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Priority to neck length or string length?

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I noticed that if I use 130mm as a neck length, the string length will become 328.6mm. And if I want to achieve an exact 328mm, the neck length must be 129.39mm. No big deal, but what do you think?

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I know nothing, but playing around wth string length (nut to bridge) after length (bridge to tail) bridge position, post position and tail position I find that all affect the sound/tone on my cello. Very small adjustments can make significant change to the tonal quality. Since the only one that is "hard" to change after the instrument is finished, I would suggest putting the neck at the "correct" length, and then during setup adjusting the others to get the tone you want. 

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I play around on a lot of different instruments and I like a constant neck:stop ratio. I can adjust to a different string vibrating length much easier than an odd neck:stop. But your differences here are pretty small, I don't think it would be a big deal. And other players might be more concerned about string length.

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Depending on who is setting up the instrument, they might lean the bridge back more than your 0.6mm, then all of your good work is out the window.

 

Neck length.

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Thanks for your replies. I think also that on paper it's easy to draw a neck 129.39, but on the wood nobody would do that, it's not practical, it's better to do 130 (measured at the neck/fb junction) and the string length, as a consequence, will become 328.6mm (unless you put the fb projection below 27, or a body stop less than 195).  I see 328mm mentioned often, but they should say 328 A.K.A 328.6 :lol:, well, no big deal, but I discovered something new.

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Thanks for your replies. I think also that on paper it's easy to draw a neck 129.39, but on the wood nobody would do that, it's not practical, it's better to do 130 (measured at the neck/fb junction) and the string length, as a consequence, will become 328.6mm (unless you put the fb projection below 27, or a body stop less than 195).  I see 328mm mentioned often, but they should say 328 A.K.A 328.6 :lol:, well, no big deal, but I discovered something new.

130 measured at the fb/nut junction at the playing surface.

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130 measured at the fb/nut junction at the playing surface.

yes, I mean fb/neck junction, blue line, from the nut until the belly plate edge level (which also means 129.29 mm on the red line).

post-29508-0-39785400-1479814788_thumb.jpg

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yes, I mean fb/neck junction, blue line, from the nut until the belly plate edge level (which also means 129.29 mm on the red line).

Red line to the nut/fb junction at the playing surface (top of the nut) not at the neck. I would question that the blue line has consistent meaning given the variables between some backs and tops.

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Red line to the nut/fb junction at the playing surface (top of the nut) not at the neck. I would question that the blue line has consistent meaning given the variables between some backs and tops.

Jerry you measure 130mm like this?

post-29508-0-45510300-1479816083_thumb.jpg

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Sorry to not be clear. FBI length measured from the edge of the top at the neck to the top of the nut.

Move your left arrow down to the top edge.

post-29508-0-70610500-1479818054_thumb.jpg

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That is it.

thanks, this way the string length as a consequence will become 328.8mm. These little differences I suppose they will become more apparent when doing a cello.

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thanks, this way the string length as a consequence will become 328.8mm. These little differences I suppose they will become more apparent when doing a cello.

For restorers, measuring this way allows consistency from instrument to instrument regardless of idiosyncrasies.

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I am always somewhat surprised that string length is not given more priority in that they are engineered to a very exact string length ( or so sez the chief engineer at a major string company).

Being an engineer by training and currently an aspiring repair/setup/sound guy, I am aware of my bias but still remain somewhat amazed. 

 

As always, great to hear the discussions and preferences of builders, restorers and even the players.

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For restorers, measuring this way allows consistency from instrument to instrument regardless of idiosyncrasies.

Hi Jerry, I measure the neck length the same way. May I ask how you measure the bridge stop?

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I am always somewhat surprised that string length is not given more priority in that they are engineered to a very exact string length ( or so sez the chief engineer at a major string company).

Being an engineer by training and currently an aspiring repair/setup/sound guy, I am aware of my bias but still remain somewhat amazed. 

 

As always, great to hear the discussions and preferences of builders, restorers and even the players.

The good thing about string length is that it can be measured only in one way, but it depends also on how thick the strings are, or the material.

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Ludwig, most string brands come in 3 tensions, often you can match a longer string length with light gauge and shorter with heavy. The numerous string brands vary all over the place anyway when it comes to tension, its not hard to find a string that works well with an instrument that falls outside the box.

 

Violas can be trickier. I have several large violas with long string lengths. But even with a 43 cm length there are three brands to choose from right off the shelf that are designed for such a purpose (one is poorly designed IMO). A lot more choices with small violas too.

 

And most companies will do custom orders if you get to the right person.

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So is the bridge stop measurement a "blueprint" measurement? By that I mean layed out planar to a technical drawing, and consequently the actual string length is determined by this?

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Measured from the top edge at the same place to the middle of the treble bridge foot.

 

Thanks and I do the same, but how do you measure it? I use a mini tape measure and measure directly over the arching. I've seen others use a "mensur stick" which would seem to me to ignore the arching or at the very least ignore the difference in archings.

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Thanks and I do the same, but how do you measure it? I use a mini tape measure and measure directly over the arching. I've seen others use a "mensur stick" which would seem to me to ignore the arching or at the very least ignore the difference in archings.

A mini tape as you do, a mensure stick is not quite appropriate on existing violins.

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