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About JacksonMaberry

  • Birthday 04/26/1989

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    Violins, early keyboards, conducting, hiking, wine, spirits, cooking

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  1. Understood, thanks. I really like d-limonene. I keep other solvents around, but it seems to do what I want and nothing I don't. No desire to evangelize - we should all feel free to chose our own poison. Literally in this case. Gloves and voc respirators, folks!
  2. Mark is always part of the solution - he's a restorer of near legendary skill.
  3. My take away from this is that gamsol is the superior option. Thoughts Don?
  4. As Jim said, please give us the details of your process so we can spot where you went wrong. Have you read my article yet?
  5. Austrian, if we're being picky.
  6. There we go! Thanks for helping me understand that, Brad.
  7. The Vincenzo Galilei formula, point taken. I'm going off observations from restringing experiments on harpsichords, where sometimes it's advantageous to try different gauges of the same material in order to arrive at the best sound, which is (among other things certainly) a factor of tension. I'm struggling to remember which at the moment, but one renaissance era lute treatise describes the correct diameter for a given course as the one which will hold the desired pitch just without breaking. In the harpsichord example, the tension of a red brass bass string of x diameter will not be the same as that of a red brass bass string of y diameter, even though the pitch, length, and density are the same.
  8. I think we've reached the point of talking at cross purposes - my fault, for going well off topic. I am not trying to defend the bass bar in question from a historicist perspective, and that is something that I have not made obvious. I regret that. Wrt the OP's bar, I only feel that "if it ain't broke (and let's be clear, it ain't baroque)..." As regards so called "baroque" violins - I suspect you have about as much first hand experience with unaltered originals from the period in question as most - that is to say, none at all. I can only claim to be doing slightly better. There are not many that have survived, plainly put. I would ask only that you not form any solid perceptions of what fiddles were like as they were made in the 17th century based on the various and sundry later attempts that can be accessed readily in our current era. Simply putting gut strings on an otherwise "modern" violin is enough to make the experience "different"; add a historical stick and all bets are off. The other differences, and this is the chief point I would like to make, between the violins of then and now are almost insignificant by comparison to those two primary practical factors.
  9. I want to point out that at no point have I claimed smaller bass bars are "superior". I don't believe that such a thing exists when subjective phenomena are being considered. I know several makers that use bars many would consider unusual - note Christian Bayon's "upside down " bass bars with free floating areas. The man's instruments are celebrated, and rightly so - clearly his unorthodox bars do not present a barrier to his success.
  10. First, let's touch on the "shorter neck" idea. It's helpful sometimes to consider violin making as having two major periods - pre and post standardization (roughly contiguous with pre and post industrialization). We do have neck and fingerboard templates presumed to be from the Stradivari workshop in the Museo Stradivari. These suggest that Stradivari violins were made originally with shorter necks than we are accustomed to in the post-standardization period. Interestingly, the two known Stainer violins that survive in almost completely unaltered condition, however, have "modern" neck stops. This is accomplished in a way that is easy to miss - the neck itself is shorter, but the nut is positioned almost 9mm higher into the pegbox to achieve the ~132mm we're accustomed to now. It's possible, I suppose, that this was one of the factors that made Stainer's violins the most sought after in Europe even during Stradivari's lifetime. We will never know for sure. Then, let's touch on the assumption that "baroque" violins were unable to 'keep up' and had to be 'improved'. There is an element of truth to this - changing circumstances in where and how music was enjoyed, what kinds of music was being written, and the materials science relating to string manufacture as well as dozens of other factors all influenced new movements in aesthetic preference, which cumulatively demanded louder instruments. Hargrave has some very interesting things to say about this in a couple of his articles. We'd need to bring a host of dissertations to bear on this to have a proper conversation about it, but to be sure, it is not enough to say that "baroque" violins (perhaps more correctly "violins") had to improve. They merely had to change. But then consider now, with the prevalence of impeccably transparent and unobtrusive sound reinforcement being the rule rather than the exception, as well as a re-emphasis on chamber forms and spaces - we don't need to make the screamers anymore that were absolutely necessary at the peak of industrial society to fill the massive common spaces (such as Royal Albert Hall) where music was being concentrated. Why not, then, allow the pendulum to swing back towards sweeter, more densely populated color palettes and away from peak dB? To muddy the waters, some excellent experts in early instruments, such as Sarah Peck, prefer standardized bass bars of contemporary proportions. I cannot, and wouldn't want to, argue against her well reasoned arguments and the obvious results of her work. I believe there is a place for both this type of approach and a more conservative historicist methodology, such as that which I employ. Strange, in a way, that I am so conservative in this regard while being anything but in most other concerns!
  11. That said, not all gut and not all steel are the same. You will find steel es that apply more or less pressure, likewise with gut. Please forgive me - despite there being a wealth of well researched facts out there, unfortunate myths persist in dominating the assumptions of most luthiers regarding "baroque" instruments and their setup. This is my specialty, whereas for most luthiers it is understandably a minor curiosity because of how tiny the market is.
  12. Indeed, which tend to be higher in tension contrary to popular belief. Think about the diameter of a plain gut e for a moment vs the diameter of a plain steel E, then reflect on the pitch.
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