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My solution is to use a large rubber band and go from the pegs around the neck a few times.  It keeps the strings from sproinging completely loose from the pegs, which is good enough for me.

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Thanks for that second picture.   I very often find that I have to adjust the after-length on new fiddles as the tailgut stretches a bit.  Maybe I will make something similar except I like Don's solution too!   Quick and simple

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Here is a quick snapshot of my latest experiment. This is my ground topped with a single coat of colorless varnish. The ground has no pigments, particulates, or protein size - all ingredients available to Strad. The lighting is overhead fluorescents and a tungsten desk lamp. It looks close to what I see. If all goes well, I will bring this violin to the Alexandria VSA Exhibit.

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From the reflections, it looks like the clear varnish was trying to avoid contact with the ground, and gathered up rather than forming a smooth coat.  Is there some wetting problem?

Also, the open vessels appear to have something very dark in them.  Is that just a thick buildup of ground?  Or lighting?

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On 10/22/2017 at 9:47 AM, Don Noon said:

From the reflections, it looks like the clear varnish was trying to avoid contact with the ground, and gathered up rather than forming a smooth coat.  Is there some wetting problem?

Also, the open vessels appear to have something very dark in them.  Is that just a thick buildup of ground?  Or lighting?

Great observations, Don. Believe me that I did test strips before touching the violin, but the violin came out different due to subtle application and production variations. The varnish issue is due to excess essential oil that went unnoticed because I applied the varnish differently (fingers for testing vs. brush for the violin). The second issue is that I skipped a step for making the ground on the violin. Thus, the red component went brown slowly. The brown spots are excess stain pooling in pores and interstices. They should have been red-side orange with a yellow halo. The resulting violin is a red-side brown.

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Michael  that's starting to look like some of my samples.   Look at page 5 on my thread.   

 

 

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13 hours ago, MikeC said:

Michael  that's starting to look like some of my samples.   Look at page 5 on my thread.   

 

1

Looks like I'm in your footsteps. Nice photos.

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