Andrew tkinson

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About Andrew tkinson

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    England
  • Interests
    Craft history, String instrument making and trying to have fun and learn stuff by combining these two interests.

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  1. I have a fondness for old tools. This little hammer is one of my favourites and is always on my bench ready for use as is this rusty old scriber with the fancifully shaped clip.
  2. I am impressed with your nailing skills - and your violin and turntable of course! The first violin I started is still unmade as I have the desire to try to forge my own nails and I have some bits of scrap wrought/puddled iron to use for this but when I tried a couple of years ago my 'forge' made from an old biscuit tin and charcoal was not up to the job of getting the largeish bits of metal hot enough. I am going to get a bigger biscuit tin and some forging coke. But if I fail, proper wrought iron nails can be got here https://www.realwroughtiron.com/ (At least they used to make them? I use
  3. Thanks for your comments, my "Lion head" looks quite like three or four different animals, dog, bear or lion and not forgetting Bruce Willis and still manages to look cheerful - even when being attacked by a chisel! The old sock under his head is an attempt to prevent damage - and headaches. Here the peg boxes have been excavated on both necks and can be refined later. The lion's tongue can be seen in my hand as it was removed to improve chisel access I also worked on the fluting on the back - this picture makes the mane look flattened or drawn in with a pencil! The hair is
  4. Hello, thanks for the lion pictures, I have to admit I have not been going for a realistic Lion look and instead been going for the Lion type heads sometimes seen on old violins. When I see these violin lions they remind me a bit of Durer's Rhino in that they are not realistic (although Durer's rhino is a pretty good representation of an asian rhino) but can sometimes be great in their own way if done well? Anyway I have now made three practice heads and decided it was time to risk carving one on a violin neck but first I thought I would repair my woodworking apron so I got the old sewing
  5. In the last two days I have just about completed my 3rd practice Lion type head and think that while he still looks a bit like a dog or even a bear, I think he is Lionish enough now, at least for me, to make his debut on an actual violin neck. Here I have carved the basic shape of the face Here I have done more work on the eyes, mane and the beginnings of the teeth can be seen The next day I worked a bit more on the face, mouth and teeth and made a small tongue. Here he is without tongue, unfortunately my close up photos are tending to make the front of his face bigger
  6. This is what I have been doing In the nearly three weeks since my previous post. Here - continuing with my 'historical methods' thing - I am sawing out a neck, held by a wedge, in the notch my on the front of my small 'experimental' benchtop My roughly made bowsaw in action After cutting out the head ends of my necks I started with some caution on their other ends. I was concerned about the proportions of the integral neck blocks and spanish-guitar-like slipper feet as I had worked their proportions out myself and suspected I had very likely forgotten to consider something
  7. I must say you are proof that the "more mature" student should not be put off the violin. I played various instruments from an early age, mainly the guitar and didn't start the violin until I was in my early forties. I will never be very good but I play in tune and enjoy it and even some other people do!
  8. Hello, if you are in the London area maybe you could consider an evening class at Merton College? I don't think they are too expensive and only take up one evening a week during term times. https://stcg.ac.uk/merton-college/musical-instrument-making-and-repair I attended evening classes for three years (Guitar making) at what used to be the London College of Furniture, and was at that time called City Poly, many years ago and they were great for learning and for meeting likeminded people. This helped to set me off on the long slow woodworking and instrument making, frequently blunder
  9. Hello, I contacted the lady with the free BVMA newsletters expressing my interest shortly after she advertised them. After sending postage and packing expenses I recieved them soon afterwards and am enjoying slowly going through them. I thought I should write this to inform other people that may be interested that the newsletters are no longer available to avoid any possible 'confusion'.
  10. Thanks for the comment Mike. I will also try to make the upper part of my lion head a bit smaller in addition to the good suggestions you have made. I have got started on the real necks for my two built on the back violins. I made some drawings to work out the angles of the rib slots in the neck block and the width of the 'foot ' on the integral neck block etc. I am trying to make the neck angles similar to modern necks using my Johnson Courtnal book. I aim to use "historically informed" methods but would like to make a couple of violins that most players would find ok? I found
  11. Joeph Pujol better known as "Le Petomane" was, it seems, blessed with a natural gift which allowed him become a professional https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Le_Pétomane Apologies for straying from the original topic
  12. I am always awestruck when I see such beautiful and precise work as this and realise that although I will never be able to do work this good I need to get off the computer and into my workshop as soon as I've typed this! (I will probably cut my finger again, within the hour?)
  13. Next on my practice lion head I started to excavate the pegbox to see if I would be able to get access to the A string peg underneath my animal head and to see how it looked. I wrapped the head up to help avoid marking it when pushing against a piece of wood during gouging I cleaned up and deepened the cavity to approach what I thought looked a reasonable depth and here I have poked a small gouge throught the uppermost peg hole to see if i could get a string under the chin of the beast and I think it should be ok. I can imagine the tongue would easily be caught on something and be b
  14. Hello Mike, I made that saw about 18 years ago. I am almost certain I drilled the holes with a brace and bit in the saw first and then whittled the blade holding pins from lilac wood so they were a stiff fit in the holes. The tight fit helps stop the blade slipping and possibly the slighty out of line hand drilled holes may help in some way. May be a bit of violin rosin might help things? I have always liked the idea of carving heads and I like the idea of usermade decorated tools. I carved the female head on one side and still haven't got around to carving the male head on the other
  15. Hello. I like to try to experiment with 'historically informed' techniques so I was trying to make and use a glue that would have been available when Cornetts were made in the past. I am not giving up but I have put my glue and cornett experiments aside for now and am going to concentrate on getting my two violins made. Thanks for your comments though, any advice is appreciated.