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Strad (?) identification


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No not a quiz, as such.....

The instrument illustrated below appears on several international websites

describing itself as a Strad....


Problem is it is never identified beyong that description and while it's

a definite Strad model I can't match it with any Strad photo I have seen.

Anyone recognize it? Is it a Vuillaume copy?

Forgive my ignorance if the answer is obvious.


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the outline seems stradish, but f-holes have a guad look to them, particularly the upper half. the maple on the back doesn't look like maple strad typically used. the scroll looks like a strad copy, perhaps a bit over antiqued. also, it's hard to make anything out regarding the varnish colr and texture. the exposure is quite yellow, and maybe a bit overexposed. maybe it's a modern (chinese?) copy? but, what do i know.

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Your examples are proportionately narrower in relation to the neck and looks more 'right' to me.....some of Strads and other Cremonese buttons do get thinned down over time with fitting new necks but with some original necks like the 'Lady Blunt' and Medicea Tenor Viola and Messie the button is not so wide....thanks for the great pics....as I said the instrument in question is not bad at all..just not a Strad.

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That's a good point. I wonder what a really untouched one would look like. The only one above is the pochette.


Yeh, Pochettes!...prompted by Bruce's Chardon pics I was just having a conversation yesterday with MN member Neil Ertz about how pochettes with their relatively fresh state compared to the harder used violins, violas and celli may be one of our best and least utilized resources of information.

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The image Omobono posted may have come from here: http://www.jerkasmarknad.com/stradivarius.html

Yes, and elsewhere: I emailed the administrator of that site and he referred me to this one:


I also appears here:


which actually gives the first site again as the authority but names it as a Strad.

And I'm sure I have seen it elsewhere.

A case of cyber cloning?

I actually have no problem with the selection of maple on the back (as one poster has mentioned)

as being untypical of Stradivari - I could find numerous close matches.

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Don't know... Is it possible to tell at all from a low-resolution photo? Too me there's something about the edgework that doesn't quite go with the f-holes: The f's if anything look like something pre-1700, whereas the purfling... a tad distant from the edge for the period, rather a 1715-ish distance that one? Side view of the scroll it looks a little bit big. The inflection where the lower bout goes into the corner has sort of a smaller radius then you would expect in most cases. There's something about the look of the maple too.. or the contrast between ground an varnish perhaps, that looks a little modern.

Also the (possible) integrity of the button is suspicious given the wear of the rest of the fiddle, but then again someone might have grafted a new button in there!

So I guess we won't know until someone recognizes the specific fiddle?

Melvin what do you consider typical yearly growth of the maple employed by Strad?

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Looking at your Vuillaume collection there, it is interesting to notice some of that same ground/varnish contrast that is so evident on the fiddle in question. Often wood colour is too white and pure, varnish is too orange in hue. The contrast between ground/wood and varnish is often a little exaggerated on copies, and sometimes more subtle than you'd expect on originals?

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Looks brand new to me, maybe it looks different in person.

Both Andrew and Magnus make good points. Pictures don't provide nearly as much information as an object in hand.

From the photos, I'll also venture that it's not an original. We're lacking a lot of important detail though, like parts which might have been altered or replaced, which could be easily noticed "in person".

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