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About HoGo

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  1. In mandolin making where CNC use is much more common (and accepted) this would show in the final instrument. CNC will not put the pre-cut parts together and finish them into beautiful instrument. The final touches are where the mastery of the builder shows.... I've seen some instruments built by a new maker who largely used CNC cut parts and highly sophisticated jigs and fixtures but his lack of hands-on experience of detailing showed really well (at least to my eyes). Some (less experienced) folks were rather impressed though.
  2. HoGo

    Unbalanced violin

    In mandolin making such inbalance is often result of too thin construction. These mandolins have impressive lower registers but are thin and lifeless in higher positions.
  3. I've tied broken strings on mandolins or guitars many times. I string up instruments in the white and remove strings few times before I start finishing. That is hard on e strings and when they break I hate to open new package for replacement (quality mandolin strings are expensive and hard to get here). I use different knots than those mentioned above (I don't know their english names sorry). On plain steel strings fishermans knot makes the string break in the tight bends.
  4. HoGo

    Fish glue?

    I think the main difference is the style of joint being quite angled locking dovetail on guitars that relies much less on sheer strength of glue itself. I guess the normal cello joint is similar to gigantic fiddle tenon? The stress in the joint is function of leverage and if you count length of neck to the contact point with top versus length of heel from that point I don't see overstand being active there... perhaps the angle of strings (versus straight line towards fulcrum) increases the torque a bit on cello, but there are only 4 strings versus 6 on guitars... in the end the stresses can be similar or even less on cellos. There is that inherent "weakness" of relatively thin cello heel with overstand causing dropping of projection but that is impossible to include in simple crude calculations.
  5. HoGo

    Fish glue?

    I doubt the liquid fish glue is made out of real Sturgeon bladders. I suppose it is from some similar fish that is comercially available. Sturgeon is almost extinct these days and the dams on Danube and other rivers where it used to live doesn't make it possible to return easily. Real fresh fish glue is just cleaned and dry bladders cut into strips. You cook them till most of the bladders get dissolved into glue. Basicly it's the same what is done with hides when Hide glue is made but that is filtered and dried into granules. I'm in touch with mandolin and guitar world and use of fish glue (whether liquid or "real") is just as exotic among them as here in the violin world. They mostly stick to Titebond and the traditionalist die-hards to fresh HHG.
  6. Crack on curly maple would follow the curly grain that is wavy in the radial direction mostly. Curly wood would never crack in relatively straight smooth line like this. These could be also last traces of deep scratches that can happen during sawmill processing or handling.
  7. Just saw this in another thread that relates this topic. Bruce Carlson was brave enough and did pretty radical bend of back plate towards neck block...
  8. They probably have a nick on edge of planer surface that scratches wood being planed.
  9. Agree. they don't look like cracks - they would be wavy on curly maple following grain. The end check would need to be watched if it doesn't go too deep, but since it is close to the outside of the plate, plenty wood of that area will be cut away when outline of back is shaped.
  10. Resolution is not the important thing but rather distortion across the picture. You want zero distortion. Try taking a picture of a ruler across the whole pic. Does the unit near edge measure the same as the unit near center? I guess guys doing dendro use special measuring microscopes for this.
  11. That is true. If you want to cut holes in the templates (like the turns of the scroll, or f-holes) you need to pre-drill holes and use fretsaw....
  12. I think if they are well closed and no material was removed then there is no problem. Even if some material was removed each ring is measured separately so I believe few missing points won't change the dendro result of whole top dramatically. And they can be approximated by looking at less damaged areas of those rings.
  13. You can cut aluminum with standard bandsaw setup for wood. Frank Ford a notable guitar technician has quite a few pages with tips where he makes various fixtures out of aluminum using bandsaw. Cutting thin aluminum would require slower feed to prevent chatter and I would use piece of plywood on the table for better support if fine details are going to be cut. I prefer acrylic (pplexiglass) or PC for templates as you can see through when you are laying out plates, you can scribe center-lines on templates and see exactly where it is going...
  14. From the side view picture it appears to be beech with pearwood on top. Almost all of the wear is from fingernails and not under strings - perhaps female player?
  15. I saw similar tactics happening in mandolin market few times in the past. Most notably when a maker emerged out of nowhere (I've been around for two decades and never heard of the name - I've been perusing web for other builders for many years searching for interesting ideas) with hefty price sold through respected dealer site (with description how great the instrument is etc.). The maker had brand new classy website claiming he and his father have been around mandolins for decades, though his own workshop pics showed that all fixtures and tooling in the views were virtually new. And all pictures of instruments were of the same two instruments in various stages of completion. The instruments themselves showed some imperfections that are common to beginners (shaping of the neck starnsition to headstock or heel etc...) what his pics showed was tooling ciopied from several known makers and CNC. The pics on the dealer site were quite a bit adjusted to get rich looking color and contrast as well. It all started when someone posted on well respected mandolin related web about the great mandolin he saw yesterday, and it was the best in there even compared to holy grail and that famous players were there and agreed etc... He posted again and again claiming how great the instrument was and later admitted he bought it. I checked site of the maker few times since them and it looks like he didn't make too many instruments in the 2 years after the flashy start, his site show very few new pictures, perhaps three- four more instruments built.... not much, but he has history of pricing of double of some very good established quality makers.