Indiana University violin shop - future uncertain


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8 minutes ago, JacksonMaberry said:

If possible, I would like to avoid further discussion of the Federation or other topics here. I appreciate your understanding.

Jackson, maybe I missed it in a post, but are they actively looking for an instructor?

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2 hours ago, jacobsaunders said:

Butt-Joint-Jerry on a job hunt?:P

Actually Jacob I am employed at the moment, as are the other people in my shop.  I am interested, however, in them hiring someone qualified....in a reality based non delusional sense.

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12 hours ago, PhilipKT said:

I never check the dates of posts, so I did not notice that this post is a year out of date.

I read all the discussion, however and I am fascinated. There is a misconception that membership and some kind a federation or trade group implies a minimum level of skill in that trade. I’m a member of the musicians union, and the only requirement is to pay your dues. My membership doesn’t say a thing about my ability as a player.

The guild system is very good about regulating its members. I would imagine that a career journeyman is a very skilled worker, Even if he has not achieved level of master.

It’s just different things in different countries, not good or bad just different.

Philip,

To avoid rehashing an old discussion. The requirements for membership in the  AFVBM were discussed in a topic started by me on March 14, 2018 . Look up " American Federation of Violin and Bowmakers" on the Maestronet Pegbox site. Yes,we have dues. No, that does not qualify someone for membership.

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13 hours ago, Jerry Pasewicz said:

Jackson, maybe I missed it in a post, but are they actively looking for an instructor?

Hi Jerry,

I may not have been clear yesterday, but they are seeking someone for a part-time, adjunct position responsible for teaching the making/repair courses and supervising the Stringed Instrument Tech Repair Crew (what a mouthful!). I don't know where the listing has been posted, but it isn't posted on the IU Faculty job listings. I hope that helps. I share your wish that they will attract a well qualified candidate with a vision for restoring the degree program and expanding the offerings. If you'd like to chat about it with me PM me and we can exchange numbers.

 

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2 hours ago, nathan slobodkin said:

Philip,

To avoid rehashing an old discussion. The requirements for membership in the  AFVBM were discussed in a topic started by me on March 14, 2018 . Look up " American Federation of Violin and Bowmakers" on the Maestronet Pegbox site. Yes,we have dues. No, that does not qualify someone for membership.

I wasn’t saying that it did, At least I certainly didn’t mean to imply that. The man who made my cello Is not a member, I don’t think.My intent was to point out that there’s a difference between The system over here and over there.

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15 hours ago, Jerry Pasewicz said:

Jackson, maybe I missed it in a post, but are they actively looking for an instructor?

Hey Jerry;

There have been inquiries from faculty at the U.  The tricky bit in this situation is that they are looking for someone "part time", which means someone who is willing to travel in to the school for classes (which probably means finding a qualified person a few hours drive from the school) or someone who wants to set up a shop nearby and spend part of their time teaching.  I believe the scope of the maintenance of school owned instruments has probably changed... as I believe they are actively liquidating a portion of those instruments.  Too bad.  The could have been a little bit of a carrot.

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40 minutes ago, Jeffrey Holmes said:

Hey Jerry;

There have been inquiries from faculty at the U.  The tricky bit in this situation is that they are looking for someone "part time", which means someone who is willing to travel in to the school for classes (which probably means finding a qualified person a few hours drive from the school) or someone who wants to set up a shop nearby and spend part of their time teaching.  I believe the scope of the maintenance of school owned instruments has probably changed... as I believe they are actively liquidating a portion of those instruments.  Too bad.  The could have been a little bit of a carrot.

It sounds like they are only making a half hearted attempt.  It is a shame really, they could move the other direction and set up a really good program......oh well, it isn’t football.

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45 minutes ago, Jeffrey Holmes said:

Hey Jerry;

There have been inquiries from faculty at the U.  The tricky bit in this situation is that they are looking for someone "part time", which means someone who is willing to travel in to the school for classes (which probably means finding a qualified person a few hours drive from the school) or someone who wants to set up a shop nearby and spend part of their time teaching.  I believe the scope of the maintenance of school owned instruments has probably changed... as I believe they are actively liquidating a portion of those instruments.  Too bad.  The could have been a little bit of a carrot.

Yes, that is a tricky bit. The load is 29 hours per week, which would be a lot of time for a professional to spend away from their personal bench where they do their "full time" work. 

I want to clarify something about the school's collection of instruments - only part of the so called "Elite Instrument collection" is being liquidated. The two most valuable pieces of that collection just sold at Tarisio - a Gennaro Gagliano and a GB Guad - for a total of 1.25 mil. I want to note, very clearly, that this money is earmarked specifically for purchasing new instruments for the students to use and can't be spent on just anything. There are still many fine antiques in the school's collection, as well as some great fiddles by living makers like Tim Johnson, Doug Cox, and David Van Zandt. So there's still some carrot on the end of the stick.

6 minutes ago, Jerry Pasewicz said:

It sounds like they are only making a half hearted attempt.  It is a shame really, they could move the other direction and set up a really good program......oh well, it isn’t football.

Jerry, I agree for the most part. The circumstances of the school and university are totally unique - there are a lot of amazing instruments in the hands of students and faculty, including rate Italians, that we got to see and study back when the program was running. There's also a bunch of research departments to collaborate with that have instrumentation valuable to the study of wood properties, varnish materials and manufacture, computer aided design and manufacture, and I could go on. If there was a will and a budget, the program at IU could be converted to a four year program with more than one faculty member and a host of interdisciplinary activities to help push the craft forward in a way similar to the Oberlin workshops. 

That said, as someone passionate about the program and the possibilities, I have to take some measure of heart in the fact that they're doing anything at all, especially after I spent the last year and a half lobbying for the cause. It's rejoice or cry, and I'm choosing to rejoice for now.

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  • 9 months later...
On ‎3‎/‎8‎/‎2018 at 7:05 PM, jacobsaunders said:

The first time I saw a Starker cello bridge, I was quite surprised, and wondered WTF. Mind you, only months later, I stumbled across a Withers patent sound post from ca. the 1950‘s, which I still have somewhere (I would have to look for it). The Withers sound post seems to be much the same principal, i.e. a normal sound post with a hole drilled in the end grain face each end, and a rubber stamp on the side, advertising the patent. Perhaps that’s where Prof. Starker got the idea. If you say that they were conical, Jeffrey, I’m sure you’re right, since I didn’t bother measuring anything.

 

Since nobody seems to want to explain to me what These University Programmes actually are, I would just say that I hope they aren’t some DIY class, where you can go around afterwards saying that you have „graduated“ in violin making.

 

On ‎3‎/‎8‎/‎2018 at 10:01 PM, Jeffrey Holmes said:

That doesn't surprise me much.  Very few ideas (good or bad) end up being "completely original".  If you find that Withers soundpost, I'd love a photo.  I believe Fawick herein the US (who had the Hillaire shop build his fiddles) fitted some of the instruments with a partially hollow post in the '70s as well... in addition to a strange looking "graduated" (thinner in the middle) contraption.

Ages ago, we discussed the Starker cello bridges, with the holes drilled in the feet. I speculated that he had perhaps got the idea from seeing a Withers patent sound post. I mentioned that I have a Withers patent cello sound post and Jeffrey asked me to post pictures. I still have it, although I can’t find it. I certainly haven’t thrown it away. It is probably several sediment layers down in some dusty corner of the workshop. The cello has a Withers certificate from the 50’s, so one might speculate that the post was from about then.

 

Last week I fished a second Withers patent sound post out of a Forster sen. Viola. I thought I should post pictures before I loose that too. It is 71mm long, 7,1mm diameter, and the hole that goes right through like a polo mint is 4,2mm diameter, it has 5 annual rings. They seem to have used a sound post setter, with a triangular spike. The stamp “E.Withers Patent” is on the side facing the treble f hole, so you can read it better from the outside.

 

Should anyone run away with the misconception that I advocate such sound posts, I do not, rather I am just documenting what seems to be one more nutty “improvement”

IMG_2272.jpg

IMG_2273.jpg

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4 hours ago, jacobsaunders said:

Last week I fished a second Withers patent sound post out of a Forster sen. Viola. I thought I should post pictures before I loose that too. It is 71mm long, 7,1mm diameter, and the hole that goes right through like a polo mint is 4,2mm diameter, it has 5 annual rings. They seem to have used a sound post setter, with a triangular spike. The stamp “E.Withers Patent” is on the side facing the treble f hole, so you can read it better from the outside.

 

Should anyone run away with the misconception that I advocate such sound posts, I do not, rather I am just documenting what seems to be one more nutty “improvement”

IMG_2272.jpg

 

Thank you Jacob!

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On 3/9/2018 at 4:58 PM, Violadamore said:

Here guys, chew on this........... [Pulls the pin on a "knowledge grenade" (which begins to trumpet, "I'm a 30-second bomb, 29, 28..........."), tosses it into the room, and bounces out the window] :ph34r::lol:

https://www.chronicle.com/article/There-Is-No-Case-for-the/242724/

A learned friend and colleague of mine once advised me: "My Philosophy degree will admit me into any pay-toilet as long as I have a quarter(adjusted for inflation)".

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  • 11 months later...
  • 1 month later...
On 3/8/2018 at 10:01 PM, Jeffrey Holmes said:

If you find that Withers soundpost, I'd love a photo. 

Dear Jeffrey,

I found the Withers patent sound post that I fished out of that Banks cello. I hope you like it, after all, I’ve spent 3 years looking for it:)

Withers Soundpost (Cello).jpg

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6 hours ago, jacobsaunders said:

Dear Jeffrey,

I found the Withers patent sound post that I fished out of that Banks cello. I hope you like it, after all, I’ve spent 3 years looking for it:)

Withers Soundpost (Cello).jpg

Thanks for remembering Jacob!

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27 minutes ago, Mark Norfleet said:

I do not.  I don’t even remember what might have been unusual about them, other than possibly being stamped?

I seem to remember they were a larger diameter on the ends and skinnier in the middle...  but it's been a while.  Might have them mixed up with another variant post.

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2 hours ago, Jeffrey Holmes said:

I seem to remember they were a larger diameter on the ends and skinnier in the middle...  but it's been a while.  Might have them mixed up with another variant post.

I remember one piece tops and two piece necks, but not funny sound posts.  Yes it has been a while, and I don't miss them.

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5 minutes ago, Mark Norfleet said:

I remember one piece tops and two piece necks, but not funny sound posts. 

That's what I remember too. But there was enough unusual stuff going on with those fiddles, that I may have gone into brain overload and failed to remember everything.

Back to the original topic: Mark, you could commute back and forth to Indiana University in about five hours each way, so you must accept your duty as the best candidate for the teaching job. However, should you take the job, I will lend you my car, which might cut the commute time down to as little as two hours, depending on traffic, and the amount of time spent in jail for driving close to 200 MPH.  ;)

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