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How can we obtain useful light-induced changes within the wood's interior?


NewPOV
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with occasional edits:

 

 

Violin makers today are showing increased interest in the longevity of their instruments. How might photochemistry be used to extend the longevity of all stringed instruments? Very stimulating is this MN contribution of ten years ago by GlennYorkPA:

 

http://www.maestronet.com/forum/index.php?/topic/250548-sun-tanning/page-2#entry250694

 

To kick off the discussion, we already know that Chlorophyll played a catalytic role in Cremonese wood finishing. (The established heavy presence in many master violins of magnesium, which is located at the center of the Chlorophyll molecule, confirms that the Cremonese used Chlorophyll catalytically.)

 

Chlorophyll's role is to facilitate the absorption and transfer of light energy; through resonance phenomena it promotes electron transfer for chemical changes.

 

For many years the master finisher at the Louvre, George Frank used Chlorophyll-based photochemistry in tandem with various phytochemicals (obtained from his garden) in order to beautify the surface of the wood by, for example, accentuating the wood's figure. George thereby achieved, at least to some degree, the obvious goal of EMBELLISHING the wood.

 

But he went on to formulate PROTECTION of the wood as the other major goal for all finishers. Said he, "There are only two reasons for finishing wood: to protect it and to embellish it." George was not thinking primarily about biocidal issues. What is so interesting to me is that by his going after the PROTECTION goal as well, he succeeded magnificently in going the entire distance with his EMBELLISHMENT goal. His thinking went like this - if photochemical transformations at the surface work to embellish the wood, couldn't the same photochemistry work within the wood's interior to protect it against chemical deterioration and structural breakdown?

 

I am convinced that the use of an incredibly dynamic photochemical procedure for protecting the wood's interior is imperative if one is to attain violin perfection. Using more technical language, we might frame the issue roughly like this:

 

How can we photochemically “electrocute” the wood (apply jolts of electrons to the wood), thereby to harden or stiffen it (because this gifts plate tuners with new acoustical possibilities), via chemical transformations of the wood's various materials (resulting in new structural integrity) that, in sum, extend the longevity of the instrument?

 

Am clearly THINKING the two-recipe Chlorophyll-based method is just so laughably simple!   :D

 

Having developed a few specifics, then, I did not want to delay introducing the problem, summarizing here the goals we face as finishers and alluding to the accompanying set of technical issues. I am soliciting not only the collective wisdom of the forum as to general approach, but your technical suggestions and ideas. Since I'm new here, I expect you'll be able to PM me in a few days.

 

Because it is just so incredibly wide open, I believe that this area of endeavor - photochemically completed reactions that involve phytochemicals both at the surface and deep within the wood's interior - merits active critical discussion and future research by the entire MN community.

 

I am much indebted to my teacher George Frank, and my appreciation goes to all of the masters in MN who share of their work to nurture the community.

 

NewPOV

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This is  otter  under a different pseudonym. Don't feed him. It's all speculative BS to me!

 

"To kick off the discussion, we already know that Chlorophyll played a catalytic role in Cremonese wood finishing. (The established heavy presence in many master violins of magnesium, which is located at the center of the Chlorophyll molecule, confirms that the Cremonese used Chlorophyll catalytically.)"  BSBSBS

 

"Am clearly supposing the complete two-recipe Chlorophyll-based method will turn out to be laughably simple, otherwise it could not have worked consistently for the Italians. I have already developed a few specifics, but wanted to pose the problem for your consideration and future research." BS   Do your own work. Put up or shut up.

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I like this, as a new tone, otter. The furor over your first sally or two will die down. You want to push thoughts outside the box, which is great. Before, you shot down any skepticism with fire and florid words, and if you can avoid that, threads like this are awesome-- magnesium!, and you have pointed repeatedly to the garden as a place to find what Italian makers MIGHT have used before their varnish layers went on. Keep this tone, and let's all talk about it.

I believe (through smarter folk) that the primary purpose of any sealant inside would be to keep bugs out of the wood. Hard sealing against moisture is something people disagree about vehemently, I'm sure you know. I use a heavily alkaline water based sealant inside, and a bit of casein or sometimes hide glue.

If you're searching for magnesium, there is a ton in seeds. Flax and hemp and seeds have more magnesium than almost anything, and make lovely oil for varnishing, I'm told. I buy the stuff. Other than some EH Roths and Knorrs, though, I rarely see oil right down in the wood inside old instruments.

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So, on this new chlorophyll/talking reasonably leaf you've turned over, can I suggest you state clearly what you think provides the two-part system you're positing? Then we can all talk about it. The feeling that your precious secrets might be snapped up by intellectually lazy schmoes is still in the air. Take a note from the truly great makers and thinkers we are lucky to have on MN, and state your idea plainly. The community will do with it what they will.

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Christopher,

 

I believe the Cremonese started off by making a strictly resinous Essential Oils Varnish (EOV) using materials from their gardens.

 

One or two of the EOs were grapefruit oil or lemon oil that was extracted from finely shredded citrus peel using turpentine.

 

Green leaves first de-waxed and then finely shredded and then soaked in fresh gum turpentine IN THE DARK for several days was another useful procedure. Spinach or kale is great for abundant Chlorophyll (Chl).

 

You can see where I'm going with this for the ground system. No traditional vegetable oil like linseed or walnut is included in the EOV. EOV simply works. For me, traditional oil varnishing and spirit varnishing approaches are dead ends.

 

To build up the ground I am using two recipes because as I've insisted before, one-pot approaches for Cremonese varnishing can't possibly work.

 

That is because one recipe is, as I've indicated above, turpentine-based. The other is water-based. Both recipes participate in gathering and transmitting light energy.

 

I trust this posted disclosure will eventually turn away more disparaging talk. I have done rather more than mere speculation.

 

Having put quite a few cards on the face up, I would invite others to do the same.

 

Perhaps the most rude simply can't?     :P

 

NewPOV

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To kick off the discussion, we already know that Chlorophyll played a catalytic role in Cremonese wood finishing.

Yes, indeed.  Without chlorophyll there would be no leaves, and without leaves there would be no trees.

 

But of course, NewPOV is simply pulling your legs--unless, of course, he's delusional like his alter ego.  ;)

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Good morning Doug.

 

Strad's asserted the necessity of sunlight for "the varnish." This constitutes further evidence that Chlorophyll-driven photochemistry was at the core of Cremonese practice.

 

NewPOV

 

Sorry, but I think that you're wrong again. Please provide the reference for that. Perhaps you are referring to the letter from Father Micanzio (about an Amati violin ) in the Hill Stradivari book, dated april 24th, 1638, that states "it cannot be brought to perfection without the strong heat of the sun". Of course,this was written in the spring, after the cold weather referred to in the letter of March 20th, 1638.

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I have made a couple of essential oil varnishes. One lavender (spic) oil essential oil varnish I used to create a thick, syrupy propolis varnish that was prepared with water, lime, and potash. The very talented Sanghoon Lee put me on the path to trying that one. The problem I came to was that the essential oil varnish was too soft and too touchy, couldn't be touched up, manipulated, although it shaded nicely.

Having done touchup on a few high end Cremonese, the touchup was really scary too, though. Well, in the places where it wasn't already ALL touchup and polish.

The turpentine is like to turn your already green leaves a lovely emerald. Would you plan to push the color back to the red spectrum with something?

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I generally don't comment on varnish topics because I'm a novice and I learn more with my ears (eyes for internet) open and my mouth shut.  But I do know my plant physiology and the reactions occurring as NewPOV descibes makes know sense to me at all.  It's analogous to saying if you throw a bunch of engine parts in a bucket and add gasoline you can produce horsepower.  Sorry

 

-Jim

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Flax and hemp seeds have more magnesium than almost anything?  Does that mean that linseed oil from flax seeds has lots of magnesium in it?

 

 

Requiring full heat of the sun could just mean a ground that won't properly dry in the shade.  Varnish will dry without sun,  I just made some that dried to the touch overnight although it's still tender so it would dry better with UV but it wouldn't need full sun.   But there is a certan ground that will stay tacky for ages if it doesn't get full sun.  

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Not that its any of my business, but are there any other pseudonyms we should be aware of? At least in the past you had been signing off as otter using the NewPOV title. Very clever. But it defeats the purpose of sensoring your account. Well, I'll leave that up to others to ponder. But do let me know what other accounts I need to block.

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How can we photochemically “electrocute” the wood (apply jolts of electrons to the wood), thereby to harden or stiffen it

 

For me, traditional oil varnishing and spirit varnishing approaches are dead ends.

What evidence do you have that applying electric current through the wood hardens it in any way?

Edit: Further to that, how much current do you think you'll develop with any photo-voltaic process on the wood surface?  I would guess in the femto-ampere range or less, which is next to nothing.

 

 

Obviously you still haven't taken the time to read the Brandmair- Greiner research.

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What evidence do you have that applying electric current through the wood hardens it in any way?

Edit: Further to that, how much current do you think you'll develop with any photo-voltaic process on the wood surface?  I would guess in the femto-ampere range or less, which is next to nothing.

 

 

Obviously you still haven't taken the time to read the Brandmair- Greiner research.

There you go again, Bill, messing up a perfectly good thread with facts.

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What evidence do you have that applying electric current through the wood hardens it in any way?

Edit: Further to that, how much current do you think you'll develop with any photo-voltaic process on the wood surface?  I would guess in the femto-ampere range or less, which is next to nothing.

 

 

Obviously you still haven't taken the time to read the Brandmair- Greiner research.

There you go again, Bill, messing up a perfectly good thread with facts.

 

A gross misunderstanding of biochemistry, field theory, and the photoelectric effect has never stood in the way of a good varnish thread at MN.  I'm with Mike.  [irradiates another envelope of popcorn with microwaves]   :P  :D

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Sorry Mike,

I didn't mean to spoil the fun.

 

OK, if you really want to pass current through the wood,  use the violin as the tail on a kite, and fly it in a lightning storm, Ben Franklin style. Be sure to use a good quality, light weight steel cable in place of the kite string; you don't want it to get away.

 

Edit: Please report back any changes you experience.

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These shenanigans are really starting to confuse me; If I want to ask a real question and I feel like if I am reaching for an answer, or unsure how to ask what I want to know, I feel like I am risking being seen as provocative or perhaps insincere as a result of all this 'static'.   We all know the difference between a joke, a witty side ways comment and a good question, but it seems like these posts are causing many people to get fatigue from trying to parse out which is which. And intellectual fatigue is no fun. It's not stimulating. 

 

Just an observation. 

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Although I am hesitant to post anything that might validate what I see as a completely whacko premise, there is the odd coincidence that a couple of days before this thread appeared, I put some leaves in alcohol to leach out the chlorophyll and see what happens when it is applied on wood.  This is only for optical purposes... none of that electrochemical nonsense.

 

The idea was started by Mike Molnar, and his information about dichromatism and the comment about pumpkin seed oil being green in thin layers, and red in thick ones.  I recalled from ancient history that chlorophyll also does this, and wanted to see if it could work on wood.  Just something strange and different, to fill the time before I build up enough energy to start making another real violin.

 

post-25192-0-22167600-1414889922_thumb.jpg

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