BassClef

I Struck Gold on the Electronic Bay (what carat?) - 1/8 Antique Violin - Info Requested

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Notice, if you will, how the ill-fitting bridge is pushing down on one side of the upper crack, further destabilizing the face of the instrument. It's good to get the crack flexing a little bit, particularly after a violin has been sitting abandoned for 50-98 years.And check out the fuzzy edges of the high quality french bridge, that adds to the reverb... you pay extra for that usually on eBay.

fine-fractional-violin-tight-bridge-fit-maestronet.jpg

 

 

Screen Shot 2017-10-10 at 4.04.05 PM.png

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3 hours ago, Violadamore said:

Some of this I've previously addressed in other threads.   The references you give (Thank You!!) are "disclaimer" or "debunker" pages kindly provided by dealers and organizations to warn the public that all that says "Stradivarius" on the label is not "gold", as part of collections of general violin information.  They are good as far as they go, but are not what I would call specialist references for violin dating, and contain errors stemming from incomplete scholarship.  I find this quite allowable considering their primary intent, which is achieved, if only the "public" (which streams in here daily, hysterically waving their "attic Strads", and pitiably soliciting verification ) would read them.  Some confusion is caused by writers on the subject who work from general legal or historical references covering all manner of goods, and pass along their reasonings from that, rather than limiting themselves to what can be attested from the surviving violins themselves.  Many of us here are painfully aware that once a defective secondary source gets referenced into another secondary source, scholarship can become a game of "Gossip".  This page that you referenced, http://violininformation.webs.com/tradeinstruments.htm , however, has one of the most excellent and exhaustive lists of manufacturers and importers of trade instruments that I have ever seen.  Thanks again!

"Sachsen" is common on Dresden porcelain, but I have yet to personally see it (or any other German regional marking) applied to a trade violin found in the USA.  The massive production and exportation of Markneukirchen/Schoenbach violins occurred after 1870, which is when "Deutschland" was unified, so it is quite possible that no "Markies" with "Sachsen" McKinley national origin markings exist.  The Dresden china industry long predates Imperial Germany, so the "Sachsen" marking (along with "Dresden") had become traditional on that class of goods (and mere legality ignored in practice, by some manufacturers, right to the present day).  I mention the Dresden china connection because most Internet antique dating references that include "Sachsen" do so because of the china, which would be obvious from the identification photos that they post.

What I see in in practice is that, prior to the 1890's, when the UK, quickly followed by the US, got snooty about national origin markings, Mark/Sch trade fiddles were labeled with the sort of fake maker's labels that have been traditional in the violin trade since Stradivarius himself was alive, and routinely ignored by everyone in the business.  The first national origin marking that I've seen appear is a very small "Germany" under a very large "Antonius Stradivarius" (with no serious attempt to copy the format or typeface of genuine Strad labels).  I have yet to see a "Deutschland" or a "Bohemia" on a violin label, which while it doesn't categorically exclude their existence, suggests to me that at least the majority of Markies exported to the US were labeled to suit Anglophones to begin with, and were exported via Markneukirchen (whether or not they came from Schoenbach) for reasons of expediency.

Regarding the probability of German violins reaching the US during WW II, or even being produced at all, one of your own references states "Label says 'Made in Germany' – made from 1921-1939 or post 1990.  From 1939-1945 instruments did not flow out of Europe due to the war and only trickled out from 1945-1949. ".  As Doug noted, most of the makers were drafted into the Wehrmacht during those years, bringing production to a halt.

IMHO, there is zero chance that BC's wooden monstrosity prized cultural artifact was produced after WW II, so I'll stop at that point. :)

 

 

Well, that's one theory...

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Quote

That roguery and lying are objectionable, and are instantly to be Hogged out of the way whenever discovered; — that covetousness and love -of quarrelling are dangerous dispositions even in children, and deadly dispositions in men...

-John Ruskin

Ruskin, as even Herr Saunders knows, was the Englishman's Englishman.

In The U.S. the term "hogged out" is generally found in reference to the mining of ore and coal, a century or more ago. 

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1 minute ago, Addie said:

Ruskin, as even Herr Saunders knows, was the Englishman's Englishman.

In The U.S. the term "hogged out" is generally found in reference to the mining of ore and coal, a century or more ago. 

Great quote, Addie!   Sounds like Ruskin had some experience with the violin business.  :ph34r:

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Anyone ever go to an utter outbreak of chaos, and have a violin forum suddenly appear?  :lol:

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9 hours ago, Addie said:

In The U.S. the term "hogged out" is generally found in reference to the mining of ore and coal, a century or more ago. 

It originates from norse/norwegian/other nordic languages like husband, plow, ski etc. «Hogging»  in norwegian referes to a more brute way of carving something, like using a (large) hammer on a chisel or even a striking tool straight on something -  without a chisel or even a sharp edge. Like a sledgehammer, axe or adze. Could be for coal hogging yes.

I think we are getting on a new path here, as Bc’s violin clearly has hogging marks on the inside of the top - I think we can conclude that it it’s maker must originate from a coal hogger family! 

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22 minutes ago, Stavanger said:

It originates from norse/norwegian/other nordic languages like husband, plow, ski etc. «Hogging»  in norwegian referes to a more brute way of carving something, like using a (large) hammer on a chisel or even a striking tool straight on something -  without a chisel or even a sharp edge. Like a sledgehammer, axe or adze. Could be for coal hogging yes.

I think we are getting on a new path here, as Bc’s violin clearly has hogging marks on the inside of the top - I think we can conclude that it it’s maker must originate from a coal hogger family! 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f9eHp7JJgq8

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What does this tell us about the wood? I'm still looking for someone with knowledge of wood to describe the materials that make up the violin/bow/tailpiece. I know it can be difficult, especially from photos.

IMG_1670.JPG

image1.JPG

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The top is spruce, the back, ribs and neck are a very low quality, plain maple, and the fingerboard (perhaps the original tailpiece and endpin also) are some kind of generic, dyed hardwood.

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On 10/9/2017 at 5:18 PM, BassClef said:

I'm not buying it.

The Mendini brand instruments are trash right out of the box. Like Blank Face states, almost every part of the instrument is unusable, and they come with false purfling, painted on to trick the amateur violin enthusiast into thinking it's worth $60. Don't fall into this trap Doug! I would also guess that the wood on the Mendini is considerable worse even than the OP instrument. Please keep me in mind if another worthless 1/8 or smaller properly-purfled violin 80+ years old comes in to your shop. I will pay for shipping and buy you a beer to take the thing off of your hands. Thank you in advance for generously shipping me all of your antique fractional violins of similar value to OP. PM me for my address. That goes to anyone reading. I love stuff like the OP violin, it would make me very happy to amass an entire wall of this stuff to look at.

Sorry to go back this far for a reply, but I'm not saying that they are any good, what I'm saying is that this is your competition. Most parents buying a 1/8 violin for a 5 year old, are going to buy this $60 outfit over a probably $200 (after you get it fixed up) outfit containing a really trashy 100 year old MK instrument. Neither one is going to sound any good, I still contend that the Chinese instrument is probably better build (reasonable graduations, real bass bar) than your instrument.

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24 minutes ago, FiddleDoug said:

Sorry to go back this far for a reply, but I'm not saying that they are any good, what I'm saying is that this is your competition. Most parents buying a 1/8 violin for a 5 year old, are going to buy this $60 outfit over a probably $200 (after you get it fixed up) outfit containing a really trashy 100 year old MK instrument. Neither one is going to sound any good, I still contend that the Chinese instrument is probably better build (reasonable graduations, real bass bar) than your instrument.

The OP violin's wood is 80-100+ years older than the Chinese Mendini violins you speak of and the violin has been in use for as long ago as 78-98 years. Doesn't old wood and a well used instrument improve the sound quality of violin? Isn't rare old hand-worked junk worth more than new machine produced junk?

Isn't the historical value as a teaching tool or reference object greater for the circa 1919-192? cottage industry Mark/Sch violin than it is for the circa 2017 chinese machine factory violin? Given that the Mendini would have to be refitted with usable strings/fittings/case, I think there's a good argument for why the OP violin is more valuable than a Mendini 2017 1/8 violin.

WYLAB.png

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2 hours ago, BassClef said:

 I'm still looking for someone with knowledge of wood to describe the materials that make up the violin/bow/tailpiece.

 

 

2 hours ago, FiddleDoug said:

The top is spruce, the back, ribs and neck are a very low quality, plain maple, and the fingerboard (perhaps the original tailpiece and endpin also) are some kind of generic, dyed hardwood.

And reprehensibly execrable.   All of which you already knew. :P

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2 hours ago, FiddleDoug said:

The top is spruce, the back, ribs and neck are a very low quality, plain maple, and the fingerboard (perhaps the original tailpiece and endpin also) are some kind of generic, dyed hardwood.

Thank you, I missed this post.

What is the quality of the spruce?

What makes the maple lower quality?

What wood and quality of wood is the bow made from?

Is the bow also lowest quality mk/schn circa 1919-1945?

What type of metal is the wire wrapping around the bow?

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" The OP violin's wood is 80-100+ years older than the Chinese Mendini violins you speak of and the violin has been in use for as long ago as 78-98 years. Doesn't old wood and a well used instrument improve the sound quality of violin? Isn't rare old hand-worked junk worth more than new machine produced junk? "

The answer to both questions is no. Old junk isn't worth more than new junk. Age, playing, and gross neglect (as evidenced by the gouged state of the front), doesn't make it any better.

" What is the quality of the spruce? "

On a 1/8 size of this grade, why would you expect anything good?

" What makes the maple lower quality? "

Almost no figure, and again, on an instrument of this class, why would you expect any better?

"What type of metal is the wire wrapping around the bow?"

Probably copper/nickle alloy.

" Given that the Mendini would have to be refitted with usable strings/fittings/case, I think there's a good argument for why the OP violin is more valuable than a Mendini 2017 1/8 violin. "

For it's intended purpose, the 1/8 size Mendini may be fine as is, and not require any replacements. Look it up on Youtube, it gets decent reviews for what it is.

And here's the description of the Mendini. You'll note hand carved, not machine made, and inlaid, not painted, purfling. Quality is at least as good, if not better than the OP instrument

" Mendini by Cecilio MV300 solid wood violin package is perfect for students and beginners. It features a hand-carved solid spruce top, hand-carved maple back and sides and finished with a beautiful varnish and inlaid purfling. It is fitted with a solid wood fingerboard, pegs and chin rest, and an alloy tailpiece with four integrated fine tuners. Every violin is inspected by technicians at Cecilio's distribution center in the United States to ensure that their high quality standards are met.

As for value, let us know what you sell the OP instrument for, and how much money and time you have to put into it.

 

 

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1 hour ago, BassClef said:

Thank you, I missed this post.

What is the quality of the spruce?

What makes the maple lower quality?

What wood and quality of wood is the bow made from?

Is the bow also lowest quality mk/schn circa 1919-1945?

What type of metal is the wire wrapping around the bow?

The spruce looks like the average quality from the Erzgebirge oder Böhmerwald of very regular, medium grain, the maple back isn't much missing than the flames IMO, what makes it a bit cheaper, but not worser than the flamed version.

The bow is from Bois d'Abeille/Brasilwood or Bees wood, bone faceplate and open grained ebony frog with nickel mounts, the winding from some sort of brass.

All in all, it's cheap and mass produced, as long as the very few small fractionals they made could be called this way, but not from the cheapest available woods, which were beech for backs and necks, wide and irregular grained spruce and inked purfling, also stained beech wood for the bow with an open trench beech frog on a track and a celluloid face.

So, with all respects to earlier posters, this ain't IMO definitely not the cheapest and fastest produced instrument and bow from this origin and period. If not cultural heritage, so it comes from a certain tradition of handcrafting, what is suitable to put it somewhere over the abbys of computer milled and sprayed on car varnish products of more recent fabrication.

Taking into consideration, that a rarer 1/8 size should be just as expensive (often even more) than a half or 3/4 size of a similar origin, one could compare the prizes of some retail shops for old fractionals, f.i. here:

http://www.corilon.com/shop/en/small_sizes.html?pager.offset=0

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1 hour ago, FiddleDoug said:

"

And here's the description of the Mendini. You'll note hand carved, not machine made, and inlaid, not painted, purfling. Quality is at least as good, if not better than the OP instrument

" Mendini by Cecilio MV300 solid wood violin package is perfect for students and beginners. It features a hand-carved solid spruce top, hand-carved maple back and sides and finished with a beautiful varnish and inlaid purfling. It is fitted with a solid wood fingerboard, pegs and chin rest, and an alloy tailpiece with four integrated fine tuners. Every violin is inspected by technicians at Cecilio's distribution center in the United States to ensure that their high quality standards are met.

Once more, all the fractional of this class I've ever inspected (as a kind of social engagement for my collegue teachers and their students) were of a quality and in a state of non-playability, that I can only give a serious warning to trust in such new "old cars" sellers speech.

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1 hour ago, Blank face said:

The spruce looks like the average quality from the Erzgebirge oder Böhmerwald of very regular, medium grain, the maple back isn't much missing than the flames IMO, what makes it a bit cheaper, but not worser than the flamed version.

The bow is from Bois d'Abeille/Brasilwood or Bees wood, bone faceplate and open grained ebony frog with nickel mounts, the winding from some sort of brass.

All in all, it's cheap and mass produced, as long as the very few small fractionals they made could be called this way, but not from the cheapest available woods, which were beech for backs and necks, wide and irregular grained spruce and inked purfling, also stained beech wood for the bow with an open trench beech frog on a track and a celluloid face.

So, with all respects to earlier posters, this ain't IMO definitely not the cheapest and fastest produced instrument and bow from this origin and period. If not cultural heritage, so it comes from a certain tradition of handcrafting, what is suitable to put it somewhere over the abbys of computer milled and sprayed on car varnish products of more recent fabrication.

Taking into consideration, that a rarer 1/8 size should be just as expensive (often even more) than a half or 3/4 size of a similar origin, one could compare the prizes of some retail shops for old fractionals, f.i. here:

http://www.corilon.com/shop/en/small_sizes.html?pager.offset=0

The example site you give has no fractionals in the 1/8 size.  I'd suspect this isn't because they can't find them. :P

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25 minutes ago, Violadamore said:

The example site you give has no fractionals in the 1/8 size.  I'd suspect this isn't because they can't find them. :P

I won't be so sure about this; I found the last years only two old smaller than 1/2 fractionals, and I know what to do with them and whom to give. (The OP I would probably ship oversea^_^).

For comparison purpose, that''s what we would recommend at our school, with quality components

Simple

https://www.thomann.de/de/alfred_stingl_by_hoefner_1-8_1-10_und_1-16_violinen.html?ref=prod_mnfmtx

Better

https://www.thomann.de/de/yamaha_v5_sc18_violin_1_8.htm

and even the Euro 429 product is claiming that only the belly is handcarved, not the bottom or anything else; this might shed a light on the promises of the Mendini sellers.

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8 minutes ago, Blank face said:

The OP I would probably ship oversea^_^

 

Considering the probable markets that would find it acceptable, and the realities of exchange in such places, how would you get a bushel of yams and a live chicken back into Europe to enjoy them?  :huh:

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7 minutes ago, Violadamore said:

Considering the probable markets that would find it acceptable, and the realities of exchange in such places, how would you get a bushel of yams and a live chicken back into Europe to enjoy them?  :huh:

I guess I would ask somebody with experience in gator export for advice; but I have the feeling that you missed the point of the quote:P.

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5 minutes ago, Blank face said:

I guess I would ask somebody with experience in gator export for advice; but I have the feeling that you missed the point of the quote:P.

Wise of you, and no, I didn't.  Your point was deflected.   No "touché" for you!  :lol::P

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1 hour ago, Violadamore said:

Wise of you, and no, I didn't.  Your point was deflected.   No "touché" for you!  :lol::P

You're still missing it; but there are surely some yams available in a Manhattan supermarket, the chicken must be saved before it reaches McDonalds.B)

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2 hours ago, Violadamore said:

The example site you give has no fractionals in the 1/8 size.  I'd suspect this isn't because they can't find them. :P

I've checked out this site a lot in the past 4 years, they often have a stable of 1/8 violins selling for 650.00 € and up. The reason you don't see any now is because they are rare and they move quickly once in stock.

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