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shoulder rest for 1/8 violin


miles
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Hello to all again!

 

My daughter is four and shall start to take violin lessons soon.  I am looking for shoulder rest for her, but cannot decide on which one to get:

 

bon musica or play on air junior

 

I have Bon Musica for myself and like it, but am afraid that it might be too "rigid" for the violin movement on her shoulder sine she just starts. 

 

Can you recommend a shoulder rest for a young beginner?

 

Many thanks in advance!

 

miles

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Children of that age usually use a simple sponge and rubber band as a shoulder rest.

.

 

Yes.

 

Miles,

Have you thought about the quality and shape of the chin rest?  The typical small, low, plastic, mounted on the left chin rests for fractional sized violins can be rather non-functional.  It might be worth spending some time experimenting with chin rests to see what works best, and then a very simple sponge and rubber band arrangement as a shoulder rest might work fine, if any shoulder rest is needed at all. 

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Yes.

 

Miles,

Have you thought about the quality and shape of the chin rest?  The typical small, low, plastic, mounted on the left chin rests for fractional sized violins can be rather non-functional.  It might be worth spending some time experimenting with chin rests to see what works best, and then a very simple sponge and rubber band arrangement as a shoulder rest might work fine, if any shoulder rest is needed at all. 

 

Hello skiiingfidder,

Nice to hear from you!  Thank you very much for the suggestion.  I had a few things in mind in regard to the chin rest:

 

(1) soft adjustable chin rest, which I saw on eBay (could not find it anywhere else?) and looks appealing from the photo:

 

http://www.ebay.com/itm/ADJUSTABLE-VIOLIN-CHIN-REST-1-8-1-4-1-2-SOFT-NEW-/140356340550?pt=String_Instrument_Parts_Accessories&hash=item20ade3cb46

 

or

 

(2) regular ebony guar. style chinrest

 

one of these will be covered with chinrest pad or gel

 

I am not sure whether it will work, but I really like the idea to cover the whole chinrest because mine hurts chin and neck.

 

Many thanks also to Robertdo and Rue.  Rue's violin is very beautiful, and the sponge looks like dust pad for make-up?  I will actually try it on my violin, too. :)

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Why thank you!

I tried all kinds of sponges and find these red ones the best. I got mine from Shar. I also use the covered hair elactics to hold it on with. They are 'softer' than a rubber elastic. I just strung two together for length.

Ask your daughter's teacher what her aproach to shoulder rests is. Some individuals need them and others play best without.

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Miles,

 

Concerning chinrests, among adult players, maybe most of them, the trend seems to be to play with the chin over the middle of the lower bout, over the tailpiece.  They seem to do this even if they have a chinrest with the cup to the left of the tailpiece, and the mounting part is over the tailpiece, like the popular guarneri.  They in effect ignore the cup and place chin on the hump over the tailpiece.  I've often wondered whether those folks wouldn't be happier with a chinrest in which the cup is over the tailpiece like the Flesch chinrest.

 

This is not a recommendation, because I haven't tried them, but judging just from photos, Wittner makes two interesting styles of fractional sized chinrests, one in which the cup mounts directly over the tailpiece and another in which the chinrest mounts to the left of the tailpiece but the cup extends to the right over the tailpiece.  Here's a link to their site: http://www.wittner-gmbh.de/cgi-bin/db_search_e.pl?rubrik=Chin%20Rest%20for%20Violin&gruppe=Chin%20Rest

 

Here's what those chinrests look like on the instruments (Scroll way down the alphabetical list to the W of Wittner): http://www.johnsonstring.com/cgi-bin/accessorysearch/accessorysearch.cgi?&select1=CH&instrument=VN&wood=1&bracket=1

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I tried all kinds of sponges and find these red ones the best. I got mine from Shar. I also use the covered hair elactics to hold it on with. They are 'softer' than a rubber elastic. I just strung two together for length.

 

 

Rue,

 

The alternative I've seen for securing those cosmetic pads (if that's what yours is) to the back of instruments is to attach them directly to the back with some kind of non-permanent adhesive (rubber cement?).  I've seen that done on some very fine instruments, from classic Italians to modern instruments.  So, apparently there are adhesives which will allow for removal of the pad simply by pulling it away and then pressing the pad back on to the back when the pad is needed again,  and it won't harm the varnish.

 

I'm too paranoid to try something like that on my own instruments, but as noted above, people who have more expensive fiddles than my instruments use that system regularly.  On an inexpensive fractional sized violin, worries about harming the varnish would be far less.  And attaching by the non-permanent adhesive and just leaving the pad there all the time might make things easier for a child, assuming the pad is thin enough for the fiddle to fit into the case with the pad in place.

 

Here's a thread from violinist.com which discusses these pads and their attachment.  See especially Michael Darnton's post on that thread. http://www.violinist.com/discussion/response.cfm?ID=21121

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I'd be too paranoid to glue something on my violin too...

 

The hair elastic works well...and I don't bother to take it off most of the time.  It doesn't hinder storage in the case.

 

And it really doesn't move very much.  I sometimes tug it downwards a bit so my collarbone (the reason for the pad in the first place) is fully protected from bruising...but that's about it.  But the red cosmetic sponge from Shar is by far the best...it is soft, has a nice density, doesn't move and is lasting really well.

 

I also like that it's red...it doesn't 'stand out' like the white ones do.

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That isn't paranoia, it's good solid common sense.  It rather amazes me, the liberties some folks take with valuable classics that they either own or have on loan.  I've seen examples on videos, and occasionally in person, and heard about more, that are stunts I wouldn't pull with one of my better Germans, much less a Strad or GDG.  Of course, if I sat on one of mine, or smashed it into a music stand, or tripped on my skirt and fell on it while dancing, or whatnot, guess who'd have to fix it again :lol: .

 

Rue, those violins are absolutely beautiful :)

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Why thank you too! :)

 

The darker one in the case - with the black-painted pegbox (that I don't personally like the look of)  :P ...is my viola.  I love the way it sounds as well as how it looks (er, outside of the pegbox, did I mention the pegbox?)!

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Just to make clear how this adhesive is used, it's applied to the pad and not to the fiddle.  Once the adhesive is dry on the pad, the pad is pressed against the fiddle for a non-permanent adhesion, and when the pad is pulled away (which is easy to do without harming the varnish), no adhesive remains on the fiddle.

 

That's the theory at least, and it seems to work for some.  What exactly the adhesive is, I don't know.  I've heard it called rubber cement.  Whether there's something better and safer than rubber cement for this, I don't know.

 

I'm with Rue and Violadamore in being too cautious to try it, but I'm an amateur violinist who doesn't depend on playing the instrument for my living. 

 

If I were playing professionally, I'd probably be treating the fiddle far less carefully just to get the job of performing done.  The instrument would become a tool which needs to serve my needs, and not the other way around.  When you have to stand in front of a few thousand people and play from memory for a half hour or so day after day, you don't want to be expending extra thought on how you should be babying your instrument.  Professional playing definitely wears instruments.

 

The only situation I can think of which might be more wearing is the 11 year old toting his fiddle to school on a crowded bus, and using the fiddle case to whack classmates and as a shield against thrown objects.

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