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About LethbridgeViolins

  • Rank
    Junior Member
  • Birthday 08/25/1991

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  • Location
    : Cambridge, ON, Canada
  • Interests
    Lutherie, special-effect-makeup, food, art.

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241 profile views
  1. Stolen from Hogwarts?

    I think you've got it! Waiting on my cousin to get a photocopy to me, but there was a Professor Maurice Ménard who retired from McGill University at age 60 in 1880, which lines up perfectly with this Maurice Ménard (Maynard) Jr's father. (https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Menard-620). Rouville's between Sherbrooke and Montréal, which lines up with the George B Reitz & Co theory, and if the scribbles under that are indeed "May ?? 1879", that would line up with this case being a retirement gift for M. Ménard Sr., possibly passed on to the son who took it to Massachusetts.
  2. Stolen from Hogwarts?

    Half of my mom's family still lives between Sherbrooke and Montréal, so I'll pester some cousins to check the archives for Bishop's University (founded 1843, Sherbrooke) and McGill University (founded 1821, Montréal) to see if they can find records for a Prof. M Ménard OR J Jénard. (Though they look like 'M's to me.)
  3. Stolen from Hogwarts?

    Just ran over my glasses this afternoon, but could that say "Geo B Reitz & Co"? There was a cabinetmaker "George Ballantyne Reitz and company" operating out of Sherbrooke, Quebec from circa 1840 to 1891 that's not TOO far on my side of the border from Maine. Might not be the maker, and might not be any help identifying the owner, but it's all I could find that may be pertinent and could fit the timeline.
  4. Relative worth of Einstein's fiddle

    That's what came to mind for me, too. I think I have an old plastic Christmas ornament with exactly this same silhouette.
  5. Taylor Lethbridge's Bench

    Thank you so much! I've still got a long way to go and much to learn, but I'm seeing improvement with each subsequent build, which is encouraging.
  6. Taylor Lethbridge's Bench

  7. Mystery Wood?

    My gut instinct was Sweet Gum/Alligatorwood too-- possibly riftsawn.
  8. Scroll identification--a little odd.

    Found a box of old lutherie odds and ends at a local antiques shop, and bought it almost-exclusively for the reamer and form it contained. There was an old Czech factory neck in there, and this slightly-unusual scroll, especially the eye. What do you guys think, folk fiddle, lousy attempt at customization, or something else entirely?
  9. Bull Tree Wood Bows?

    The Macacauba (Platymiscium trinitatis) tree was sometimes marketed as "Bullwood" for cabinetmakers at the end of the 19th century. I don't know if it would be viable as a bow wood--never having worked with it--but its source is geographically compatible with brazilwood/pernambuco.
  10. To Seal Or Not To Seal?

    Funny you should say that--On my current Vieuxtemps Guarnerius build, I've sized/sealed the insides of the plates with albumin and used the separated yolks to make a pound cake. I've mostly used either nothing or a hide glue size til now, and I'm only attempting it with albumin to see if there are any detectable differences to my inexperienced eyes and ears.
  11. Curious about this grain pattern in spruce violin top

    Quite possibly a noob question: I've found that I sometimes get visible medullary rays such as these in Norway spruce when doing the final "rub-down" with horsehair. Does it make sense that would happen, or am I using too much brute force with the horsehair/too coarse of hair?
  12. Questions on aging pattern

    Looks a little like it's wearing a cheap bustier.
  13. Just for fun - violin ID

    I can't help much in terms of the mystery bump (aside from the slim possibility that it's just a very abrupt/lazy graduation) or the violin's age/origins, but Miami-Dade county's public records list a "Carl Friederich Lotze" living at 799 N.E. 70th St, Miama FL 33138 in 1951, so your wife wasn't far off (The cursive 'z' gets everyone.)
  14. Liquid hide glue

    My first violin was built using liquid hide glue. (The big bottles were on sale, and I have no formal training to warn against it.) It dried relatively fast and pretty hard, so I assumed all was well. Got it strung up and hung to settle, and within a matter of 18 hours the neck popped off and the top started to lift. It could have been a bad batch--or the southern-Ontario humidity, but I decided not to risk it and now only use liquid hide glue to affix my labels, and use the pearls or flakes to do all my actual assembly
  15. Taylor Lethbridge's Bench

    If you're referring to the del Gesu 'Ole Bull'/'Cannone' hybrid, you're 100% right. That was my first (and possibly last) experiment with potassium dichromate oxidation. (I'm not fond of the greenish cast). The Strad I just finished was briefly ammonia fumed (only about 40 minutes), then tanned in a light box, so the coloration of the unfinished/worn sections is a much more neutral grey than the photos would suggest.