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building a viola vs violin


Florian
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I'm planning to make my first string instrument soon and as a violist (I've been playing for seven years now) I of course really want to build my own viola. After searching for a long time online I quickly find out however that there are so many more resources for violin and cello building for beginners as well as wood and hardware required to finish. So my question is; is it a better idea for me to build a violin as there are many plans, instructions and cheap hardware for it, or should I make a viola which I can play myself and be proud of? (with maybe a steeper learning curve and more things to work out for myself)

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I agree with arglebargle. If you play viola then I would make one and take good notes. You can improve anything that needs adjusting on the second one. Like arching, graduation, etc. The only difference I see might be the price of wood.

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On 6/14/2017 at 2:48 PM, Florian said:

I'm planning to make my first string instrument soon and as a violist (I've been playing for seven years now) I of course really want to build my own viola. After searching for a long time online I quickly find out however that there are so many more resources for violin and cello building for beginners as well as wood and hardware required to finish. So my question is; is it a better idea for me to build a violin as there are many plans, instructions and cheap hardware for it, or should I make a viola which I can play myself and be proud of? (with maybe a steeper learning curve and more things to work out for myself)

I have made a number of violas.  The small details of outlines do not seem to make much difference.  Make it sort of like a violin.  but a little wider in proportion to length.   I also make the lower part a little larger to keep the string length down.  (The Tertis model viola is an extreme form of what I do.)

It seems to me that BOTH air volume and surface area are important.   But I cannot prove it because each instrument has different wood etc etc etc.

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8 minutes ago, Johnmasters said:

I have made a number of violas.  The small details of outlines do not seem to make much difference.  Make it sort of like a violin.  but a little wider in proportion to length.   I also make the lower part a little larger to keep the string length down.  (The Tertis model viola is an extreme form of what I do.)

It seems to me that BOTH air volume and surface area are important.   But I cannot prove it because each instrument has different wood etc etc etc.

My own personal viola is very nice and based off an old Italian one, however I once tried a german modern design (I can't remember the makers name) which had an enormous lower part, I have to say I was quite impressed by how much depth and sound it had.

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