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Matthew Hannafin

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Everything posted by Matthew Hannafin

  1. Hi Mike, I just bought a cheap set on ebay. They're still out there for around five bucks for the set.
  2. Hi Jay, congratulations on the violin! The two things that jump out to me, are how the top pegbox line resolves in the scroll throat (probably too closed up), and some flat spots on the ff holes. Something that really helps for the scroll throat, are these little templates like in the picture. It can be clamped in after the first turn is done, and you get a nice reference. I like to use these little mini rasps in there. And with the ff-hole flat spots, I think it helps to see irregularities by looking down the ff-hole, like you're checking a 2x4 for warp: Then it's pretty easy to see the part of the line to adjust. I like to use a combination of a stout single bevel knife, and a fresh x-acto blade there. Good luck with the varnish & set up! If you're ever in the greater Albuquerque area drop me a line and come by the shop. ~Matt
  3. Hey cool, it's working now. Thanks Spelk. Looks like the fiddle is in good hands!
  4. There is also "The" Violin Making Notebook, which is (I believe) an unnamed person's notes from the Violin School of America in the 80s. Your post rattled foggy memories of finding this online ~10 years ago back when I was taking (much sloppier & less detailed) notes at Red Wing. https://stephenchurchill.files.wordpress.com/2015/06/the-violin-notebook1.pdf (I don't know Stephen Churchill, but this link popped up after searching the internet...I bet if I dug out my old, old laptop this PDF is on it too)
  5. My computer isn't making the link OK...is this a problem on my end?
  6. Thanks for posting the pictures, Janito. Its great to see the project at the finish line, especially with all the difficulty and tragedy in the world since 2020. Five years have sure flown by. I still feel lucky to have gotten to meet Neil, and I feel grateful that so many of Neil's friends wanted to do this project. Organizing a project like this turned out to be more difficult than I imagined, and I would like to thank everybody that not only worked on the instrument, but kept the project going behind the scenes. I am also sad that Addie and Craig Tucker passed during this project. They both helped the project, and were a pleasure to talk with along the way.
  7. Would anybody happen to know a supplier for Big Leaf maple to make violas/cellos? I know Bruce at Orcas Island has retired, and it looks like the Woodwell has closed its doors as well. Cheers
  8. John Reed taught archtop construction when I was there in 2009, we were allowed to pick between A style mando/violin/guitar. It was an optional course to second year guitar students, or violin students. I think the curriculum is a bit different now. Probably not as intense as a three year school, but over a decade later, I'm glad I went there and took John's class.
  9. I get that...guitarists have been hoping to play unplugged to the same crowds an unplugged violin can. So volume gets valued really high. The funny part is...electric guitarists still covet the old out dated temperamental guitars...and amps with tubes too.
  10. Speaking of...I wonder if gene editing science can make seeds that only grow figured maple? Sort of cool to imagine a project for future preservation of materials. I'm thinking like Jurassic Park....but just a bunch of curly maple trees.
  11. Yeah if one had a TARDIS it'd be pretty fun to see how far into the future iconic musical instrument models go.... I can't imagine violins breaking away from Strad/dG models...
  12. Some of us are rough carving big leaf maple....and that freezing air feels pretty good blowing through the shop! It's also funny to watch Albuquerque drivers go from being absolute maniacs to gently crawling through 1/2" of slush.
  13. Hi Nestor, I've made corners in many different ways...but I always keep coming back to using a simple template (ala cornflake packet). I use a small piece of clear material and make them about like this: You can trace them off a good image/poster, or an instrument. To use them, I like to mark lightly on the plate where the ribs point is, then erase the pencil off-set line near the corner...then just use the template to come up with something satisfactory. Basically, it's taking a good corner shape, and making it work into your margins & rib shape. If there's anything irregular about the rib structure (or if you're worried making a P model on a PG mold) it becomes a slight change in overhang, rather than corner shape. When cutting the final plate outline, I like to check the corner shape by lightly using a purfling marker (can use lightly on the underside) to see if the miters end nicely (which is something that naturally happens on nice corners.) Speaking of the computer images you're doing....try off-setting the outline by the measurement of purfling offset you plan to use (usually a bit over 4mm) and see how that looks. It can help visualizing corners by seeing what purfling shape they make and comparing the whole ensemble to reference photos.
  14. Jim, sorry to hear this. I hope you recover soon!
  15. That's great. I sent out some more emails yesterday trying to work out the setup & delivery too. Nothing shaping up yet, but hopefully something works out soon. I agree too, it is very sad to see Addie, and Craig passing away during the project. Perhaps a letter of dedication should accompany the instrument to St. Marys...and make a special mention of two more of our missed M'Netters?
  16. As far as I know, it's still with Paul Belin getting varnished.
  17. I don't know for sure...but since I had these notes from school out anyway (I think they're right from the Weisshaar book) it says to mix 250g glue at 1 part glue to 2 parts water...so maybe yours is just too thin and the excess moisture gets pushed away when it cools? I have no idea if the separation is related to going off in only a few days...but that would sure be frustrating.
  18. Thanks for the responses. I appreciate all the help and links. I'd feel bad throwing this batch out...so I decided to carry on for now, and order from Bjorn next time. (I'm going to buy a small jar of minced garlic next time I'm at the store...this old mustard jar doesn't really offer any counter odor!) I went ahead and glued up last night...I was a bit worried thinking about this glue possibly leaving a glue line due to lack of clarity...but it turned out fine: So...how do gram strength and dilution in water relate? Can a glue like 315g be diluted enough to still work for gluing a belly to the ribs? I've had to repair one of my instruments in the past that was assembled with 164g at 5g glue to 7g water...and that belly came off just fine. Or is the strength of hide glue not as important because it is all easily broken down by dehydrating the glue for repairs? Or does it have more to do with higher strength glue being a bit more resilient to severe conditions that can threaten the glue stability?
  19. Well, the test went well...the glue definitely seems to form a strong bond. I dug out a piece of scrap to do a bigger test rub joint on...and that went well...seemed to grip nicely right away. Once I got a big smear of glue down though, I realized how vastly different it smells than the Behlen 164g I'm used to...and not good different. I held up the jar to my nose and gave a deep sniff...what a mistake. Shall I say...the odor of decomposition? Is a really bad smell normal? Are the higher gram hide glues just a bit more pongy?
  20. Well....I've used up the last bits of hide glue I had...I think it was Behlen 164g...for most purposes I was mixing 5g glue to 7g water. The new stuff I have is 222g from International Violin....it just seems a bit frothier than I'm used to...and it doesn't look as string-ey if you mush it in your fingers and pull apart. I have notes on glue:water ratios from the school and I mixed this stuff up at 5g glue to 9.2g water. I did a little test rub joint on some scrap and it seemed to be OK...but I thought before I glue up a back I'd make a post, have some lunch and walk the dog. Why is it so frothy? Is anybody familiar with the 222g from International?
  21. Yes I'm afraid I've moved half way around the world from Scotland. I've been in touch with some other makers I met and got to know in Scotland, but nothing has developed yet. It's really just needing somebody willing to get the varnished instrument shipped to them, and do the set-up, and then get the instrument to Saint Mary's in Edinburgh. I've not been in touch with Saint Mary's yet, but I think that would be the next step after we know more. I still like the original idea of following what John Cockburn brought up, and donate it to Saint Mary's as a gift from Neil's friends at Maestronet. I think once we have things laid out with a solid plan for getting it done, that would be a good time to let Neil's family know that we're almost done and take it from there. Another thing to coordinate once we know where the instruments last bench stop will be, is getting the label made up and off to that person as well. (Addie, are you still up for making a label?) It's also very sad about Craig Tucker passing away during this project. He generously donated very nice fittings and ebony for the project...perhaps there's a way to mention this on the label somehow...let me know what people think about this.
  22. Hi Rue, good luck on the hunt! I just wanted to say, that a properly set up guitar can really play quite easily. Most new factory instruments will just press in the frets, and then fit a nut and saddle that leave the strings higher (sometimes a lot higher) than is needed for a good setup...in an effort to compensate the inevitable uneven fret. I would plan to have any guitar properly set up, with a fret dressing, and setting the string height correctly at the nut and saddle, as well as proper neck relief for the strings you want to use. Some shops may throw this in when you're buying a new instrument from them. Another route entirely, if you have a shop you like and trust...is find out what they would charge for a neck reset, refret and bridge reglue, and take that as a rough guide and start shopping around for second hand gems. There are lots of great old guitars out there that need work to play right, but are nicely made solid wood instruments. Harmony, Silvertone, Kalamazoo, old broken down Gibsons, 70s & 80s Martins. All fully serviceable guitars with hide-glued dovetail necks (easy to work on). Even some old Yamaha guitars are quite nice when they're all setup...those aren't all solid wood, but you can usually tell if it's a laminate by looking at the end grain around the sound-hole. Anyway, sometimes you can snag a real gem for absolutely peanuts.
  23. The only thing I know, is that it's strung with D'Addario Helicore strings. It also looks like the neck graft has been compromised...there seems to be a gap at the floor of the joint. Has it had string tension on for a while?
  24. The first thing I ever had to do at my first job as a luthier was to fit a soundpost in a 1/16 violin. It was a new outfit...the shop had a lot of rentals in fractional sizes. It wasn't uncommon to see 4 or 5 year olds come in and get fitted with something that small. I would guess somewhere in time there was a young kid that wanted to play violin, so a relative with a workshop set about to make it happen. It looks like the purfling and drawings were made at the same time with the same marker...so that's pretty sweet to imagine a craftsman trying to make it fun for the youngster. Somebody obviously cared enough for it to try and fix it at one point.
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