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Dating a "Sebastien Kloz An 1700"


Woodman
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This violin came to me in its coffin box with neck detached. The rest of it pretty much fell apart as soon as the chinrest was removed. Someone inked a "repair note" on the top, there is some penciling on the back, and of course, the label. Can anyone guess to the actual period of manufacture? Thank you.

 

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Thank you both! I noticed the name difference but didn't know what to make of it. A copy of a replica?

I've had two Jon Bapt. Schweitzer Copy of 1813 violins come through my hands, which (I'm told) were produced 1890-1905 as replicas, and have seen Schweitzers labeled "Copy of 1814", which I think of as fakes of the replicas. So I wondered if something like that was going on here.

The name on the inked repair notation does not come up in BRITISH VIOLIN MAKERS BY THE Rev. W. MEREDITH MORRIS, B.A.

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1 hour ago, Blank face said:

I agree that it appears to be french, though the rib joints and construction is identical with the Markneukirchen built on the back method. Isn't the inside pegbox blackened, too, or just very dirty?

The inside of the pegbox is varnish. A dampened q-tip cleaned it up far more quickly than I would have expected.

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Yes, I'll do all of the work. It looks like the 'repair glue' completely disintegrated. 

The top has a crack aside the bass bar - you can see two cleats along the bottom edge - which I'll want to recrack. It has flex and the joint is not tight. The top, of course, is in two pieces. The back seems whole. Some lining is a bit loose.

The block at the neck is my only obstacle - I've not yet done a neck reset. But I've plenty of wood and can make what I need.

Here is my latest woodworking effort, a ¾ missing part of its lip:

Delipped ¾ violin top off repairs 21.jpg

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43 minutes ago, Brad Dorsey said:

The insides of the plates have visible saw marks, a feature I have seen in other cheap Mirecourt violins.  I'm pretty sure that this means the arches were pressed -- not carved.

In my eyes the marks seem to originate from a teeth plane, as they are often found in Mirecourt instruments (usually at the hardwood/maple parts.). Pressed violins are rather an early 20th century thing.

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Saw blade marks, indeed. Straight on the upper/lower bouts. Mysteriously curved on the C-bouts, but that would make a circular blade of rather large radius.

Also inside the peg box (sorry for the fuzzyness; cheap camera or cheap luthier, not sure). Like I said, the pegbox seemed to clean up easier than I would have expected.

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How hard is it to repair what looks like a bass bar crack below the center seam ?

I guess the bass bar has to be removed, adjusted or renewed, and glued back on ?

And how much of that gunk can be taken off without removing varnish ?

And how much of that gunk is an  antiquing effect and was there when new ?

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In general, I plan on doing as little as possible to turn it into a player. The gal who will end up with this violin will be thrilled with its age & provenance.

The bass bar will not be touched. I can get 5" up into that top crack, and even 3" will be enough to me, to get the top more tightly together. I'm not sure why the repair tech did not get the top tighter. Maybe someone glued the saddle crack without removing the top; down the road, with the top off, another put on the two cleats.

The gunk looks authentic. A definitely interesting pattern where the chin rest was removed. There is damage to the varnish under the chin rest, probably the result of many a sweaty pit?

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3 hours ago, Delabo said:

How hard is it to repair what looks like a bass bar crack below the center seam ?

I guess the bass bar has to be removed, adjusted or renewed, and glued back on ?

And how much of that gunk can be taken off without removing varnish ?

And how much of that gunk is an  antiquing effect and was there when new ?

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1. Not hard if it's yours - very hard if you take it to a professional! it will involve much sucking of teeth and scratching of the head in the vicinity of a calculator

2. not necessarily, depends how far the crack travels up the bar ... in this case I think we might bleach the crack and squeeze in some runny glue and rely on the bassbar to hold the repair (if the bassbar is actually on top of the crack)

3. all of it with the right approach - with Mirecourt violins of this era they often have a very tough varnish and you can maybe use a solvent

4. the back gives a clue as to the original finish - very minor shading - the entire table and scroll is covered in black gunk which will come off

 

 

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3 hours ago, martin swan said:

1. Not hard if it's yours - very hard if you take it to a professional! it will involve much sucking of teeth and scratching of the head in the vicinity of a calculator

2. not necessarily, depends how far the crack travels up the bar ... in this case I think we might bleach the crack and squeeze in some runny glue and rely on the bassbar to hold the repair (if the bassbar is actually on top of the crack)

3. all of it with the right approach - with Mirecourt violins of this era they often have a very tough varnish and you can maybe use a solvent

4. the back gives a clue as to the original finish - very minor shading - the entire table and scroll is covered in black gunk which will come off

 

 

I love this response.  I have experienced #1 multiple times when taking violins in. So true ha ha 

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21 hours ago, martin swan said:

1. Not hard if it's yours - very hard if you take it to a professional! it will involve much sucking of teeth and scratching of the head in the vicinity of a calculator

2. not necessarily, depends how far the crack travels up the bar ... in this case I think we might bleach the crack and squeeze in some runny glue and rely on the bassbar to hold the repair (if the bassbar is actually on top of the crack)

3. all of it with the right approach - with Mirecourt violins of this era they often have a very tough varnish and you can maybe use a solvent

4. the back gives a clue as to the original finish - very minor shading - the entire table and scroll is covered in black gunk which will come off

 

 

Thanks for such a good answer.

My guess is that more often than not bassbar cracks fall to either side of the bassbar and not under it ?

Life would be too easy if they fell directly under it :lol:

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On 8/15/2018 at 2:05 AM, Bill Merkel said:

. . .  made from a kit?

I wonder if you are not far off. A 19th century violin kit? The back lip (but not the top) has a groove in which the ribs sit. Like Assembly-101-for-dummies? Or is this a not-uncommon practice, cutting a channel for the ribs? A tonal /structural thing?

I've glued more than a few back separations but this is only my second back-off job; the other, I recall no groove. I am ready to glue the back to the ribs except . . . 

My dilemma: the groove is filled with glue ...

I'm studying neck angles and such, seeing how 9˚ will be achieved, and am readying myself to make a new neck block ...

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