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  1. Interesting and excellent explanations and photos of this bearclaw feature. many thanks Kevin
  2. Thanks, I am enlightened now. If not a bear could it be a squirrel! They have claws as well. Kevin
  3. This violin labelled Breton Bravete has a pronounced ‘bear claw’ (I believe it is called) on the spruce table. I should like to know from those that know these things if this is a feature of a specific variety of spruce. Also if this feature changes the stiffness of the plate to affects its tonal qualities. the violin varnish also looks to have been slapped on with a large part missing completely under the finger board! Does this also indicate a rapidly made trade instrument or have I missed something. Thanks Kevin
  4. Thanks for the replies, I know the photos are pretty poor but the best I could get with a phone photo of the original advert. I didn’t see it, just interested to know as a long shot if it’s country of origin or quality could be identified etc. Guess not, but someone loved it once!
  5. This poor unloved cello was recently advertised locally for restoration Intrigued, I wonder if it is indeed worth saving and where it was made. It was quickly snapped up so someone thought it might be worth the effort. grateful for some views.
  6. Thank you for the feedback, I guess that’s the most obvious way the damage happened, I was confused by the wood grain at the damage spot. Someone must have like the violin once judging by the extensive repairs. I did set it up a long while back and it didn’t sound too good.
  7. I should be grateful if members can suggest what has caused the damage to the back of this violin. I was wondering if it was caused by an inherent weakness in the wood or else is a sound post crack. The crack has been patched along with extensive work on the table and the scroll which looks a bit of a mess. I’m thinking that it is a Markneukirchen violin. Many thanks.
  8. I should be grateful for opinions and information on this violin that I suspect is Neukirchen in origin. It is unlabelled and is not marked internally, it is fully blocked. BoB construction? The neck joint intrigues me, is this some kind of transitional construction or just a later botch up, with a later neck? The end blocks are semi-circular. Many thanks Kevin Fuller
  9. Someone must have chesrished this instrument judging by the extensive repairs,also the dreaded woodworm has also got at it. Any ideas on origin and date welcome.
  10. My bow is heavily red stained including the ebony tip plate. I’m unsure of the wood, pernambuco? It is unbranded apart from an assembly mark on the stick with no corresponding marks on the frog under slide and the adjuster is nickel. The mortise is very neatly crafted. I’m thinking that all of parts of the bow did not start life together. It weighs 56 grams without any lapping and it is 740 mm long. I should be grateful for any comments on the origin and age of the bow. Photos attached.
  11. Thank you all for your helpful replies and hopefully I can get the violin playable again for my family use. Thank you for your interpretation of the inscription Mr Saunders. I enclose another photo of the wording to see if you can read it better, although I fear that it may not be any clearer.
  12. I have taken on an abandoned project. The previous owner has stripped the varnish and the instrument has damage to the table and ribs at the chin rest position. It was a violin used in schools I believe so I guess it has been handled and mistreated by hundreds of schoolchildren over the years. I should be grateful for your advice and observations on the following. 1) The corner blocks have the linings set into them. Does this point towards a Mittenwald made violin? 2) The end blocks have wooden pegs set in them to locate the top, they look to be original, is this standard for an Instrument of this origin? 3) The saddle is not recessed into the end block and is set in the table only, is this as it should be and original? 4) There are no labels inside but there is a faint pencil inscription on the table, I should be grateful if anyone can make any sense of it? 5) The stripped varnish reveals a pleasing aged wood ground colour, should I treat it with anything before varnishing? 6) I have not varnished a violin before and therefore was thinking about using the Hammerl oil based varnish products. The original varnish looked to be a reddish brown colour and I should be grateful for any advice on the Hammerl colour pigment to use for the best results. Apologies for the long thread and multiple questions.
  13. Many thanks for all of your helpful responses.
  14. I am a new member and this is my first post. I have had my broken violin for a few years and was told that it was a worthless low grade German fiddle circa 1900 which has fake scratches and repairs to make it look older. It is in very poor condition and I thought therefore that it would be a good first violin repair project for me. I have looked at it more closely recently and following the excellent threads on MN it has the features of a BoB Saxon, Markneukirchen fiddle, and also a very off centre button which I guess confirms sloppy workmanship. The violin back is 361 mm long and it has 5 ply purfling. It has a real neck graft and I’m thinking that the scratches and dings may be natural wear having had a hard life. It has no label or stamps as far as I can see. I was wondering, because of the purfling if the instrument is slightly older than first thought and might be from the workshop of the Markneukirchen maker Christian Wilhelmina Seidel. Sadly the violin has been badly mistreated/ repaired by previous owners with a nailed on belly which hampered its removal and some poor over varnish. It has numerous cracks to the belly and I am daunted by a nasty crack to the bottom of the pegbox. But I should still like to work on it. I should be most grateful for any thoughts on its origins and age and please bear with me as I attempt to upload photographs.
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