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Everything posted by uguntde

  1. uguntde


    It is good to discover something new every now and than. I also call myself Outis sometimes. What do these instruments with flat tops sound like?
  2. uguntde

    Violin with ribs let into the back

    Is this feature of ribs let into the back not attributed to early Füssen makers? Pamphillon also did it. We know little about these makers and their instruments are difficult to identify.
  3. uguntde


    I am not a violin maker and cannot answer your question from experience. You probably won't find a good answer as nobody has made a violin with a flat front. However, if you play an old violin which is more highly arched that those of Stradivari, made by or in the style of Stainer or Amati, you will find that it has a disticntly different tone. Most modern violinists prefer Stadivari who changed the arching to make it flatter and got a more powerful tone. But some of these older instruments make an intriguingly beautiful sound. I guess the answer why some arching is needed is to give the plates additional stiffness, they would otherwise sink in under the pressure of the strings. One could probably make them thinker but this would dampen the sound as the elasiticy of the plate would be reduced.
  4. Thomas Smith was a violin shop in Birmingham UK. They turned around a lot of violins but got closed in the late 1980s. But this won't help you much with the identification of the maker.
  5. This French violin has two labels. Does anyone know who made those? One label reads: Luthierie Vosgiere 68 Rue Reamur, Paris and the other: Le Hieronymus The varnish has some heat damage, as you can see. Otherwise it is in good shape.
  6. uguntde

    Violin ID labelled Luthierie Vosgiere

    Thanks Martin. I haven't seen this label. Do they oftern have two labels? Is this worth £300?
  7. This French violin has two labels. Does anyone know who made those? One label reads: Luthierie Vosgiere 68 Rue Reamur, Paris and the other: Le Hieronymus The varnish has some heat damage, as you can see. Otherwise it is in good shape.
  8. uguntde

    Warchal Brilliant vs. Visoin Titanium Solo

    I did not intend to be negative about your strings - of course any string can break (in this case it was a metal A on a viola). Overall you achieve a unique sound characteristic of strings.
  9. uguntde

    Warchal Brilliant vs. Visoin Titanium Solo

    Obligatos seem to be a bread and butter string, at least for violists - very commonly used among orchestra players simply because they sound good and they last - they tend to use a Larsen A. I convinced a CBSO violist to try Warchals and he dropped them after the A snapped - I thought they sounded better on his viola, but he looks for something completely different - to be heard in the orchestra, and to keep costs low. I used Warchals for a while now - following Martin's many recommendations - like them and never had a broken string. On some fiddles I find the Karneols somewhat too mellow. I personally like Warchal Amber on violins and violas. Powerful and warm. On one of my fiddles (a Duke) Obligatos were awful, far too sharp, with Warchal Amber I get a rich and warm sound. On a G Bernardel (very rich in overtones) Obligaots lack warmth. In the end it is of course always a matter of taste.
  10. uguntde

    Warchal Brilliant vs. Visoin Titanium Solo

    As the original post originated from Mr Violadamore I will contribute my view on the viola versions. Vision Solo and Warchal Amber are probably my favourites for many violas. On the viola the Warchal Brilliant sounds very similar to the Amber, the former slightly more powerful, although string tension is almost identically low (around 50). Respond easily, very resonant. They take a long time to settle in. Vision Solo has sting tensions in the mid 50s and is slightly less resonant that the Warchals, but also an excelent string. They settle in faster and last well. As most great sounding violas can easily develop wolf notes I would also choose strings to minimise wolfs. A change in string pressure can on a viola entirely remove a wolf.
  11. uguntde

    Identification of maker's mark

    I will never forget, when I was a student in Tübingen, I visited the local violin dealer to get some violin assessories. When I was in his shop someone called and from hearing one side of the conversation I understood that the person on the phone wanted to be reassured that she had bought the violin for life. He responded cynically saying that one doesn't even know that it is for life when one gets married. I have since had a promiscuous life with violins, I can never stick to one very long. But I decided never to buy a violin, even if I Iike the tone, that cannot be clearly authenticated. This is also the advice I would always give, except for cheap instruments where sound and some essential design quality is all that counts.
  12. uguntde

    Sandarac Varnish : My Method

    I am not sure I understand what pyrogenization means. From what you write it seems you refer to its ability to mix with an oil after it has been heated. I thought a pyrogenic substance is one that produces a flame when heated, and I would almost guarantee that sandarac will burn as it is a tree rosin, just from a specific cypress. Do you see any advatage of using sandarac over any other rosin? Sandarac dissolves in alcohol and is therefore used in spirit varnishes. It gives the varnish a certain type of shine, people like Fiorini, Fagnola and Bisiach used it almost certainly, but without cooking. For an oil varnish, does it make a difference to use sandarac rather than generic rosin? You also don't add any soda or lime stone which would raise the pH. I had one batch of varnish not drying well because of this. Have you ever had such an issue?
  13. uguntde


    Maybe they were to small and someone filled them in towards the ribs, shaping them nicely straight as a new artistic expression. The larger they are the bigger the tone, I suppose, thus adding to the Italian sound of the fiddle.
  14. uguntde

    Is this violin English?

    Can you show the peg box from the front? I wonder what kind of wood the bottom was made of. These pegs are often seen on old English fiddles - they may well be the original ones.
  15. uguntde

    "Sebastian Klotz 1772"

    This is very interesting indeed. $500 for a Kloz, and $1250 for a JB Vuillaume, Nicolo Amati $8500, other Amati family members around $3500, together with Gagliano and Lupot. The ratios have shifted massively to the disadvantage of Kloz violins. They also describe the tone of their instruments - today I only see this occasionally in Bongartz' catalogues. Other auction houses seem to avoid tonal assessments, except for some top instruments for which we get a sound snippet from Brompton's.
  16. uguntde

    Otto Dolling bow any good?

    She also uses Benoit Rolland bows, and maybe many others. On their web page they keep some references: "David Oistrach (Russland), Yehudi Menuhin (USA), Ruggiero Ricci (USA) und der finnische Cellist Erkko Rautio ", and " Der Solo-Cellist der Metropolitan Opera in New York, Rafael Figueroa und seine Stellvertreterin Dorothea Noack, erwarben in jüngster Zeit Cellobögen aus der Werkstatt Dölling."
  17. uguntde

    Otto Dolling bow any good?

    The Döllings have won prizes, they far from mass production and yield good prices in auctions. For me among German bow makers the Grünke family or Paulus are a level above, but others may view this differently.
  18. uguntde

    Help ID inherited violin

    The rounded edge and the way the purfling is flicked into the edge is very nice - almost too good for a Mittenwald trade fiddle. These pegs I have seen on several English violins from that time, but didn't want to suggest it is an English violin.
  19. It is worth listening to her recordings with Fazil Say, where she also plays his music. Two geniuses with a well-matched style.
  20. uguntde

    Iron Rosinate

    Many of the early 20th century Italian makers (Bisiach, Fiorini, Poggi) used spirit and not oil varnish, and many of their instruments have an excellent sound. personally prefer the looks of a good spirit over oil varnish. I see the preference for oil varnishes just as a kind of fashion in modern violin making.
  21. uguntde

    Late 19th Century French?

    The scroll looks very French, particularly from the back, the way the f-holes are cut too (vertical cut with a knife, not in a right angle to the slant of the surface of the top). Most French violins I have seen have relatively high linings and more square shaped blocks on top on bottom. The edge work and purfling doesn't make sense at all, as Martin pointed out.
  22. uguntde

    Jais or not

    There was an esrlier article here suggesting that Johannes Jais is actually Sebastian Kloz: Unfortunately I cannot find the pdf's quoted in there, the url's no longer exists. The Mittenwald museum thinks the label should look like this: The article there in German describes him as a violin maker and church musician and mentions that his brother Anton was a violin maker. In the Bozen church archives he is listed as successor of Joseph Antonius Alban. There are invoices for violin repairs. The known instruments are of very variable quality and this is why the author of that page assumes that he bought instruments from Mittenwald for resale. Whether Jais or not, the instrument above looks like a reasonable 18th century Mittenwald violin, although I have seen much better scrolls from the Kloz family and the shape of the button is strange. The same shape of small button I see on a violin described as Jais here (although with a much nicer scroll):
  23. uguntde

    Violin ID

    Here a French violin with a Stradivarius label. It has some heat damage to the varnish. The edge work and corners very exact, high linings as typical for French violins. The edge work and purfling as precise as Collin-Mezin's. Just Mirecourt violin?
  24. uguntde

    Viola test drive.

    Sounds great. Rich on the C. How big is it? What is the height of the ribs?
  25. uguntde

    VIOLIN ID beautiful back

    It could be both. These French violins usually have much higher linings and more square shaped blocks.