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Posts posted by Guido

  1. Thanks everyone. Perfect.

    I really need to do something about humidity control, i.e. at least get a humidifier. My relative humidity can drop into the twenties and go up into the eighties.

    Bow hair length is the other pita with that.

    And I always hope it isn’t too dry on a day when someone is coming to look at instruments, as they generally sound much worse in very dry conditions.

  2. To get the obvious out of the way; despite well adjusted pegs...

    Sometimes I open a case that has been stored away for a while and the pegs may have all popped lose, or the opposite, they are seized to a point where I can barely break them free (and I suppose this is one way you get peg box cracks).

    Many of you may never have experienced this as I suspect it takes quite a swing from one extreme to another; but unfortunately where I live I get huge differences weather and building standards are tent-like, so it isn't always easy to control conditions.

    The question is within the permutations of climate conditions (warm, cool, humid, dry), going from which combination to which combination may result in either lose or seized pegs?

  3. I actually agree the OP is probably Saxon... (although maybe not as clearly as it seems to be for you and Jacob).

    Just thought this was interesting as we discussed this feature in this thread.

    7 minutes ago, Blank face said:

    There's exactly one b/w photo, accendentally by the same certifier with this feature, second is the actual auctioned, and about ten instruments without.

    Don't want to split hairs, but there are three cellos out of six with this feature in the cozio archive.

  4. 22 minutes ago, Blank face said:

    Unfortunate to talk about an actual auction, but we wrote some words about old certificates. I won't say that I have much knowledge about Flemish instruments  but there's also another instrument by the maker in the auction (with an actual certification) and everybody can compare if the scrolls are similar.

    ... and there are already three more cellos by this maker in the cozio archive featuring a back of the pegbox like this.

    This is a scandal of epic proportions :-)

  5. It's a professional level cello made from solid wood with genuine inlaid purfling. Does it have a bow with real horse hair?

    Jokes aside, high/low quality means different things to different people.

    And while there are many exceptions either way, fluted f-wings are usually a good sign in my book.

  6. You may have better luck at specialist auctions (i.e. tarisio proper) which is taking increasing aim at retail customers.

    At T2, the violins are without any attribution, some are as labelled, some are questionable, some are fake, some are "dangerously" trying to deceive.

    Same for condition. Some are ready to play, many need work, some are for restoration. Most people will grossly underestimate the effort/ cost associated with getting a violin in actual proper playing condition, even though it may have looked good.

    Finally, if you can't try the violins, the odds at auction will be against you. Especially the ones that are in retail condition and could just hang in a shop - because chances are: this is what they just did, and were deemed difficult to sell. You don't need to be a genius to understand that shops/ dealer weed out difficult to sell instruments from time to time by giving them to auction, where most bidders don't get a chance to try them.

  7. 19 minutes ago, Bill Merkel said:

    ^He or she says that in every thread with a picture, and I think it's mostly their personal opinion.  The website itself doesn't seem to have any such objection, and it is their decision

    I would agree with George re pictures. The whole approach of seeking an opinion online about a violin being offered somewhere else is somewhat problematic, because we have bitter members on this forum who piss on any violin they see. This will leave the seller compromised, as his/her customers will not discern the quality of the negative poster.

    10 minutes ago, Michael Darnton said:

    The best advice I can give is that violins are not an investment. You buy them to enjoy using them. Dealers like to suggest they are, but the process for achieving that is not achievable for most musicians in any meaningful way unless you buy something incredibly expensive with historical value.

    While I generally agree with this, I do think it is a good idea to try and consider re-sale even if its only a distant possibility. A relatively unknown American maker might indeed be a bad choice in this regard. If you buy , for example, a Collin Mezin instead, you are likely to get (more of) your money back.


  8. On 2/4/2023 at 9:33 PM, Blank face said:

    I have no idea who made this bow, but the shape of the frog throat is IMO imitating a F.Peccatte feature, which was later copied and varied and somehow exeggerated by several makers, f. e. E.Ouchard. S. pics.

    peccatte francois frog.jpg

    ouchard e.jpg


    Thanks, that looks like the general idea, with mine being a bit more extreme still.

    I was wondering how old my bow might be. The screw looks modern (but might be replaced), and the pearl slide is also something I usually associate with the time between the wars (but it might also be replaced). The two piece heel plate it something that I would associate with an earlier period however.

    I was also wondering if the bow might be French. the adjuster looks very French to me (it is pinned in both rings) and has a second cut relatively high just taking the edges of the facets. The underslide is also pinned.




  9. A reasonably nice bow, octagonal, 60.4g, silver mounted.

    I tried to provide visuals of all the usual things to look for...

    The nose and throat are obviously quite unusual, which is my main reason for posting. Maybe it rings a bell somewhere?

    Last picture I tried to show the frog being unusually narrow at the upper throat level.











  10. Don't clean too much, distilled water is more effective than tap water, the enzymes in saliva can work miracles (this stuff comes in bottles if you don't like your own); and dig up Jacob's recipe for violin polish on this forum if you are keen, but I wouldn't go any further or use any "products".

    You know you need tools for the pegs (reamer and shaver); and to do a fingerboard well is a complex task, not for beginners. Research this well! Any luthier would charge you a multiple of your violin purchase price just for a fingerboard and for good reasons. And did I mention tools? Most luthiers have a dedicated finger board plane, just as an example. Oh and on the subject of tools, of course you need to tune and sharpen them. I'd recommend you get a Tormek and some water stones :-)

    It's hard to do this just a little bit...

  11. 10 hours ago, Mark Norfleet said:

    Wet sand it, let it dry and then oil it and wait a day or two.  You might be surprised at how much it darkens.

    Next time, orient the grain 90% from what you've done so that it's perpendicular to that of the fingerboard.

    Rotating the grain 90' makes a lot of sense, thanks for the tip.

    I did micromesh/ polish it and that alone has made it look considerably darker.

    Then, as I was cleaning the violin with Jacobs violin polish (which has oil in it) I rubbed it over the nut, too, and it got darker again (and has stayed that way since).

    I quite like the look of it now and may or may not try to match the fingerboard.

    10 hours ago, Blank face said:

    I can see no fault in making a usual ebony nut here.

    Of course, just aesthetic preferences...


  12. Got a rosewood fingerboard on a violin that needs a new nut. Made one from a piece of rosewood I had around. The fingerboard is very dark, the nut very light.

    While I can think of several ways to darken the nut, I was wondering if someone has experience with adjusting the shade of rosewood.


  13. I know someone who worked there during this time. A worker's target was to make 10 white violins per week from per-milled parts. Someone else sprayed the varnish, and someone else did the set-ups. Guess that's the lass in the picture :-)

  14. 12 minutes ago, mysticpaw said:

    Loose bow in case ??

    I'm also suspecting a bow, maybe rested on the violin when closing the case. Of course it depends on the design of the case but the frog usually leaves marks on on the lower bouts and more clearly just on top, and usually more shallow.

    Whereas this impact seems to have come from an angle. I thought maybe the player knocked the violin on the stand when getting up and turning around... but that's all speculation.

  15. On 1/10/2023 at 5:35 PM, Michael Szyper said:

    do you know shops in the us which redo the setup on a regular basis? 

    Even though this has been answered, I'd like to add an observation on set-up.

    I have violin #136 of a currently still active maker (I think he is in the 600s now).

    The violin is really well crafted and beautiful. At #136 from someone with any talent, you'd expect that.

    However, the original bridge bearing his name is thick and clumsy and ugly. I'm keeping it as a token but would not consider it appropriate for use.

    If you are predominantly or purely a maker and haven't spend much time working on/ setting up violins, and you haven't cut hundreds of bridges; your set-ups are unlikely to pass muster with a good shop.

    Making 100 violins might be a lot. Cutting 100 bridges is barely getting started.

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