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Everything posted by bean_fidhleir

  1. Does anyone else see what looks like a post crack or two on the back? (it's hard to tell without seeing the pegbox, but that 'graft' looks an awful lot like a scratch to me, too. Sorry to be a contrarian )
  2. I'm no expert, but it looks cheesy to me. The scroll is definitely not well done.
  3. Quote: People in California must really love obscure american makers, cause nearly all the bidders on this one (except the winner) are from CA. http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?Vie...A%3AIT&rd=1 Amazing that the seller couldn't even read the label. "Luther & Arneson" indeed! Does anyone recognise the model Mr Arneson was working to? To me it looks a Giovanni Ala Carta
  4. French polished, do you think? And I wonder whether that strong figuring on the back and ribs could be from not having had the pores filled with ground first? It looks very dramatic.
  5. If he was lying and you can easily demonstrate it, that's a violation of the law and you should be able to claim against him with ebay.
  6. Quote: The repair man was active in Montreal in around 1900. http://translate.google.com/translate?hl...6lr%3D%26sa%3DG Thanks for turning that up. Interestingly, the article mentions the father-son shop Lavallée et Fils. I've an instrument that has a Chas. Lavallée (the son's) label in, though I'd be surprised if it was made by him: my guess is that it's a high-class German factory instrument.
  7. Quote: Its got what looks like quite deep channeling which is probably why it looks higher arched than it really is. Could that account for it, do you think? When I look at the play of light around the f-holes/c-bout in the top view, it looks as though it ought to have one of those 'look in one f-hole and out the other' archings.
  8. I never know what to think about people who do such ads. They're very naive, for sure, to think that anyone would offer that much. But are they naive-but-honest, or naively crooked?
  9. It's funny, but that side view doesn't seem to fit with the top view at all. I would have thought from the top that the side would show a 'barrel' body. I don't know what's going on there. It looks like it could be a decent student-grade south-German fiddle from about 100 years ago. Given the apparent discrepancy between top and side views, I can't imagine what it might sound like, though.
  10. Ha! Yes, thanks, Steve, now I see it. I completely missed it the first 35 times I looked. LOL! (Looking more closely also showed me the dreadful varnish job, too. Yuck, it's got all dust in.)
  11. If it's a high-quality fiddle, screwing a pickup-wire clamp to the back seems a bit of a desecration, doesn't it?
  12. I'm sure you're right about the reason for making them that way--at least in Appalachia, where poverty prevented access to conventional violins to serve as construction models. I expect it was the same way as with banjos and 'dulcimoors': some highly creative musician-craftsperson sees some kind of 'store-bought' instrument at a distance, or a picture of one, understands instantly how it works, and then invents a way to make a usable one with whatever tools and materiél he has at hand. Roby Hicks certainly did his best to copy what he'd seen. As well as I can tell from the photos, he took a lot of care to carve a classical scroll and elegant f-holes, and put a beautiful coat of varnish on it. Not bad for someone who could neither read nor write, and had never had any formal training of any kind.
  13. I believe fiddles in Appalachia were sometimes (often?) made that way. Anne and Frank Warner mention that Roby Monroe Hicks (b. 1882) of Beech Mountain, NC, made his that way: We have one of Roby's fiddles, of his own design. The bottom and sides are one piece of wood, hollowed like a dugout canoe, with the top nailed on. It is beautiful craftsmanship, and it plays with a tone rather like a hoarse viola. There are 2 photos of his fiddles being played and they look to be about the size of violas, too--big ones!
  14. Have you tried blowing air over the neck with a fan? Moving air will carry away moisture (clothes will dry on a line no matter what the humidity, if it's breezy). Just a thought.
  15. Quote: the back crack Oh ugh, are those really post cracks in the back? I was hoping it was a trick of the lighting and my imagination.
  16. Does it really seem a Guarneri model? The ff look more Stainerish to me, but perhaps it's the angle. I'd also say 18th c., but mid ...and I'll only rate my opinion at a penny.
  17. It's quite nice-looking, whatever it is. Could the neck/head be later, do you think? It doesn't seem to match up with the body.
  18. Quote: I heard that Yamaha is good, but it costs a bundle as well. Is there any mom and pop brand, which might be also fine for a biginner? I don't know. My only experience is with my Yamaha. I know that a few years ago here there were some people who seemed to feel okay about some other electrics, but that's all I really remember. You might find mention of them if you search the archives.
  19. Just to be a contrarian I have an acoustic that I can't mute enough to be playable. So, I play my Yamaha Silent. It's very nice and not especially nasty sounding. Of course I'm a fiddler, not a violinist, so that probably affects my judgement and tolerance. It's still audible even when not plugged in, but only from a few feet away. I can even, and do, hook it up to my computer's sound system and play through speakers. I can turn it down to where its volume is socially acceptable and I don't have to contend with the deformed sound a mute produces on my acoustic fiddle.
  20. I'm a bit dismayed to see the dismissive responses. Were they perhaps meant to teach me not to pose thought-experiment questions to my betters?
  21. Why not? (I should perhaps have qualified my 'absolutely' by disclaiming being able to exactly copy the wood, but I hope that's not your reason)
  22. There are a lot of subtle, computer-guided tools available today. If someone wanted to do the programming, in principle they could absolutely copy any existing instrument they could lay hands on. They could also, again at least in principle, create additional instruments that would fit in with the maker's existing oeuvre. Could experts detect the fakery without using sophisticated chemical, dendro, or radiological tests? If so, what would give the fakes away? As devices for making music, how would they probably compare with hand-mades by the average successful maker, and why?
  23. In the interests of conventional language use, could I just mention that the sellers are suspect(SUSS-pekt), not suspicious. We are suspicious, they are suspect.
  24. It's interesting - the signature on the label on this one http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewI...764485&rd=1 looks to me as though it was written by someone who's more used to writing the Cyrillic alphabet. Just stirring the pot a bit
  25. Word for word, I think. Why do I smell fraud in that listing?
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