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Any clues on who made this?

martin swan

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I thought this was very pretty : http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/170916733991?ssPageName=STRK:MESINDXX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1436.l2649&autorefresh=true

The work involved in getting it back into shape is way beyond me or my budget, but I kind of fell in love with it. Particularly that plain deep yellow varnish, which I assume is English .... (?)

Is the lovely bottom block original? If so, what school of making does it indicate?

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  • 2 weeks later...

It looks English to me, before the overwhelming adoption of the "Stainer" model. maybe around 1740.

I see your point. The upper part of the soundholes has a certain look, but it doesn't seem to follow through the rest of the instrument. bean+fidhleir, look again at the edges, and you'll see that they are not an original part of the instrument. If I took a punt in the dark, I'd have said that the back is more likely early 19th century English. Probably a composite?

Johnson instruments can be variable - they are not always London Stainer copies, and when there are, there's a whole bundle of hands involved, I think its unlikely he ever made a violin himself being a major retailer of all kinds of instruments and music instead, - so Martin, its not what I think a typical Johnson should be - but that's not to say that you can't hold it up to an authentic Johnson which it is identical to...)

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That makes a lot of sense - it's very like one I saw about 5 years ago, and which I didn't have the money to buy. It sounded fantastic, although it had a bizarre enormous trapezoidal lump of wood glued into the middle of the back (inside of course ....)

The varnish had a similar creme caramel quality as the back of this one.

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The edge from the middle of the front lower left bout up through the centre bout may and probably are replacements but apart from that i dont see anything composite about it. I dont see anything Johnson about it either.

If you mean the lower bass side,Bob, fiddle around with he inside view (squash image, and you'll see that all growth rings carry on to the edge consistently. For the middle and upper bout edges on that bass side, I suspect the purfling groove was too deep and went right through, which is why it appears detached from the main section, but again growth rings are consistent and continuous,if slightly offset.

I don't see Johnson either.btw

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