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Everything posted by MarkBouquet

  1. The Austrian noble family's palace violin fetched a mere $1625.00, plus $69 S&H. I'm finding it increasingly difficult to fault sellers like this. They're just giving people what they want, and telling them what they want to hear. What else is new? Anybody looking to buy some nice mortgage backed securities?
  2. Once again I want to thank everyone who responded to my original post here. All things carefully considered, I'm determined to carry through with the 1649 "Alard" Nicola Amati violin. I have the "Strad Poster," and I had forgotten until I looked again last night, but Johnson & Courtnall feature that very instrument in their book, "The Art of Violin Making," so I have a lot of information to work with. I'm aware of the design compromises with the Amati, higher arching descending faster into the edge fluting, resulting in smaller effective vibrating surfaces, and therefore less power than
  3. I was taught to place a piece of wet paper, cut from a brown paper shopping bag, between the iron and rib while making the bend. This provides the moisture and steam right where you need it. Temperature? Strobel recommends setting it experimentally, but also suggests that "a drop of water should "dance" on the iron, but not fly off."
  4. If you swell the wood with moisture it will return to its original condition when it dries, so that doesn't seem like a good idea. How about trimming the high spots by slipping a single layer of fine grade sandpaper into the open seam, then pulling it back out along the crack (towards the end button). You might alternate the direction of the sandpaper with each pass, sanding one side and then the other, and of course pay careful attention to your progress. I think that the sandpaper would affect the high spots first, and you might be able to refit the seam. Just an idea, and I would wait for t
  5. I sure appreciate, and I'm encouraged by everyone's comments. I have a "Strad Poster" of the 1649 Alard Amati, and that's the one I'm considering building. The stop length, at least on this poster, is the modern standard 195mm. The design doesn't seem archaic. I want a violin to play, not a museum piece. I currently have two "golden era" Strad copies. They're nice violins and I just don't feel that I "need" another Strad. I'm attracted to this Amati not only because it's stunningly beautiful, but also because I'm intrigued by the sound characteristic attributed to Amati's as I understand the
  6. I built a violin in my youth, with a poor outcome. It was one of the first woodworking projects I had ever done. Now, many years later, I'm a skilled cabinet and furniture maker with a shop full of tools and I want to build another violin. I've collected books and studied the subject pretty much continuously since that first one, and I believe that I can do a reasonable job of it. I'm thinking of going off the well worn track and building a less popular model. I'm thinking about a Nicola Amati in particular. I said this to a professional maker and his response was essentially "don't bother,
  7. Good call Rue. Now that you pointed it out I can see that the grain is misaligned at that upper scar.
  8. I'm no expert, so please take my comments in that light. 1) The ebony/ivory tip plate on the certificate bow appears more delicate, and the ratio of their respective thicknesses is different from the sale bow. The bow tip seems crudely formed with a larger chamfer on the sale bow compared to the certificate bow. 2) The button on the sale bow is misaligned with the stick, compared to the certificate bow which appears better aligned. The turned down steps at the button fronts appear to be in different width ratios from one bow to the other. 3) The leather wrapping is certainly different,
  9. I've had success using small grinding discs in a "Dremel" type tool. I mount the rotary tool positioned in a way that allows me to hand hold the reamer and clearly see where I'm grinding, on the flat radial face as Dburns said, and keeping the grinding action rolling off of the cutting edge, and not into it. I also use "rubberized abrasive discs," which cut with surprising efficiency, in that same rotary tool. (I'd recommend a Proxxon over a Dremel, if you don't already have one.) That allows me to polish the edge to refined sharpness. This same equipment can be used to sharpen many kinds of
  10. "So what are we actually doing ? How will all of our individual efforts possibly eventually be interpreted ?" Who wants to know? I don't mean this to be a facetious question. Adam and Eve took that bite out of the fruit of the tree of knowledge, and lo, a self was born, and paradise lost. Now we experience the world through that filter of knowledge and thought, which is simply the past continually making itself present, and the present is lost in the process. So to your original question again, who, or perhaps more accurately what wants to know?
  11. I don't get the impression that this seller is a slick deceiver like some others. His feedback history has nothing violin related. He currently has two bows up for auction, which likely came out of this same case. He mostly sells PEZ boxes. I'd bet that he's completely ignorant about violins, and that right now he's as astonished with this price as we are. The responsibility here should fall on the buyers. I can't help feeling that they will deserve what they're getting.
  12. Franc, I think Martin's comment about liking the grain lines in a bridge to be level means that the grain lines are perpendicular to the bridge face, and parallel to the surface of the violin top. This condition is automatic when the medullary rays are long on the bridge face, because the grain lines are always perpendicular to the medullary rays. It's two sides of the same coin; long medullary rays, therefore grain perpendicular to the bridge face; grain perpendicular to the bridge face, therefore long medullary rays.