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How big viola do you play?


Bohdan Warchal
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Hello
colleagues,




I believe there are a lot
of viola players among you. We are a violin string producer, and
currently we are developing  viola strings. Unfortunately, the
viola string development is a bit more complicated as there are
various sizes of the instrument. Some producers solve this problem
by producing strings for each size and even in various grades of
tension. It would not be a problem for us to produce it, either.
What could be a problem is the distribution. The dealers are
frustrated already now by having to keep in their stock strings for
various instruments from different producers and even in different
versions of tension. And as if this were not enough, also E strings
ball and loop, and also fractional sizes for
children. 



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Therefore,
we have been considering marketing viola strings in one size. It is
very important for us to know what size of viola is used by the
majority of you. It would help us a lot if you agreed to
participate in this small research and wrote us what size of viola
you play (or what size do you mostly make). The most important for
us to know is especially the playing length, in other words NUT -
TO - BRIDGE LENGTH either in millimeters or inches.




Thanks,



Bohdan Warchal, violinist,
strings producer

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I don't think there can be any doubt that 16"-16 1/2" represents the biggest proportion of viola size in use.

What kind of core is your company thinking of developing: synthetic (nylon), composite fiber, steel rope? It would be a very good idea to consider windings other than aluminum, at least as alternatives, since aluminum windings are sometimes prone to corrosion due to the pH level (or perhaps the alkalinity?) of some people's perspiration.

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Some makers (I'm among them) use the same string lenght even when they change the body size. As a viola maker I see another problem that you will find, and the is what is the "viola sound", that's a controversial issue, some violists prefer a more open sound, some will prefer a darker sound. If possible, I would like to try some samples.

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Mr. Bohdan Warchal

You asked a direct question so I will give you a direct answer. I make a standard (suggested by Rene Morel) 379mm string length viola .

May I take this opportunity to Thank You and your Company for the free E string that you placed in The Strad magazine.

Just a thought ....you will probably find two general viola players , one group likes the large size (16" and over ) and the other the small size, so perhaps if you could reduce the viola string category to two sizes then you might end-up with more satisfied customers and clients.

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Great to hear from an accessory producer doing market research and a privilege to be asked.

Can't add a great deal to what has been said above. I've tried pretty much the range available from Doninant, Tonica, Olive, Larsen.Evah Pirazzi........ like Obligato and now happy with Zyex. You will understand from that that I prefer a more yielding and less intrusive string.

You are right to point to the stop (or nut to bridge measurement) as a truer guage of the length required as viola dimensions do vary a lot and body length is not always a consistent demirmining factor, certainly in relation to hand. arm size and playability.

The measurement on the instrument I have nearby at the moment and which I find comfortable is 37.5cm.

I would be interested in a a free sample too - If I mail you a postal address is that possible?

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  • 3 weeks later...

Mr. Warchal,

Just wanted to let you know that your e-string that came with my copy of Strad Magazine is the best that I've tried on my violin, and I've tried many.

It has a very nice open E sound...very brilliant, yet not at all thin sounding...unusually wide dynamic range.

I've actually been primarily a violist for many years, and look forward to trying your viola strings. To answer your question...yes, most violists here use synthetic c, g, d, and a steel a (although Helicore c, g, and d are popular), but some use the A from the rest of the set.

Andy

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Mr. Warchal,

Just wanted to let you know that your e-string that came with my copy of Strad Magazine is the best that I've tried on my violin, and I've tried many.

It has a very nice open E sound...very brilliant, yet not at all thin sounding...unusually wide dynamic range.

I've actually been primarily a violist for many years, and look forward to trying your viola strings. To answer your question...yes, most violists here use synthetic c, g, d, and a steel a (although Helicore c, g, and d are popular), but some use the A from the rest of the set.

Andy

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Hi Bohdan, I tried to email you but my message was returned to me,

is the email address in your profile correct? I also tried to PM

you, but I'm not sure if you received that either...I had some

questions about your strings. What do you recommend for a too

bright sounding violin, that is using Vision strings and a too dark

sounding 15" viola with Dominant strings that could use a

little brightening up? My email address is

blansing12@gmail.com

Thanks,

Betsy

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Hi Betsy,

I don't know what could happen, our e-mail address generally works.

I received PM from you and we are sending you our KARNEOL set to

warm and soften your bright instrument.

As for the viola: Dominants are generally bright enough. Maybe you

could consider better set-up of the instrument. Did your bridge

make a good violinmaker?

regards,

Bohdan

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quote:


Originally posted by:
Bohdan Warchal
Hi Betsy, I

don't know what could happen, our e-mail address generally works. I

received PM from you and we are sending you our KARNEOL set to warm

and soften your bright instrument. As for the viola: Dominants are

generally bright enough. Maybe you could consider better set-up of

the instrument. Did your bridge make a good violinmaker? regards,

Bohdan

Thank you so much Bohdan, I'll let you know what I think after I've

played with them. As far as the viola is concerned, it wasn't

terribly expensive to begin with, I bought it just to see what I

thought of the viola. Perhaps I should think of upgrading soon.

Betsy

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