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Found 44 results

  1. Hi folks, I bought a 16-1/2" unfinished "white" viola from a Chinese seller on eBay over a year ago. I bought it because I loved the look of the tight grained spruce top, the beautiful flamed maple on the back, and especially the fancy inlay. I have never tried any kind of project like this before, but after receiving it I realized that I had gotten something that was going to be more work than I bargained for. The fingerboard had a big hump in the middle of it. I double checked that it wasn't just warped, but no, the bottom was flat and the just the top had a big convex hump in it. I put it in the closet and decided to buy a much cheaper white violin to practice on and learn from before risking my luck on this nicer project. So now, over a year later, I took it out to see about fixing the hump and I noticed something I had not seen before: the fingerboard also has a long crack in it. I hoped that it was just cosmetic and I started aggressively sanding down the hump. But the crack is still there even after removing almost 1.5mm of thickness. I had saved the eBay listing photos when I bought it, and I now see that they cleverly avoided any view of this section of the fingerboard. I bet "Master Song and his 2 right hand apprentices" knew all about the hump and the crack in it - and that is how it ended up as a DIY "white" viola on eBay rather than a finished instrument... Is there a way to fix it? Fill it with CA glue? Would I be better off to remove it and put a better quality piece on? I emailed the seller asking if it was just "tack glued" and he replied, "No, it be well glued." So that solution won't be easy. Maybe I should just ignore it?
  2. This violin suffered from a fall and I am interested in how to repair it. Weisshaar goes into detail about a through patch for the top (table) and the process of matching grain lines. The two small missing pieces were found inside the violin so hopefully they will fit without having to match the flame. I am thinking about removing the back to do a plaster cast and a reinforcing patch from the inside. Can this repair be done by just removing the top and making a plaster cast with the back in place? I have done a brief search to see if similar repairs were done but did not find any. Suggestions and and advice would be appreciated,
  3. Greetings, In a recent talk with a Luthier friend, he shared with me that plate tuning could get very tedious, because of the difficulties at each step to know exactly where to carve so as to obtain the desired impact on the final frequency. Reading some papers, I came across a very interesting one, by Alan Carruth, a former student of Carleen Hutchins (attached carruth1991plate.pdf). In this article, the author gives a diagram with the impacts that carving might have on several different regions on the plate. I then compiled this information in a spreadsheet, where you can input the desired final frequencies for the plates, and then feed it with the current ones. Based on this information, the spreadsheet will show diagrams with the regions that could be carved in order to achieve the final desired frequencies. My friend liked it so much, that he encouraged me to share it to the Luthier community, so I'm sharing here with you. Please feel free to post any questions, criticism, and any feedback is appreciated. Thanks for your attention! carruth1991plate.pdf
  4. Hope everyone is staying safe and keeping busy. With the abundance of free time due to the corona virus lock down, I've acquired a few new repair projects. The question is, with the hyper competitive bidding of sites like ebay, the high fees on many instrument auction houses, and the endless sifting through listings of garbage German or Chinese factory instruments. How do most individual luthiers or shops go about acquiring "profitable" repair projects? I'm sure having a store front and the occasional trade in provides some source of decent instruments in need of some TLC. Any personal stories of interesting instrument acquisitions are welcome, I'm aware most traders or luthiers are not keen on idea of sharing their mystical instrument source
  5. Hello! I am looking for some expert advice on a repair venture I am beginning on a friend's cello. I am an experienced electric guitar builder but cello is a bit outside of my pond. I have a neck that is cleanly broken off from the pocket with only some minor chipping within. I have three questions: - Do I need proper hide glue or would some Titebond III do the trick? Any alternatives? - Would it be preferable to fill the chip-outs with a glue/sawdust mixture or do I need to look at replacing the block? - Should I remove all glue before a second glue-up? Any other advice or tips would be greatly appreciated.
  6. Hi everyone. My niece's student cello has a hairline crack at the D string peg hole (see pics). Any suggestions on how to repair? Thanks!
  7. Hi all, this is my first post. I just wanted to get your thoughts of the authenticity of this violin. Is it a Perry, Wilkinson, or workshop instrument? The violin shows its age both inside and out, and I do believe the label to be authentic, aside from someone trying to scribe ‘17’ over ‘18’. I have read there are German copies of Perry violins. The repair work seems to have been done centuries ago, lending credit to the repair inscription of 1841. Purfling lines are painted on, but I’ve read that is a characteristic of some Perry violins. Also, any general suggestions on repair of the neck would be appreciated as well. Thank you!
  8. Lindsayb

    Lindsayb

    I have a Scherl and Roth 3/4 violin I am working on for a local youth program (charity) and am wondering if it is possible to replace a single Caspari-style peg (E string) instead of rebushing the whole peg box to return it to friction pegs. The E string caspari-style peg runs out of thread at an Eb and wont hold with fine tuner adjustments either. All the other pegs are working fine (despite being Caspari!) Any advice would be welcome as I'd like to get this instrument back into a student's hands quickly and cheaply.
  9. Hello! I am in the stages of repairing a violin for the first time, purchased cheaply at an auction simply for the joy of learning. The violin is about 100 years old and was caked with dirt, I have lifted off the worst with cotton sticks and saliva. I will attach a photo of the current state of varnish, pictures taken with flash to better show the contrasts. The varnish is mostly matte, and chipped off or scuffed in many places, and dirty in others. I have come to understand that spirit varnish is mainly used in repairs, but I have not been able to tell yet if the original is oil- or spirit based. My question is: is it best to apply new varnish without any further big preparations of the current state? Or is it better to lightly sand down the worst scuffs to a more even structure and cleanliness before applying new varnish? Some scuffs are basically down to the wood, how would a base coat react to the varnish around it? My first plan is to leave as much as possible intact and only lightly sand the surfaces before applying varnish, but I am unsure how well it would attach on top of "dirt". The goal of this violin is not to make it look brand new, I would very much like to have it show its history but to be protected. Please give me your thoughts on the steps how you would restore the varnish
  10. I have a violin i purchased at auction from a home where the owner passed away. It is in dire need of repair and I want to learn by doing. I have some contact with a luthier but he is retired and may not have the energy for tutoring, so I am on my own here gathering knowledge and resources and joy of trying to figure things out. Aside from all the external parts missing the violin is a bit grimey (I am carefully cleaning some parts using saliva, which I read about on this forum) but the cracks and scabs are the main issue. THE DAMAGE: There is a deep crack that goes through the purfling up to the f-hole, and a small crack above the f hole. Risk of the entire side falling off when top is opened I fear. I am thinking of somehow securing these parts before opening? (Despite the crack running wide, it goes together neatly when I try to press it together, I have hopes it will close well once the pressure is off.) There's a crack on the left side as well in the top, it reaches the f hole but not as deep as of yet. Purfling intact but crack continues on the other side of it. There is a minor crack just shy of opening in the middle from the tail nut. Purfling has risen on both sides of the neck. Sides are scuffed and needs filling in. An outer corner piece is chipped. Finger board has wear, replace or not, I am undecided yet. MY CURRENT IDEA: lightly secure the big cracked pieces externally (such as a removable, undamaging postage tape) before opening the top. Then open the top carefully and see how it would align the cracks without pressure from the ribs. Begin gluing the big crack, then reinforcing from below with spruce, and continuing the same way with the other 3 cracks. Put the top back on and repair the side scuffs using spruce. I am unsure how the 3 different purfling statuses affect the cracks to close. MY QUESTIONS; is this a good order to start with? What should I do about the purfling situation? Should I first try to close some cracks using the moisturing method? I greatly appreciate any recommendations on how you would go about this.
  11. I live in a country where we don't have any good luthier. Moreover, it's a hard deal to find a good violin, there's no music shop with normal violin (only cheap fake ones).. So I don't have any option except doing it myself. I will do it this way or another, but dunno the steps. Please don't judge me badly hahahah))) 1. As you see there are minor cracks. What material should I use to cover those cracks? Is it necessary to cover them? (pics of inside & outside below) https://imageshack.us/i/po9jreixj https://imageshack.us/i/plY0MBn1j https://imageshack.us/i/plH2Zi2Gj 2. Most of the cracks are on the ribs, but ribs are covered with additional ribs, so should I remove them, or it's okay to leave them this way? (pics of inside & outside below) https://imageshack.us/i/plSIOz4Bj https://imageshack.us/i/po33wiqAj 3. One more crack is on the neck. I think no need to do anything with it, still I took photo just in case.. (pics of inside & outside below) https://imageshack.us/i/pmXujnWtj I'm about to receive hide glue soon for it, so far, that's the only material I have for now. Now, one more important thing. When I fix them and put the spruce back I need to varnish it. I saw in few videos I found that the luthiers put coating, then they varnish the violins. Or I might be mistaken. Just need to know what materials to buy to varnish violin, how many layers of coating, how many layers of varnishing. Actually I'm not aiming to make the violin shiny, would like to make something like this (link in the comment). I hope you'll share your experience, please....
  12. Hello, I am thinking of purchasing this violin. The seller says it's French from early 20th century. Can anyone tell me about it? There is a small crack on the backside, going up the middle from the chin rest, and the purfling is damaged. How much would this cost to repair? Thanks! Kristen
  13. Hello everyone, I am a violin performance student in his last semester. For the last couple of years I have been teaching myself violin and bow repairs and studying the historical makers. I was always handy with a knife as a kid, and enjoy working with wood. I bought several broken german violins and bows from ebay and have restored them as a way to learn. For the last two years I have been getting quite a bit of work at the university I am studying at, as there is no reputable violin shop close by. I have done rehairs, cut bridges, replaced bow tips, silver wrapping and thumb grips, fixed frogs and eyelets, glue seams, reset necks, dressed fingerboards, the whole shebang. The thing is that I have not made a violin yet. I really enjoy the restoration and setup aspect and frankly as a fulltime student I have not had the time. So that brings me to the question, what do I call myself? A restorer, repairer? Would it be presumptuous to call myself a Luthier? Some of my work: www.instagram.com/azevedoviolinist
  14. Hi. I bought a used Chinese made scherle roth violin. The original price was 300 USD so it's a low end instrument. The notes all sound fine except the A string's c sharp note. When I play it it vibrates abnormally with cross tonality. In other words imagine hitting c and csharp on a piano at the same time - that's how it sounds. This isnt a case of me putting any vibrato on the string through my bow or finger pressure. This isnt a case of accidentally hitting the E string at the same time. It doesnt occur on other notes or strings. Naturally I replaced the string and examined the head and bridge and soundboard for imperfections but cannot locate the source of the jittering sound. Any thoughts? Playing D or C sounds fine but the Csharp whirls like a helicopter sound when it takes off. Mark
  15. The photos are of an old bow that I have. The question is about what I assume is mother of pearl on the eyes, the adjuster, and the slide. I've never seen a bow where the MOP looks somewhat primitive like this. Is that just an indication of the age of the bow, or just amateurish workmanship? Since it is somewhat unique, is it worth having the MOP repaired when I get the bow rehaired? I've never had this bow rehaired, so I'm not sure if it's a good player or not. In fact, i'm not even sure it is worth rehairing, but just curious about the MOP. Thanks.
  16. Hi forum I Need some help, I think it was repaired with epoxi, how can I be sure of it? if so, does it have a solution? How is it best, go one by one or all the cracks at a time. Next, if it is reparable, will be remake the holes. What do you will do? The cracs go all around the pegbox, and you can open and close the gap a little, the inside have an ugly insert that is maintainig all the thing together. If you look inside the crack it looks like there is stalactites and stalagmites, could be expoxi not cured? How to clean tahat? The violin is a french one 70-80 years old, not so much value and good sound, and I have little experience repairing, I make my own violins I am now in my #5 and need help. Thank you for reading. @violintorre
  17. Dear Friends, I am new to cello repair and to this forum. Really appreciate all the helpful comments you posted about neck reinforcement. So I was thinking . . . . these cello necks broke about an inch below the point where the neck intersects the belly. The strings are exerting a strong pull toward the bridge and tailpiece. I believe the traditional method of repair is to glue the neck back together while still attached to the instrument, then install one or two dowels vertically. Would it be of value to install a dowel at an angle, top of dowel pointing toward the scroll and bottom of dowel pointing toward the top block? And what kind of glue would you recommend? Hot hide? Epoxy? Many thanks for your assistance, Fred
  18. I've recently repaired a couple of Srentor cellos with broken necks for a local music store. They were not broken completely off, but were retained by a small rectangular piece of wood inserted vertically through the neck. Made it easy to locate and glue. Easy repair with a couple of dowels. I am building a violin and wondering about drilling the neck at the heel and installing a dowel as reinforcement, possibly preventing a future break. Maybe that has been done before. Maybe it's overkill. What do you think? Thank you!
  19. Just wondering what would be a good plan of action... I was given an 'old violin' and took it to a specialist string store to get looked at. Told it was definitely worth doing up (for my daughter). Took a couple of pics of instrument and label inside (best as I could) before taking it in. Got it back and the identifying label inside has had the middle third of it all scratched away - gone! The repairer made no comment to me about this when I collected the instrument and I feel so angry about this. Also, the wood under where the label was seems very roughly scraped. Would it be possible this was already like that- or unlikely? After speaking to professional players, noone seems to understand why this would have happened...and more over why it would not have been mentioned. The violin is a Strad copy, so not ridiculously wonderful instrument, but still good. Should I be concerned about this? And if so, what would you expect to be done about it? I'm assuming the part of the label that is missing is long gone.... I hate confrontation and I guess I'm thinking nothing can really be done about it anyway. Thanks for your opinion. I'm not a string player myself, but am a School Music teacher, so I do know a few bits and pieces. Cheers.
  20. The bow that came with my budget but old violin needs a rehair but also a replacement tip. It's seems to be a decent quality bow so is it worth paying the amount required to set this up for future use? Is it old or just used a lot - leather pad has perished somewhat? What material was used for the metal the internal metal parts? Looks like gold but surely not? Happy new year to all!
  21. Hello, I have a few questions regarding the appearance of my violin. I have been told it is probably German-made from the first-half of the 20th century. Please bear with me as I have no experience of wood-working or varnishing... Is the light-dark pattern of the back due to age and wear (light areas are worn more than the dark ones), or is it due to the way the wood originally took the varnish? What are the dark spots due to? I read that they are due to dings that happen during the life of the violin. Is that were true, wouldn't the varnish be damaged at each of these spots? It seems that the varnish is as smooth as everywhere else at these spots. Does the darkness of the back seem mean that it has been repaired? Thank you.
  22. Got a bow in for repair and re-hair from the local music shop. The wood of the bow I just discovered is cracked and the eyelet, which is slightly undersized has such thin walls that it does not hold when tensioning the bow hair. An new eyelet of the correct thread will not tread into the frog because the stem is also undersized by 0.2 mm. Easy enough (yes?) to drill out the frog to the right dimension for the new eyelet. A 7/64 drill bit worked well on a tes piece of ebony. But the width of the new eyelet needs to be filed down to fit the bow slow but at least 0.2 mm. Depth is OK so I can leave the height if the eyelet alone which is where the old eyelet failed. So my main question is is the bow crack an issue that needs to be addressed any other way that gluing with hide glue? Or would you use white glue? The store told me this was a $600 bow. I am reminded of the Pink Panther when Inspector Clouseau destroys this grand piano and the butler reminds him that is a "Priceless Steinway"... and Clouseau responds "Not any more"...
  23. I always get asked what happened to my violin... and the answer is I do not know! It was like this when I bought it and it doesn’t bother me because I think it adds character and an identifying feature. No crack, just a surface abrasion of some sort. Any theories as to what caused this? I wish I knew because I am very curious of a person, haha. Is this damage anything I should be concerned about fixing/restoring? My luthier didn’t think so but I’m not sure if this can even be restored if I’d want to in the future? Thanks!
  24. So, I'd like to thank you all in advance for potentially helping me sort through all of the general questions I have, and also welcoming me into this community(by allowing me to create a free account to quiz the people in the lifelong trade/journey about what I seem to have gotten myself into). Thanks again for reading. I am excited to become a part of this particular community!
  25. Hello, I am repairing a violin front with a few cracks. And some of the wood on top of these cracks are missing (i.e. varnish side). However, the bottom wood still remains.I was thinking to use wood filler or cut away the wood to insert a new piece of spruce. Does anyone have any ideas? Thank you! Top (varnish side): https://postimg.org/image/5kr0x6nr5/ Bottom: https://postimg.org/image/mwrdimh8h/