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HoGo

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Everything posted by HoGo

  1. And even if it did sit there, the amount of the nitrite actually applied is rather minimal, perhaps in milligrams per whole violin.
  2. I'm not a chemist but I'd simply put it into a shallow pan in the sun and let it dry out. DO NOT heat it - these substances can be explosive. I have no idea whether it reacted with water and oxygen while in bottle and changed the composition.
  3. I wonder what supplies the Ca into the reaction in the bucket... naturally the Ca(NO3)2 occurs on concrete or mortar of stable walls. Wouldn't addition of lime (or lime water...) help a bit with formation of nitrites? Then add ashes to convert to KNO3? Just musing...
  4. I wonder where the word "better" comes from when folks cannot generally agree whether one violin is better than another one (considering similar provenance). The scientist can measure properties and say the curly maple has significantly "different" properties from plain maple which is quite to be expected as the structure of wood is significantly diffterent from straight grained wood. But whether those values of (some of) the parameters are better suited for making great violins is questionable without building controlled batches of instruments and their proper evaluation (big problem in itself...). I often read violin makers prefer light spruce or high speed of sound or medium density or some other parameter but I don't recall makers bragging about such properties of maple, except few that want dense grain and just about everyone nice wide slanted curl. I did similar research years ago with my friend, we checked about 100 mature maple logs (40cm + diameter) from one single slope of which about 5 had curly grain. 2-3 were good enough for violin making which seems to match the slovenian data. BTW, here is one curly beech I pass around often. Straight tree. When the tree wants to grow curly it will....
  5. I've used anhydrous (99.9+%) alcohol for almost 10 years now and it IS much better than 90 or 95% alcohol for shellac based finishes. I haven't had a shellac go bad even when diluted in bottle for well over two years while with water containing ethanol the shellac generally goes bad in a year or less. Alcohol does absorb water but likely not at crazy speed. https://chemistry.stackexchange.com/questions/14392/ethanol-and-water-hygroscopic-equilibrium-concentration I've used this stuff and I go though a liter or so in few years and it still works the same. The amount of water in the air entering the bottle while I pour some alcohol or in the shellac bottle is negligible even at tropical lever RH. Definitely! I buy anhydrous bioethanol sold as fuel for fireplaces. Here it contains only traces of bitrex to make it undrinkable, otherwise 99.9% ethanol. No poison like methanol. May still be hard to get in some parts of USA.
  6. I haven't heard from any respectable maker that they use curly maple because of acoustic reasons. Most of the makers actually never made violin(s) out of plain maple to compare... Most of old factory violins were made of curly maple and thay sound like they do, some better, some not so much. Natural figure in stump is result of the bend in the wood so the outside fibers necesarily "fold" as their path is shotrer. Visually this is very different from curly pattern. Curly trees are curly along large part of the trunk. In most extreme cases up into thicker branches. The curly pattern gets stronger as the tree grows. It's very likely genetic predisposition of extreme cambium growth. The stump or crotch areas have the curl combined with the natural deformities of wood. I think curly cracks cross-grain much easier than plain maple - rib bending of curly maple tells it clearly.
  7. OMG. After reading the paper I'd like to get the lab-rats to actually make instrument out of the wood to show something. I don't see any proof of anything in the paper. Just comparison of wood properties of samples from two logs. They somehow assume that higher density is better quality wood based upon citation of another paper. These guys pretend they know what makes great instrument but in reality they never made one or most of them don't even play. I know personally few folks from that university department and they are pure theoretics, they can measure wood samples properties, that's all.
  8. Many makers do care if they manage to sell their instruments and eye-catching wood helps a bit as players are the customers... :-)
  9. Here: https://trianglestrings.com/applying-removing-rib-protector/
  10. I don't think so with spruce what happens here is mostly just a form of regeneration of the single plant. The root system of spruce may sprout new trunk or two but will not "migrate" or grow over larger area. They mention possibility of natural layering of spruce but I think that happens less often and only under very specific conditions but certainly not systematic rooting like strawberries or blackberries. I have never seen spruce layering on it's own in the forest (probably because there is shade, bugs that kill damaged trees and way too much plant competition) and even artificial layering or rooting of spruce offcuts is not simple. That old swedish spruce gows in an open almost arctic area so it developed some new tricks to survive.... Plums (I've got plenty of them in garden) or aspen will sprout new tree from root system few meters from the original tree, if you try to dig it out (move it) you'll find out it has almost no own roots, it just grows from long shallow root of the original tree. Eventually it will develop it's own root system but I'm not sure if they are still interconnected under gorund or not. I ususally cut through the main root if I want to keep and replant the new sprout so it grows new roots faster and I can re-plant it in a year. Same applies to aspen, if you won't cut the sprouts you'll have one big forest in few decades. I was thinking more of the forestry researchers. Here, the forester maintains the woodland but most of it is not old growth natural forest but managed forests where owners want to maximize profits.
  11. I think best for this cello would be selling it on evilbay as is. Some beginning luthier might consider it good project to hone (and show up) his skills and in the end he could sell it with no loss...
  12. That is not shared root system but one single surviving root system that sprouts again and again over thousands of years. I think cloning (or vegetative propagation) is more interesting for maple than for spruce for violin makers. There is no consistent answer what properties violin makers want in spruce but certainly there are such in maple - great figure. There are folks who do that. Forresters are mostly interested in fast wood production e.g. good growth with less defects.
  13. You can try Tru-oil, which is commercial product, it is basicly highly modified oil varnish without resins. I've used it on mandolins (and many other makers do) and it works very well. Michael Darnton showed one of his violins few months ago where he used it. Linoxin varnish is spirit varnish where linoxin replaces the basic bulk of resins.
  14. You have to try submerging in pure acetone :-) That works. After reading the OP, I would suggest just using high gram strength hide glue in full strength (no extra water) . That should grab in a minute or so. I'd hold it for two minutes and put it aside to dry in a position that will not create undue stress on the crack. I've used liters of CA but I would not use it here unless it was some junk violin and wanted to do quick&dirty job to make it playable in 15 minutes.
  15. Many del Gesus are barely over 350. 351 or so... They certainly aren't 3/4s
  16. HoGo

    kiln dried wood

    There are many types of kilns these days. From simple heat/air circulation with controlled RH of air to vacuum or microwave systems that work on different principles. Some od them may move some sap/resins from inside to the surface and cause the surface darkening as natural result of the process.
  17. What do you mean by vibrational properties? What does it mean "better" vibration? These are extremely vague terms that may "impress onlookers" but are hardly quantifiable or traceable into quality of instrument. For me every piece of wood is "regular", it's all growing on trees. "Tone"wood dealers often spread BS stories that make beginner thing that "tonewood" is some sacred species growing in secret places known only by them and processed in some special correct manner, but in reality it is JUST wood. 30 years ago I had the same bad understanding when I tried to get some "tone"wood for my first attempts but couldn't locate any local seller, everyone had just regular lumber. It took me few years of reading about wood processing that it is just pieces of wood selected by various criteria that can vary from place to place but generally aesthetics and lack of natural growth defects are the most important to most. After that you can find dealers preferring any other random property from density, speed of sound, crossgrain stiffness etc. Much of my "tone"wood came directly from forest from maple trees that would otherwise end as "regular" lumber or spruce logs or splits that were destined to be sold for firewood but otherwise ticked all the boxes of "tonewood".
  18. HoGo

    kiln dried wood

    I agree that most modern kilns are probably way better than traditional air drying. More controlled to prevent any defects from uneven drying. No mold or fungus to stain the valuable wood, no internal stresses. With air drying you need to seal endgrain and take care of possible bugs of fngus forming, keep good airflow, but not too much of heat etc. and still s..t happens. Air drying of maple can go wrong in several ways, you can dry too fast or too slow and you only find out when you slice the piece open and find checks or mold stain inside piece that looks perfect on the surface (DAMHIKT). Drying of spruce is much simpler though.
  19. I may be way off here as I don't work on violins but rather mandolins .... Mandolins that are "dark/ warm" are usually lightly built and generally do well with lighter gauge (lower tension) strings. I don't remember I've seen tension charts on violin strings (not that I have looked for them on those few sets that came through m hands).
  20. There were more than few folks aspiring at luthiery with machinist background who found out it was much more involved job than just making and assembling parts (though basicly it IS the process). The good think is that you have advantage of knowing what are high tolerances and possibly technical view at the process but there is much more to it that is different or not related to machinists work. Good masters will always encourage you and be positive to you even if your violin wouldn't get 10 points out of 100 at a competition because any first attempt will not be perfect (and theirs were not as well). You should become your own honest judge by learning how the violin should look and sound. The more I build the more I see thet the devil is in details and wood is just one of zillion of details (that's what Jezzupe wanted to say) and you can only judge your wood selection AFTER you mastered the other details. No one else can come and tell you with any level of certainty that you fiddle sounds like crap (or like a Strad) because you selected bad(or great) piece of wood but they will be able to see if there is potential in your work after looking at your carving skills or workmanship. I would pick the piece that is on the top of the heap, just like I do with T-shirts in the morning. :-)
  21. Congratulations to your instruments. To be honest, I don't see much of YOUR own work in the violins. They both appear to be completely CNC cut and parts barely sanded smooth and assembled (and I can see the traces of router on the surfaces in the pics under finish). Those would qualify as VSO around here. Your edges look almost twice as thick as in normal violin and I suppose you CNC'd the ribs all from single piece of wood unlike normal bent ribs reinforced with blocks and linings. That's why they can't sound anywhere like normal violin. If you don't want to waste the more traditional (possibly expensive to you) wood I would advise studying the subject abit deeper... Making real violin takes lots of handwork and only some preparatory rough work can be easily done with CNC machine unless you are really good at CAD/CAM and fixturing. I think reading this would help you a lot with the new wood... http://www.makingtheviolin.com/
  22. I think it is completely silly/crazy idea to judge the wood just by listening to recording of being tapped. Just very slight difference in size of the pieces will result into different tones as will even very slight difference n holding and tapping position. These two sound quite far apart in pitch so either the pieces are VERY different in stiffness/density/etc. or they are not exacty same to start with. I've made several very succesful instruments out of wood rejected by other folks - theorists because of "not suitable tap tones" or similar crap. I see that you finished your first violin so I'd suggest to concentrate on building techniques and mastery of tools and workmanship for the next few at least before bothering with esotheric wood selection processes and similar distractions - that will just slow down your progress. Just sharpen your gouges and planes and make some shavings.
  23. HoGo

    String tension

    Ideal scoop possibly depends on tension of strings as well. On mandolins and guitars neck relief (same as scoop on violins) is adjusted by truss rod. Generally heavier strings need less relief than lighter strings.
  24. I'm making mandolins so it's two bars per top and it rarely takes me more than 30 minutes to fit a bar from prepared bar stock to final fit. I guess 20 minutes on average. (I've done 6 mandolin tops last month in few sessions and the last went certainly faster than the first). Very little to no spring in the fit. I've got tempate for marking position and the glue pot is heating up while I'm fitting and I use spring clamps so clamping is simple and fast half minute job.
  25. Each maker has their own measure of what is top grade. But generally, lesser cosmetics devalues wood even if it is perfectly fit to make great sounding instrument. Novice makers often make significant mistakes in their building methods and only after several builds start to have slightly clear view of what's going on. Depending on their schooling they will start developing their own sense of what makes good wood.
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