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Davide Sora

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About Davide Sora

  • Birthday 01/07/1964

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    Cremona, Italy
  • Interests
    Violin making

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  1. Better: be aware of your mistakes, so you don't make the same mistake twice.
  2. The more you fail, the more you learn...
  3. Yes, the water cannot remove the glue completely, it spreads it around and into the wood. You need mechanical removal, scrapers, or chisels depending on the spots affected. A 365nm UV inspection is also useful if you apply a protein sealer, it can show any areas where it is missing.
  4. Yes, the fluorescence changes depending on the materials, I was talking about protein-based animal glues, I don't use others.
  5. In the case of new works, it is very useful for highlighting any glue contamination on the surfaces or near the gluing areas on the white violin (bare wood). To be eliminated before starting varnishing.
  6. One problem is that the distortions we see in a photo could depend on the photo, not on the instrument, we would need to know which lens was used and at what distance the photo was taken. It seems to me that the one posted by the OP is made with a strong wide angle, like that of cell phones
  7. The important thing is that the top coat is of the same nature as the underlying varnish. No lacquer, unless they are cheap factory violins.
  8. This happens often, it's the best tactic to confuse people and keep secrets. There is a secret agreement in this regard among reputable makers.
  9. Or sharing so many things that the truly decisive ones are no longer distinguishable and go unnoticed.
  10. I grind them with a slow rotating water-cooled grinding wheel, it's quite slow but there's no danger of overheating. After all, it's not a job that gets done very often, I only did it once to make the two blades that I've been using for decades. It took me about a couple of hours for the two blades, including grinding the cutting edges (sharpening on the stones excluded).
  11. Yes, I also think that with careful use, the combination of various chemical substances can lead to interesting effects, both in terms of color and acoustics. Regarding ammonia, an effect that I consider interesting, reported by the studies I posted previously, is the increased ability of the wood to absorb and integrate with the subsequent treatments (sizing) applied. However, my very basic tests on gluings have shown me that over two hours of exposure to vapors weakens them drastically, after four hours the glue is practically dissolved, even if it reverts after some time (but I don't know if it will hold again like before). So a lot of caution would be needed for a finished violin. Regarding the color, after only two hours (which I consider the prudent limit for glue and wood structure) the effect is very bland, even if I have the impression that the brilliance of the medullary rays and fibers has increased, and also the behavior of subsequent treatments seems improved. To achieve a significant color takes too many hours (even several days), and so for me it is out of the question. The problem with these chemical treatments is that we will never be sure how beneficial they can be, nor how deleterious their effect can be from an acoustic point of view because our judgment is based on impressions that are influenced by many factors, It is impossible to attribute with certainty the credit for possible improvements perceived in sound to a specific treatment. I think the question is whether or not you are willing to take the risk and to what extent is it worth it, but I also think if you use common sense and if you know what you use, it can be kept within acceptable limits.
  12. To me, the outside faces without bevels decrease the fluidity of the cut because you would have a flat surface running along a curve, and it will always tend to snag and go straight instead of following that curve. Unfortunately, I think that being careful, especially in critical points (cuts parallel to the grain and curve changes, even worse with wide grain) is the only answer. Developing a refined technique is essential, perfect tools are not enough. If I had a Stradivari, I would still be a terrible violinist. To develop good technique it is essential to understand why mistakes happen, to anticipate them, and find ways to prevent them as much as possible. Then, some small "errors" are not a drama, perhaps they will be very evident on the white wood but much less dramatic on the varnished violin.
  13. Well, I bought it forty years ago, I don't remember exactly. If I remember correctly they were not very thick (I'd guess 0.8mm) but made of inferior-quality steel, I had replaced them very soon. They were not sharpened, they were just two strips of steel supplied separately from the cutter. Back then, manufacturers took it for granted that the sharpening was the responsibility of the luthier.
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