Davide Sora

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About Davide Sora

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  • Birthday 01/07/1964

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  • Location
    Cremona, Italy
  • Interests
    Violin making

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  1. This observation hits straight into the center, it is very easy to fall into this misunderstanding and review the work from the point of view of the machine, this is one of the major risks and definitely a line not to be crossed, at least from my point of view.
  2. The problem is just that, only some honestly admit what they do (and whatever they do if it's legal and they pay taxes nobody can ban them from anywhere) while others hide what they do and tell customers "I do everything by myself and entirely by hand". This applies to any part of the world, but I consider it a particularly unfair behavior here in Cremona, where the name is also used as a brand to sell. The correct behavior for me is at the base of everything, no matter how and where.
  3. Pros and cons of Dremel Purfling router

    It's always nice to know that there is someone who appreciates the difference, thanks for the support.
  4. With CNC you can only do the roughing work but also get very close to the finished work, depends on the quality (and cost) of the machinery and the intentions of the maker. I know how you use it and why, and I'm fine with this, but other makers may use it differently and with different goals in mind. I am fine in any case also with these makers, I do not expect everyone to share my way to work, assuming that they clearly and honestly declare the working systems used. Probably my sensitivity to the difference in working system is given by the fact that I live in a city too much in the spotlight and too crowded with violinmakers, for better or worse......
  5. what determines the sound a luthier aims at?

    ......unless it is a violin maker, who often have a tendency to "professional deformation" to judge the sound of the violin.....
  6. Nice planes

    Nice good old planes!!
  7. But what do these 160 hours refer to? To the finished violin in the white or to the finished violin, varnished, mounted with soundpost, bridge and fittings, fine set up and sold? I don't think I never managed to sell a violin in 160 hours, working time is not only cutting wood.
  8. Of course I agree, but this is an old refrain that can makes many people think that the technique does not serve, but this is not the reality. For a modern violin maker I believe it is better to be appreciated when he is still alive than after several decades after his death. For music I also agree with you, but I still prefer someone who can move us with excellent ability to master technique and intonation. In both cases the problem is not to be victims of the technique but to know how to use it correctly and in the right direction and yes, also in the right amount.
  9. Yes, in the sense that you can make great sounding violins even using CNC if you know what to do. But if you have to work by hand (personal choice) you need to know how to use hand tools developing the skills to control them very well, in order to do what you want to do without chasing your mistakes, in this case it is essential to be excellent woodworkers.
  10. Everythings depends on the meaning that each of us gives to the word "made by hand", everyone is free to interpret it as he wants and to give it the value he wants. Here in Italy the law says that if you have made at least 20% (or so) of the work here in Italy you can say made in Italy, if you have up to 20 employees you can still declare craftmanship work.
  11. Of course I do not mean to say that we must be Taliban, I also have electricity in my workshop. I do not think having a band saw or a drill press make us forget how to use a hand saw or a hand drill, it's just a matter of will.
  12. Angles between corners and belly/back plates

    I probably had to express myself better : I should have said "helps to prevent the sinking of the top avoiding that its plane (gluing surface) becomes concave". I think that the "cremonese style" ribs slant allow that the inevitable bowing of the soundbox caused by strings tension would result in a concave gluing surface of the ribs (top side) that as a consequence it also forces the top plane (gluing surface) to sag in the wrong direction. This does not completely avoid the deformation of the top which is very complex and due to various factors, but I think that it helps to keep it within certain limits. These are just my illations (in the end our work is driven by illations....) but I did not notice any contraindications in doing this, while when I was doing the "straight" taper as you do I always had the impression of a slight negative bending, but maybe this has just an aesthetical value. Would you explain why you think the "straight" taper make better mechanical sense? I am always interested in hearing different points of view from mine, my working principles are not set in stone.....
  13. I do not think that the debate between power tools vs hand tools should be seen only with a view to greater or less efficiency and speed of execution (however questionable, as Conor and others points out, I also put myself among these). In my opinion making violins is an ancient work that deserves to be preserved, persist in using manual methods and tools also has the purpose of preserving the skills and knowledge necessary to use them, otherwise in a short time all this would fall into oblivion and would be irretrievably forgotten. We have already had clear examples of this at the end of the eighteenth century and we are still paying the consequences, so I prefer to keep alive the use of hand tools, leaving the extensive use of power tools to those who are more concerned with production than with the historical survival of our work. I have no intention of denigrating those who use them if they declare to use them (and this is another important point), I respect everyone's right to make his personal choices. It's just a matter of different vision and different approach to work that for me is very important. A too romantic vision?
  14. Scraper shapes for edge work

    Nicely done. One observation I can make is that the channel in the corners seems a little too flat and there is little elevation towards the tip, but may be your choice, not necessarily a flaw. Photos are fine enough, set your camera at higher f stop (f 22 if you can) if you like sharper images.
  15. Angles between corners and belly/back plates

    You understood correctly, the inclination is confined to the upper bout and the rest is all the same height. If I have a batch of ribs long enough I always make one piece lower and upper ribs : better resistance to block splitting and no joint needed But it's not always easy to find a good quality 45 cm long piece for a one piece lower ribs so often you need to use two pieces. Cremonese violin were almost always made this way (one piece ribs), this is mainly due to the baroque construction where the neck was nailed and a one piece upper rib guaranteed the resistance necessary to reduce the risk that the block would split during this delicate operation. Today it's rare to see this feature on old violin because the modernized neck is morticed cutting into the block and the lower rib is often cut to adapt the ribs width to the shrinking of the plates, but if you look at the maple flames you will notice that the inclination is always in the same direction along the rib.