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About FoxMitchell

  1. Mike Molnar's Bench

    This is brilliant! I need one!
  2. Violin ID and Restoration Tips?

    Thank you! There was one crack that went through. The others look like cracks but they are just scratches on the varnish. Given that I have 6mm thick wood on the top and on the back, I made the decision (much to the restorers' horror) that I will re-do the graduations on this violin. I have immense respect and admiration for the resident restorers and their expertise, but this violin is getting sacrificed on the altar of Learning and Practicing New Techniques. Hopefully it will sound at least Ok when I'm done with it. And I finished my peg bushings, and eh! I'm not satisfied with them, the end-grain changed color drastically with the first layer of varnish and I couldn't get it to match. Also I made the executive decision to drill the holes where they're supposed to be, not where they were, because those were horribly crooked. Another issue was the cheeks are not flat, they are all over the place with rough chiseling, and there was lots splintering and burr on the original holes that now in afterthought I should have reamed all the way out but at the time I was trying to be conservative. I was wondering about the inside of the pegbox... The majority of ones I've seen are always painted black. This one was the same color as the rest of the violin. Is there a standard or preference or anything about that? Not that it matters much since I'm butchering the whole thing with my rebuilding instead of restoration, but what would be the Bohemian/Schönbach traditional, if any (assuming that's where this violin came from)? would help hide the horrible gouge marks on the insides...
  3. Violin ID and Restoration Tips?

    Awesome, glad it worked for you! Two days sounds about right without any 'persuasion' to the joint to fall apart.
  4. Violin ID and Restoration Tips?

    The journey continues! with some peg bushings! The holes were already so enlarged, and so incredibly crooked, that I figured might as well learn to do this while I'm at it! Couple of questions for the experts, if you don't mind... 1) Hans Weisshaar and Margaret Shipman's book says to use maple, but everywhere else I looked people say to use boxwood for the bushings. And the pegbox itself is made of maple so logic would follow that you'd use maple to patch it. Why the insistence on boxwood? 2) When drilling the new peg holes, I have seen some say to use a 2 degree angle, while others say to drill straight. Is there a preference or proper standard to follow? Thank you!
  5. Flood Damaged/Moldy Instruments

    While there are many ways to get rid of mold, the one that's supposed to have no residual clean-up and no damage to the surface the mold is on is cold jet dry ice blasting. But I don't know who does it on small stuff, it's normally done in large scale like attics and such.
  6. Cleaning rosin & gunk for violins with acetone

    I in fact absolutely agree! I don't recommend anything other than water and mild soaps done by a professional to clean up the instrument! What I did was an experiment which had a rather unexpected result. Like Jeffrey (and others) say... ...I don't think acetone should be the first, or second, or third, ...or even fourth go-to cleaner for string instruments or anything with a varnish! It may work in some cases but it's way too powerful of a solvent to be risking it.
  7. Cleaning rosin & gunk for violins with acetone

    Not meaning it in the confrontational way, but... have you tried it? I just did, on an early 1900's violin I have being ...uhmm.. sacrificed at the altar of learning new things! The results were alarming, actually! The violin had a huge build-up of rosin and gunk on it. So I figured I could try it on a small bit and if it messed things up it would be some good varnish patching experience to learn! Turns out the acetone dissolved all the gunk, but on the varnish itself it rubbed like it was rubbing on glass, it didn't seem interested on the varnish. So I cleaned more and more... and more... And got the whole thing shining, but the varnish seems intact. Before (with a little bit cleaned)... And after... So, what happened here? Wasn't this stuff supposed to melt down the varnish? I'm confused! I'll keep an eye on it, as it might turn out tomorrow the varnish turns cloudy white, ...or purple! Or might crackle or fall off or who knows! But this was an intriguing result. Perhaps more testing is needed? EDIT: DON'T DO THIS ON A VIOLIN YOU CAN'T AFFORD TO MESS UP!! I was experimenting on a violin I couldn't care less if it melted into goo! Don't do this on anything you care about!
  8. Cleats Variety

    What about glue drops used as cleats? (old Bohemian one I'm working on)
  9. include model on label?

    I agree, it's nice to have such information readily available, 1) because it honors the original maker from which the work was based upon, and 2) violin geeks and snobs alike like to know these things!
  10. Well, that's different!

    Is that a mummy violin?
  11. Cleats Variety

    I thought this picture was from but now visiting the page again I can't find it there. But it's the same type/technique they show there. edit: Ah, here it is
  12. Cleats Variety

    Noob question here: Is there a reason for the variety of cleats used on cracks out there? We have the square ones (long and short)... ...the diamond shaped ones... ...the parallelogram... ...the... variety pack... ...the complete mess... Is there some consensus on what's the right cleat shape for the job, or even if there's a 'best' cleat shape? Thank you!
  13. Violin ID and Restoration Tips?

    Scrapers, and a whole lot of patience and nothing else to do with several hours of your time. You can also use a rotary tool and a sanding drum attachment but that made far too much noise at the time I was working on it (1am) so I went back to scrapers. Thanks! I decided to thin the ribs because not only they were very thick and uneven (2.3mm on average), but also on the inside they were left really rough, with saw marks and unfinished to the point of being 'fuzzy'. The way I see it, this is a generic anonymous non-functioning old violin that would have ended up in the trash or hanging on the wall as decoration. There are thousands like it out there; its 'historic value' is barely relevant if it is used out of the context it was meant for (a musical instrument). With what I'm doing, it at least has a chance to live on as a musical instrument. And if I fail to make it an acceptable one, at least I got to practice and learn some techniques with it and it will be left in better looking condition than when I found it.
  14. Violin ID and Restoration Tips?

    Thanks Carl! The idea is to make it look like it was never there!
  15. Evan

    At least there's no lack of toothbrushes!