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dpappas

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Everything posted by dpappas

  1. Thank you. For this poplar and pine special, I am using the Gibson strad outline and archings.
  2. Good points, thank you both. I bought some cheap cheap wood today as I am teaching myself to glue and do the really basic stuff. Maybe I’ll use it for my first mold. I’m trying to go slow so as not to spend too much at once.
  3. Hello, I am thinking of self-teaching myself to make a violin. This is a hobby and I do not see myself quitting my day job (Chemistry professor). I have “the art of violin making” and I intend to try some cheap wood from the hardware store first just to get a feel for the work. I have always been captivated by del Gesu’s instruments. Which style do you recommend to start with for inspiration? I know this is a loaded and naive question but i don’t feel like buying all the available strad posters. I’d like to take a stab at making a violin, I might as well start with a Guarneri.
  4. That’s the biggest factor I think. I have played a lot of instruments blind and I find that the sound and label do not always correlate. I intend to measure the SPL of high-end instruments up close and at a distance when I am again able to travel (and when I have enough time...).
  5. When I hear tales of instruments that are quiet under the ear and yet fill a hall, I wonder how many measurements have been made of this phenomenon. It is always a perception, and anecdote, and not hard data. Sound pressure decreases to the square of the distance. Now, building acoustics play a role and perhaps that is what people are hearing (again, not measuring). The scientist in me--I'm a chemistry professor--has studied violin construction, varnish, etc., and my hypothesis is that ultimately its wood and arching, craftsmanship, that truly matters. The studies that new, high-end instruments hold their own when confirmation bias is removed proves that. In my own experiments, sound close up correlates with overall volume at a distance. Violin research is my side hobby, and is currently hampered by lack of access to truly great instruments (Bein and Fushi did let me make a bunch of measurements pre-pandemic, but these days it's hard to travel to experience excellent instruments).
  6. David, thank you (and to Mr. Manfio as well!). I meant sound pressure levels, as in overall loudness measured with a microphone or SPL meter. I’ve found that an instrument that can move air like mad will do so, and under the ear it’s intense!
  7. I am not referring to expensive just because of provenance. I’ve played some old Cremonese and Brescian instruments that underwhelmed. When playing a great, projecting instrument, how would you describe the sound under the ear? I imagine a penetrating instrument with a carrying tone would be a bit intense under the ear. I find when trying instruments the ones that please me under the ear don’t sound as good when others play them for me during the evaluation. Is my experience atypical? I find a responsive instrument is intense and the feedback (aural) really tells me a lot about intonation, etc. -dimitri
  8. It’s from the Amber Strings Workshop, Zhong Long Shen.
  9. It is weird. I replaced the tailpiece with Castel boxwood and a boxwood chinrest. The pegs are wittner finetune. Hence the black color.
  10. I’d say so. Plus the shelf space you saved from having to store that paper weight.
  11. I am comparing the Liu Xi instrument I have to another Chinese workshop instrument, albeit of much higher quality, as our local shop orders many and sends back what they deem inferior. I'm open minded about what I play. One day I'd love to own a Burgess, or a Darnton, a Curtain, etc. A new instrument by a maker in the US (where I live) is a long-term dream but as a hobbyist player, I can't justify the high end purchase until all my kids are out of college and even then its a lot of money for someone who does not earn a living with the instrument. But to get back to my point, the Liu Xi is a decent instrument for what I paid. It's just my other Chinese instrument blows it out of the water, sound wise (and actually gets a lot of compliments from others who play it). Here are a few pics of my other instrument for comparison
  12. The "memory" issue the least likely idea, given that pitches have changed over the years. The Tonerite seems to have the biggest influence in those who are trying to justify it's purchase.
  13. I bought one (A T20 "1715" strad model). I got it for 100 bucks plus shipping. It's ok. For $180, I can't imagine getting anything better. However, it does not compare to a good violin. I am defining good as a new, well set up workshop instrument that you might get for 1500-2500 USD. Even with a decent setup, it sound a little muted. But for a student instrument, it's very good for the money. I bought it as an experiment, and now I keep it around when my daughter wants to play. It's decent for what I spent, but it's a cheap instrument (the wood feels "green" to me).
  14. Michael and Don, Yes, the EQ trick was perfect to illustrate it, thank you. Now i need to do some recordings of my own instrument and see how it fares in that regard. Dimitri
  15. Michael, Thank you. I had read some of your posts on the bridge hill response here on MN, which is what got me thinking about this in the first place. Dimitri
  16. I have been reading old posts about the bridge hill (2-3kHz), and how this is a desirable effect in a violin. Has anyone made recordings (or know where I can find them) of instruments with and without this response? I am just trying to learn more about it and hearing it (even via recording, which is not optimal) would be helpful.
  17. There is always a victim, and it's not always the faceless CC company. I bought a BAM case from Shar during one of their sales. I had to order over the phone because the website was not applying the 30% off. On the phone, the sales associate accidentally applied the 30% discount twice. As much as I would have loved to have a 51% discount, I told her she had calculated the price wrong. She thanked me profusely, because I suspect the extra percentage would have come out of her paycheck. If it seems too good to be true, it usually is.
  18. Joe is a good guy. I went there in March to do some research (I’m a chemistry professor, and violin research is a side hobby). Not only did he bring out a selection of Cremonese and Brescian instruments for me to work with, but he also took an hour out of his busy day to talk shop, even though I was upfront that I was not a customer that day. I wish him well. I wonder how they will split the inventory, if they are splitting up the business?
  19. I'm a long-time lurker and, but I wanted to weigh in that discussion of what is safe, or not, is a very dangerous game to play. I do not usually mention my credentials, but I have a PhD in chemistry (in fact, I'm a Professor of Chemistry) and I also worked at NASA in the early 2000s. My area of expertise is in human health and chemical measurement. Methanol requires serious ventilation and PPE considerations, please read the MSDS before taking anyone's advice (even mine): https://fscimage.fishersci.com/msds/14280.htm
  20. Now that is probably the biggest improvement on tone for sure! When I stopped making guitar amps and just practiced, my guitar tone got much better!
  21. I agree with Davide that they are not the prettiest pegs out there. Since the gears are in the end housing (instead of the shaft, like PegHeds), I guess there is only so much that can be done about the look. I will say that while well-fitted pegs are great, the precision and stability is the appeal of the geared pegs. I use both Wittner and friction and I really prefer the Wittners. So far I can't tell a difference in tone, but I was curious if anyone else had heard a sound difference. Now I need to make 6g weights to attach to the pegs to try Davide's experiment for myself.
  22. Davide, thank you for recounting your experiment. I’ve thought about replicating something similar out of curiosity. Interestingly this violin suffers from a lack of bass (for a violin). The E and A our powerful, and the G is a little thin so to speak. I’ve tamed it a bit by moving the tailpiece north to about 52-52.5 mm (still settling), but I wonder if the Wittners are affecting the tone. I have another violin on trial and while it has more bass, it’s weak in the treble. I can’t have both it seems with the instrument near me.
  23. I love the Wittners as well, I haven't had to tune my main violin in two weeks (plus no fine tuner on the E throws people off all the time). I haven't noticed a tone or weight difference, although my instrument is very light so the added Wittner weight doesn't affect my playing.
  24. I am curious from the Luthier's who have installed Wittner Pegs. They are heavier (40 g for a fitted set, vs 14g for the "boxwood" ones that came with my instrument). I am curious if anyone has noticed a tonal difference adding the weight from those pegs or Peghed/Perfection pegs. I'm not interested in a debate about whether or not they are good, I'm just curious if anyone has noticed a tonal change. Thanks!
  25. Joe, Thank you! I suspected much of the work happened before the final layers were applied.
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