- I missed it fingerbord. Any clue what the piece was? Jimbow
  5. Merry Christmas to you and your family, Craig! Also, Merry Christmas to all you fine people on this board who have taught me a lot and shared your thoughts with us all in 2004! You are a great group! Peace and happiness to you all! Jimbow
  6. but I can already see the majority opinions are being suppressed by the few. ---------------------------------------------------- I think you are seriously misinterpreting some things here. I realize it might look like Mud Wrestling to you, occasionally. But, just as you want to know the significant things to look for in the process of identifying your violin, likewise you need to distinguish who is giving you authoritative advice. You say that "almost all of you have stated you are not experts." You must realize that the person who goes around saying "I am an Expert! is usually the one that you have to be suspicious of. In my 73 years of earthly experiences, I have found that real experts don't go around claiming to be experts and readily admit that they have a lot to learn. You might think seriously about Michaels comment.... "OK, let me warn you, though: authenticity is not a democracy; all votes are not equal. As Bob Bein says, "Ten identical wrong opinions don't outweigh one good one." You might click on Michaels "profile" an well as Jeffrey Holmes and many others and check their experience and qualifications. These professionals have earned their fine reputations and our respect. If you check out trade publications, you will also recognize of lot of other members of this board--and we are talking Internationally! I don't think you fully realize that many of the top violin authorities follow and post on this site, although as previously stated they don't proclaim to the world that they are experts. You will find that the more expert they are, the more cautious they are. That is until, and if, they have reached and state a definite conclusion. Last, I want to challenge your statement that "..but I can already see the majority opinions are being suppressed by the few." I strongly feel that is not true and possibly the reverse is, in fact, true. In any event, don't be lulled into hearing only what you want to hear. From photos alone, you will not get a valid concensus, probably not even from a hands-on inspection. There have been many thousand of violin makers over the centuries and, except for the more famous ones, many violins will remain unidentified in the fog of history. I just made that last phrase up but I do believe it. IMHO Jimbow
  7. It's about time.....now read the whole book. ------------------------------------------------ I think I may have already read it, John, bit by bit in your mellifluous posts. However, I have over 150 rare, expensive, and frankly, much better, books in my little personal string reference library that I prefer to study. Reade is a bit prosaic for my taste. Nothing personal, mind you! That's just me. Jimbow
  8. John, I know you read that somewhere in some old book-- probably Charles Reade, and so you believe it without a thought,... ------------------------------------------ Michael, You are a very intelligent man! You nailed it! " Cremona violins and Varnish" by Charles Reade 1873. Page 33, paragraph 2, line 2. ..." It is not in the power of man to charge an oil varnish with color so highly as the top varnish of Mr. Hawleys Bass is charged.......What, in that mere film so crammed with color? Never!....This, then is how Antonio Stradivarius varnished Mr. Paule's bass--He began with 3 or 4 coats of oil varnish containing some common gum. He then laid on several coats...made by dissolving some fine red unadulterated gum in spirit: the spirit evaporated and left pure gum lying on a rich red varnish...etc, etc." ------------------------------ Finally, the riddles are solved! Clear and Simple. You have been a great service to humanity! Thank you Michael. Jimbow
  9. I suggest seeing an appraiser with your instrument to determine it's origin. The discussion is beginning to take on the feel of expertise by divining rod. Amen,Jeffrey. Well stated. Jimbow
  10. " "***It is not in the power of "man" to "charge" an oil varnish with enough color to keep the varnish thin enough to remain flexible. That is, unless you know how... I know how, and no one else on the planet knows but me.**"" ------------------------------------- Yep, John that really helps me a lot! "...Nobody who participates in this forum would stoop so low as to buy a fiddle on eBay??!!?? Would they??!! Why I think that is just about the silliest thing I'ver ever heard!!! " ---------------------------------------- John, Here is one guy that did! Poster: insearchofcremona Subject: Re: Hey Ya'll, your thoughts please on this violin "Hi, The violin pictured on the right, along with the scroll posted, is the last violin I bought through an online auction service..... Needless to say, I am very well pleased. I bought the violin for $350.00 including shipping/insurance. Hope this post will help you make a good choice. Regards, John " ------------------------------------ Thanks for all the words and the help!... NOT! As my grandson would say! What a waste of our time! John, Occasionally you seem to want to establish some credibility on this board. This was apparently not one of those times! Jimbow
  11. "I've taken another shot of the button per your request." Sorry, rdkyote, I should have been more specific. I mean the other "button" on the rear of the back plate where the heel of the neck connects. It's kind of a knob on the extreme (neck end) of the back plate. The shape and detail of this button can be a clue of what you are dealing with. At least, if it is "sloppy" worksmanship, it excludes a few possibilities. Jimbow
  12. Looks like handmade French to me , mainly because of the narrow white, uneven purfling , the edgework, and traces of black on the scroll chamfers. Would like to see closeup of the back button, straight on. jimbow ...but what do I know?
  13. nicolo, If those photos are representative of your work, don't change a thing! They are beautiful! Unless, of course, you have a concern for the effect of the varnish on tone, in which case you may want to wait for the comments of the experts. Appearance-wise......They look fantastic! Jimbow
  14. "... Most French copyists used spirit varnish, full of lake pigments, with the varnish simulated to look old. The varnish on your fiddle is a high quality oil varnish, and is very old...." insearchofcremona ------------------------------------------------- John, I don't think that I can be convinced that it is possible to distinguish spirit varnish from oil varnish from a photographic image on a screen. Further, being able to distinguish from the image that it "..is a high quality oil varnish, and is very old" is even more remote. I could be wrong, and I know you have done a lot of experimentation with varnish, so could you explain what you detect in the the photo presented by OP that the finish is: 1) "Oil varnish"? 2)" High quality " oil varnish? 3)"Very old" varnish? 4) Natural wear vs: "Simulated to look old"? If you can convince me it is possible to detect, and also explain how to detect these things, I would be much obliged as I am sure others would too. It would certainly help us perfect our eBay analyses! Jimbow
  15. "Try this thread." Michael Thanks, Michael! While I was writing my last (one finger) message, you had already provided an answer with the thread you recommended. I browsed thru it quickly and it appears to have most of what I was looking for. You are way ahead of me again, not surprisingly. Jimbow
  16. "...Beare noted that he starts his identification process with the back because it's one of the more robust parts of the fiddle and thus likely to be the original. The back also offers a good way to gauge age...." skiingfiddler This could be very interesting and enlightening! Beginning with this comment regarding the back, what are the specific features to examine on the back to determine: 1) Age 2) Country of origin (or school) 3) Maker 4) Original vs. copy determination? 5) Purfling, channeling, varnish, button distinctions? C'mon experts, give us your secrets! It could help you all in the long run if the vagueness of terms and descriptions could be more specific and/or quantified. Jimbow
  17. when I have left a violin strung under full tension for a period, inevitably one or more of the strings have broken and I wince at the thought of that sudden change in pressure on the belly. Glenn, Valid point, well taken! I,too, am anxious to hear others comments. Jimbow
  18. "I relieve the tension to almost nothing on the strings for a violin that will be stored for a year or for years... " ctviolin Craig, You may very well be correct, and maybe I am missing something obvious here, but could you please explain your logic? How is a "stored violin" being damaged by maintaining string tension compared to an expensive Strad that is being played professionally and continually for 100 years, for instance? Jimbow
  19. "..Once you put strings on a new instrument, it is under stress, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The instrument will yield to a slight bending, after a period of time, all the accesories ,bridge,post,included, need to be adjusted. You call it a Syndrome if you want..." yuen Good point, yuen. Occasionally, I will have someone say they have intentionally loosened the strings on a violin because it was not used for a year (or years). They seem to relate it to loosening bow hair tension between uses. I have always believed in maintaining a constant,tuned,tension on violin strings..in use or not,to maintain the established stabilization that you mention. If I am wrong on this, someone please let me know. Jimbow
  20. People were only skeptical of what he has found. " His violin sound like a Strad " (Argree by whom?) Audience, Players, Makers ,Sellers,appraisers, or else Universally agree? yuen ------------------------------------- I am not sure who you are quoting here, yuen. It is certainly not me! I have never heard a Strad in person , although I do have a Strad Magazine CD called "The Violins of Cremona" which compares various famous violins. I must confess, though, in a blind test, I probably couldn't tell the difference between a 'del Gesu' and my best old German! (sorry about that, John! ) So much depends on the ability and technique of the violinist as a perceptive post recently pointed out. (Maybe it was yours!) I was only expressing my opinion that we should accept and encourage experimenters and not disparage their efforts! You are certainly free to disagree if you wish. Jimbow
  21. I read an article in Scientific American many years ago by a gentleman whose name escapes me that was of interest. He and his fellow researchers had proposed that the real reason Strads sound the way they do is because the tone wood was marinated for a good long time in brine. --------------------------------------------------------- Frank, There was an article in Scientific American on June 10,2002 titled: "Secrets of the Stradivarius: An interview with Joseph Nagyvary" by Charles Choi.It could possibly be the one to which you refer. I have a copy before me and it is quite interesting although I do not have the scientific or musical training to fully appreciate or critique the article. Another very interesting article about Prof. Nagyvary,who is a biochemist and teaches at Texas A&M, is in "Discover" July 2000 by Michael D. Lemonick. General comments (FWIW) I am not trying to reopen the discussion on Joseph Nagyvary but I have heard him talk of his work a few years ago when he was a guest lecturer at a local University . I am personally convinced of his sincerity and passion for his work. I know a highly talented local violin teacher with a degree in music, specializes in violin performance, and plays in a symphony orchestra in a nearby city. She has had a Nagyvary violin for a number of years. I think she told me that she recently bought a second violin from him. She speaks very highly of the tone of his violins and of his work. I trust her expert judgement on violins and musical matters implicitly so it bothers me a bit when I occasionally hear personal attacks about Professor Nagyvary. A Christian Science Monitor article (11/29/01) by Patrik Jonsson quotes one professional violinist.... "I think Nagyvary's getting close." "...As if to still his critics, Nagyvary acknowledges that his search for the world's holy grail isn't over. 'There are many mysteries left.' he says." So, please keep an open mind. Joseph Nagyvary is striving for the same things you all are searching for. His approach is a bit different but isn't it all part of the big puzzle? He could be right, you know! Jimbow
  22. Thanks for the analysis, Wolfjk. There are no commas above Babos....I'm not sure if that is good or bad. Another thing I failed to mention is that the label is a red-orange color print on an old, ivory colored paper for whatever significance. Unusual, that! To Glen, the violin has a rich, full tone with a good sustain and teachers who have played it have commented favorably. However it still hangs on my wall probably because the wood is not dramatic looking as many others hanging next to it. Most buyers say they are "looking only for tone", but in the end analysis, younger players, at least, are swayed by appearance, country of origin, and makers name. I agree that Hungary does not seem to get its deserved share of attention in violin circles despite its impressive musical history. I still like this old "Szeged" a lot and don't mind at all keeping it among my small collection. It is fascinating and always elicits interesting comments. Jimbow
  23. "...So, Admin, something fishy with the cookies since the upgrade. I've seen this vanishing "new message count" several times. Fixing it requires expiring cookies and restarting a session." falstaff I've noticed this also but thought I was doing something wrong. Thanks for describing it in technically correct terms. I've also noticed, if I do get the last post, and try to click onto the prior page, instead I get the beginning page 1 of the thread. Not yet quite certain of this though. (Still the best forum and best camaraderie that I have found on this dang machine!) Jimbow
  24. There are ' marks above the a in szam, and the last e in hangszerkeszitonel and a double mark '' above the o. There is also a ' mark above the a in Sander. I didn't know how to reproduce them (') on the keyboard above a letter. Thanks for your help. Jimbow
  25. "-Are you Hungarian by any chance?? --- Yes..." Wolfjk Well, now! (Ahem!) Since we are on the subject of Hungary and we have an expert among us, may I ask a question about one of my violins? (If not, just flame me and I will delete.) It is labeled: ------------------------------------ Babos Sander hangszerkeszitonel (No date) SZEGED, Iskola-utca 6 szam alatt. ------------------------------------- also has a repair label by Louis Kunz Windsor,Ont. Although the wood is quite plain and the purfling is scribed, it is a nice little violin with no cracks or "issues" as they now say. I installed a new fingerboard, pegs, and set it up with a NOS Wm Lewis bridge and Dominants. I figured it would be a good student violin for someone who wanted something a bit above the ugly "orange peel" rentals. Henley book says there were many factory "Sander" versions but this doesn't really look "factory" to me somehow. Any comments or help? Jimbow
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