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Found 10 results

  1. I know that the standard peak height for a violin bass bar is 12 mm, but how was this established? I guess the snarky answer would be that "it works", but is there a better height? Anyone have an idea and any old references to read?
  2. Hi everybody, I need your opinions about the bass bar. I am making a new violin, form model is Guarneri Kreisler 1733. My used sound plate wood is 20 yearly, very dry but very soft and flexible on X and Y axis. My used thicknesses are on middle 33 mm and on the top and end 25-26 mm. And sound plate is 62 gr. The structure of the veins are narrow (1-1.2 mm), flat and regular. (I will add photos) Now, I think about the bass bar making. I have to make a strong bass bar, but the bass bar won't interfere with the flexible of the top plate. So, I did make bass bar thickness 6 mm. And I think I'll make the highest point 12.8 mm and end portions 3,8 - 4 mm. But, So, while this is the case, how can I make te bass bar form shape ? I saw on luis claudio manfio's violin, he make a flat shapes bass bar. Is that what I should do? or any different shapes, or original ?
  3. Wondering what people listen for to guide tonal adjustments in setup? I know for myself, to a large degree I'm listening to brightness versus darkness in the tone. And I mostly associate that with a generally more tensioned and strong setup giving harder brighter results, and lower tension tending more toward dark. I know I'm trying to maximize power and response in the tone, while balancing other factors. I want to strike a balance making brightness or darker warmth available in the tone, and a balance between openness of tone and a more reedy firmness of tone. Presuming good fit of bridge feet and post, I think of tension as the first thing to adjust in the setup. Following Gerald Botteley's advice from the Courtnall & Johnson book, I move the bridge forward to test lower tension and back to test higher tension, and see which direction gives improvement in the tone and response. I try to work first from a completely standard, but somewhat beefy bridge, and a somewhat beefy and longish post a little bit closer to center line and further back behind the bridge than standard. From this start, I try to get the tension of the instrument setup as close a possible to right, but slightly over tight, as I work the post closer toward a 'standard' position. I prefer to work with bridge and post just barely thickish. Once the tension seems close to good, but definitely not too loose, then I try to refine the post position by listening to how it affects the balance of the response in terms of bass versus treble, and quick brightness versus slower warmth of tone. This things I mostly test by playing in low and high positions on all strings, and by listening to how the response changes near and far from the bridge, and with different pressures and bow speeds. I try to work with the bass to treble balance first. Mostly I adjust this by moving the post closer or further toward the center line. Since the fit and tension/height are affected by this kind of move, I might need to make a new post to get both the tension and the bass/treble balance working well. The nearness or distance behind the bridge foot also alters the effective tension, but less so the fit. So I'm happy if my fiddling around with the post ends with this last dimension. I feel like this distance most strongly effects the balance between hardness/directness versus openness/indirectness of response. It seems very similar to moving a microphone nearer or farther from the voice. After this, even though the general bass to treble balance should be good, the balance between individual strings might want some further adjusting. I try to do this last balancing of strings by trimming away a little in the bridge cutout just below the string that wants to be a little more present and open in tone. Once the strings seem as well balanced as possible, I consider if the tone wants more openness. If so, I consider trimming the other cutouts of the bridge further. But I don't want to lose strength in the bridge, so I'm least inclined to thin the bridge or post. Both these steps can lighten and open the response, but are too easily overdone. It seems that response can get mushy and slowed, and tone thin if either post or bridge aren't solid enough. But, response can be dampened and tone veiled if these have too much mass. I prefer to end up with a very standard post and bridge in very standard positions, but results matter more. *********** I don't think there's much out of the ordinary in what I described above. But I'm interested in hearing more techniques people use, and the things they listen for. In the part where I'm listening with different pressures and speeds and such, I do one kind of test that I haven't particularly heard discussed elsewhere. Maybe others do this to? I pay attention to how easily you can play a sul ponticello effect, and how far from the bridge you can be and still get that sound. As well as how close to the bridge you can draw a clear brilliant tone, and where on the string you can start to get a sul tasto kind of sound. I like it when all these colors are readily available. I like to see the sul ponticello available out mid way to the fingerboard. And a good sul tasto color available starting right around the fingerboard. Post to bridge nearness for example affects this greatly. Also, I want to see similar colors available for similar contact points across all the strings, as much as possible. More and more, I find myself using these tests as my main guide as I work through the setup. ************* I'm hoping people will share both their process, and the special things they listen for to help judge tonal setup.
  4. Hello, After applying the second coat of varnish on my viola, I noticed that the bass bar is telegraphing through the top in the lower bout. It was definitely not there after the first coat of varnish. It's not really visible, but I can definitely feel a raised ridge where the bass bar is. What did I do wrong? Thanks, Trey
  5. Anyone seen one like it? It's not shaped on the lower bout end. Last 5mm of the upper end broke off. Cross section is rectangular, not rounded off.
  6. Violin Top plate Before ff and bass bar: weight gm.s mode 2 Hz mode 5 Hz 69.5 170 337 After ff and partially (?) carved BBar: 71.2 182 339 Have observed that trimming distal thirds of Bbar RAISES Modes 2 and 5 (probably d/t reduced mass), and that carving/trimming middle third LOWERS modes 2 and 5 (probably d/t reduced central stiffness). But where/how to carve Bbar to bring Mode 2 down more, without affecting Mode 5 much ? And similarly, how best to preferentially affect mode 5 rather than mode 2 ?
  7. Hello Makers: a long time ago a nice person lent me his book from P.P. Prier's school. The book showed that Prier advised students to put the bass bar at a left leaning angle rather than straight up and down, parallel to the ribs. I have done both and I don't see any difference but it is my guess that most makers place the bar parallel to the ribs. What do you advise?
  8. Hi there, Im currently repairing a nice German violin, and I noticed the bass bar measurements (From the center line to the side closest to the center line) differs with 8mm. Measuring from the center line to the closest side of the bass bar, it measures: Upper = 10 mm, lower = 19 mm. Is there a specific reason for a bass bar to be like this, and not parallel with the center line? Does this have a big impact on the sound? The top is also pretty stiff, not too flexible. The bass bar is NOT carved into the top, like some cheaper German/Czech violins are. Thank You.
  9. 1) How do you know when it's time to replace the bass bar in an instrument? When the bass feels weak and unsupportive? 2) Is it true the use of steel strings wears out a bass bar prematurely? 3) I've had my instrument about 17 years, always played with steel strings. Now all of a sudden my luthier can't get the soundpost in a place that satisfies me. Can this be another symptom? 4) Do bass bars really wear out and lose their ability to support the bass bridge foot adequately? TIA for any help. If this has to be done, obviously it's not inexpensive work. I want to make sure I make the right decision. Regarding the sound, and my unhappiness with it: literally every other little thing has been done that can be done. Glue, strings, bridge, tuning the after-length, etc, ad infinitum. If the problem isn't the bass bar I'll have to pull out the rest of my hair and/or retire. Thanks again.
  10. Hi guys, I have recently finished the top of my new baby. It is based on a slightly modified strad G form. I have a 357 mm long top. If I use the rule I allways use to cut my bass bars: 7/9 the lenght of the top minus 80mm I get a 277 mm bass bar. Will it be too long? I am tempted to stay at the usual 270 mm lenght, as I am not sure what will be teh effect of such a bar. And another question: If I finally decide to put the long bar, shall I also make it a little higher? Is the hight of the bar proportional to the lenght, or should I stay with the standard height that involves the top thickness? The top is 357 mm long, it has a quite uniform thickness of 2.2-2.6 mm (slightly thicker near the f holes and around the soundpost area, around 2.9mm) and weights 64 grams (without the bass bar, of course)