Andreas Preuss

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Everything posted by Andreas Preuss

  1. The subway violinist aside, that's an interesting brain twister for me. Here in Jspsn they made 3 years ago an interesting experiment with some Strads a Fagnola and a Scarampella. They surrounded a violinist in literally every direction with somewhat 100 or 200 microphones and measured the sound radiation. It came out that Strads are radiating more evenly at a high level in every direction whereas the two modern Italian instruments rather projected in one single direction for some frequency bands.
  2. Nothing is too simple. Going to the edge you need to think about the edge! But maybe there is a trap. There is a chance that the thickness of the edge can't be thinned down to 2.5 mm in all around.
  3. Interesting. From my experience rib weight had neither a positive nor a negative effect on the sound, though I never reduced the corner blocks to the bare minimum.
  4. Strads corner less violin was not a violin from the beginning, if I remember correctly. I think it came to life as a soprano da gamba kind of instrument and was converted to a violin to make some money by selling the only corner less strad .
  5. Stradivari didn't know anything about Newtons physics. And each time a physicist explained to me how the violin functions my reply was: and how do I make this wth a plane, knife, chisel and a scraper? The answer was usually something like ' I don't know' so let's look on weight in different way for one moment and see if there is some interesting ideas behind it. So far in the whole discussion it is clear that weight is necessary. But for what purpose? I am using here by purpose words which don't belong to the language of physicists describing sound. In s certain sense the wei
  6. If we would compare violin techniques in the days of Stradivari to what classical players do today there is a huge diffetence. And classical violin music still evolves. If I need to attach wings to my violins to keep them on the ground I will do it too. For cars this evolution hasn't taken place if those wing equipped weren't faster.
  7. Just a helpful hint from my experience: start with parts which are not actively involved in the violin sound first ribs second neck scroll and fingerboard..
  8. Yes, Melvin that what it is about we are doing every day. However, when our mindset thinks from the beginning that we can't do it, well that's it. On the other hand with your logic, did you ever try how heavy you can go? Might be interesting as well.
  9. No justification. I just find a fascinating thought provoking challenge in it. In the history the most successful violin makers developed their own concept and refined it to the extreme. Even though I am convinced that Stradivari refined the weight concept to the extreme, I think there are other possibilities to go further. Not more and not less.
  10. Don, you need to throw away your calipers. Seriously, try to make a violin without measuring tools and you get a completely different idea. Maybe I am wrong, but all calipers measuring precise to 1/10 of a mm have been invited for metal work. It was necessary. We are using them without giving a thought how helpful they are. I started to think that they probably prevent us in our mindset to do better than what we actually do.
  11. Ok, Stradivari climbed a mountain but there must be a mountain where Stradivari would say I never thought of climbing that one. But back to my initial question: what do we really know about making violins as light as possible? Of course you can thin down any violin in all its parts to extreme thinness and find out that the sound lost all substance. I think the question of how light we can go without destroying what we know as a good vibrant overtime rich violin sound leads to how we approach the process of making an instrument. I am a kind of fan of the term lean athletic bo
  12. Somehow my initial question led to rethinking and questioning all violin making is about. Don, regarding looking on the sound of a violin like a physicist I am very sceptic to gain valid answers. For example I once asked a violin maker who is quite Davy in physics how we can explain and measure carrying power and his answers was simply this is the only thing physics is not able to explain For my part experimenting is the only solution to get new insights. And having made some instruments which didn't function at all at the beginning and figuring out a way to make them sound was bett
  13. Things which look easy are too difficult to me. And having a son who expects me to become the Einstein of violin makers puts some pressure on me.
  14. At the age of 52 you don't think 100 years ahead. Need to make it 3 grams per year.
  15. Violin bridge manufacturers employ the same technique to extract sugars (hemicellulouse) in the wood. There are different methods. One is using fungi, you can use steam as well, or soaking for a prolonged time in pure alcohol. Depending on the wood log it is possible to reduce weight between 7 and 15 percent. The rest you have to try yourself.
  16. This wouldn't prevent me to give it another try. Some experiments went wrong because some important factors were overseen. What I know about Joe Curtins violin it follows normal dimensions and has a normal arching. Maybe, light weight needs to be combined with a higher arching.
  17. Melvin, of course light weight is no guarantee for good sound. In contrary it seems to be a very risky business. However from my experience I see two different concepts: Guarneri Del Gesu didn't care much about mass, Stradivari did. On the bottom line the question should be not 'how to minimize weight' but 'but how to optimize the weight versus strength properties. Since I got into understanding the concept of Stradivari, I asked myself more and more those questions. This is just my personal opinion but if someone wants to recreate the construction process of Stradivari, one M
  18. One thing which wasn't mentioned in this thread yet is the causes for tendinitis. Generally this comes from overusing your hands and seems to be most frequent amongst high class performers. So if I give such a violinist a violin which weights only 330g that would be 25 percent less. I never practised daily for 8 hours or so but I imagine a lighter violin would help to go through such a marathon of practicing.
  19. I think partly you gave the answer yourself. I know a few high performance players and one important criteria to choose an instrument is its response. Sound timbre seems to be only secondary. Another thing I learned from a player is the term 'resistance'. First I confused it with some particular overtone range. But it means how much you can dig in with the bow without that the sound collapses. It is literally driving the instrument to the edge. It seems that this feature is partly linked to the weight of the violin. I personally started to doubt that the weight loss comes from
  20. Yes, Knilling is the only patent peg which is lighter. Wittner is really heavy, because Germans like steel to make things really solid! For the weight I was actually initially aiming at 300g trying to beat carbon violins, but this is prabably in the end out of reach. For the sound, there is nothing like a standard sound anyway even on high end concert instruments. So I am not too pessimistic that a change will cause a negative first impression. I give it a chance that one p@layer out of three will notice something positive about it. However I know at least one pretty prominent maker
  21. That's of course an option. For technical reasons and thinking about the future of the violin I don't like the built through neck. Too difficult to make a graft because you need to open the violin and fit a new top block. Therefore the solution with a spruce neck a kind of 'outsmarts' it. Cornerless violin looks to me like cheating. A violin is a violin is a violin and should have corners like violin. BUT we can reduce the corners to the necessary minimum. In some way I imagine that a world famous violinist can step on the stage with the 'superlight' violin and nobody in the audience wi