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About cj-vm

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  1. OP here. Thank you for your insights and opinions so far. It helps to know I'm not crazy that the tailpiece looks to be mis-sized, and the hobbyist level work is obvious to knowledgable people. It does make sense to ask for a lot of better pictures before committing to a trip to try it. I'll admit I find the idea of supporting local materials and the legacy of local craftspeople really attractive, but in the end it needs to sound good and help an intermediate-level child develop. It's really just a matter if I can gamble with this amount, and still have enough for a better "advancing student" market violin left, and make this one a back-up violin if it doesn't work out after burning through some setup budget. -- Oh, yes, I have been watching the more nearby boards like Craigslist for many months, but I had not thought to contact local teachers. The boards have mostly VSOs people want to unload, or 60s-90s stuff I'm not sure we'd be able to judge in isolation. I hope to just get lucky, because a 2-string-playing-kids parent doesn't have a ton of time for the hunt for a decent violin, especially outside of major metropolitan areas! Thanks again for taking the time to help! (Apologies for my late reply - I am still under moderation.)
  2. Hi all, Background - I am the parent of 2 violin kids, with only 5 years of experience with string instruments, rented and purchased. I am looking to purchase a step-up violin for my child who is ready for a (better quality) 3/4. Bear with me! I do not live in an area with much beyond a chain music store. The local rentals are pretty ordinary beginner variety. The one or two good luthiers within striking distance do not carry fractionals. Therefore I am looking on-line (not ebay), mostly for something pre-loved. I ran across what reads like a possibility - a used 3/4 made by a regional craftsman who was not very well-known outside the area. I have researched so that I am confident that the named maker in question did reside regionally, played violin at a semi-professional level, and built more than 50 violins. I don't know beyond that and I'd rather not name them publicly. It would be wonderful to have something locally made though I know I could get a very good quality Chinese 3/4 within my budget - I am considering those as well. Here's my question. The seller assures me their child used it and it plays beautifully, but in the picture, the tailpiece appears to me to be maybe the wrong size for the instrument, and the bridge and setup seem wonky? I am a bit suspicious. Does it seem wrong to you? I am torn between wanting to continue negotiations for an instrument produced regionally, and thinking something is up. I'm tempted to contact the family of the maker to ask about a 3/4, but they might not have any idea of the history of the instrument and how the current seller obtained it. It was built in the early 2000's, the maker died about 10 years later. You might recommend I go see it in person and we try playing it. But, our geography means a 4+ hour trip to go see it. I'm fine with having to buy a new tailpiece, new bridge, new strings, and getting set-up done professionally. I just don't know what to think of the picture. Is it just a pattern I am not familiar with, where the tailpiece would extend past the bottom of the F-holes, or just some kind of set-up choice? Sorry for the poor quality picture, it's all I have. Thank you for any information/opinions!